By Amy Kennedy, Professional Home Organiser from The Organising Bee
Sharing a bathroom with children or multiple people can be tricky. This definitely applies for young children and teenagers within the same family.
Simplifying the organisation and storage systems within a shared bathroom, can make it easier for your children to comfortably share the space and are more likely to keep it tidy without adult support.
Amy Kennedy, Professional Home Organiser from The Organising Bee explores different ways to maintain an organised bathroom when shared by children of different ages.
GIVE EACH CHILD THEIR OWN UNIQUE COLOUR
Colour code the key items used by each child – towels, hand towels, face washers, toothbrushes, hairbrushes etc. By ensuring that everything owned by child #1 is blue and everything owned by child #2 is green, can make it easier for each child using the bathroom. They can immediately identify which item belongs to them. In addition, provides ownership and security in the knowledge that their siblings are less likely to use their things.
In addition, a big benefit as a parent is that you can easily determine which child is not hanging up their towel or putting their toothbrush in the toothbrush holder, avoiding unnecessary conflict. Who says sharing a bathroom with children was difficult?
If your children already have items which are all the same colour, you can easily add a coloured name label or even wrap coloured washi or electrical tape around the handle of a toothbrush or hairbrush. In addition, you can also extend this colour coding into other areas, such as lunch boxes, drink bottles or swimming googles.
CREATE A DEDICATED STORAGE SPACE FOR EACH CHILD’S ITEMS
Rather than throwing all of your children’s items together within the vanity, consider separating each child’s personal grooming items into their own zone or section. Furthermore, the older your child gets the more important this is to maintain the overall organisation of the bathroom. In addition, it also reduces the chances of little sister’s sticky fingers getting into big sister’s make-up or personal hygiene supplies.
Furthermore, depending on the amount of space available, you could nominate each child their own drawer or a separate basket. Whatever option you choose, it is important to ensure that it is super simple for the child to access. For this reason, I recommend against stacking baskets on top of each other. In addition, look for plastic containers that are easy to keep clean and can withstand moisture. For example, the SmartStore and Sterilite Basket ranges are perfect for this.
Consider nominating a dedicated space in the bathroom to hang each child’s towel and encourage your children to hang their towel in that space each time. However, communication and persistence are key. Eventually, your children will remember where their own towel lives. In addition, if you don’t have enough towel rails installed in your bathroom, the portable 5 Tier Bamboo Ladder can be highly convenient.
INSTALL SEPARATE HOOKS FOR EACH CHILD’S BELONGINGS
Dedicate hooks for each child to hang their own hand towels, shower caps or anything else that they use regularly. The Umbra Flex Gel-Lock Double Hooks are perfect for this. In addition, place these as close as possible to the child’s height.
If you’ve got young children and teenagers sharing the bathroom, it’s important to make the bathroom feel less like an infant’s play space. This may be very important for a teenage girl who likes to invite her friends around to get ready before heading out. You could consider storing the toys in plastic baskets with adequate drainage holes (like the Howards Rectangular Plastic Basket) that can neatly slide under a wall hung vanity or be placed within the bath when not in use. In addition, this is a neat way to ensure that the bathroom maintains a grown-up and mature feel, meeting the needs of both an older teenager and an infant.
HAVE A BIN AND LAUNDRY BASKET ACCESSIBLE IN THE BATHROOM
You want to make things as simple as possible for your children to keep tidy, dirty clothing is usually one of the biggest culprits in the bathroom. In addition, keeping a laundry basket in the bathroom provides your children the option to put dirty clothes directly in the washing basket. If you have space, a large laundry trolley like the Howards Large Laundry Trolley Cart – 3 Dividers can be convenient for the children and parents. However, if short on space, the 5 Tier Bamboo Ladder provides options to collect dirty laundry and to hang towels.
Furthermore, placing a Bathroom Bin in a highly convenient place within the bathroom increases the chances that your children will use it. Anything that helps to encourage putting empty packaging in a bin is a big plus.
PRE-PLAN A SCHEDULE OR ROSTER FOR BATHING & PERSONAL GROOMING
In addition, if you have multiple children needing to use the bathroom and they are all fighting for the space, it is definitely worth considering a schedule or roster for when each child has dedicated time to bath and groom. A simple way to approach it is for the teenagers and or pre-teens to shower in the morning before getting ready for school or later in the evening when younger children or infants are asleep. Moreover, infants and younger children could bathe late afternoon or early evening depending on your preference and families schedule.
If you have any questions, or simply want to clarify a point, please feel free to contact Amy directly via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Amy Kennedy is a Professional Home Organiser and founder of The Organising Bee based in Canberra. Amy is a practical and fun-loving professional organiser who gets a buzz from supporting others to organise their home and life. She has supported hundreds of families within the Canberra region to ease the pressures of everyday life by reclaiming their space and time. The Organising Bee has been awarded the Best of Houzz Award for Service for the past 4 years (2017-2020) and is a Professional Member of the Institute of Professional Organisers (IOPO) and the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO).