The Perfect Guest Bathroom

Mar 17, 2009 by

The Perfect Guest Bathroom

As I look at my half-way demolished master bathroom and whistfully hope for the day it will be remodeled to a new beautiful bathroom, with uncracked marble tile that isn’t lose, glass shower doors that are oh so pretty and a toilet that doesn’t leak water under our tile making it loose to the point it cracks, I think about what I will also be able to do to improve my guest bathroom.

When not haphazardly occupied by my makeup, fiance’s electric razor and hair goop,it will be a nice tribute to one of my early visits to MIL to be’s house.

MIL to be is an amazing hostess.  She is one of those persons who when she goes places she picks things up for you just because she knows you will like them, she send cards for every holiday, remembers your favorite juice and picks it up from the store when you are coming down, in essence she is June Cleaver in our modern world.

On one of my first visits to their new house in Charlottesville I was delighted to find the shower stocked with Crabtree & Evelyn Lavender Shower Gel, Pureology shampoo and conditioner, Nuetrogena face wash and an exfoliating face scrub.  Most people put shampoos they didn’t like or extra toiletries from travels to nice hotels in their guest bathrooms, but this extra indulgence made me feel comfortable and welcomed, I was happy that I didn’t have to pack nice toiletries in the future knowing they were there.

This formulated into a decisive notion for me.  Great hostesses know what you want and have it there for you, so you don’t have to ask or want for anything.  I know I hate going to stay with someone and routing around their bathroom for an asprin, a personal care item or a hair dryer, and in the early morning everyone has their own time and you don’t like to disturb someone to ask for these items.  You guest bathroom should clearly have anything a guest should need in the shower, medicine cabinet, drawers or a nice basket on the toilet if you are really pressed for space.  I have come up with a bare minimum list and an all out list for those who really want to impress:

Absolute basics list:

Really nice shampoo, conditioner, body wash, face wash and lotion.  You won’t have to buy them often so get something nice, that way your guests know they don’t have to bring their own.  If you don’t want to go all out and get Pureology like MIL to be, get Biolage or Paul Mitchell, it is gender neutral and nice enough to keep everyone happy.   I think there are many neutral face washes out there, I like Nuetrogena or Burt’s Bees, as it is good for all skin types, avoid those with acne cleansers or harsh chemicals.  I have a girly scented body wash and guy body wash, but you could get something neutral, I love Crabtree and Evelyn and think Jojoba Oil collection would be well liked by all.

BONUS: Right now Crabtree and Evelyn is having a special on travel size items, so if you have a small guest bathroom, these would fit perfectly in a drawer or medicine cabinet.

And please keep a nice spray somewhere easily found like under the sink, guests hate to leave your bathroom stinky, so make it easy to find.

Minimum list:

Extra toilet paper, tissues, ibuprofen (not Tylenol in case it is a hangover to which Tylenol is not recommended), antacids,Immodium, toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, disposable razors, shaving cream (get a shaving lotion or cream as opposed to a gel, the benefit being they often don’t have odors so it could be used by a male or female, you can normally find it in most grocery stores or pharmacies, I really like the one at Trader Joe’s and they have them in a small travel size normally so it can easily fit in a medicine cabinet), personal care items,  hair dryer, of course your normal cotton balls and cotton swabs, band aids and lip balm (again something like Blistex that isn’t scented or tinted).

All out list add ons:

Exfoliating face wash, sugar or salt scrub, hair brush, bobby pins, elastic bands, eye and face cream, make-up remover towelette, nail clippers, nail file, nail polish remover, eau du toilette, mouthwash, sewing kit appropriately stolen from a nice hotel and rubbing alcohol or peroxide.

Now being super anal, I store all this in the medicine cabinet and under the sink, I use these organizers from Ikea because they are super cheap and you can label them, so guests don’t feel like they are prying, two fit under my guest cabinet, with room for toilet paper, tissues and hair dryer on top.

So think about this next time you are going to have guests, or are the grocery or pharmacy.  It really is a super easy trick to make people think you are a perfect hostess who really lives like this:

Organized Bathroom

P.S. Can I stress how much fresh flowers make your home look like you really are one of those people.


  1. very good suggestion for the new home builder and owner who are going to build or building their new house so they can apply this on their home.

  2. Jessica Sandberg

    I loved this article! Thank you so much. The Ikea link doesn’t work anymore. Is there anyway to know what organizers you are talking about? Thanks again!

  3. Katelin

    So the Ikea product I have isn’t sold online, the one I have has smaller little drawers, but these from container store might work too.

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