One of the most useful space saving steps you can take in your small bathroom is to add an over the toilet storage unit. This allows you to make good use of that otherwise wasted empty area along the wall above the tank.
Installing over the toilet storage is one of the easiest and often least expensive home improvement projects to complete, and the resulting benefits of reducing clutter and improving the space can be tremendous.
Types of Over The Toilet Storage
- closed cabinet with or without shelves or drawers
- open cabinet with or without shelves or drawers
- towel racks
There are three main types of unit, which are:
- Free Standing Over The Toilet Cabinet – These have two feet on the floor on each side of the toilet. There are side panels or supports rising from each side, and these support a cabinet that is above the toilet tank
- Wall Suspended Cabinet – Much like upper cabinets in the kitchen or laundry room, these cabinets are attached to the wall above the toilet.
- Wall Suspended Shelves – Traditional shelving is attached on the wall above the toilet.
Exposed or Hidden
While this is a great area to store bathroom items, toiletries, and towels out of the way, there are some general things to keep in mind.
First, what you decide to store there will of course be different if your unit is open and exposed, versus if it is closed and hidden.
If your cabinet is closed with a door so no one can see what’s inside, then you have lots more flexibility in what you store and how you store it. Just keep in mind the intention of reducing clutter, and that means you’ll want it to look and feel tidy and organized even when you do open t he cabinet door.
If your cabinet or shelving is open, then it is more important that it is neat and nice looking. Because it is so visible, this type of storage is often used more for decorating purposes. For example, you might display candles and pictures on it, to give the bathroom a more cozy and homey feel.
What To Store Above the Toilet
When deciding what to store, consider that it may be difficult for some people to reach high up over the toilet to get to a top shelf or area. So store things that you won’t need to access as often up there. For example, this may be where you keep your backup shampoos and soaps. If you don’t have a cabinet under your sink, it may also include extra bathroom and mirror cleaning products.
Then reserve lower shelves for primary toiletry items you use frequently such as toothbrush and toothpaste, hairbrush and products, and makeup. Depending on how much room you have, this may also be where you store extra sets of towels.
Some over the toilet units have towel racks on them. These make reaching for the towel convenient, but be aware that larger towels may drape too low onto the toilet tank. So a rack here is usually best for folded bath towels, or for hand towels and washcloths.
Some units have hooks on the sides of them. If yours doesn’t, it would be an easy and useful thing to add a hook or two to each side of your over the toilet cabinet. Whatever you hang on these would be out of the way of the toilet itself, and would instead fall to either side. These hooks are great for hanging bathrobes or used towels. This is also a convenient place to hang a hair dryer.
Whatever you decide to put into your over the toilet storage area, be mindful of the goal of reducing clutter. Don’t stuff things up there just because you now have extra room. Cleaning up and discarding old items and expired toiletries regularly will help you to maximize the amount of space you have to store the items you find most useful.