There’s always been something very luxurious about having a dressing table.

I had a gorgeous old-fashioned one as a child that was handed down from my grandma. It came with a velvet-topped Ottoman stool with gold trim, and matching wardrobes that were far too big for my room.

And although the days of those colossal, winged cabinets with gold leaf edging are long gone, I still love having a space to call my own. Somewhere to put my perfumes and creams, bracelets, make-up and my all-important anti-wrinkle eye cream…

Vanity tables are very personal too.

Whether you prefer a minimalist look that’s clutter-free, or adore the powderpuff pink of a princess-styled room, adorned with satin bows, trinket boxes and far too many cushions; there’s a vanity table for everyone. They can be used as standalone pieces or at the centre of all your shelves, cupboards and drawers, depending on how often you swoon at the make-up counters in Debenhams…

And if you’ve never experienced the happiness of owning one, now’s your chance.

Why I love dressing tables


When it comes to choosing what furniture to have in your bedroom, the term ‘vanity table’ has always made them seem like an extra. Saved only for Disney characters who like to muse away the hours singing to the birds about a man they’ve just discovered and are now in love with.

So, to avoid the stigma, how many of us then end up balancing an over-stuffed toiletry bag on the edge of the basin, as we try and make the curling tong cable stretch across the hallway to see the mirror? Too many.

And if you’re still not convinced, here’s why vanity tables should be put at the top of your must-haves:

You get a little me time – there’s a reason why vanity tables tend to have stools and not benches. They’re about you, getting that little bit of time every day, to do nothing except look after yourself. Whether you’re doing your hair, tending to your skin or dousing yourself in glitter, we all need that time to relax and enjoy being ourselves.


Beauty is fun – having a vanity table doesn’t mean leaving the house looking like Cruella de Vil every morning – although this wouldn’t be a bad thing, after all, she is pretty badass. But dressing tables aren’t necessarily about having to layer it up. They’re about taking care of yourself. So, whether you love applying fresh, posy pink blush, smoky eyeshadow or blobbing on that eye-gel that helps you look a little less like you’ve had two seconds sleep – give yourself some space to relax and enjoy your own time.

Storage – we’ll let you into a little secret: if beauty for you is lots of eyeliner and a fistful of gummy bears, that’s ok. You don’t need thousands of expensive products to feel like you deserve an entire table to put them in. Dressing tables are great for storage. And there’s no point denying that top drawer that’s overflowing with face wipes and pants is going to get any easier to close after a trip round Boots on payday. Give yourself a little extra room – even if some of the drawers do get filled up with old phone chargers and takeaway menus.

It’s your space – in busy households, bathrooms can so easily get filled up with shavers, toothbrushes, medicines and more. Having a vanity table is a way of dedicating a space to you and your things. You didn’t spend all that money on your radiance-boosting night serum for it to be stuffed alongside a net of dinosaur bath toys. Like a safe for all your beauty secrets, vanity tables are great for hiding away all your precious potions so they’re safe, untouched and ready when you are.

They’re not just for products – having a little extra surface area can work wonders for your morning routine. So, if you gradually find your blusher brushes have been replaced by a work phone and the world’s strongest coffee – that’s ok. A busy lifestyle deserves organisation and ease of living.

So, however they help you get up and out the house in the morning, they’re definitely worth having.

How to personalise a dressing table


Make-up is personal, hair is personal and attempting to put false eyelashes on for the first time is pretty personal too.

So, it makes sense to ensure your dressing table is personal too. It’s your space where you can just sit and enjoy being you.

Here are my top 10 ways you can get inspired and get creative with your vanity table:

• 1) Ribbons – simple yet effective, ribbons and bows make everything prettier. Wrap them round your perfume bottles, decorative boxes and even tie a few around your drawer handles for instant loveliness.

• 2) Music boxes – these are so charmingly sweet and will pluck the strings of many a girl’s inner princess. Ballerinas, carousels and birds spinning gently on their podium – and you can even get Game of Thrones themed ones too – sorted.

• 3) Mirrors – why just have one when you can have many? You can get all different types and they look pretty too. Have a selection at the ready for all your beauty/selfie-taking needs.

• 4) Shelves – companies invest a lot of time into ensuring their products look beautiful so why not have them on display? Whether it’s your skin care bottles, creams, nail polishes or pots of body glitter, surround your table with shelves to keep your beauty products close to hand. It’s also a great way of freeing up some drawer space for even more phone chargers and takeaway menus – just saying…

• 5) Flowers – the fresh, velvety petals of a bunch of flowers are perfect for helping you feel beautiful in the morning. Get a small vase and pick some posies down at your local market for instant beautified smugness.

6) Hearts – cliché or too good to deny? It’s about time we started showing ourselves a lot more love. Hearts are a symbol of confidence – in ourselves as well as those we admire. They are a symbol of care and compassion. And being reminded that you should give yourself that extra bit of love and attention everyday isn’t a bad thing. Hearts – use them in abundance!

7) Photos – pictures of friends, family members or even your boyfriend smiling hastily next to a tear-out pic of Ryan Reynolds – they’re all great for filling you with happiness. And when you’re rushed off your feet, having that injection of loveliness is great for helping you to relax and smile.

8) Fairy lights – when you’ve not had enough sleep and you wake up to your cat using your scalp as a scratching post, standing under your bathroom’s luminous strip light is not going to brighten your day. Instead, let your eyes adjust to the morning sun with beautiful, soft fairy lights. Drape them over your mirror, wrap around the table legs or hang them behind your table. Create light that’s perhaps a little kinder to the night owls among us…

9) Kiss and make-up – sometimes we all need a little inspiration. If you love to flick through magazines for beauty inspiration, why not keep hold of the looks you love and put them in a photo album or note book? That way, whenever you’re searching for ideas, you can look through to give you that spark of creativity. Keep your notebook on the side or in one of the drawers (next to the takeaway menus) – simple!

10) Stay organised – if you love to try new products, then keeping on top of all your lipsticks, liners and lashes can be a bit of a nightmare. Make sure getting ready is a breeze with drawers that simply ooze organisation! You can do this by sectioning different parts of your drawers, so each type of product or shade has its own area.

More convoluted approaches involve creating your own little decorative partitions. But it’s just as effective to use a selection of beautiful make-up pouches, wash bags and gift boxes.

So! Get ready to show your vanity table some love and most importantly, grab a little me-time and give yourself the care and attention you deserve.

And as always, I’d love to hear from you! Send me your vanity table designs on Facebook @HartleysDirect.