8 Ways to Tackle Storage in a Tiny Bathroom

We've got your top-to-bottom organization game plan. Ready?

If you're in the tiny bathroom club like I am, then you've likely already faced some space and storage dilemmas head on. (Not only do I have a tiny bathroom, I only have one of them.)

I’m not going to lie: small space bathroom challenges can feel overwhelming and insurmountable. But I'm living proof that they can be solved.

Marble Backsplash In White Country Style Bathroom

White Country Bathroom with Marble Backsplash

A plaid window shade is a charming accent in this country bathroom featuring white, wood wall panel and a farmhouse sink.

So take a deep breath, light a candle and settle in so we can help you figure out your top-to-bottom tiny bathroom storage game plan.

Get Real About Your Space

Small Navy Blue Bathroom Adjacent to Chartreuse Guest Bedroom

Small Bathroom With Bold Navy Blue Walls

To turn the once-drab powder room into a bold and cheerful space, the walls and ceiling were painted navy blue in a semigloss finish. The dark-colored walls and ceiling help tone down the intense chartreuse paint of the adjacent guest room.

The first thing you have to do is to honestly assess your space, and get real about whatever limitations you might have.

Take some careful measurements of your bathroom, and pay close attention to all the nooks and crannys. For instance, if you think you might be able to fit a shelf in between the sink and the toilet, carefully measure that space so you can try to find something that fits perfectly.

Even if you’re not great at sketching (I’m not either!), I would recommend that you draw out your space and include the measurements of each area so you have that as a reference when you’re researching possible solutions. I would even measure the inside of your vanity, if you have one.

Purge and Re-Organize

White Bathroom With Pedestal Sink

Small Bathroom With Pedestal Sink

A pedestal sink maximizes space in a small bathroom. A large mirror and white walls, floor and fixtures make the room feel larger, while a black and white mosaic tile inlay accents the marble floor.

From: Sarah's House

Next, it’s time to purge and re-organize all of your bathroom essentials. I get that this step is also not fun, but chances are you have a lot of stuff in your bathroom that you might not be using.

I would suggest emptying out every drawer and cabinet and making three piles: “must-have items,” “only-need-sometimes items” and “don’t-need-at-all items.” Once you see what you’re dealing with, you’ll be able to easily make decisions in terms of any new storage containers or organizers needed.

You can ditch or donate the “don’t-need-at-all items," and think about the “only-need-sometimes items" in terms of alternative locations. For example, if you have a number of medications that you only need to access every once in awhile, you might want to think about organizing them in a nice basket and locating them someplace else (like a linen closet or in an unused spot in your kitchen). This could potentially free up some space for your “must-have items."

Identify Any Unused Spaces

HGTV Smart Home 2015 universal design bathroom.

Universal Design Bathroom

Serving the downstairs as well as the guest bedroom, this state of the art universal design bathroom is made to work for everyone, regardless of age, size and capability.

Photo by: Eric Perry

Eric Perry

Now it’s time to take a look around your bathroom and search for any spots that are currently underutilized:

Questions to Ask Yourself

  • Can you add a shelf underneath your vanity to create another level of storage?
  • Do you have any unused spots on the walls that some shelves would work on?
  • Are you making the most of any niche space you have in your shower?
  • Is there an over-the-toilet storage solution that might work for you?
  • Is there space on the wall for some additional towel racks?
  • Do you have room for any additional storage cabinets or shelves in your space?
  • Is there an over-the-door rack solution that might work?

Take a look around using a critical eye and see if there are areas of your bathroom that might be due for a storage upgrade.

Get Creative With Storage...

Small Bathroom With Smart Storage and Organization Ideas

Small Bathroom With Clever Storage Solutions

Cabinets in a small bathroom can take up a whole lot of space—create storage by using hanging baskets and rails on the wall, then make use of accessory containers to organize all the small stuff.

Photo by: IKEA U.S.


Once you’ve identified the spots in your small bathroom that are being underutilized, you can start getting creative about how you will best make use of them.

Don’t limit yourself to strictly bathroom solutions either. Kitchen and closet storage options often work great in the bathroom, as well. For example, this IKEA rail system (above) works great for storing utensils in your kitchen, but when you switch it up and think of the bathroom storage possibilities, a whole new world opens up. If you’re lacking a vanity and have a pedestal sink, wall storage could be your ticket.

In my bathroom, we don’t have room for toilet paper storage, so I use a large glass bowl vase to keep rolls of toilet paper easily accessible.

...But Not Too Creative. Basics Work, Too!

Small White Country Bathroom

Bright Country Bathroom With Book-Page Wall Decor & Skirted Sink

Careful attention to design ensured that this already-small bathroom would not feel closed in. Wine boxes add beautiful, warm color and create easy storage. A skirt for the sink provides extra storage underneath, and the pages of an old book are taped to the wall for inexpensive and effective decoration.

Photo by: codyulrich.com


While it’s fun to be creative, sometimes it makes sense to get back to basics if that’s what works best for your space. In especially tiny spaces, standard towel racks might take up too much space. But a hook can always do the trick.

Don’t be afraid of saying no to creative options if there is a tried-and-true option that might work better for you.

Use Matching Storage Containers



2009-1003 K 006

Photo by: Stacey Brandford

Stacey Brandford

When you have visible storage containers in a small space, I prefer to create unity and symmetry by using one color or style of container.

Small bathrooms tend to have a lack of cabinet options, so your items often need to be on display. When choosing your storage containers, going with one type will create a more calm and pulled together look.

Create Design Interest

Black and White Bathroom With Tree Wallpaper and Black Vanity

Black and White Bathroom With Bold Tree Wallpaper

This bathroom is wallpapered in a tree design with a black background, with a matching sink cabinet and modern streamlined toilet. A silver beveled mirror adds a polished finishing touch.

Tiny bathrooms often serve as a great spot to take some design chances in your home and really make a statement.

Once you have your storage sorted, consider doing something to amp up the design factor of your space, like painting your door with chalk paint, adding a bold shower curtain or even wallpapering the space.

Even if you’re not ready to go quite so bold, you could do something simpler like adding a fun, poppy piece of art.

Consider Going Custom

White Bathroom With Skylight and Shelves

Bathroom With Skylight and Built-In Shelving

Bring loads of natural light into an interior space with a skylight tube, as seen in this bright, white bathroom. The idea of cutting a hole in a roof may be intimidating, but this project can be completed in a few hours with midlevel DIY skills.

Photo by: Marian Parsons

Marian Parsons

If you own your own home and have more of a budget, a luxe solution to a tiny bathroom would be to create some custom or built-in storage for your space.

This would allow you to incorporate shelving or cabinetry that perfectly fits whatever tiny dimensions you might be dealing with. Even if you’re unsure about how to best make use of your space, meeting with a carpenter might help give you some ideas of custom options that could work for you. And because your bathroom is small to begin with, building out a custom solution might not be quite as expensive as you think.

Next Up

Maximize Small-Space Storage

Use cabinets and shelving in smart ways to create storage in your small spaces.

Small Bathrooms, Big Design

Get tips for designing a master bath as luxurious and enticing as those found in the finest spa retreats.

10 Ways to Organize Your Makeup + Beauty Supplies With Items Around the House

Before you buy expensive organizers to sort out your stash of makeup and beauty products, raid your home for items you can repurpose.

Bathroom Organization: Taming Hair Care Chaos

Between sprays and spritzes, bands and barrettes, hair care gear gets out of control in a hurry. Try these tips to smooth out your styling routine.

Quick Tips for Organizing Bathrooms

Use these seven tips for bathroom organization to make the most of your bathroom, regardless of its size.

10 Ways to Maximize Under-the-Bed Storage

Amplify bedroom storage with clever clutter control solutions that sit out of sight below the mattress.

Get Organized with Countertop Containers

Corral the clutter on your bathroom countertops and unleash your creativity with these stylish containers.

5 Strategies to Declutter Your Bathroom Countertop

Hair dryers, flat irons, sprays and other products can easily create an unsightly mess on your bathroom countertops. These quick fixes will clear your counters and organize your toiletries.

10 Steps to an Orderly Kitchen

An organizing expert offers expertise for kitchen organization and storage solutions.

How to Sort Crafting and Gift Wrapping Supplies

With some planning, you can have a user-friendly space in your home for craft projects and prepping gifts.

Meet the Team

Get to know the talented writers and editors of HGTV's show and design blog. 

Go Behind the Blog

From the Archives

Take a look back at our past posts, from entertaining and design trends to up-and-coming HGTV shows.  

Read All Our Past Posts

Go Shopping

Refresh your home with stylish products handpicked by HGTV editors.


Watch Live TV

Don't miss your favorite shows.

Live Stream HGTV Now

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.