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Organizing Your Makeup Drawer

Updated: Jul 11, 2023

Part 1: Building Your Bathroom “Beauty Bar”

I have a bit of a skincare and make up habit. I used to subscribe to boxes that sent full size items to me every month. When my daughter still lived at home, we’d love to split them. But wow did we end up with a lot of products.

So much so, that my cabinets and drawers are overflowing. I can’t seem to get enough of the latest beauty products, although I’m nowhere near the level of requiring a closet to store things. Hard to fathom I’d even use the products before they aren’t safe to use any longer. Given this is going to take some time and includes multiple drawers, underneath my sink and my vanity, I'm going to post the project in parts.

I’d like to organize and display what I do have in a much nicer way in my bathroom, so it’s time to cull, clean up and refresh!

Out with the old

There is a time limit on how long you should keep your makeup and skincare. I've put together a quick reference guide for each type of product in another blog post. Suffice it to say, if you have old makeup, this is a great time to clear it out.

I ended up with half a shopping bag full of items I needed to throw out. This process definitely made me rethink

how much makeup I actually need. Many of those items, I forgot I even had in the first place. For a review of how long to keep your makeup and skincare, visit my blog post Ew, throw that away!

Keep Like Things Together

I began this process by pulling everything out of my primary makeup drawer. It was a lot. I could hardly understand how it all fit in the first place. But I also realized, I use only a few items everyday. Yes, if I'm going to a big event, or a special night out, I'll use more of what I have (that jar of Tarte eye shimmer, for example) but I truly only use about 20% of what I've got in this drawer.

I then sorted and organized every item by category. Makeup tools, skincare, lips, eyes, foundation, hair ties/barrettes, etc.


This is a no brainer. When I pulled the old bins out, it was a bit of a rude awakening how much hair and debris had accumulated in the drawer. I used some cleaning wipes and gave everything a good wipe down, including everything that was going back into the drawer.

How do you want to organize it?

I bought all new bins for this project. It was a package of 24, interchangeable bins in various sizes. I had some in the drawer before, but they were primarily larger sectioned bins. This forced me to make my things fit in those bins vs. the other way around.

The thing I love about individual bins is the endless options to organize them. I was surprised the smallest sized bins were as useful as they were. This was a great choice for the project, as you can see. They are clear, so you can see the contents of the bins from any angle.

I considered a bamboo version but ruled them out for two reasons. First, they take up significantly more room and second, they are opaque so you'd have to dig around a bit more to find certain items.

Arrange for Easy Access

Once you're ready to put everything back, think about how you get ready everyday.

What products do you use daily and what items do you use infrequently? Understanding how you use your products will determine how you want to organize them. Keeping frequently used items closer to the front of the drawer, means easier access and less digging. Using the spaces further back for items that you don't use as often ensures the most efficient use of the space you have.

You've already sorted like items together, which will make it even easier to place everything back in an organized and thoughtful way. If you're like me, and you use a few products everyday, you might consider grouping those items for quick access and then sorting the rest. I opted to keep like products together which I think made for a more cohesive plan overall.

I find myself opening the drawer just to look at how pretty it all is! Getting ready this morning was a breeze - no digging for anything. Everything was in its designated place.

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