Shopping
Advertiser Disclosure

The Best Toiletry Bags for Keeping Personal Hygiene Products Safely Organized

Best Toiletry Bags
iStock

Our evaluations and opinions are not influenced by our advertising relationships, but we may earn a commission from our partners’ links. This content is created independently from TIME’s editorial staff. Learn more about it.

updated: July 8, 2024
edited by Amber Katz

On the list of things that will ruin a vacation, finding your toiletries smeared all over the inside of your suitcase ranks pretty high—not as bad as a crate of killer bees breaking open inside your aircraft, certainly, but it’s a serious annoyance. The solution is investing in a toiletry bag or dopp kit. Whether you’re traveling alone or with your family to a fancy hotel or into the wild, there’s something on our list of the best toiletry bags that’ll work for you.

Our picks for the best toiletry bags

Best budget toiletry bag: WANDF Hanging Toiletry Bag

Best budget
WANDF Hanging Toiletry Bag Travel Cosmetic Organizer Shower Bathroom

WANDF Hanging Toiletry Bag Travel Cosmetic Organizer Shower Bathroom

Spending a ton of money on something that’s just going to sit on top of a hotel toilet, holding your athlete’s foot cream, isn’t for everyone. If you’re looking to spend less without skimping too much on features, this bag packs in a surprising amount for $17. As well as being water resistant, it boasts a shower hook, ten internal dividers, two side pockets, and a zipper pocket on the back.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 9.5 inches x 4 inches x 8 inches
  • Colors: 7
  • Material: Polyester

What we like:

  • Lightweight
  • Water-resistant
  • Inexpensive

What we don’t like:

  • Won’t fit full size bottles

Best toiletry bag for camping: Osprey Ultralight Roll Organizer

Best for camping
Osprey Ultralight Roll Organizer

Osprey Ultralight Roll Organizer

When you’re packing for a camping trip, you’re trying to make everything as compact and practical as possible (or perhaps more accurately, you should be). Osprey’s nifty organizer can help with this, unrolling to reveal five zippered internal pockets: Two large mesh pockets; two small, toothpaste tube-sized ones beneath a single zipper; and one large, more water-resistant pocket. It’s also made of recycled materials and weighs just 0.2 lbs when empty.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 9.06 inches x 2.76 inches x 4.33 inches
  • Colors: Black and waterfront blue
  • Material: Recycled, high-tenacity nylon

What we like:

  • Comes with mirror
  • Includes hanging clip loop
  • Water resistant to a degree

What we don’t like:

  • Lack of color options
  • Can be tough to roll up neatly when fully packed, per some reviews

Best toiletry bag for makeup: Lay-n-Go COSMO

Best for makeup
Lay-n-Go COSMO (20") Drawstring Cosmetic Makeup Bag

Lay-n-Go COSMO (20") Drawstring Cosmetic Makeup Bag

Although not the most conventional-looking makeup bag, the COSMO gets points for innovation. What appears to be a simple drawstring bag fully unfolds into a temporary tray, so you can find exactly what you’re looking for at a glance. If you’re short on space but don’t want to just dump your makeup out on the bed, this is an ideal solution. There’s also a zippered, internal pocket and an elastic brush-holding strip for extra organization.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 20 inches x 2 inches (when unfolded)
  • Colors: 21
  • Material: Nylon

What we like:

  • Different
  • Washable
  • Water repellent

What we don’t like:

  • Won’t suit those who like their stuff rigorously organized

The most versatile toiletry bag: State Bensen Toiletry Kit

Most versatile
State Bensen Toiletry Kit

State Bensen Toiletry Kit

While it may look more like a kid’s lunch box than a toiletry bag, this is actually to its advantage: Opening flat, like a magazine, means you can organize and access your stuff more easily than with a regular, top-opening dopp kit. It also features three separate mesh compartments (one zippered), a water-resistant, TSA-friendly, snap-off pouch for short trips, and a hook for hanging it up when opened. Pretty much whatever you need this bag to do, it’ll do.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 8.9 inches x 3 inches x 6.89 inches
  • Colors: 13
  • Material: Polyester

What we like:

  • Can be personalized with your initials for an extra $20

What we don’t like:

  • Some customer reviews note that the shower hook is too small to be practical, depending where you are

Best toiletry bag to splurge on: Smythson Washbag with Double Zip

Best splurge
Washbag with Double Zip in Panama

Washbag with Double Zip in Panama

Is it sensible to spend close to $600 on a toiletry bag? No. But is the bag packed with high tech features that actually make this a sound investment? Again, no. But the bag is beautiful, made from crossgrain calf leather, with an oil-resistant satin lining, and features two zippered compartments and two internal slip pockets. It’s not some fragile objet d'art, either—speaking from personal experience, I bought my wife the Smythson cosmetic case (in bright yellow, a color sadly currently unavailable) nearly a decade ago and it’s still going strong despite almost daily use.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 8 inches x 3.5 inches x 5 inches
  • Colors: 6
  • Material: Crossgrain calf leather

What we like:

  • Beautiful design
  • Durable

What we don’t like:

  • Not much in the way of practical features
  • Insanely expensive

Best toiletry bag for families: Bagsmart Space Saver Toiletry Bag

Best for families
Bagsmart Space Saver Toiletry Bag

Bagsmart Space Saver Toiletry Bag

Packing for any kind of trip when you’ve got kids is a pain, particularly if they’re still at an age that might require a small pharmacy’s worth of lotions and ointments at any given moment. This bag, at least, is large enough to fit both your stuff and theirs, and its compartments are roomy and separated enough that you’re not going to accidentally put diaper rash cream on your toothbrush (depending how sleep deprived you are, of course).

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 11 inches x 3 inches x 7.5 inches (medium) or 12.2 inches lx 4 inches x 9.1 inches (large)
  • Colors: 11
  • Material: Polyester

What we like:

  • Comes in two sizes
  • Water-resistant

What we don’t like:

  • Some customer reviews note that it’s hard to close once all the internal compartments are full

Best hanging toiletry bag: Sea to Summit Hanging Toiletry Bag

Best hanging
Sea to Summit Hanging Toiletry Bag

Sea to Summit Hanging Toiletry Bag

For those who like to keep their entire toiletry bag handy in the shower, a hanging option is vital. This bag strikes the right balance between lightweight and strong, while offering just enough capacity and organizational options (two zippable mesh pockets inside the lid and one open, internal mesh pocket) to keep things useful. Be warned, though, although it’s made of water-resistant material, it will still take in water through the zipper if it gets completely doused, so don’t put it right under the shower head.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 8.9 inches x 2.2 inches x 6 inches (small) or 10.2 inches x 3.9 inches x 8.9 inches (large)
  • Colors: High rise grey, atoll blue or spicy orange
  • Material: Nylon

What we like:

  • Comes with attached, shatterproof mirror
  • Available in two sizes

What we don’t like:

  • Doesn’t have much structure

Best water-resistant toiletry bag: Tooletries The Koby Bag

Best water-resistant
Olive Koby Bag Dopp Kit

Olive Koby Bag Dopp Kit

While other bags on this list can claim a degree of water resistance, this one, made from 100% silicone, is the real deal, both leak-resistant and antimicrobial, so you’ll never find it developing mildew. For those needing something smaller, it’s also available in the Koby Lite and even Koby Mini forms.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 10 inches x 6 inches x 6 inches
  • Colors: Charcoal or army green
  • Material: Silicone

What we like:

  • Sturdy
  • Antimicrobial

What we don’t like:

  • Only two color options

How we selected the best toiletry bags

Our selections were made through a combination of thorough research, personal experience, and positive customer reviews.

How to choose the best toiletry bag

When choosing a toiletry bag, you want to find something that keeps your stuff safe, dry, easily grabbed, and with enough room for everything you need.

Water resistance

Depending where it is you’re trying to wash—the shower block in a campsite, say—it can be difficult to keep your stuff dry, so a wash bag that seals tight and keeps water out is a must. Conversely, you want the bag to stop any liquids spilling out when you travel.

Organization

Again, not every bathroom you find yourself in will be a luxurious five-star en suite. For bathrooms with little space, you want to be able to use everything in your toiletry bag without emptying it out. So a bag with multiple, easy-to-access compartments will be extremely helpful. Additionally, you want to consider where your travel organizer is going to “live” while you’re en route: Carry-on luggage, rolling suitcases, travel backpacks, and travel totes all have different capacities.

Capacity

Some people can travel with a toothbrush and not much else. Others require a little more in the way of toiletries. Still, others won’t leave the house without their entire medicine cabinet stuffed into their suitcase. Try to think exactly what you’re likely to take with you when you travel, and choose your bag size accordingly.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

How many toiletry bags can you bring on a plane?

Technically, you can bring as many toiletry bags as you like, but when it comes to liquids (your shampoo, toothpaste, perfume, etc.), current TSA rules state that flyers may only take one quart-size, clear, zip-top bag in their carry-on. It’s called the 3-1-1 rule: Everything must be 3.4 ounces or less, it must all fit in one bag, and it’s just one bag per person. Bigger items will have to go into your checked luggage.

What are the measurements of the TSA-approved toiletry bags?

The TSA doesn’t officially endorse any products directly (so ignore any “TSA-approved” claim you see), but quart-size bags measure roughly six inches by nine inches, so aim for something close to that. And obviously, go for something transparent.

What should be in a toiletry bag?

That depends on you! If you’re planning on a longer trip with a large, checked bag, go nuts—take all the stuff you think you’ll need, so long as it fits into your suitcase and doesn’t break the airport scales.

For shorter trips with a carry-on, you’ll have to pare it down a little. Consider decanting liquids like shampoos and body washes into smaller plastic bottles (pro tip, only fill these two thirds full if possible—that way the liquid has space to move around rather than bursting out, if the bag is squashed en route). Put your toothbrush in a travel case, and if you’re taking cologne or perfume, bring a smaller, travel-sized one – you’ll be seriously bummed out if your expensive, full-sized bottle gets confiscated during your TSA check.

What you should not put in a toiletry bag?

All the usual suspects: Anything flammable or in an aerosol (e.g., hairspray), anything sharp, like nail scissors, and anything that breaks the 3-1-1 rule.

What fabric is best for a toiletry bag?

It depends on your situation, but in general you want something durable, water-resistant, and relatively light. With this in mind, nylon and polyester are the most common options.

The information presented here is created independently from the TIME editorial staff. To learn more, see our About page.

1.1481.0+1.69.4