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Best Decorative Trays for Your Vanity + Beauty Products

May 21, 2020

Best Spring to Summer Perfumes 2019 | The Beauty Look Book

Today I’m rounding up all of the best decorative trays for your vanity! I’m always on the hunt for better ways to organize, display and store my beauty products. I love trays of all shapes and sizes because it helps me keep things in place and makes things look less cluttered! So many of you have asked questions about where I get all of my trays so today’s post is a comprehensive roundup.

Many of you have also asked for an updated makeup storage/organization post. You want to know how I store everything from the best acrylic organizers, boxes, shelving, drawers etc. I haven’t done one since we were in San Diego in my Home Loft Tour (3 years ago!). We’ve done a lot of moving around over the last few years since we’ve moved to Florida. I feel we have been in a long transition phase as we took our time to explore the different areas of Tampa Bay. We’ve finally found an area we truly love that feels like home to us now. I will be putting together my full beauty organization setup in a separate post. Today’s roundup focuses on all my vanity trays.

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Restoration Hardware Bath Tray

Measures 12″W x 7ยฝ”D x 1ยผ”H

Restoration Hardware Marble Bath Tray

I’ve loved and used my Restoration Hardware trays for years! It’s held up really well over many years and moves and it’s such a classic piece. The one you see in most of my photos is their White Italian Carrara Marble Bath Tray and it’s a single solid piece of marble with the center interior carved out. It looks like the rectangular ones I own have been discontinued from their website although some of their other Bath Accessories are still available. I’m trying to find a high quality dupe but haven’t found one yet.

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Crate and Barrel French Kitchen Marble Rectangle Tray

Measures 14″W x 8.5″D x 1″H

Crate and Barrel French Kitchen Marble Tray

I ordered this Crate and Barrel French Kitchen Marble Tray because of the rave reviews and the $39.95 price seemed like a steal! I think for the price it’s a great buy. However it is not a single piece of solid marble. The base and four sides are bonded together with some kind of smooth white grout or epoxy which is visible where the pieces are connected. The cut isn’t 100% exact so some of the corners have more white grout/glue showing in between the corner lines than others. It’s not a deal breaker and overall it’s well made. Also this is not totally noticeable once you have product (or food) set on it.

Side by side of the Crate and Barrel (larger on the left) tray next to the Restoration Hardware Tray (smaller on the right). If you look closely at the photo, you can see the white grout showing in the corners on the top right and bottom right corners of the Crate and Barrel Tray – I do think each piece will be different though. Yours might not show any!

Marble Trays for Your Vanity

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Goop Marble Petite Round Tray

Small measures 8″ in diameter, 1.5 inches high

Everyday Makeup Favorites

I love the small but still practical size of the Goop Marble Petite Round Tray ($50). I do not think it’s carrara marble as the veining and coloring isn’t quite as nice as other marble furniture pieces I own, but I think it’s really well made and I love the size. The Petite Size is currently in stock ($50 for 8 inches) and I just ordered the Grand Size ($80 for 12 inches, currently on waitlist). They’ve restocked multiple times since I first ordered mine. More views of it and full breakdown of the makeup in the photo listed in my Everyday Makeup Favorites post here.

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West Elm Marble Cheese Board Round

Measures 14 inches in diameter (from my Best of Cle de Peau)

Cle de Peau Radiant Liquid Rouge Shine Liquid Lipstick Sugar Jelly

Round Marble and Brass Cheese Board

I love West Elm! I stalk their site on a weekly basis. Their Marble and Brass Cheese Board Round ($49.50) is perfect for our kitchen to display a few candles and room sprays. I also borrow it for a prop on some of my beauty shoots from my Best of Cle de Peau, Charlotte Tilbury review and Hair Care Favorites to name a few. I really should just order a second one.

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Marble and Brass Cheese Board – Rectangle

Measures 14″w x 10″d x 2″h

Marble Brass Tray for Beauty Vanity

Marble Brass Vanity Tray

I also love the rectangular Marble and Brass Cheese Board ($49.50). You’ve seen this in my bathroom, on my vanity, on my desk etc. It’s heavy and I love the quality. There are some other options that I think are super cute including the Cake Stand (could double as a stand for beauty products) or their Marble Brass Footed Board.

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Acrylic Trays

CB2 Measures 14″W x 6.25″D x 2″H

Acrylic Tray CB2

I’ve gone through several acrylic trays over the years. I had some larger square options from West Elm and CB2 that I loved but got rid of over some past moves. Acrylic tends to scratch as you move product over the surface (even the sturdy durable options). Over time they wear down. I do like the CB2 Acrylic Tank Tray for my sunglasses and also for my desk. Note that this style does not have rubber feet (I added them on my own) so if you don’t want it sliding around I’d recommend adding them. They’re easy to find at a wide range of places. I ordered some from Amazon and really like them. The Container Store has some options for acrylic trays which are decent and functional, but in my experience not the best quality.

For those curious the sunglasses from top to bottom in the photo: Black round (Celine), Brown square (Tom Ford), Honey brown round (Ray-Ban), Beige round (Ray-Ban), Dark brown round (Ray-Ban), Pink small (Chanel, old style).

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West Elm Mirrored Trays

Small Size Measures 15″ x 10″

Favorite Face Brushes and Tools

West Elm Mirrored Tray Small

I love the look of mirrored trays, especially with any brass or gold accents! However they’re high maintenance as they scratch easier than other surfaces and show every speck of dust or finger prints. Mirrored trays are easy to clean, I just find I have to clean and dust them frequently. This Fishs Eddy Gilded Cafe Mirror Tray – Brass from West Elm has held up for many years though. It’s the same one I’ve had since I lived in San Diego. There are a few scratches as it has been well loved. I have the small size but they have a larger option too.

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Lacquered Trays

Medium Shown measures 7.2″w x 10″d x 1.1″h

Pink Color Tray West Elm

Most of my lacquered trays (gloss or matte finish) have been from West Elm. I’ve loved and used them from years! I’ve bought them long before I started blogging. As we’ve moved around I have switched and rotated them with other styles. This one is the Color Block in the Medium Size. I like that it’s on the compact side and easy to fit in small places/shelves. They also have other colors and sizes which I have but haven’t put to use yet. CB2 also makes nice options!

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Marble Wine Coaster

Measures 4.75 in diameter and 1.75 high

Byredo Candle, Marble Wine Coaster, Diptyque Photophore

This Williams Sonoma Wine Coaster ($15.96 on sale) is the perfect size to hold a Byredo Candle or standard size Diptyque Candle. It’s also tall enough to store small things like my Slip Silk Scrunchies or rubber bands. Long matches from Tommy Bahama. Photophore from Diptyque (older style, but current versions here). Wick Trimmer from Diptyque.

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Small Marble Brass Inlay Tray

Measures 9″w x 4.5″d x 1″h

Marble Brass Inlay Tray Small

If you want an extra small tray to keep things super tidy, I think the Small Brass Inlay Marble Tray ($40) from West Elm is really lovely. It’s quite small and only holds a few things but it well made, heavy and looks lovely on the night stand, shelf or desk!

Trays added to my Ikea Billy Bookcase shelf (option is with doors):

Beauty Lookbook Shelfie

A few extra tips on finding the perfect tray(s) for you:

  • Some trays do not come with anything on the base. You might want to buy a set of thin small felt pads if you have a surface that might get easily scratched. Adhesive bumpers/rubber feet are also another option if you want the tray to stay in place and prevent them from sliding around. I ordered a bunch from Amazon (also for furniture too). You can find these easily at Target or any home improvement store etc.
  • Look for products that aren’t labeled “tray.” Some other things will pop up on search that can double as display trays. For example on home good sites like West Elm or Crate and Barrel (etc.) type in the search bar words like dish, board, trivet, cake stand, coaster etc.
  • I tend to look for small to medium trays for beauty product storage as larger ones can get cluttered REALLY fast for me. If you’re organized it should not be an issue or problem at all though! I also have a console and shelves that are on the narrow side so finding a smaller tray has been ideal for me.
  • Sites like West Elm, CB2 and Crate and barrel often have sales on their sites. Lots are happening this weekend for Memorial Day. Target has some really nice affordable home decor options but the seasonal launches tend to sell out quickly.
  • If you stain your marble with watermarks or oil, it’s possible to remove by applying a baking soda + water mixture. Mix it into a paste and apply to the stained area. Leave on for 24 hours and then wipe away. For smaller stains that haven’t settled too long it should absorb any oil and remove them! This has worked for me when oil from skincare or water from a cup/jar has left a ring on my tray. Your mileage may vary depending on what the stain is made of, how big it is, how long it’s been there etc.

Beauty organization post to follow soon but leave all your questions in the comments below so I can add them to my list for FAQs! I hope you found this roundup helpful. I’m asked on a daily basis “where did you get your marble tray?” – the answer is usually that I have several! This post has them all in one place so now for reference.

Trays featured:

 

Other decorative accents/accessories featured:

 

Do you have any trays you love for your beauty products? Or do you tend to display them on a shelf, drawers or boxes? I’d love to hear how you organize your beauty stash!

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Storage Ideas From The Beauty Look Book

March 19, 2011

Finding the best storage solutions to fit one’s room is always a challenge for makeup. Many have asked for advice on how I store everything. This is something I am always working on as my stash grows. If you click on the storage tag below you will see a few previous posts with ideas. For an update, click to see more.
To recap:
  • I mainly store my items in the tall Ikea Alex Units. I have two of these side by side. These have shorter drawers and a few taller drawers ideal for storing things for easy viewing. I love these and can’t rave enough (even if it is a pain to put together). I’ve found a number of photos on Flickr featuring the Alex Units in put together rooms. Check out these links for ideas on how others use this unit: Ikea Alex Gallery 1, Gallery 2, Gallery 3, Gallery 4, Gallery 5, Google Images: Ikea Alex
  • For brushes and pencils, I use Stila Paint Cans (which can be hard to find), MUJI Acrylic Cylinders and Crate & Barrel Containers
  • To store lipglosses, MUJI has great acrylic solutions, high quality drawers with excellent craftsmanship. These are super sturdy and aesthetically pleasing (for acrylic). The price shown above reflects the price from 2009, I don’t know if the price is still current.

Today, I still utilize both Ikea Alex units and I have not added any more units, although ideally one more would be nice. You can see below the shallow shorter drawers are nice for storing things in short stacks for easy viewing. They are great for storing MAC Blushes, Bronzers and Mineralized Skinfinishes for easy access. Over the past year I’ve started using gift boxes as storage separators. I’m the type who will hold onto a pretty gift box for a while before tossing it. Jo Malone, Chanel and Dior make beautiful branded gift boxes. I’ve found some are the perfect height for lipsticks, multiples, glosses and such.

White box is from Dior, black box is the cap from a Chanel box – perfect size for lipsticks:

In the back is a MUJI cylinder, on the left a cute Paul & Joe tin, cream colored boxes on the right are the bottoms of Jo Malone candle boxes:

Another Jo Malone box (the base) to hold NARS Multiples and other skinny cream-liquid products:

Stacked MAC MSFs and Beauty Powders:


I’m still working on Nail Polish storage, but so far this is how they are stored in this post. The nail racks I’ve found are cheap and ugly, but they do the trick of storing them in an organized easy-to-see fashion. I don’t like storing them in boxes or drawers because those methods make it difficult to sort through the colors since all you see are the caps. If anyone has ideas on nail polish storage that you love, please share.

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Chanel Le Vernis Nail Colour Collection

July 6, 2010

This post is for one of my readers Jo Ann, a fellow Chanel Nail Polish collector, she was kind enough to search for shades I did not have from Asia during her recent business travels. I apologize to her, but this has been a few months delayed. She hoped I would feature an updated post on my Chanel Le Vernis Nail Polish collection in order to try and figure out which shades she was missing. Upon returning from her trip, I heard she brought back over 20 bottles (Chanel + Dior) ๐Ÿ™‚ Many were for her friends. One was for me. I was ecstatic (it was Magnolia Rose which I had missed out on years ago).

I never thought this would happen, but I’ve recently run out of space for my Chanel Nail Polishes in my nail polish rack. There are now four lone bottles without their own space. I need an intervention, but don’t really want one. Most of these shades were limited edition from past seasons. Chanel is the brand that set off my interest in nail polishes. The formulas weren’t always great quality (in my opinion). I can’t remember the exact year, perhaps it was the early 2000’s was the time Chanel revamped their formulas. My first two were Le Perle (see dupes here) and Vamp (see swatches here). Some of the shades are from Canada, Europe and Asia, so US girls might not recognize or remember all the shades being released here in the US. This is definitely not comprehensive of all the shades that have been released in the US.

* Blanc Petale & White Satin swatched here

* Django swatched here
* Jasmine & Inattendu swatched here

* Jade Rose swatched here
* Perle Rosee swatched here

* Tendresse swatched here
* Pink Satin swatched here

* Mistral swatched here
* Cry Baby swatched here

* Rose Paradise swatched here

* Violette & Lilac Sky swatched here
* Paradoxal swatched here
* Vendetta & Feu de Russie swatched here

* Diabolic, Forbidden, Rouge Noir & Vamp here

* Blue Satin & Nuit de Russie swatched here

* Antilope & Trapeze swatched here
* Particuliere swatched here

* Illusion D’Or, Gold Lame & Golden Sand swatched here

* Riviera & Nouvelle Vague swatched here
* Riviera dupes here
* Orange Blossom swatched here

* Dragon swatched here
* Coromandel swatched here

* Tokyo Happening Collection


I may have missed a few swatch links. Also, I haven’t always photographed every mani/pedi I’ve had in the past year. I’ll try to include more in the future. Do you have any favorite Chanel Nail Colors?

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A Few Reader Requests

May 1, 2010
Some of you have requested info, photos and swatches on a few items in the past few weeks. I apologize for the delay, I have not forgotten – here are the swatches and info you have requested. For reference, I am a Chanel Shell 1.5 in Teint Innocence (the liquid version). To see what other foundation shades I am, check out the sidebar – there’s a link to my foundation shades.

1) Can you swatch Edward Bess Bare Rose on your lips alone? Here it is by itself, please excuse the skin I don’t have any foundation or powder on:

2) Please swatch Paul & Joe 06 Nail Polish! I like this better in the bottle. On my fingers, I feel it’s a bit muddy looking. I’ve seen it on my tan friends (who are the equivalent to NC40 and a bit darker) and it looks gorgeous on them though. Here it is (2 coats):


3) How does NARS Love Devotion compare to last year’s Outsider?
Love Devotion is brighter and sheerer. Here they are also compared to Beautiful Liar:

4) Can you swatch Shu IR Brown 850 compared to Shu ME 850? Sure, I’ll do one better. Here it is next to the other Shu Uemura taupes that I have. I find it fascinating how the base pulls out different undertones in each taupey color. These are swatched over a moisturized arm:

5) Can you write a post on how you pick out your makeup-of-the-day/look-of-the-day? There’s not much to write about this one. I pick out my clothes first and this is based on my mood. Makeup looks are picked out depending how much time I have and the colors I’m wearing for clothes. Sometimes, I’ll pick one product and create a look around that color. I’d like to say it’s more planned out through a more creative process, but it’s really just based on whatever works.

6) Will you show stash/closet pics? Most likely not. It might seem like I’m organized, but I am far from it. Just ask my husband. Granted, I do keep an organized mess – everything has their own section/pile – but it’s still very chaotic. I will share an old photo of my purse organization (this is an older photo from long before I started blogging, before I started my MBA, back when I was much more organized):


7) Did you purchase the new Chanel Shanghai-Paris Nail Polishes? What are your thoughts? But of course! How could I resist? I wasn’t going to write about these because so many other bloggers did, but since I’ve received several requests, I will. This one will be a bit more comprehensive, so I will do a separate post on this topic in a few days or so.

8) Will you be swatching NARS Versailles? Here’s a swatch, but I plan on this being my next manicure, so stay tuned for more pics! (FYI, I’ve seen this swatched on other blogs and it looked very streaky, I had to apply with a really steady hand to get an unstreaky result on my finger.)


9) Is there a dupe for Rescue Beauty Lounge Pink Shimmer? Yes – I’ve found 2 dupes, Chanel Le Perle (long discontinued) and China Glaze Heaven. They look really different in the bottles, but on the nails, the result is strikingly similar. If you look close you can see the difference in finish and opacity, but’s not really noticable from afar.


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MUJI Acrylic 5 Row Case for Lipgloss Storage

September 28, 2009
Ever since I discovered the store in London, I’ve become a huge fan of Muji’s Acrylic products which are extremely sturdy with a simple and clean design. I can be a bit picky with acrylic products because the quality can be sub par, but Muji does not disappoint so I feel the price is worth it! I recently purchased a couple Acrylic Drawer units from the Muji US Online store and they work perfectly for my lipgloss storage!

Single 5-Drawer Unit with Le Metier, Cle de Peau, Laura Mercier, Chantecaille, Dior and MAC Lipglosses:

Two units side by side:

Close ups with drawers open:

This purchase was inspired by Voce Magazine & Rouge Deluxe’s Blog. Check out her blog to see other storage options for these units with MAC and Paul & Joe goodies galore!

For other Storage Solutions, check out these links:

Makeup Organization & Storage Options Part 1
Makeup Organization & Storage Options Part 2

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Makeup Organization & Storage Part 2

June 19, 2009

For my storage options, I opted for the Ikea Alex Unit with 9 Drawers. The nice thing about the Alex Unit is that it has 2 different heights for drawers, smaller ones at the top, and taller ones at the bottom. This makes it so you can store other non-makeup items such as laundry accessories, small towels, small papers or cards etc.

Close up of a few drawers (the shorter ones):

Stila Cans to store long brushes & Hello Kitty Brush Cup:

Crate & Barrel Storage Containers to store the shorter items (but works for long pencils too):

MUJI Acrylic Round Pots without lids to store long pencils and other brushes:

Coming next – more storage options from girls in the beauty industry!

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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, Ikea.com, Crate & Barrel Online, MUJI Global, MUJI USA