Last Updated: February 2, 2023
Are you a makeup enthusiast, but also an organizational queen? We get it! You’re in a constant battle of having multiple brushes, sponges, and products scattered near arm’s reach, and want more clutter-free space.
Luckily, you’re not alone—our expert makeup artists and product enthusiasts have come together to give you the best tips on how to organize makeup in a functional, practical, and aesthetic way. They even answer some frequently asked questions and share some interesting facts, so read on!
How to Organize Makeup?
Where do you start when you have drawers full of brushes, sponges, palettes, and other beauty products? Follow these steps to transform your makeup area:
1. Take It All Out
It’s best you start with a clean canvas to know how much space you’ll be working with. Pull out all the products from your drawers and put them on a flat surface or table. This also applies to lip balms and other beauty products stashed away in purses, vanities, your nightstand, and the bathroom cabinet.
If you want to organize beauty products, you need to know how many products there are and how much space you have. This is a good time to check if there are any beauty products that have expired or products you don’t even use, which you can get rid of to declutter. If you haven’t used them in the past year or they’re beyond the expiry date, throw them out before you start to organize makeup.
|Did You Know: Expired makeup can harbor bacteria that can lead to eye infections, rashes, and acne.|
2. Clean Everything
Makeup can be quite messy, but cleaning it can even be quite a satisfying experience. Start by sanitizing and wiping down every surface. If you already have a few beauty containers, take them to the kitchen sink and give them a gentle wash with dishwashing liquid. When washing your makeup bag, follow instructions on how to get makeup out of fabric to ensure your pouches stay clean for future use.
Before you organize makeup, you have to clean it as well. It’s important that you thoroughly clean your makeup sponges and brushes at least once a month. Use a damp cloth and some sanitizer to wipe down other products like foundation, mascara, and concealer. For a hygienic beauty station, it’s wise to add this cleaning ritual to your calendar at least once a month.
|Did You Know: Makeup residue and buildup can damage your brushes and sponges.|
3. Sort and Separate Makeup
The best way to organize makeup is to start sorting and separating the products you have. Categorize your products into the following:
- Concealers, foundations, primers, and powders
- Bronzers, highlighters, and blushes
- Eyeshadow palettes
- Single shadows
- Eye pencils and eyeliners
- Lip liners and lipsticks
- Accessories like glitters, stickers, glue, and false eyelashes
- Extras like unopened products or doubles.
The above categories are only our suggestions—you can categorize your makeup in groups you use them or which you find most practical.
|Did You Know: The average woman owns 40 makeup products, so makeup makes among the perfect gifts for a girl best friend.|
Store Your Brushes in a Holder or Jar
Now for the fun part—organizing and packing away! The best way to store makeup brushes is to keep them upright in a holder or jar. Not only does this make them much more accessible, but it also looks aesthetically pleasing.
If you have loads of brushes, consider an organizer with different compartments to keep your face, lip, and eye brushes separate. When your makeup brushes aren’t in use, or you leave them in a dusty room or bathroom, avoid contamination by covering them up. There are loads of reusable makeup brush covers on the market you can consider when thinking of ways to store makeup.
|Did You Know: To avoid makeup brush contamination while traveling, you should invest in a well-designed travel makeup bag that keeps brushes separate, covered, and protected.|
Keep Makeup Sponges on a Sponge Stand
Sponges can be breeding grounds for bacteria and germs. If not stored properly, they can get dirty by touching other surfaces, so one of the best makeup organization ideas is to store them in a sponge stand. They look something like a cute egg holder and come in a variety of designs. Alternatively, you can get an acrylic sponge holder that fits 2–4 sponges.
Keeping your sponges in a stand not only prevents contamination but also ensures they can breathe and dry completely after each use.
|Did You Know: Makeup sponges are generally used wet to blend products on the face, but beauty blender creator Rea Ann Silva says a dry sponge can be used as an eraser.|
Sort Eyeshadow Palettes by Tone
Let’s face it, apart from creating gorgeous makeup looks, eyeshadow palettes have become kind of a new hobby to collect as well. There are loads of makeup storage ideas when it comes to your palettes, but we’ve found that sorting them first is the best way to go.
Unless you have a professional makeup set that already does the sorting for you, you can sort your eyeshadow palettes yourself by tone or any of the following categories, depending on the way you use them:
- Cold and warm colors
- Night and day colors
- Color tones together
Once you’ve grouped tones together, you’ll be able to easily find a tone you want to use with a specific outfit. Finding creative ways to store makeup will make your beauty routine much more functional and less cluttered, and storing your eyeshadows according to color is one of them.
|Did You Know: 12,000 years ago Egyptians started wearing a substance called kohl on their eyes. Since then, eyeshadow has evolved into the palettes we can find everywhere today.|
4. Use Makeup Organizers and Containers
Finally, it’s time to pack everything back into drawers, shelves, and cabinets. There are many ways to store makeup, but finding a great makeup organizer that fits into the space you have available will save you a lot of time.
You should measure your drawers and available space to know exactly what size your containers should be. We strongly recommend purchasing containers made from clear acrylic, so you can see the products from all angles and avoid rummaging through everything to find what you’re looking for.
Consider the following bedroom and bathroom makeup storage ideas and solutions:
360 Degree Organizer
Perfect for putting on top of your vanity, a 360-degree organizer is typically round and can be turned to access products from all sides. It usually has taller compartments for brush holders, perfume, or skin treatment, and smaller compartments for foundation, nail polish, and primer.
Vertical Palette Organizer
Perfect to put on a shelf, the palette organizer looks like one of those old-school CD holders and is great for holding your larger eyeshadow palettes.
These cases usually come as stackable drawers and compartments perfect for makeup organization in small spaces, because you can pile them on top of each other to create extra space.
Lipstick Storage Tower
For those of you who have lipstick and balms in every shade, the storage tower solution is great, especially if you find one that can spin and store at least 40 lipsticks on the sides and on top.
Makeup Organizer Bags
Makeup bags should have different compartments and spaces, so they’re great to travel with or keep in your drawer as an organizational tool. They are also a great gift for women over 50.
Drawer Dividers and Inserts
The best way how to organize makeup in drawers without breaking the bank is to have drawer inserts or drawer dividers. You can DIY a few drawer inserts by cutting up cardboard and decorating it or using thin pieces of wood to create the exact sized compartments within your drawer.
|Did You Know: Keeping makeup out of sunlight and neatly stored away will prevent the preservatives in it from being destroyed.|
5. Label It
Once you’ve neatly organized, categorized, and packed away all your products, you can consider labeling them. When you have loads of products in clear containers, drawers start to look, all the same, so making simple labels for face, lip, and eye products is the last step in how to store makeup.
You can also consider sorting your beauty essentials according to brand and label them as such.
|Did You Know: An average American woman spends approximately $1,780 on lipstick, and $15,000 on cosmetics throughout her lifetime.|
|Throw out expired makeup products|
|Clean and sanitize beauty products and surface areas|
|Categorize your makeup products|
|Use clear containers like acrylic organizer drawers and holders|
|Label your containers and drawers|
Makeup organization is vital to a functional and practical daily routine. Even if you have a small space, you can follow our pro tips to find organized beauty storage solutions for using different containers, labels, and categorizers that will transform your makeup area.
Invest in vertical stackable drawers that you can put on top of a small vanity or shelf to create more storage space. A 360-degree rotating organizer is one of our best makeup storage ideas for small spaces.
You can, but it’s recommended that you store your brushes in an upright position so they can fan out and last longer. Storing them in a drawer will damage the bristles and become a breeding place for contamination.
If you’re wondering how to organize makeup in the fridge, keep in mind that the only beauty products that should go in the fridge are homemade or organic cosmetics, and you should keep all other products in the bathroom or your dressing room.