How to banish bathroom clutter

A disorganized bathroom makes for a disorganized start to the day. (Photos: NYTimes)
Even the most beautiful, spalike bathroom can be defeated by a common foe: the clutter created by bottles, soaps, washcloths, toothbrushes, cosmetics, and other toiletries left out on every available surface.

“The bathroom is a space that can set you up for success or failure in the day,” said Marissa Hagmeyer, co-founder of the home-organizing company Neat Method. “If it’s a disaster, it’s hard to get ready for the day, and you’re automatically heading out the door in a rough mood.”

We asked professional organizers and designers how they banish bathroom clutter.

Take stock of existing storage space

If your vanity drawers and medicine cabinet are not neatly organized  you may be surprised at how much space you already have. The best way to begin a bathroom cleanup, Hagmeyer said, is to take everything out and get rid of anything you know you will never use.

Keep only the few products you actually use, she advised, and dispose of everything else.

Once the purge is complete, look at how much storage space you have and consider whether the remaining items will fit in a reasonably uncluttered way.

Make more room
If you conclude that you do not have enough storage space in the bathroom to hold everything, it is possible to create more.

During a renovation, one option is to recess one or a couple of cabinets into the wall cavity, between studs. “You’re capturing little nooks to create additional storage,” said Monica Fried, an interior designer in New York.

Many medicine cabinets are designed to be recessed into the wall above a vanity, but that is not the only option. Fried sometimes recesses shallow cabinets into other bathroom walls, with mirrored, or painted doors.

Jessica Davis, founder of Atelier Davis, a design studio with offices in Atlanta and South Orange, New Jersey, has added armoire-size built-ins to some bathrooms and semi-recessed cabinets just a few inches deep to others.

“Shampoo and hair products don’t require a ton of space,” she said. “It’s not like storing books on a shelf, where you need 12 inches (30cm) of depth.” In the bathroom, 8­–10cm will usually suffice.

If you would rather avoid cutting holes and mounting cabinets to the wall, an easier option is to add a freestanding piece of furniture. In larger bathrooms, some designers install chests that look as if they were pulled out of a bedroom.

In smaller bathrooms, you could buy a multitier rolling cart that can be tucked under a washstand or in an unused corner, said Wendy Silberstein, founder of the Aesthetic Organizer in New York, who likes models from the Container Store. A rolling cart is “freestanding, and you can put a set of towels on the bottom and everyday items on top,” she said.

Design the inside of drawers and cabinets
When you are ready to put your toiletries back into drawers and cabinets, grouping similar objects will help you keep things organized.

“You want to categorize everything — but think in broad categories,” Hagmeyer said.

Then use drawer dividers or small bins to keep each category separate. Silberstein likes using clear plastic bins, which makes it easy to see things stored in drawers and medicine cabinets. And she often removes products like cotton swabs, floss, bandages, and razor blades from the packaging and stuffs them into bins, to minimize the amount of space they take up.

Larger items like hair dryers, brushes, toiletry bags, and cleaning products can be stored in baskets that fit into a big drawer, cabinet, or closet, or stowed under the sink.

You can also put daily items on display.

It is impractical to store every last bottle in a drawer all of the time. Products you use every day should stay where you need them: by the sink, shower, or bathtub.

Develop a plan for linens
To keep your bathroom looking serene, figure out where you will put your towels and washcloths. A stack of clean, fluffy towels can be a beautiful thing, so when they are freshly laundered, fold them nicely and pile them up in a closet or on a shelf. “They all need to get lined up, whether you sort them by color, by size, or by trim,” Barbara Sallick, co-founder and senior vice president of design at Waterworks, said.

Once those linens are in use, you will need enough hanging space for every wet towel and washcloth to avoid having them left on a doorknob or tossed on the floor.

If you think you do not have enough wall space, there are many options that can help. Wall-mounted towel racks can hold multiple towels. Freestanding racks can be placed on the floor. You may be able to mount short towel bars on the sides of your vanity. You could add hooks on short walls, or on the back of a door. And if all else fails, you can drag in a stool or side table. اضافة اعلان



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