Downsize & reDesign - Bathroom Edition

If there was one thing I was good at growing up, it was making messes and holding on to everything. I hated throwing things out and felt a sentimental attachment to the silliest items. 

It wasn't until recently that I discovered a life with less stuff is actually way more pleasant. I began donating all kinds of stuff and really made an effort to keep my space clean. Now that I have begun to change my ways, I cannot even begin to describe the serenity I feel when I come home after work. After spending so long feeling overwhelmed in my own home, I must say downsizing has really changed my life.

I'm starting this Downsize & reDesign series to help others who are or were at one point in my position. I'll be going room by room, step by step, helping you rethink what you believe you need and reorganize what you actually need.  I know it sucks and I know the thought of getting rid of the majority of your stuff seems mind-boggling, but I promise you there is light at the end of the tunnel. 

So for the first edition of this series, I'll start off with the easiest room to completely makeover - the bathroom. I've mentioned before that I am a renter, so my wiggle room as far as shelving and putting nails in the wall is limited. I try to avoid these as much as possible. Because of this, I fully utilize cabinets, cupboards and organizers. 

The first thing I did in my bathroom, and what I recommend you do, is take out all of your liquid/ gel products. This includes hairsprays, gels, toothpaste, sunscreen, hydrogen peroxide, whatever you keep in your bathroom. I put it all on the counter and thoroughly went through each item and reconsidered why I had been keeping it. Half of the bottles I pulled out, I had no idea were even in there. The amount of things we buy and forget about is remarkable. You'll get a nice lesson in frugality when you start cleaning your house.

Toss things that you haven't used in 6+ months. Chances are if you haven't used it for that long, you aren't going to be using it any time soon. There are a few exceptions to this rule. If it's a back up item (spare toothpaste, shampoo, etc.) keep it until you need it. Also first aid items (hydrogen peroxide or rubbing alcohol) should be kept in case of necessity. Use your best judgement when tossing things. If you feel guilty about wasting money by throwing things away, pass it down to a friend or family member. Clutter their house, but clear yours. Ha ha!

Next, pull out your hair products (combs, styling tools, clips). I know this may come as a shock, but you don't need 5 brushes, 7 curling irons or 10 comb. You only need 1-2 of most of the things you're storing away in your cupboards. Pick what you need and get rid of the rest!

The downsize portion of this process is all common sense. If you don't need it, don't use it or even don't want it - don't keep it! Using your bet judgement and thinking like a minimalist will really get you through this. I know it's the hardest part of the process, I felt your pain.

Now that you've reduced the clutter in your bathroom. It's time for the fun part, organizing! I never thought I would be calling organizing the fun I've changed.

Since most bathrooms have a cabinet under the sink and a medicine cabinet, take advantage! I embrace the small amount of storage I have. Try and reduce counter clutter and get that 12 pack of toilet paper away from the side of your toilet! If it's not cute and can't be made to look cute, keep it out of sight! I have 3 main organizational tools in my bathroom. 

The first is a small 3 drawer organizer like this 3 drawer organizer. I store my girly time products in the first drawer, hair accessories in the second, and 2 curling irons in the third. These storage containers are so useful for projects like these. They aren't the most attractive but since they're under the sink no one will ever know. 

My second form of organization is a small basket I slid under the sink to hold my liquid products. I keep sunscreen, hydrogen peroxide, rubbing alcohol and a few other products stored away in here. It keeps all my products together in one spot and makes it look a little less chaotic. 

My third organizational tool is mason jars. These aren't so much for purpose as they are looks. I have 3 mason jars sitting on the back part of my toilet. One for q-tips, another for cotton pads and the third is a really cool mason jar lotion dispenser. In my medicine cabinet I have a fourth mason jar that I keep my coconut oil in. These containers make these things look more appealing than their regular packaging. To spruce up my mason jar arrangement on my toilet I added my 2 country style mini vases which you can find a DIY for here

Since I'm all for clean counters, I like to reduce the amount of stuff I keep around my sink. I limit it to a soap dispenser and a cute little buddha sculpture. I also cutdown the clutter in the medicine cabinet by only keeping things that I use on a daily basis stored nicely away. 

Just because you're making this room look brand new, doesn't mean you need to spend a fortune to do so. Thrift stores have awesome storage and organizational things just waiting to be picked up. If you're hesitant about thrift stores, check clearance sections in your local department stores or Amazon. Most of the baskets and boxes I have purchased have either been thrifted, bought on Amazon or bought from Target. If you have old baskets that are sitting in your closet, now is the time to utilize them! Once we get to the closet edition of this series, chances are I will tell you to toss those old baskets.

Start small. I picked the bathroom as the first edition not only because it's a small room, but because it's an easy room to ease yourself into the idea of tossing what you really don't need. It is so important not to overwhelm yourself or you will turn yourself off to the idea of downsizing at all. 

I hope you found this post useful and can use my tips to help you downsize, declutter and destress your bathroom. If you have enjoyed what you read, please make sure to subscribe below or in the NEWSLETTER tab at the top of the page for weekly updates on my recent posts.

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