Makeup storage presents some unique challenges. Products come in irregular sizes, and some are made of fragile materials, which mean you can’t simply stuff them away. Especially when you consider the very high potential for something to leak.
This is doubly true if you consider yourself something of an aesthete and want to proudly present your jars, vials and tubes for all to see. And even if you’d rather have things neatly tucked away, you don’t want to to rummage through various drawers and cupboards just to apply a dab of mascara. To help restore order to your dressing table, we asked six experts — from influencers and makeup artists — what they use to keep their beauty products in check. Read on for the best drawer organisers, storage boxes, and furniture options.
Best small makeup storage
Michelle Carrington, also known as @OuiMichelle on Instagram said a classic acrylic unit is her go-to for her daily essentials. “I have four that house most of my makeup. My lipsticks and lip glosses are separated and then categorised by shade to make selecting the right one simple. My other products are also done by type: blush, bronzer, highlighter, mascaras, etc. Seeing most of my collection in clear acrylic like this eases the process of getting ready for me and is just pleasant to look at. These organisers are also deceptively roomy and hold more than you think!” she explained, naming the Sorbus brand on Amazon as a particular favourite.
[Editor’s note: Michelle’s choice from the Sorbus brand is currently out of stock. However, we spotted this model by Songmics, which has similar sized drawers, and takes up a similar amount of dresser space.]
Beauty influencer Evie, who goes by the handle @sknperfct on Instagram said her organiser is from the brand Beautify, found on Amazon. “They have some great options. I found some organisers for my brushes, as well as a unit that’s sort of open at the top so you can easily grab what you want quickly,” said Evie.
Makeup artist Nick Barose took inspiration from his niece to find his ideal brush (and eyeliner) organiser. “The Montmartre Studio Tidy is a great way to display eyeliner pencils, so I know which I have and which one to pull, and it’s easy to organise by colour. I saw my niece had one for her art supply, so I got it for my makeup, too,” he explained. The slots are designed for brushes, but any small tools will neatly fit inside, with a range of differently sized slots.
If you need a portable solution, whether that’s for moving from place to place, or even just room to room, Onuoha suggested options from MyKitCo and Promakit. “MyKitCo has a great range of organisers, big and small, with space for anything you might want to pack, including cotton buds and other hygiene bits and pieces. You see a lot of makeup artists using these,” said Onuoha. “I also really love my pieces from Promakit, especially these bags that have sections in. It makes it a lot easier to store small items like lip liners, as you can easily see what’s in there and grab it,” she explained. [Editor’s note: This product is currently sold out, but you can sign up to be notified when it’s back in stock.]
Best drawer makeup storage
If your stash is so large it needs a dedicated piece of furniture, two of our experts suggested a chest of drawers from Ikea. “I was struggling so much with storing everything, so I went to Ikea and a really helpful sales associate pointed out this chest of drawers. I think it’s probably designed for clothes and shoes, but it’s perfect for makeup,” says Adeola Gboyega, who’s the U.K. artistry manager for Pat McGrath Labs. “I use the top drawers for my base and foundation products, in the second drawer I have eyeliners and eyeshadows, and so on.” Shahnaz Islam, a makeup artist and influencer, also has Ikea drawers; “I actually have two chests of drawers to store everything. I keep everything in there from cotton pads to makeup bags full of surplus kit.”
For a smaller number of products, Malm could be enough.
In order to keep everything readily to hand and easy to find, Gboyega suggested buying drawer organisers – or in a pinch, repurposing cutlery organisers. “Utensil containers are great for makeup. I can easily fill one with lip liners, and another with blushers or whatever it may be – they lay flat within the drawers and mean I can easily grab whatever I need quickly,” she explained. Kelechi Onuoha, global pro artist for Charlotte Tilbury also extolled the virtues of drawer organisers, saying, “I found some on Amazon that are ideal. There’s longer sections for things like brushes and tools, and smaller ones for pots of eyeshadow or compacts. It makes life so much easier.”
[Editor’s note: Gboyega’s exact pick is currently out of stock, however we found this model from Cabilock with almost identical section sizes.]
The best nonplastic makeup storage
Sure, it’s not single-use plastic, but if you’d prefer to have a nonplastic option for environmental or aesthetic reasons, Barose suggested a pandan box. “These are made from pandan leaves which we use a lot in my part of the world (Thailand), from cooking to weaving baskets. These traditional handwoven boxes come in rich dark brown and I have many at home in my beauty closet. We look at and touch so many plastic containers, so I feel like these are more zen, elegant, and resort-like. I love touching something made from nature instead of plastic,” he explained.
If you want something that offers both form and function, Carrington suggested this mirrored tray with gold accents. “This is for my luxury makeup, those pieces with packaging that catch the eye, especially my Pat McGrath Labs, Dior, and Westman Atelier,” explained Carrington. “Glass and frosted bottles look especially amazing on it. I absolutely bought this just for the aesthetic!”
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