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Crate and Barrel


Makeup Organization & Storage Options Part 1

June 18, 2009
One downside to accumulating and collecting makeup is the challenge of finding ways to store your products, trying to squeeze in all your blushes, eyeshadows, lipsticks and brushes keeping them organized in a way that that allows you to access your items easily.

There are number of beautiful different vanities and drawer options available, but when it comes to storing makeup, the options don’t always fit what I’m looking for. The ideal storage unit for me is something with lots of drawers that aren’t too tall, deep or wide and compact enough to put in a corner of a room or store somewhere discrete. And of course – not too expensive!

I find that Pottery Barn and Ikea are great for their room ideas online. For those who don’t have a large built-in vanity or bathroom counter to store things, here are some nice storage options for small spaces:

1. Pottery Barn Bathroom Bureau $599 – a classic looking hardwood framed unit with moisture-resistant finish, also includes their Smart Technology strip for a plug in point for hair irons or curlers, and an adjustable mirror. It has a beautiful finish and look!

2. Ikea Alex Unit with 9 Drawers $119 – a cheaper alternative to the Pottery Barn Bureau, slightly smaller and narrower in dimension, made of particle board instead of hardwood, but with more drawers. Ikea has four different units in the Alex series, giving you options for different widths and heights.

3. Ikea Helmer Drawer Unit on Casters $39.99 – a cute steel 6 drawer unit on wheels that comes in three different colors, red, silver and white. Small enough to slide under your desk. Check out the Ikea Workspace Rooms for ideas!

Also check out Ikea Bathrooms for other storage options.

To store longer items such as brushes, mascara tubes, eye liner and lipliner pencils, I’ve found that Stila Paint Cans work extremely well. The downside is that most are not for sale and I’ve been lucky enough to get some through friends. Some alternative storage units I’ve found include:

4. MUJI Acrylic Round Pen Pot – I originally found these in London when I went several years ago. They have an entire Acrylic Storage series with some great storage options. I love these for their high quality and sturdiness. Unfortunately, they are based in the UK with locations around the world outside of the US. At this time, it appears they are available in the US only in New York. Click here for locations. I do believe some of their sites ship to the US. I’ve been lucky enough to get these through friends who travel overseas and also through a few custom purchases!

5. MUJI Acrylic Case with 5 Rows $23.95 – MUJI does have a US online store, but the selection is limited and doesn’t have all the same products as what they do have overseas. This is a cute 5-drawer acrylic storage unit – there are more variations and options with 2-drawers, small, large, and a unit with a flip-top lid as well. However most of the other options are on the UK website.

5. Crate & Barrel Storage Containers with Lids $4.95 and $5.95 – These are the closest items I could find in the US to those Muji Acrylic Pots. I found these are great for shorter brushes and pencils. The smaller ones are 3.5″ in diameter by 3.75″ high, while the larger ones run 4″ in diameter by 5″ high. Just remove the lids and they turn into the perfect storage container for your shorter items!

Coming next . . . actual storage photos!

* Promotional photos from Pottery Barn Online,, Crate & Barrel Online, MUJI Global, MUJI USA