Toiletry Bag Consolidation

Okay so a couple of years ago I shared how a couple of Professional Organizers took one look at my massive toiletry bag and ran screaming from the hotel room we were staying in.  Okay okay maybe I’m exaggerating slightly but I do believe I did scare them a little with it :)

As soon as I got home I immediately went out and bought a brand new much smaller bag and got it all organized up.  It was compact and easy to use and has served me well for the last couple of years.


Here is the inside of it.  I liked to travel with the liquids in a baggie in case of leaks.  The material inside didn’t feel waterproof to me.


Top compartment


Lately though, on my last couple of trips, I’ve noticed that this particular toiletry bag was beginning to annoy me.  I couldn’t quite put my finger on it either until one day I realized it wasn’t this toiletry bag at all that was annoying me, it was instead the SECOND one I had to cart around for my makeup.  You see my new lovely smaller toiletry bag didn’t have room to house my makeup so I had to bring along a second smaller toiletry bag with me wherever I went.

Now I know many people travel with multiple toiletry bags.  What’s the big deal right?  Well here is just another example of the “organizing junkie” in me coming out.

I couldn’t handle not having everything CONSOLIDATED into one bag.

There I said it and yep, I know it’s weird.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with having more than one toiletry bag AT ALL.  In fact they pack better ultimately because you can squish two smaller items into two different smaller spaces into your suitcase.

But it annoyed me, I’m not going to lie.   I like to keep all things similar together.  Don’t even get me started about what it does to me when I find two bottles of the exact same condiment open in my fridge.  Oh no they didn’t!  My family loves to mess with me!

So I set out to rectify this problem.  I wanted a toiletry bag that was big enough for both my toiletries and my makeup without being over the top ridiculously huge like my old old one was. Plus it had to have multiple compartments and handles.  Got to have handles.

Are you following any of this?

I was so happy to find this lovely bag at my local drug store (Rexall for you Canadians wondering) and got it all set up.

Here is my new bag.

This new bag is 7″ tall by 10″ wide whereas the old one was 6″ tall by 8″ wide.  Not a crazy huge difference.

I love that I can unzip one side or the other without opening it all the way.  Snaps hold the two sides together.


I like the clear plastic interior.  Easier to wash in case of leaks.  In this picture below you can see the compartment at the bottom for my makeup.


All labeled and ready to go :)


It fit everything perfectly AND I think it’s still a nice respectable size.  I won’t close the book on going back to my old ways if needed but for now we’ll see how this works out for me.

The moral of this story is you have to organize for what works for YOU even if it seems different or odd.  Release that organizing junkie within you just waiting to come out! :)

So tell me, do you travel with one toiletry bag or multiple ones? 

Updated to add:  here is a picture of the tag for those who were wanting more information about it:

toiletry bag

Style #CG932302

Filed under: Bathroom, Containerizing, Travel/Auto Organization


46 Responses to Toiletry Bag Consolidation

  1. 1
    Deborah Wagner says

    Just curious- Where do you put your hair “stuff” (hairbrush, hairspray, hair product)?

    • 1.1
      Laura says

      Deborah, that is such a good question and I can’t believe I totally forgot to talk about it! I only travel with hairspray and a couple of brushes so I keep those in a large ziploc bag. Somehow that doesn’t bother me to have it separate lol. I’m such a strange duck :)

  2. 2
    Caroline says

    I know I’m a strange bird (almost never wear make-up for a start!) but still this could never work for me! As a frequent flyer I always have a clear plastic zip-up bag for my liquids – the hassle of trying to locate my various liquids at security is too much otherwise! Everything else just gets tucked into shoes to save space. What about jewellery though? I always use a coin purse for mine – those big jewellery wraps seem so over-the-top, and they never accommodate anything slightly chunky!

      • Peggy says

        I have been trying to find your bag accessory Designs CG932202 cant’t find it anywhere–can you help me locate one please??

        • Laura says

          Sorry Peggy, it was just one I picked up at our local drug store (Rexall) and they don’t even carry them anymore unfortunately.

    • 3.1
      Laura says

      Thanks Elizabeth!

  3. 4
    Dawn says

    Don’t even get me started! I’ve been an expat all my life with about 8 long haul flights a year around the world. I have tried every bag out there. Oh, they seem perfect at first but after a couple of flights they bug me. I’m always on the prowl for a new toiletry bag. I’m like you and need to have everything together. And I’m not even a high maintenance kind of make-up girl. You’re right though…we all want something different. I’ve made many a girlfriend’s day by passing on a lovely make-up bag. I hold out hope that one day I will find the perfect one! ….right after I find the perfect carry-on!!

    • 4.1
      Laura says

      I hear ya on that! I’m constantly changing my mind on these type of things. I’ve been through soooo many carry-ons!

  4. 5
    Meaghan says

    Up until recently I had the LL Bean family-sized toiletry bag and loved it. While we were coming back from our last vacation, the TSA inspected my bag and never zipped it back up. My toiletry bag and a few pairs of shoes fell out, apparently never to be seen again. Now I am in the market of replacing everything (pretty annoying!)- where did you get all those little plastic bottles?


    • 5.1
      Laura says

      Meaghan those are just from my local dollar store.

  5. 6
    Rache says

    that’s actually one of the nicest set-ups I’ve seen for multiple compartments. my hubby has one of the sort that hangs from a hook and rolls up on itself, but I’m not so keen on those, they can get bulky. right now I travel with small children so it makes more sense to keep the makeup separate from the ‘bathroom’ stuff as we share bath/shower products when travelling.

    • 6.1
      Laura says

      Yes that makes total sense. I too am not a fan at all of those ones that you hang with a hook. I find them very bulky as well.

  6. 7
    Lee Ann says

    Very nice. I have one similar but doesn’t have bott section like where you have your makeup (love BE btw!!). Perfect solution there!! Especially w mineral makeup because you’d rather have it flat instead of on side hmmmm maybe I found THE BAG!!

    • 7.1
      Laura says

      I LOVE my Pur Minerals makeup, been using it for years!

  7. 8
    Lee Ann says

    Ooh I just realized you said you bought at a store I was thinking this was a product your were selling. My hopes are dashed. Lol. Is there a name on it?? Maybe search Internet for one.

    • 8.1
      Laura says

      No I think it’s just a generic bag and it wasn’t expensive…I think I paid $15 or something like that. I’m sure any drug store would have something similar.

  8. 9
    Ann @ The Scrapbooking Housewife says

    I have a hanging roll-up bathroom bag that I’ve had for years and absolutely LOVE it!! Love that I can hang it up. I do find that it takes up a lot of room when packing so I actually never roll it anymore, I just pack it flat. I also have an awesome smallish bag (a free gift with purchase from Elizabeth Arden, I think) that I use to carry my fold-up blowdrier, brush, curling iron; and my makeup, what little I have, is kept in a small little bag (that may fit inside, I can’t remember). I don’t travel often so I haven’t really perfected my packing! LOL!

  9. 10
    Andrea says

    Wow, that really looks like the Perfect bag. Thank you for sharing where you found this!
    : )

  10. 11
    Joyce says

    I’ve always used 2 also because that’s just what I have, and I hate shopping, so I don’t want to buy another one, but I think one would work better for me too.

  11. 12
    Tracy @ says

    You’re in good company. I carry one bag because it saves time getting ready away from home. At home, I keep everything together. If I had multiple bags, then it would take more time trying to find the items. Glad you found a system that works for you!

  12. 13
    Mridu says

    Ok, I am loving your new bag!! Where is it from?

  13. 14
    Shana says

    I use just one. I like to be able to grab one bag when it’s my turn to head to the bathroom.

  14. 15
    Lorraine says

    OMG, I need one of these, but I live in the US! I love the way it opens up to reveal the makeup compartment! bRILLIANT! I’m officially on the hunt. Thanks for sharing, and it helps to know that there are so many folks out there that are “org junkies”!

    • 15.1
      Renee says

      Love, Love, Love the bag. I’m an ex-flight attendant and could have used that yrs ago. What is the name brand of the bag.? Any labels inside? However I also need 2 bags. One for makeup in case Flt ever gets cancelled……obivously an ex- Flt att. Ith cancellation experience

  15. 16
    Jennifer says

    I use a few toiletry bags and it drives me crazy! So thank you for the inspiration of showing this one. This particular bag you show is great- Do you know where I can buy it?

  16. 17
    Vicki says

    Love the bag. What is the brand?

  17. 18
    Charley MS says

    I’m making a valiant effort to fly carry-on, so I use 2 plastic bags. 1 for liquids/gels for airport security, the other holds the rest of my toiletry items and does not require inspection. Cruising, however, is a different story – not a carry-on trip for me. I have an old Samsonite hanging toiletry bag for those tiny bathrooms. It is supposed to fold, but takes up too much room in my luggage, so I pack it flat.

  18. 19
    Marcia Francois says

    LOL I love it – I’m totally with you on sorting things out so they don’t annoy you anymore.

    I use one toiletry bag and of course the little one in my handbag for make-up. It helps that I use eye liner, lip liner and lipstick aside from foundation – that’s it. And I have about 3 lipsticks total :)

    • 20.1
      Sheridan B says

      I use the same bag! It’s awesome, I store my makeup in it when and hang it on the back of my bathroom door when I’m not traveling with it!

  19. 21
    Teresa Overman says

    I love this bag. I would love to take it on my next beach trip.

  20. 22
    Sheridan B says

    Tulum, Mexico in the Yucatan Pen. So beautiful and so much great culture without the over-touristy feel. Lots to do, SCUBA, snorkle, ruins and parks. It’s close to it all!

  21. 23
    Teaching in Turtlepond says

    Is your local drugstore a London Drugs or Shoppers Drug Mart? I am in BC and would love to find a bag like yours!

  22. 24
    Michele says

    Sandestin, FL

  23. 25
    Karyn says

    Hi! Just started reading your blog today! I love a lot of your ideas and can relate a lot. I’m glad I’m not alone in my organizing quirks!

  24. 26
    Lisa Snyder says

    My favorite vacation destination is at Longboat Key, Florida!!! Love it.

  25. 27
    Easton Rimer says

    This is awesome, very organized and up to the expectations.


  26. 28
    B says

    Im leaving for a trip soon and desperately need a cosmetics travel bag. I have been looking too long and found nothing functional. I absolutely love this bag, but cannot find it online, even having been to ACI website. I live in the US so I’m unable to go to the listed drugstore. I too need total organization and ease, so If anyone can help I would greatly appreciate it!

  27. 29
    Wil says

    Well let me chime in. I’m a guy and yes I need a large toiletry bag. I am on the road constantly and need something large for my shower and shaving stuff plus my clothes. It is amazing how much stuff you need to carry around. I also carry full size everything which doesn’t help. What I loved was the LL Bean bag! Particularly the family size. Problem is about a year ago I got a new one because my old one was just tired. Well they changed everything great about it and in 3 months the handle broke! I use it every single day. While it is a great bag, they have cut corners. I still recommend it only because it’s the only bag like it on the market! They know this because I told them everything that was wrong with the new one and they could care less – they didn’t change it back. : /


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