Do you dream about having one of those expansive, spa-like bathrooms we’ve all seen on Pinterest or Instagram? But in reality, the bathroom you’ve got just feels dark and cramped? You’re not alone. But the great news is that it doesn’t have to stay that way! Your bathroom should be a calming, functional oasis. It’s the place where you put yourself together every morning, as well as the place where you wash off the stresses and strains of daily life. So the atmosphere of your bathroom can have a significant impact on how you feel about yourself. You deserve to have a bathroom that looks and feels its best – so you can look and feel your best, too! Think of bathroom care as an act of self-care.
The good news, especially if you’re on a budget, is that a total remodel of your space isn’t necessary. In fact, there are plenty of simple ways to help transform a bathroom from drab and tired to refreshing and inviting – and some of them can be completed all on your own.
Here are 5 of my favorite ways to make any bathroom – large or small – more beautiful and functional!
Keep It Clean & In Good Working Order
Let’s start with the basics. Regular cleaning is a must for any bathroom in order to keep the space beautiful and hygienic. A good place to begin is to do whatever you can to help eliminate and prevent mold and mildew, for the sake of your health. It’s also important to make sure everything is in working order. A leaky faucet or a toilet that won’t stop running can lead to more than just an inflated water bill. After a while, the persistent presence of issues like this can make you feel more depressed every time you visit the bathroom (not to mention that it’s bad for the environment). Dirty shower walls, stains in the grout, and clogs in the drain don’t help to inspire confidence during your most personal and private moments, either. A clean, healthy bathroom represents a clean, healthy being. You deserve it!
Now is as good a time as any for a complete deep clean of the entire space. Once this is done, get into the habit of performing a complete cleaning of your bathroom at least weekly. Wipe down all surfaces, removing any mold and mildew, and make sure to sweep or vacuum the floor. Just the simple acts of keeping your toilet clean and your bathroom mirror clear will make a huge difference in improving your bathroom’s atmosphere! A mirror that’s spotted or blurry simply won’t reflect your image in a positive way, and a dirty toilet really doesn’t do anyone any good!
Basic maintenance, like refreshing tile grout or replacing a broken shower head doesn’t have to cost a lot but can also make a major difference to the space.
Organize & Accessorize
Changing your purse or shoes can make a major impact on any outfit and it’s the same with your bathroom! Accessories are one area where you can really let your personality shine through, so be sure to have fun with them! At the same time, you don’t need too many bathroom accessories, especially if you have limited space available. It’s all about quality and impact over quantity and clutter!
Towels really do double duty for both functionality and design. It’s always a good idea to try and coordinate them with other accents in the room, such as bath mat, soap dispenser, wastebasket and shower curtain (if your bathroom has a shower with no wall or door). At the very least, choose a towel color that doesn’t clash with the rest of your décor. Remember, matching accessories don’t all have to be the same color – it’s about choosing a complementary palette and using textures and patterns that work together, rather than making everything mix-and-match.
Before you start shopping for new accessories, take some time to evaluate your current bathroom setup. Does it feel cluttered and tight? If so, ask yourself two questions about each item: is it important and do you love it? If you can’t answer ‘yes’ to both questions, that means it’s time to let it go and find a replacement. If it’s an important item that’s simply old or worn-out (for example, a bathroom mat or towels), then shop for something new. Having fresh, new towels that coordinate well with your décor will make all the difference! Your bathroom will feel fresher, more stylish, and more inviting too!
Change Your Wall Color
One of the best ways to rejuvenate your bathroom space is to paint it! When choosing a color, one pro tip is to choose a hue that complements your skin tone, something that you’ll love to see surrounding your face and body every day when you look at yourself in the mirror. For example, a mustard tone or an overly bright color might not do your skin justice. Some colors can also skew your makeup and clothing choices. Of course, you’ll also want to ensure that the color you choose will coordinate or contrast nicely with any hard surfaces like flooring, and shower walls. You could also choose to pull an inspiration color from your accessories.
Another bathroom paint pro tip: choose a washable wall finish that can hold up to moisture. In a large bathroom with good ventilation, eggshell paint works well. However, if your bathroom doesn’t have the best ventilation – or if you have young children with sticky fingers – a satin finish will hold up even better.
Wallpaper is another option for freshening up walls, but remember that bathrooms with showers are not the best places to use wallpaper. The steam essentially acts like a wallpaper adhesive remover. Limit its use to powder rooms. It’s also wise to choose a durable finish for the ceiling paint in your bathroom.
Finally, don’t forget to freshen up the paint on any features like shelves and cabinets! A fresh coat of paint can do wonders!
Improve Your Lighting
Another simple way to refresh your bathroom is to brighten it up. If there are windows, make sure they’re able to let in as much natural light as possible. As far as artificial lights go, overhead lighting really isn’t the best option for getting your hair and makeup right. If possible, try adding some focused light to the sides of your mirror with sconces. If you’re renting and can’t change any fixtures, try placing tall lamps on either side of the sink. If that isn’t possible either, you can always make use of an illuminated makeup mirror. Better bathroom lighting will improve visibility, and it can also help to lighten the atmosphere. Experiment to find the right type of light bulb which offers the color and intensity of light you prefer.
One of the simplest ways to brighten up a boring bathroom is to add a plant or two! Green is always a calming color and having natural foliage will both freshen stale air and elevate your space. Choose plants that thrive in an environment of humidity and warmth. Even those of us who aren’t blessed with gardening skills can make it work with low-maintenance beauties like spider plants and aspidistras.
However you choose to update your space, maintenance is the secret to a bathroom that stays looking its best. Get into the habit of doing three simple daily actions. Wipe off your counter surface, neatly hang your towels, and do a quick mirror cleaning every day. Doing all three will only take you a minute or two, and following this daily routine will do wonders in enhancing the look and feel of your bathroom.
Go ahead and give these tips and suggestions a try – you are so worth it!