I Muji'ed: notes about Christmas, feeling down, and beauty product storage

My cup does not usually runneth over with Christmas spirit. 

Growing up, my family didn't really celebrate it. It was only when I was in high school that my friends would take me in and include me in their family celebrations; later on, it was holidays with my partner's family. For a big chunk of my mid-twenties, I would always get quite down and depressed in the holiday season. There's something about it being "the most wonderful time of the year" which seemed to highlight all the shortcomings in my life.

It's a different story this year, though, and last year wasn't so bad either. I'm in a way better frame of mind, and I've made some positive changes, so things are looking up! Also there is a lot of mulled wine and cider going around.

I write about all of this because I wanted to acknowledge my decision to not buy anything beauty-related until after the Christmas break, and the two things are related. In the past I've been known to make some slightly stupid purchasing decisions because shopping made me feel better, even if I knew that I would feel bad about it in the long run. I'm much more considered in my approach to buying beauty things these days, even in the face of pre-Christmas sales and enticing discounts and a brand new country full of new-to-me brands.

I also want to show you my beauty product storage set up. Let's face it: most of us have far too many products to be getting on with, and it's easy for them to hide away in the nether regions of drawers and cupboards. For me, not seeing things physically also has the effect of mentally hiding them away. I wanted storage that made my go-to items easy to access, as well as prompting me to go through my collection, showing me what I already have.

makeup storage dresser top

Muji was one of the first shops I visited when I moved to London. I'm not all that stoked about the quality of their slippers and smartphone gloves I purchased, but their acrylic storage and stationery are beauty hoarder favourites for a reason. They are robust, easily customisable, and perfect for fans of the minimalist look.

First up is the acrylic partition desk tidy. I only really have a handful of brushes (blog post to come), and the majority of them fit nicely into this little unit. The larger face brushes and face products in tube/stick form are in the two compartments on one side, while the smaller four compartments hold eye brushes, products like mascara and liner, and regular and mini cotton buds.

muji acrylic partition desk tidy makeup

Next up is the smaller version of the two-drawer acrylic box. This holds some of my lip products, as well as my go-to eyeshadows and cheek things.

muji acrylic two drawer makeup storage

Also on the surface of my dresser is a wooden cutlery tray from Habitat which I found for £1 at an op shop (the op shops here are amazing). It's very similar to their current version here, and holds a miscellany of products like my pencil sharpener, eye drops, cotton pads, and eye cream.

habitat uk makeup storage cutlery tray

I have this sweet enamel mug from Rob Ryan which serves as my rubbish bin, because I'm a fancy lady. Now that I no longer have easy access to a sink while putting on lotions and potions, I use baby wipes to clean my hands between makeup applications. I'm also a disgusting human being, so having a tiny bin helps corral the random bits of rubbish that would otherwise be left to annoy Will (he is a bit tidier than I am).

Most of the rest of my beauty bits go in the top drawer of the dresser (which came as part of the furnished flat). Muji make these polypropylene partitions which fit their vanity cases, and these separate my eyeshadows, cheek products, mascaras (I have several to get through), and lipsticks. 

I also have things like eyeshadow palettes, blushes, and out-of-season foundations stored in random freebie makeup bags. Unused hair and body things go in the overhead cupboard, and boxes from Birchbox (referral link) and Latest in Beauty hold the rest of it.

Organised chaos.

Organised chaos.

I've gone minimalist in the bathroom through necessity, because four people share it. This Muji PP case holds my contact lens solutions, cotton pads, eye makeup remover, hair ties, Elizabeth Arden 8-Hour Cream, and my toothbrush. 

Don't lie: you snoop through other people's bathroom cabinets as well.

Don't lie: you snoop through other people's bathroom cabinets as well.

I hope that's been of interest to some of you. For the rest, some lipstick and sponge reviews coming soon!

P.S. I'm doing the #beautyfashionplay December photo challenge over on my Instagram page (more details here). Go on over to have a look, even if I'm a couple of days late, plus I'm not feeling great today so I'm likely to be even further behind soon...