For many renters, it’s easier to live out of a suitcase than face organization headaches head-on. But according to organization expert Dorothy Breininger, the process starts with debunking the myth that being organized means being neat.
“Your stuff can be a jumble,” Breininger says. “Being organized is about finding what you need when you need it.”
The key, she says, is to think about how you use a room. Breininger believes that home organization is highly personal and should cater to your lifestyle.
For example, if you don’t use cotton balls, why do you need them in a jar next to the sink? If you don’t use washcloths every day, why keep a huge stack on a shelf?
Check out Breininger’s five bathroom organization tricks below:
1. Hang out
“When it’s a small apartment, I love using over-the-door organizers with clear pockets,” Breininger says. “Traditionally they’re used for jewelry or shoes, but you can use them for all your little bathroom stuff, like hairbrushes and toothpaste.”
2. Get hooked
“I really like hooks for blow-dryers and curling irons,” Breininger says. “Even if you just put a nail in the wall, it’s an inexpensive space saver.”
Get creative about where you put your hooks or nails too – place them inside cabinet doors to keep tangled cords out of sight.
3. Throw it in
“If you’re lucky enough to have under-the-sink storage or counter space, you can organize supplies in plastic drawers,” she says. “Figure out the different categories of products you use, and designate a drawer for each of them – nail supplies, dental hygiene, etc.”
Breininger recommends not worrying about how stuff looks in the drawers.
“You just need to get it into the right drawer,” she explains. “Being neat with everything is something different.”
4. Be lazy
Lazy Susans are ideal for organizing spices, but Breininger says this tool’s functionality doesn’t have to stop there.
“Put your Lazy Susan under the bathroom sink,” she suggests. “Put everything from toilet bowl cleaner to hairspray on it. You can easily access everything because it spins.”
5. Look up
A bathroom wall – especially the space above the toilet – is prime real estate.
“Over-the-toilet shelves are a good idea,” Breininger says. “Just ask yourself what you’re using them for – to store beauty supplies you never use, or to access stuff you use a lot?”
- Declutter Your Way to a More Organized, Intentional Home
- 10 Home Organization Woes (and How to Fix Them)
- 10 Ways to Make a Small Bathroom Look Bigger
Originally published January 22, 2015.