Bathroom Ideas – The Ultimate Design Resource Guide


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Bathrooms are one of the most popular and commonly remodeled rooms in the home. And since they’re a high-traffic space (and where upgrades are noticeable), doing so can have a significant effect on resale value. When starting a bathroom remodeling project, think about both utility and design. Bathrooms are often difficult jobs because multiple components must be arranged to fit and function in a small space. There are also multiple water features, so getting the project right, from plumbing to ventilation, is imperative. Due to frequent use and the resulting wear and tear, bathrooms tend to start to break down after about 20 years, whether it’s a perpetually dripping faucet, crumbling grout, or chipping tiles (or all three). On average, bathroom remodels cost $16,724, so your design needs to be intentional and strategic to ensure a high return on investment as well as create a functional space. That said, bathrooms are often small, enclosed rooms, so they’re also a place in your home where you can play around with color and texture a bit.

Some of the most important things to keep in mind when considering different bathroom remodel ideas are choosing materials that are easy to maintain, maximizing energy efficiency, and focusing on brightness whenever possible. If you’re doing the project yourself, make sure you’re aware of building codes and permits and check out these 10 things not to do when tackling a home improvement project. And before you get started, check out our 15-point checklist that will walk you through everything from taking the right steps and creating a renovation schedule to what part of the job to start with. If you choose not to go the DIY route, check out our seven essential tips for hiring a contractor. Either way, determine how to make the most of your space. We’ve covered everything from small bathroom ideas that focus on function to making the most of your budget by changing little things like paint color or updating in phases. Whether you’re looking for master bathroom or guest bathroom ideas, we’ve rounded up our best bathroom design tips and advice to help you create the room of your dreams on any budget.



Luxury Bathroom, Inn at Sunrise Point, Camden, Maine, USA
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Tile is frequently used in bathrooms for many reasons. It’s aesthetically pleasing, reflects light, is durable, easy to clean, and is a simple way to freshen up your space. And options abound for bathroom tile ideas, from material to implementation. Tile half the wall to create wainscoting, use classic white subway tile, tile the entire wall, create a 4- to 6-inch border, or combine various style elements with your desired material. However, using mosaics is more expensive than painting, so if you’re on a budget, choose an iteration that doesn’t use much or just use paint. Be sure to mix the right additive with your paint color to prevent mold, and if you’re using tile, look for stain-resistant grout (more expensive but worth the extra cost). White and off-white are the most popular bathroom color ideas and neutral colors also help the space feel calm and fresh. Choose a monochrome color palettewhere you base the entire color scheme on one main color is another popular option and will make the space feel larger.

Turning on

nice bathroom
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Selecting the right lighting in your bathroom is important because a bright room will feel larger. Good lighting can transform the space and make all the other design elements stand out. Unless you’re particularly handy with electrical work, leave electrical projects to professionals unless you’re just changing a fixture. In terms of efficiency, install LED lights. They use at least 75% less energy and last 25 times longer than incandescent lights (and they don’t heat up the room).


A beautiful modern bathroom
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There are many options for bathroom flooring, so first consider our tips for selecting a material for your flooring to help you choose what works best for your space. In general, larger floor tiles and patterns are subtle and better for small bathrooms. If you’re laying ceramic tile on the floor, look for a grade of 1 or 2, a water absorption rating of less than 7%, and a coefficient of friction greater than .60, slip-resistant, and water-resistant. You’ll also want a more waterproof tile for the floor due to exposure to water. Vinyl feels better in bare feet than ceramic tile and is one of the most popular flooring options because it is affordable and practical (safe, easy to install and maintain). One feature buyers are looking for in today’s market is radiant heated floors, which not only ensure warm feet in the colder months, but also cause the floor to dry faster, reducing the chance of slips and falls. . It is also energy efficient.

Accessories and Finishes

detailed tub
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According to the National Kitchen and Bath Association, bathroom fixtures take up an average of 20% of the renovation budget, so when choosing fixtures and finishes, consider who is using the space and how much will be used. Is it a bathroom for children? So plastic laminate flooring and countertops are a good choice because they’re durable and inexpensive (and the high-quality material is less important to kids). You’ll thank yourself later for using finishes that require little maintenance and are easy to keep clean. On that note, choose quartz over marble and make sure glass shower doors are treated with anti-staining agents. In terms of accessories, you’ll want high-quality construction, like all-brass parts and a PVD finish that resists scratches. Basic chrome is cheaper than materials like nickel or bronze. Low-budget, high-impact trade-ins include the replacement of specific features; here is our guide on how to choose the best bathroom vanity. When making any changes, consider where you can creatively hide storage in the room, and for energy efficiency, be sure to look for low-flow toilet models.

Showers and tubs

Large modern bathroom with large windows
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Although you may not want or even use a bathtub, every home should have one to appease buyers dreaming of a hot tub or those with small children (or dogs!). Take advantage of the shower/tub area to define zones in the room and create an accent wall by changing the tiles you use. You’ll want to select a tile that has a water absorption rating of less than 3% (less than recommended for floors) and has good traction (a coefficient of friction greater than or equal to 0.60). If you’re debating between an open or enclosed shower, take a look at our pros and cons to help you make a decision.


decorative bathroom
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If you can’t afford a full job, redecorating is a way to breathe new life into a space without spending a fortune. There are plenty of easy bathroom decorating ideas you can implement, from changing cabinet hardware to a fresh coat of paint. Colors and textures that may seem flashy in other rooms of your home are fine in the bathroom, like dark tones like burgundy or wild prints and patterns. In addition to painting, there are other simple ideas to decorate the bathroom, such as refreshing the accessories in the room, such as rugs, toilet paper holders, soap and towel dispensers. Expensive items like custom floor patterns or countertop materials won’t be as hard on your budget as they would be in a kitchen because the space is so much smaller.


Photo of a contemporary looking bathroom.
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If you don’t know exactly what you want or need, check out our other bathroom design ideas for some of the hottest bathroom trends and innovations, or explore other inspiring ideas like our marble bathroom gallery or our 30 beautiful and relaxing bathrooms. . If you’re still sketching designs on graph paper, be sure to check out our ideas on how to get the most out of your bathroom design.


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