Organization Challenge — 3 Bathroom Vanities; 0 Drawers!

Truth be told, if given the choice, I think I would eliminate cabinets altogether. Definitely in the kitchen but probably in the bathroom, too. Give me deep drawers that pull out and keep me from having to crouch and climb to the back of a dark hidden space any day! But, in our house, the fact is — we have cabinets. A lot of cabinets. As a matter of fact, we have several vanities that not only have cabinets, but have only cabinets. As in — no drawers in the bathroom at all. Until recently, I’d let that detail be my excuse for lazy storage and lackluster organization (i.e. no organization). But, finally… FINALLY… I came up with solutions and conquered those pesky vanities with no drawers! Today, we’re taking a peek inside three bathrooms — Eliza’s double-vanity Jack and Jill toddler bathroom; the guest bathroom; and the powder room — to check out the dire “befores” and much improved (and most importantly, more functional!) “after” conditions!

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Toddler Jack and Jill Bathroom Organization Ideas

Sources: Step Stool | Cabinet Pulls 

Toddler Bathroom — Jack & Jill

The saddest bathroom vanity of the bunch is probably Eliza’s double vanity. The kid stages shift so quickly from baby to toddler to little girl (and even before that, the bathroom served as a joint guest bathroom) that it’s hard to implement a permanent system. My solution was to just kind of shove everything in. Even things that had no business being in the bathroom vanity. The only time I would open the vanity is to pull out a new bottle of shampoo or body wash, and meanwhile, her dresser drawers were overflowing with items that would have been better purposed in the bathroom. So, I finally took care of it. This is what it looked like before…

Bathroom Organization Makeover for a Bathroom with No Drawers

The main struggle with any cabinet is bringing items from the back of the cabinet forward and making use of vertical space. So, organizers that can pull out, stack, and turn are going to be our bffs when it comes  bathroom cabinet organization. THIS slide out drawer also comes in a two-tier option and helps bring even the bottles in the very back forward, without reaching in and knocking everything over. It’s great for housing back-stock items.

How to Organize a Kids Bathroom with No Drawers

SourcesWire Pull Out Drawer Organizer

On the other side of the cabinet, I wanted to make better use of the vertical space. I love using turntables in cabinets for the same reason I love pull-outs and drawers — to be able to bring the items in the back forward. But, had I only used a turntable, there would have been a ton of wasted space. I found THIS acrylic riser which housed my favorite divided handle bins underneath perfectly.

Organization Ideas When There's No Drawers in the Bathroom

Sources: Acrylic Shelf | Clear Divided Turntable | Divided Bin w/Handle | Disney Princess Makeup Eraser | Aquaphor Healing Ointment | Sweet Cheeks Diaper Paste 

By the way, THESE makeup eraser towels are meant for the face but this darling Disney princess collection set work perfectly as Eliza’s washcloths.

Favorite Toddler Washcloths-- Kid Toiletry Essentials

Sources: Disney Princess Makeup Erasers

Under the second sink, things were also… sad. I took everything out, came up with a plan, and now have plenty of room to grow and evolve. Here was the before…

Kid Bathroom Organization Ideas with No Drawers

And here is the after!

How to Organize a Bathroom Vanity with No Drawers for a Toddler

SourcesModular Drawer | Humidifier

To keep Eliza’s toothbrush close by, and to make use of the back of the cabinet door, I used THIS adhesive cup, intended for a razor. It holds her toothbrush and toothpaste perfectly. If you have multiple kids, you can use multiple cups on the back of a cabinet door.

How to Organize a Bathroom With No Drawers

Sources: Command Cup Holder

When there’s no drawers, add… drawers! I love THESE stackable modular drawers — they come in several different sizes and configurations so I just measured the vanity opening first before committing. Even though I just stacked two units on top of each other, you can actually snap the top off of the bottom unit and turn two units into a single, double-decker unit.

How to Organize a Bathroom Vanity Cabinet When There's No Drawers in the Bathroom

Sources: Modular Drawer

The modular drawers are actually deep enough to stack THESE storage compartments in, also — I’ve been using this clear plastic modular storage system sets in drawers and cabinets all over my house! See how I’ve mixed and matched the set of 10 customizable compartments in the following posts:

Bathroom Organization Ideas for Vanities with No Drawers

Sources: Modular Drawer | Plastic Modular Storage System

Bathroom Vanity Organization Ideas When There's No Drawers in the Bathroom

Sources: Bath Tub Finger Paint

We aren’t short on apothecary jars and Eliza chooses a bath fizzy or some sort of tub add-in before most baths so we grouped them all together on the counter for easy access.

Toddler Bathroom Organization -- Vanity Ideas with No Drawers

Sources: Apothecary Jars (similar)| Bath Water Color Tablets

Guest Bathroom

Before tackling the guest bathroom, I actually had most guest toiletries and supplies outside the bathroom. I formerly used THIS 2-gallon jar. I used to house it in the Jack and Jill bathroom — which until recently was situated between two guest bedrooms — but since then, relocated it down to the only standing guest bedroom. It’s an easy solution if you travel and have regular guests; but, it can be a little difficult to find exactly what you’re looking for with everything mixed together.

Using a huge jar for small guest toiletries

Sources: Glass Apothecary Jar

After taking a look and facing the reality of our guest bathroom, it was clear some changes needed to happen. The guest bathroom vanity has no drawers and the cabinet had turned into a home for toilet paper… and that’s basically it. It didn’t even hold helpful items for guests. So, we changed that. Here’s what it looked like a few weeks ago…

How to Organize a Bathroom with No Drawers

And here’s how it looks today.

Bathrooms with No Drawers -- Cabinet Organization Ideas

Sources: Wire Pull Out Drawer Organizer | Divided Bin w/Handle | Divided Lazy Susan

Like Eliza’s bathroom, you’ll see some commonalities to battle the no-drawer challenge:

  • Pull out drawer system
  • Riser (to make use of vertical space)
  • Handle bins for easy-pull-out
  • Turntable to access items in the back of the cabinet on rotation

In the wire drawer unit, I kept a spare hair dryer with brushes in the bottom drawer and spare toothbrushes and dental toiletries in the top drawer. Spare rolls of toilet paper fit perfectly on top.

I took all my sample toiletries and divided them into like piles. I discarded any that were old and then decided on the best way to keep them accessible and available to guests. I had THIS divided turntable with tall sides — with four compartments, it worked perfectly for shower supplies. It comes in two sizes HERE and mins it the smaller of the two.

How to Organize a Bathroom with No Drawers

Sources: Divided Lazy Susan

I don’t always label, but in this case, it was imperative. If I can’t tell what things are at a glance, how would a guest who’s unfamiliar with the system be able to easily distinguish the difference and identify whats available? I used my label maker (HERE) to quickly label each category. I’ve raved about it in lots of organization posts but if you don’t have one, you’ll probably want to start organization projects, just to be able to use this thing. It’s so simple and so fun.

Organization Ideas for Bathrooms with No Drawers

Sources: Divided Bin w/Handle | Labels from Label Maker

My clear divided bins with handles were also key and again — they fit perfectly under the riser I used!

Cabinet Organizers for Bathrooms with No Drawers

Organizers for Bathrooms with No Drawers

Sources: Divided Bin w/Handle | Labels from Label Maker

The guest vanity is now stocked with the essentials and is serving its intended purpose — even with no drawers in the bathroom.

Powder Room

The final bathroom is the half bath — the powder room (see all the details and full reveal HERE). The items the small 24″ vanity should be holding are along the lines of spare toilet paper, facial tissue and soap for downstairs. The reality of what it was holding was this…

How to Organize a Bathroom with No Vanity Drawers

And here’s the after!

Organization Ideas for Bathroom Vanities with No Drawers

Sources: Bin w/ Handle Cut Outs (for soap) Bin w/Handle Cut Outs (for books) | Small Storage Box Components (set of 10 modular system)

Like the two bathrooms earlier in the post, my method for easy organization was to…

  1. Determine what should be in the bathroom vanity
  2. Then, take a look to see what was actually in the vanity
  3. Remove all items and group in like piles — purge/rehome items that shouldn’t be there
  4. Based on the piles of like items, determine what would be the most efficient storage solution and consider — should these items be contained?; how do I keep these items accessible?; and, how do I store these items most efficiently (vertically, in a certain container/organizer, etc.)
  5. Start with the most important and bulky items/organizers and work my way down to the smallest items

How to Organize a Powder Room Vanity with No Drawers

Sources: Bins w/Handle Cut Outs | Small Storage Box Component | White Turkish Hand Towel | Striped Turkish Hand Towel

This powder room is pretty specific to our family’s needs because it’s one of Eliza’s primary bathrooms and it’s also off the kitchen and probably most frequently visited throughout the day by the most people. Unlike some, we have to keep an assortment of Eliza’s books in here, reading glasses, etc.

As our needs shift, there’s plenty of room to expand. Also, using a modular container approach on these shelves, it’s also easy to move groups of items and reconfigure them within the cabinet.

How to Organize a Bathroom with No Drawers

I can’t believe I had never actually “organized” these three vanities and they all had the same thing in common — they all had no drawers in the bathroom. I have more typical bathroom organization projects coming soon as I shift focus back to our bathroom that took on a full remodel this past year. You can subscribe to emails to make sure you catch that post at the bottom of the email. You can also check out more organization projects in the organization gallery HERE.

Other Bathroom Organization Posts

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  1. 4.14.22
    Monica said:

    I love the use of revolving storage in cabinets. When I read over the reviews for these storage bins, just about every review said these particular bins don’t spin when you put items in them. Are you having any problems with that?

    • 4.18.22

      Hi Monica, Thank you for taking the time to stop by. I love using these Lazy Susans in my cabinets and pantry and this one works great! I show it in action in my latest Instagram reel, if you’d like to take a look. I really like the higher sides and the dividers.

  2. 4.21.22
    jennibell said:

    I love dividers and shelves for all.the.things. That is BRILLIANT, putting the toothbrush and toothpaste on the cabinet door. I hate having “stuff” out on my counter, but with only under-cabinet storage it makes it difficult.
    I recently re-did our master bathroom cabinets and came to the same conclusion — there was a lot in there that didn’t need to be. I was able to free up some space by taking things out like all my nail stuff (that can just as easily go in the linen closet) and putting all.the.things that used to hang on the wall in there. Those drawers and containers can get expensive, but once bought they will last for YEARS – worth the investment.

    • 4.21.22

      Jennibell, Thank you for taking the time to stop by and for your kind note. The countertops in this bathroom certainly needed some work, so it was very refreshing to find cabinet storage solutions for all of the things. I really like that toothbrush/toothpaste holder and may have to find some other areas where the same can be used.

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