Color-coded storage solves bathroom confusion

Sharing a bathroom with a roommate, parent, spouse, or sibling can be a difficult task even for the most organized. One person might leave his things strewn about the counter, you might have more stuff than your allotted storage space, and your bathroom might look messier than any other area in your home.

The Rubbermaid company offers some terrific advice on their website for sharing a bathroom in their Back-to-School section. The article “Room for Two” talks about the whole dorm room, but one of their tips caught my attention and is perfect for anyone sharing a bathroom:

What’s mine is…blue
Identify what’s yours at a glance and avoid confusion by stashing supplies in color-coded containers.

One roommate can go black/blue and the other brown. Everyone who shares the space should go through their things to first make sure that only necessary items are being stored in the shared space, and then organize what is left into color-coded containers. It’s so simple I’m surprised I hadn’t thought of it before reading this article.

7 Comments for “Color-coded storage solves bathroom confusion”

  1. posted by FB @ FabulouslyBroke.com on

    What a great idea!

  2. posted by Magchunk on

    Color coding is so basic I think it is often overlooked. Growing up we only had one bathroom (we were just three people at the time, so not too bad). We all had an assigned drawer with one big drawer at the bottom for hairdryers and other large items (the hair-cutting box). You just didn’t put your stuff in someone else’s drawer or you might not see it again. Kept me editing so that I could always fit everything in mine.

    While in dorms (as this product suggested), we always had a my-half/your-half policy, with some communal space in the middle. But nobody dumped their stuff in the communal space, always on your own side. Wasn’t clean (hello, dorm room), but we didn’t lose anything. I could see bins being useful though, for the right roommates.

  3. posted by GermX on

    That’s a very good idea and it really works. As kids, my mom assigned each one of us two colors (as some items were not available in all colors). Plates, cups, storage boxes, towels, small blankets, and other items were color coded so we knew which item belonged to whom and who left their stuff all over the place… As we grew older the need for color coding almost everything subsided but we still use it for towels and storage.

  4. posted by Kathryn on

    Is this really a problem for people? Maybe it’s just a faulty memory, but I don’t recall ever having much difficulty distinguishing my stuff from my housing mates, whether family or roommates.

  5. posted by cv on

    Bins like the ones pictured are helpful in my bathroom, aside from the color-coding aspect of things. Having the items contained in some way makes things look much neater, even if they’re still out, accessible and visible. I’ve had a couple of bathrooms with very limited storage where I’ve had an open bin like this on a windowsill because there was no room anywhere else.

    I do try to keep the visible stuff limited to things like hair ties and contact solution and not really personal items.

  6. posted by T-mag on

    Yes, Yes, Yes, this is a big problem for many of us. My kids (6 and one on the way, all under 8) have a colour and a pattern to keep everything straight. We couldn’t function without it!

  7. posted by Sandi on

    We color coded our two boys’ “stuff” almost from birth, and it makes cleaning much easier for everyone. It also eliminates arguments over toys & such when it’s very easy to tell whose it is by the color.

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