31 Days of Decluttering, Day Three & Four: Master Bathroom

Bathroom Drawer Declutter Before & After

Welcome to Days #3 & 4 of 31 Days of Decluttering.

Since Day 3 was Shabbat, I figured I was doing well just to get the Shabbat dishes washed and mostly put away. Earlier today, i.e. Day 4, I thought: I’m just going to quickly declutter my make-up drawer in our bathroom. It was a jumbled mess and I was constantly wasting time searching for what I need.

I mean, seriously — just look at it. Ugh!

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An hour later, and I was finishing the last of eight drawers and cupboards in our vanity. I guess I figured in for a penny, in for a pound. I had the time — and the motivation — so I just decluttered the whole bathroom vanity. I even did a quick declutter in our shower stall — tossing an empty bottle of body wash and a rusty razor (eesh!).

Like I mentioned earlier, our new house has an abundance of storage space. Not only do we have many closets — but we also have great storage in our bathrooms.

Bathroom Cupboard Before & After Declutter

Great storage is a good thing, but it can also lull you into hanging on to stuff you never use — since you have room for it. Like that empty body wash bottle in the shower! Or when I emptied out my make-up drawer, I found four beauty product containers that were completely empty! What a waste of space! Into the trash they went.

I also found a pile of hair bands, loose change, and even some kippah clips (my boys are forever losing theirs, so I’m going to hold on to these four and dole them out in exchange for hugs — I’m not above bribery!).

As I continued cleaning the bathroom vanity, I noticed that we had a lot of first aid supplies — including many duplicates (three half-full tubes of Neosporin, for example). The bathroom is not an illogical place to keep this stuff, but not when it’s all spread out in different spots. No wonder we can never find a bandaid when we need it! I moved all of these products to our linen closet for now, where I will eventually create a first aid basket/tub/station there (stay tuned for a future decluttering & organizing project.)

Bathroom Dental Hygiene Drawer Before & After

When I was finished tossing the trash and rehoming various products, I quickly tidied up what was left in the drawers. To containerize like items, I just used baskets and plastic tubs that we already had on hand. Most of them came from the dollar store — or the Dollar Spot at Target — at one point. You don’t have to spend a ton on gorgeous acrylic drawer organizers to keep things tidy and looking good!

The last step in my decluttering was to clean the counter-top and drawer faces of the vanity — which my daughter and I did together. (She loves to clean when it involves a spray bottle!)

Here’s the vanity, all cleared off — the only items left out on the counter are my electric toothbrush, our hand soap and lotion. (I have a thing for clear counters!)

bathroom after

(By the way: If I had to pick out finishings for a bathroom, shiny black surfaces would probably be at the bottom of my list. Not only are our vanity, counters and sink black, so are our toilet and shower. We’ve gotten used to it, but it was very weird at first to shower in a black stall! We’re grateful, though, for the functionality and spaciousness of the room — and since we have two Bar Mitzvahs to save up for, I’m thinking a remodel won’t be happening for quite a while!)

And there you have it: What started off as a small project (one drawer) took on a life of its own and turned into a whole bathroom declutter.

Public accountability helps, my friends. So please: Leave a comment below and let us know what you have decluttered today!

31 Days of Decluttering

Do you, too, feel the need to get a handle on your house? Join me for the 31 Days of Decluttering challenge! Maybe you’re willing to take on one project a day (remember: small ones count!). Perhaps you’d rather pick four projects, and give yourself a week to work on each one. Maybe you just want to tackle your basement for once and for all. It’s all good! Everyone is welcome to join.

Day One: Decluttering the Toy Storage Closet

Day Two: Decluttering the Top of a Bedroom Dresser (Finish What You Start!)


  1. Thanks for the inspiration! Many home organization posts make me feel like I need to spend tons of money on bins, containers, space-saving devices, etc. if I want my house to look neat. It seems like you used what you already had at home and still accomplished a neat look.

    If I work on organizing my home over the next few weeks, cleaning for Passover should be much easier!

    • Mara Strom says

      Definitely, Estie! I know the big organizing blogs have gorgeous containers – but it’s not essential at all! In a pinch, I even use empty shoe boxes, empty tissue boxes and ziploc bags. I can always go out and buy new baskets and bins, but I figure I should wait to see what my real needs are before I lay out any money! So glad you’re finding this encouraging! That’s definitely my intention in baring my proverbial dirty laundry. 🙂

  2. Good work! Beauty is in the eye of the beholder: When I first saw the photo of your black bathroom I thought “How chic!” And wished we could afford to redo our bathroom to make it look like yours

    • Mara Strom says

      Aw – you’re so sweet, Kathy. It’s definitely very “retro”. It’s growing on me – the toilet and shower being all black is still a bit freaky though!

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