How To Declutter Your Medicine Cabinet

clean modern white bathroom empty of clutter

How To Declutter Your Medicine Cabinet

Where do you keep your toothpaste? Is it out on the counter because that’s the only available space? If so, it might be time to declutter your medicine cabinet.

Overcrowding can sneak up on you. Maybe you didn’t finish your last round of antibiotics and the prescription bottle remains in your cabinet. There might be a once favorite shade of nail polish that you no longer wear, or fancy soap you received as a gift and never used.

Finally, something is knocked off the shelf and falls into the sink when you’re searching for that anti-itch cream. It’s definitely time to declutter!


Start With a Trash Can

Decluttering is simple, but can seem overwhelming if you over-plan. There’s no need to schedule it by putting it on your calendar. The best way to get started with this organizational task that will simplify your life is to grab a trash can liner and head to the bathroom right now.

First, you’re going to look for old and dried out bottles of makeup. They could be serums for nails or eyelashes or tiny tubes of sample lipstick. If you haven’t used them in over a month, or they’re more than six months old, sweep them into the trash.

When you find that you are resisting throwing away something, like a lip color you used to love, take a picture with your cell phone so you can replace it with a fresh and unexpired purchase.


Drugs are Bad

Take out any medicines with expired prescriptions or in different containers than their original ones. But don’t just toss them! If you throw them in the trash, they could end up in the wrong hands or poison pets and wildlife. If you flush them, they end up in our waterways. October 28, 2017 is National Prescription Drug Takeback Day. (It takes place every April and October.) You can take any unused medications to locations in your community, such as pharmacies or police stations, for safe disposal. Find a location near you.


Soap, Nail Polish, and Cosmetics

If you do have perfumed soaps still in their wrappers but aren’t really interested in using them as soap, move them to your clothes drawers to use as sachets. If you don’t like the scent, then move them to your toolbox or sewing kit for lubricating zippers and door hinges.

How about nail polish bottles? If they’ve become clumpy but you still love the color, store them with your arts and crafts supplies for an art project. You could paint flowers on a picture frame that needs new life, or cover up a chip on your favorite coffee mug. Store your still-good polish in a wire basket, which makes it easy to see your collection at a glance. You can buy one with a handle in the bathroom section of your favorite store.

Throw out any makeup that’s more than two years old, less for eye makeup. Here’s a handy guide to knowing how long to keep makeup.


Super Sharp Tweezers

What about the tweezers? Do you have some that are dull and useless? Some brands offer lifetime guarantees that include free sharpening, so send those in for refurbishing. If they are crooked and don’t grip well, tweezers won’t even help with splinters. Go ahead and throw them out.

The best way to protect and store your expensive tweezers is to put them over a rim of a small jar or glass. You can place your makeup brushes inside, and now your tweezers won’t get knocked onto the counter. Dropping your tweezers even a few inches can ruin their alignment.


Where Should Things Really Be?

What else is in your medicine cabinet? Maybe the lotions should be in a basket under the sink. Would it be better to have the aspirin in the kitchen?

Try to make the cabinet as useful as it can be for your lifestyle. Just because it’s called a medicine cabinet doesn’t mean you have to use it for that. If that’s where you get ready in the morning, then go ahead and put your makeup in there.


Customize Your Cabinet for You

Before you start putting things back into your medicine cabinet, check the space between your shelves. Most heights are adjustable, so see if there’s another arrangement that would make it easier for you to find your smaller items.

Once you’ve adjusted the shelf height and the cabinet is empty, give it a thorough cleaning. Make sure to get the gap between the door hinges and the outer edges of the mirror. Maybe you’ll need a little baking soda to clean rusty rings from the bottom of the shelves.


Keep it Spacious

Try placing your items back in the cabinet, but leave one-third of each shelf empty. You’ll appreciate having a little space to maneuver without knocking things over. To make the cabinet really useful, keep adjusting your items as you use them each day. Put your most frequently used things on the bottom shelf, and keep tossing what you no longer use.

Now that you’ve taken care of that overlooked space in your bathroom, things feel more spacious and open. It’s important to have a little room to breathe.

If there are other places in your house that need attention, Newly Organized can help. Whether it’s a fast fix like the medicine cabinet, or a larger decluttering, we can give you more space in your home and in your life.  


PHOTO: Logan Ripley at Unsplash / CC0 Public Domain

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