7 Personal Items You Shouldn’t Store in the Bathroom

Sure, bathrooms differ as far as wall color, bathtub size, and cute little bath mats and waste baskets. However, there’s two things all bathrooms have in common: they’re wet and they’re humid. As you can understand, this typical bathroom environment can be a breeding ground for bacteria and germs. So if you keep these seven bathroom tools…in your bathroom…you may want to rethink your storage choices…

1. Makeup

I’m guilty of keeping my makeup in my bathroom. However, my eyeshadow pallet and mascaras are not tucked away in a drawer or medicine cabinet, they sit on a shelf directly over my bathtub (gasp)! I, like many women, choose to store my makeup here because it’s convenient to grab and apply in the mornings.

However, the heat and humidity from my shower (and my husband’s showers) are doing my face no favours, according to Jenny Frankel, President at Frankly Beauty. Not only do heat and warm moisture breakdown cosmetics, they also provide ample breading ground for germs and mold to lodge in my makeup brushes.  Needless to say, it may be time for a makeup table (with a drawer) in my bedroom.

Acne Friendly Makeup

2. Jewelry

Anything metal is prone to rust. So if you keep your favorite pair of earrings or a few statement necklaces in your bathroom to grap and clasp in the mornings, your favorite pieces may rust and tarnish (if they’re silver) faster than normal.

Jewelry, be it real silver, plated, or cheap costume pieces made with other metals, will inevitably degrade quickly in warm, moist environments such as your bathroom, according to Harper Lane jewellery, in Australia. Instead, store jewelry in a dry, closed jewelry box to protect it from steam and corrosion.


3. Fragrances

The beauty experts at Allure.com recommend storing perfumes and body sprays in a dresser drawer or, if you must, at least in a dry bathroom cabinet. The reason is that fragrances can quickly degrade and turn rancid thanks to bathroom humidity and heat.

Perfumes and fragrances don’t respond well to high spikes in temperature from shower and bath steam. So if you don’t want your favorite scent turning sour, store it in a stable temperature and away from direct sunlight in your bedroom.


4. Oral Medications

Women who take birth control pills depend on them to work. No surprise there. However, if you store your oral contraceptives in your bathroom, you may be risking their effectiveness.

According to studies from the U.S. National Library of Medicine, don’t store medications in your bathroom (i.e., birth control pills, allergy or pain relief capsules) where moisture and heat can cause they to expire faster than normal. A cool, dry, dark cabinet or drawer away from heat or cool sources (i.e, stove or sink) in your bedroom or kitchen is a much better place.

birth control

5. Condoms

Apologies for getting so personal, but if you use condoms, it matters where you store them in your home. If you tuck them away discreetly in your medicine cabinet, you may be messing with their effectiveness.

Research from Planned Parenthood found that condoms can degrade when stored in warm, moisture prone environments for over a month, like your bathroom. Yes, even if you keep them tucked away in a medicine cabinet or your car’s glove box, they may become damaged due to heat.

6. Your Toothbrush

Collective ewwwwws all around. You knew your toothbrush was going to be on this list! All of us have been (or are) guilty of storing our toothbrushes by the bathroom…maybe even near the toilet (gross).

When it comes to storing what you put in your mouth so close to the toilet (again, gross), scientists from Louisiana’s Quinnipiac University warn you may be brushing with more than toothpaste. Not only was fecal matter detected on 60-percent of toothbrushes stored in shared bathrooms, the toothbrushes were also contaminated with the fecal matter, bacteria, and potential viruses and parasites from cohabitants of the same shared space.

Brush in the Morning

7. Razor Blades

It’s convenient to keep extra razor blades near the shower. That way, when you’re getting a dull shave in the shower you can clip a new one on and shave away.

However, according to the shaving experts at Schick.com, the moisture and humidity in your bathroom can degrade, oxidize, and case new metal blades to rust even before you clip them onto your razor head.



Emily Lockhart

Emily Lockhart is a certified yoga instructor and personal trainer. She believes that being healthy is a lifestyle choice, not a punishment or temporary fix to attain a desired fitness or body image goal. Anna helps her clients take responsibility for their own health and wellness through her classes and articles on ActiveBeat.