Published on March 23rd, 2011 | by Jules IKEAHacker


Makeup vanity for small spaces

Ekby Gruvan shelf; Vika Curry legs; Godmorgon box; Kolja mirror; Gilbert stool

My bedroom isn’t very large so I needed a small makeup vanity. I’m the type that likes to see all my makeup because if I don’t see it, I won’t use it. The Ekby Gruvan works great for this reason.

Connect 4 Vika Curry legs to a Ekby Gruvan shelf (I used the 48 1/2 inch). If you need a larger surface area, the Ekby Gruvan table top would work too.

The Godmorgon box with compartments fits perfectly on top of the shelf for more storage.

To finish off the vanity, the Kolja mirror is hung on the wall and the Gilbert stool works great with the small area.

Acrylic trays from the local craft store fit perfectly between the shelf and glass to store all of my makeup.

This was such an easy project and took less than an hour. The part that took the longest was organizing the makeup!

~ Annie, Fairfield, CA

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The Author

Jules IKEAHacker

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

50 Responses to Makeup vanity for small spaces

  1. Anonymous says:

    What a fantastic hack! I too would like to see all of my makeup… I would indeed use it more!

    I’m book marking this. Thanks so much for the great idea!

  2. You rock! OMG, this has to be one of the best vanity hacks I’ve ever seen! Great job :-)

  3. Awesome. Looks so professional!

  4. GoofyGirl says:

    This is one of the most useful (in my world) hacks I’ve ever come across! I am completely inspired by it to create one for myself, THANK YOU!

  5. Rumle says:

    OMG! Thats an amazing idea! Been looking a solution like this for ages!
    Thank you very much ;o)

  6. Anonymous says:

    This is a great hack, but I think it would have been better if you did away with the legs and made it “float” and had it mounted to the wall like the LACK shelf.

  7. Anonymous says:

    This is so great! Only way to improve IMO is to add some vanity lighting . . . consider this hack stolen ;)

  8. Anonymous says:


  9. Jenny says:

    Great idea! I think I would use shelf brackets instead of legs and the EKBY ALEX shelf since my makeup isn’t pretty enough to display and I prefer things put away. BUT it gets really beat up in the bathroom drawer.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Brilliant hack, but man, that’s a whole lotta makeup! I think I’ll have to borrow this for my crafting table though—what an awesome way to both display projects while still maintaining a workspace! —Jenny E

  11. Caterina says:

    Fantastic!! I had been looking at lots of vanity hacks and dyi tutorials – this is by far the best! Simple, functional and pretty.
    As a fellow make up addict I love the fact that it isn’t just a storage unit but it showcases your collection :)

  12. besswess says:

    This is the best vanity! It makes me drool!

  13. Anonymous says:

    LOVE IT!!!! What a wonderful idea. I will definitely be a copycat!!!

  14. Anonymous says:


  15. mapetite0206 says:

    Awesome Job! Going to steal this for my spare bedroom.

  16. Michelle says:

    Very nice! I also like “I have to see it or I won’t use it.” I’m the same way and never know how to word that. Also what up local lady, I’m from Vacaville! Lovely hack!

  17. -L says:

    Totally did this over CHRISTMAS!! Such a great alternative!

  18. I am in love this hack! It’s the perfect vanity!!

  19. now that is some seriouse stuff:

  20. Anonymous says:

    It’s so simple and so brilliant at the same time! Great job. It’s something that makes people go “Now, why didn’t I think of that?”

  21. Rene Braun says:

    WOw!!! I love Ikea so much!!!! This table looks amazing!!!



  22. Tamara says:

    I am tempted to go out and buy more makeup just so I need this! But mine all fits in a small shoebox. But there has to be some practical need in my life for this. Kitchen – spices maybe? art supplies?

  23. Anonymous says:

    Great job, def. going to try to copy it!

  24. NinaPWA says:

    I just bought a large bunch of itty-bitty earring charms. I am also a need-to-see-it-to-remember-I-have-it person. Just this weekend I purchased the acrylic containers at the craft shop…..was going to put them in trays in my dresser drawer. Might do this instead!! Great ideas!

  25. Anonymous says:

    Fabulous! But can I check… do u need to drill the legs to the shelves or simply fix it because the holes are already there? Thanks!

  26. Annie says:

    Hi all! Thanks for all the nice comments! To answer your question, holes are not in the shelf so I had to drill small holes and then screw the legs in. When I was done, my shelf leaned forward a bit and was a little shaky. If you have the same problem, just turn the shelf around–that way it tilts/leans against the wall. Now it’s sturdy. =)

  27. Anonymous says:

    This is AMAZING!!! I love that you can see everything!!! I wonder if that shelf comes in other colors???

    Google here I come!

  28. Anonymous says:

    LOVE THIS! Did you use the 31 1/8″ shelf or the 46 7/8″ shelf?

  29. Anonymous says:

    Hi! I used the 46 7/8 inch shelf. – Annie

  30. Anonymous says:

    The vanity is amazing, not to mention your fantastic eye shadow collection. I would love the whole thing in my house! Thanks for posting!

  31. Anonymous says:

    Why didn’t you just attach to the wall? Any reason for going with the legs instead?

  32. caitlin says:

    I totally copied this in my bedroom! I did attach it to the wall using a french-cleat type hanger for heavy mirrors and pictures, and two legs on the front. Thank you so much for the idea!

  33. Annie says:

    I didn’t attach it to the wall because we’re still trying to rearrange our bedroom. Once we get settled, I’ll probably use brackets so it looks prettier. =) -Annie

  34. Anonymous says:

    i was wondering if the shelf is 119cm or 79cm in length?

  35. Anonymous says:

    i love that idea


    congratulations :)

  36. CHOO says:

    Just a couple things for all those attempting this hack:

    the 31 1/8″shelf is not the same depth as the 46 7/8″ and you will not have room to put in the extra legs.

    To Annie – I’m curious as to if you used the screws that came with the legs to screw plates in – when I drilled my first screw it went through the other side :\. Would’ve been nice to know going in.

  37. Anonymous says:

    Hi Anne, which trays did you use from the container store. I notices there are two sizes one with 1″ depth and another with 2″. Great hack thanks for sharing.

  38. rr77 says:

    I copied this hack in my new bedroom, It turned out very nice, just a word of caution: Just like CHOO mentioned before me, do get shorter screws for this project. The ones that come with the Vika legs are too long and I too found out about this after I ruined the base of the shelf inserting the first one. Such a shame, luckily I can cover it with a eyeshadow palette but would have liked it better if it never happened ofc. I used the original ones on the edges only and got additional shorter screws for the rest. Didn’t have to drill any holes, a battery screwdriver was powerful enough to push the screws in.

  39. Anonymous says:

    I stole this, but made some modifications! Did away with the legs, used brackets for the floating shelf effect. Switched the round mirror for the square one with a shelf from IKEA …believe the mirror name is Fullen, it was 9.99. I then bought the vanity light mirror, $14.99 I believe, and did a quick rewiring to be able to plug it into the outlet in my bedroom. Thanks SO much for the great idea!

    • kelly says:

      I am curious how simple or difficult it was to wire your light fixture to an outlet? I also bought a 14.99 light fixture but cant use it as it is now

  40. Caitlin says:

    I stole this, but made some modifications! Did away with the legs, used brackets for the floating shelf effect. Switched the round mirror for the square one with a shelf from IKEA …believe the mirror name is Fullen, it was 9.99. I then bought the vanity light mirror, $14.99 I believe, and did a quick rewiring to be able to plug it into the outlet in my bedroom. Thanks SO much for the great idea!

  41. Anonymous says:

    Nice I found this when I was searching for Makeup Vanity’s on youtube

  42. The Vittsjo Laptop table from Ikea works great as a vanity also! I just bought it last night and it was only $39!!! The dimensions are as follows Width: 39 3/8 “Depth: 14 1/8 “Height: 29 1/8″ I also bought the Kullen Chest with 2 drawers for $29.99 and put that underneath the shelf. I also bought the Stefan chair in black brown $24.99. As this is going to funcation as a desk/vanity I chose this route. This table is a little sturdier than the one above becuase it’s all one solid piece. My whole project (desk, chair, chest) came to under $100! Hope this helps! :)

  43. nice article. That’s exactly what I was looking for.

  44. Brianna says:

    Thanks for this idea! Seeing as how this is a few years old, some of the products are not offered anymore. Instead of the Vika Curry legs, I used the Adils Legs which ran $3.50! I wanted to use the Lalle Leg, but my Ikea was out of them in black. I also went to Lowes and bought 3/4″ screws instead of using the 1″ that came with the legs, as I didnt want to ruin the shelf. I also opted for the Ekne mirror ($14.99), as it matched my room decor already. I have not purchased a stool yet, but I will probably be back there soon to get one.

    Thanks again!

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