Where to Put Toilet Paper Holder in a Small Bathroom: A Comprehensive Guide

When it comes to optimizing space in a small bathroom, every decision counts. Even something as seemingly simple as the placement of a toilet paper holder can make a significant difference in functionality and convenience.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore:

  • The various factors to consider
  • Assess different placement options
  • offer tips for maximizing space
  • Discuss the types of toilet paper holders available
  • Provide installation guidance
  • Address common concerns and challenges,
  • Showcase creative ideas.

So, let’s dive in and discover where to put toilet paper holder in a small bathroom.

Before we delve into the specifics, let’s emphasize why proper placement of a toilet paper holder matters. A well-placed holder ensures easy access to toilet paper, prevents inconvenience during moments of need, and enhances overall bathroom efficiency.

By strategically positioning the holder, you can make the most of the available space and create a functional and aesthetically pleasing bathroom environment.

Be sure to use the table of contents below to skip to the answers to your questions!

Factors to Consider Before Installing a Toilet Paper Holder:

Size and Layout of the Bathroom:

In a small bathroom, every square inch counts. Assess the dimensions and layout of your bathroom to determine where to put toilet paper holder in a small bathroom. Consider the proximity to the toilet, sink, and other fixtures, and ensure it doesn’t obstruct movement or create congestion.

Accessibility and Convenience:

Think about the accessibility and convenience of the toilet paper holder. It should be within arm’s reach when seated on the toilet, allowing for easy and effortless paper retrieval.

Consider the height and reach required, especially if there are individuals with mobility issues or children in the household.

User Preferences and Habits:

Understanding your personal preferences and habits, as well as those of other bathroom users, is crucial. Take into account how you and your family members typically use the bathroom and position the holder accordingly.

Factors such as left or right-handedness, preferred hand for grabbing toilet paper, and habits like folding or scrunching may influence the ideal placement of where to put toilet paper holder in a small bathroom.

Do you prefere your toilet paper holder left or right?

where to put toilet paper holder in a small bathroom - left or right?

Assessing Different Placement Options:

Standard Placement: Next to the Toilet:

The most common and conventional placement for a toilet paper holder is on the wall next to the toilet.

This placement ensures easy access and convenience, as the toilet paper is within arm’s reach. It is a practical option for small bathrooms with limited space.

Plus, it allows for easy installation and replacement of the holder.

Pros of Standard Placement:

  • Easy accessibility from the toilet.
  • Convenient for most bathroom users.
  • Simple installation process.

Cons of Standard Placement:

  • May consume wall space that could be used for other purposes.
  • Can limit flexibility in bathroom design.
  • May not be suitable if the wall area next to the toilet is obstructed or uneven.
  • You don’t want the toilet paper holder too close to toilet

Alternative Placement: Adjacent to the Vanity or Sink:

In some cases, placing the toilet paper holder adjacent to the vanity or sink can be a viable option. This placement utilizes unused wall space and keeps the toilet paper within reach, especially if the bathroom layout allows for it. It is particularly useful in bathrooms where the toilet is positioned farther away from the sink area.

Pros of Alternative Placement:

  • Efficient use of unused wall space.
  • Provides a convenient backup option if the standard placement is unavailable.
  • Can be visually appealing when coordinated with the vanity or sink design.

Cons of Alternative Placement:

  • May not be suitable for bathrooms with limited wall space.
  • Requires careful consideration of the sink and vanity layout to avoid interference.
  • Accessibility may be compromised if the toilet is positioned far from the sink area.

Creative Placement: Inside a Cabinet or Vanity Drawer:

If you prefer a sleek and minimalist look, consider installing the toilet paper holder inside a cabinet or vanity drawer. This creative placement option keeps the toilet paper hidden from view, maintaining a clutter-free appearance in your small

bathroom. It works best in bathrooms with vanity cabinets or drawers that have sufficient space and depth.

Pros of Creative Placement:

  • Conceals the toilet paper, providing a streamlined and tidy look.
  • Maximizes available storage space in the bathroom.
  • Keeps the toilet paper protected from moisture and potential damage.

Cons of Creative Placement:

  • Guests may find it difficult to find your toilet paper – thats an awkward conversation
  • Requires extra installation steps and customization.
  • May limit accessibility if the cabinet or drawer is not easily reachable from the toilet.
  • Not suitable for all types of bathroom layouts or configurations.

Wall-Mounted Placement: Next to the Shower or Bathtub:

In bathrooms where space is at a premium, wall-mounted placement of the toilet paper holder next to the shower or bathtub can be an effective solution. This option optimizes wall space and ensures convenience for those using the shower or bathtub area.

Pros of Wall-Mounted Placement:

  • Efficient utilization of available wall space.
  • Provides easy access for individuals using the shower or bathtub.
  • Can create a cohesive design when coordinated with other bathroom fixtures.

Cons of Wall-Mounted Placement:

  • Limited accessibility if the holder is far from the toilet.
  • May require careful positioning to avoid water splashes.
  • Not suitable if the wall area near the shower or bathtub is tiled or uneven.

Considerations for Combination Spaces (e.g., Bathroom and Laundry):

In homes where the bathroom shares space with the laundry area, it’s essential to consider the layout and functional requirements of both areas. Look for wall space near the toilet or adjacent to the laundry appliances where the toilet paper holder can be installed. This ensures accessibility from the toilet and convenience for laundry-related activities.

Tips for Maximizing Space in a Small Bathroom:

Utilizing Vertical Space:

In a small bathroom, vertical space is your best friend. Explore options for wall-mounted toilet paper holders that take advantage of the height of your bathroom. Installing a holder that extends upward can free up valuable countertop or floor space, creating a visually appealing and efficient bathroom.

Utilizing Wall Space:

Maximize the available wall space by installing the toilet paper holder on a wall that is easily accessible from the toilet. Consider wall-mounted holders that incorporate storage compartments or hooks to hold additional items such as hand towels or toiletries, optimizing the functionality of your small bathroom.

Utilizing Behind-the-Door Space:

The space behind the bathroom door often goes unused but can be an ideal spot for a toilet paper holder in a small bathroom. Install a holder on the back of the door, ensuring it doesn’t interfere with the door’s movement. This placement keeps the toilet paper easily accessible while maintaining a clean and uncluttered appearance.

Utilizing Under-Sink Space:

If your bathroom has a vanity with an empty or underutilized under-sink area, consider installing a toilet paper holder inside the cabinet.

This placement keeps the toilet paper conveniently tucked away while maximizing storage space in your small bathroom. Make sure the holder is easily accessible and doesn’t hinder the functionality of the cabinet.

Utilizing Over-Toilet Space:

Take advantage of the space above the toilet by installing a shelf or wall-mounted toilet paper holder. This placement keeps the toilet paper within reach and utilizes an otherwise unused area.

Opt for a holder with integrated shelves or compartments to store additional bathroom essentials, making the most of your small bathroom’s vertical space.

Selecting the Right Type of Toilet Paper Holder:

Freestanding Holders:

Freestanding toilet paper holders are a versatile option that can be placed anywhere in the bathroom. They often come in stylish designs and are easy to move around as needed. Consider a freestanding holder if you prefer flexibility and want to avoid drilling holes in your walls.

Pros of Freestanding Holders:

  • No installation required; can be placed anywhere in the bathroom.
  • Portable and easily repositionable.
  • Wide variety of designs and styles available to match your bathroom decor.

Cons of Freestanding Holders:

  • Occupy floor space, which can be limited in a small bathroom.
  • Can be toppled or knocked over, especially in households with children or pets.
  • May not offer storage options or additional features.

Wall-Mounted Holders:

Wall-mounted toilet paper holders are a popular choice due to their space-saving design and accessibility. They are fixed to the wall next to the toilet, ensuring easy reach and convenience. Wall-mounted holders come in various styles, ranging from simple and functional to decorative and elaborate.

Pros of Wall-Mounted Holders:

  • Utilize wall space, leaving the floor area unobstructed.
  • Securely fixed, reducing the risk of accidental falls or displacement.
  • Available in a wide range of designs and finishes to complement your bathroom.

Cons of Wall-Mounted Holders:

  • Require drilling and installation.
  • May limit flexibility in repositioning.
  • Accessibility may be compromised if not properly installed at the right height.

Recessed Holders:

Recessed toilet paper holders are installed directly into the wall, providing a sleek and streamlined look. They save space by being flush with the wall surface, making them an excellent choice for small bathrooms with limited space. Recessed holders can be purchased as complete units or as inserts that fit into existing wall cavities.

Pros of Recessed Holders:

  • Create a seamless and unobtrusive appearance.
  • Save space by being recessed into the wall.
  • Can be easily cleaned and maintained.

Cons of Recessed Holders:

  • Require professional installation or advanced DIY skills.
  • Not suitable for all types of walls, such as those with plumbing or electrical obstructions.
  • May involve additional construction or modifications to the wall.

Adhesive Holders:

Adhesive toilet paper holders offer a non-permanent solution that eliminates the need for drilling or damaging the walls. They come with strong adhesive backing that allows for easy installation and removal. Adhesive holders work well in rental or temporary living spaces where permanent installations are not desired.

Pros of Adhesive Holders:

  • No drilling or wall damage required.
  • Easy installation and removal process.
  • Suitable for rental or temporary living spaces.

Cons of Adhesive Holders:

  • Adhesive strength may vary; ensure you choose a reliable and sturdy product.
  • Not as secure as other types of holders; may become loose over time.
  • Limited design options compared to other holder types.

Tips for DIY Installation:

Tools and Materials Needed:

Before starting the installation process, gather the necessary tools and materials to ensure a smooth and successful DIY project. You will likely need a measuring tape, pencil, level, drill with appropriate drill bits, screwdriver, wall anchors (if necessary), and the chosen toilet paper holder with accompanying hardware.

Step-by-Step Installation Process:

Measuring and Marking the Placement:

Start by measuring and marking the ideal placement for the toilet paper holder. Consider the factors discussed earlier, such as accessibility and convenience, when determining the height and distance from the toilet. Use a measuring tape and pencil to mark the desired location accurately.

Drilling and Mounting the Holder:

Using a drill with the appropriate drill bit, carefully create holes according to the marked placement. If necessary, insert wall anchors into the holes to provide added stability. Align the mounting brackets or backplate of the holder with the holes and attach them securely to the wall using screws provided with the holder.

Testing and Adjusting the Holder:

Once the holder is mounted, test its stability by gently pulling on it to ensure it is securely fixed to the wall. Make any necessary adjustments to ensure the holder is level and straight. Double-check the tightness of the screws and brackets, ensuring they are snug but not overtightened.

Precautions and Considerations:


In bathrooms with showers or bathtubs, it’s crucial to consider the proximity of the toilet paper holder to water sources. Ensure the holder is installed away from direct water splashes to prevent damage or degradation. If necessary, apply waterproof sealant around the holder’s base to protect the surrounding wall.


If you have young children at home, take extra precautions to childproof the toilet paper holder. Consider using holders with covers or lids that require dexterity or strength to open, preventing excessive wastage or unwanted unraveling of the toilet paper.

Maintenance and Cleaning:

Regularly clean the toilet paper holder to maintain its functionality and appearance. Use mild soap and water or appropriate cleaning products suitable for the holder’s material. Avoid using abrasive cleaners or rough materials that could scratch or damage the holder’s surface.

Final Thoughts:

The placement of a toilet paper holder in a small bathroom requires careful consideration to maximize space, accessibility, and convenience. By understanding the factors influencing placement decisions, exploring different options, and selecting the right type of holder, you can optimize your small bathroom’s functionality and aesthetic appeal. Remember to follow the installation instructions carefully and consider any unique challenges or requirements of your specific bathroom. With the right placement and a well-chosen holder, you can ensure a seamless and enjoyable bathroom experience every time.

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