Pack it up: Simple strategies for moving your toiletries

Use these helpful tips and tricks to pack toiletries safely and securely for your upcoming move.

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Packing is one of the most cumbersome parts of moving. In all the disarray, you might think that packing your bathroom—likely the smallest room in your home—is as easy as cramming things into a few boxes. However, it’s important to remember that your bathroom stores plenty of essentials. Packing toiletries safely and efficiently entails a great deal of care and organization.

Read on to learn how to pack toiletries for moving to get your essentials secure and transport-ready.

How to pack bathroom items for moving

Step 1: Empty your shelves

bathroom shelves with toiletries

Just like how you would approach packing other parts of your home, the best way to start is by determining what you need to pack. Empty your shelves, cabinets, and drawers first. Lay out all your items so you can see everything in one pile. This will give you a better idea of what you can keep and what packaging materials you need.

Step 2: Sort your toiletries

toiletries sorted in containers

With all your bathroom items laid out, it will be easier to group them. To categorize your things, consider building a bathroom packing list. The list can look like this:

  • Appliances: hairdryer, curling iron, electric razor  

  • Cosmetics: makeup and other beauty products

  • Oral care items: toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, dental floss

  • Skincare items: moisturizer, serum, cleanser, soap, lotion

  • Medicines and medical products: prescription medication, first aid kit, eye care products (also cotton swabs, cotton pads, etc.)

  • Feminine products: sanitary napkins, tampons, cups

  • Paper products: toilet paper, paper towels 

  • Hair products: brush, comb, styling products, shampoo, conditioner

  • Cleaning supplies: cleaning brush, plunger, bleach, soap

  • Linens: towel, bathrobe

  • Miscellaneous items: bathroom decor, containers, rugs

Pack an essentials kit and a first aid kit: Once your things are all sorted, set aside a few items you use daily. You’ll want to be able to access the things you’ll be using right up until moving day and within the first few days of settling into your new home. Store your medicines and other medical products together and keep them handy as a first aid kit.

Step 3: Declutter your bathroom items

empty and unused toiletries in basket

Sorting your bathroom items is an excellent opportunity to downsize. Doing so can ensure you’re only taking necessary things and saving time, space, and money—especially if your moving company charges by weight—during your move.

As a rule, the fewer bathroom items you can take, the better. Most bathroom items are risky to move as they are fragile or contain liquids.

Questions to ask yourself while purging

  1. Is it expired? Dispose of anything that is past the expiration date on the packaging. Additionally, note any unusual textures, colors, or smells in the products. Expired medicine, however, needs to be disposed of properly by taking it to your nearest hazardous waste facility.

  2. Is it empty or almost empty? You’ll want to discard unnecessary packaging or containers, like bottles or tubes. In terms of the products, try to use up what you can before you pack up. Otherwise, toss things like empty lotion tubes or grimy bars of soap in the trash. 

  3. Does it still serve me? If you have items you don’t use, consider giving them away or selling them at a lower price instead of taking them with you. Do you have a broken hand mirror you never got around to replacing? Throw it away. Do you have old, ragged rugs or towels? Keep those—they may help wrap fragile items.

  4. Is it safe to move? Your movers will not allow items that pose more risk when spilled, like paint or bleach, or flammable items, like nail polish. These would likely need to be transported on your own, so check with your moving company.

Step 4: Secure packaging materials

woman preparing packaging materials for packing

Now that you have a rough idea of what you’ll take on your move, you need to have your packaging supplies ready. Most materials are easy to acquire—you likely already have things you can use at home. Others can be improvised. Have the following ready:

  • Small and midsize boxes

  • Bubble wrap

  • Packaging paper or recycled paper

  • Plastic bags

  • Tape

  • Markers

Step 5: Start packing

skincare items in a wooden container

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you’re all set to pack toiletries and other bathroom items:


Use an accessible and easy-to-carry cosmetics bag to carry your essentials kit. This way, you wouldn’t need to do much and can quickly spot your kit while settling into your new place.

Liquid items

Any container with liquid poses a risk during moving, so you want to be sure these are packed as securely as possible. Bottles and tubes should be placed inside a plastic container. Use plastic wrap for open containers holding liquids. For tubes and plastic bottles, do the extra step of getting as much air out as possible before packing. Finally, make sure these items are positioned upright in their containers.

Tip: Some liquid products can freeze and burst if you’re moving during colder temperatures. While this shouldn’t be a problem for local moves, it may be risky for long-distance transport. Check with your moving company if they use temperature-controlled trucks in such cases.


Keep these in their own boxes, and provide extra cushioning, such as with bubble wrap or paper. 

Fragile items

Fragile items like perfume are trickier to move, so you want to pack each separately and cushion it with bubble wrap. Then, place them in a tight container to be transported upright. Any fragile item should clearly be labeled “Fragile.”

Makeup and other smaller items

Generally, these smaller, lighter items can be wrapped in plastic wrap as another layer of protection and placed in smaller boxes. Place accessories like makeup brushes into a resealable bag. To protect products like pressed powders, put a cotton pad on top of the powder before wrapping.


Keep your medications, bandaids, cotton swabs, and other medical products within close reach while moving. Use a small bag as your first aid kit.

Packing your bathroom safely

The best way to pack toiletries for moving is to take your time. Sort and downsize your items with a toiletries packing list. Ensure everything is tightly and securely packed for the move.

Need help with moving? Whether you’re switching apartments or need long-distance transport, find a professional local mover near you by booking through Airtasker.

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FAQs on packing toiletries for moving

In general, movers will not allow certain items that could be risky when spilled—paint and bleach are some examples. Aerosols and flammable items, like nail polish, are also prohibited. These are items you should transport on your own if needed. Most other items can be moved as long as they are securely packed.

General toiletries should be packed securely. This includes providing fragile items, like glass bottles, an extra layer of protection and placing plastic wrap over open containers with liquids.

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