Feeling cramped in your small bathroom? There are ways to make it look and feel bigger, without knocking down a wall or doing a major remodel. Just follow these simple tricks to make your bathroom appear significantly larger.
Easy Ways To Make Your Tiny Bathroom Look & Feel Bigger
1. Choose colors carefully
It’s common knowledge — light colors reflect light. And the lighter you go in the color wheel, the better.
Naturally, all-white is an obvious choice to make any room appear bright and airy — white walls, white floor, white counter, vanity, and so on. Using reflective tiles and satin paint finishes will bounce off light and brighten the room further.
If you don’t want to go stark white, go for pastels instead, or neutral shades like beige, cream, and soft gray. These will give you a clean slate on which to add bits of color later, through accents and decor.
Avoid dividing lines and contrasting colors. Whenever possible, blurring the lines between sections and elements of your bathroom by going monochromatic — using the same color for your floor, walls, ceiling, and fixtures. It would allow for a seamless, uninterrupted visual flow. If you must highlight certain elements, like the door maybe, or the baseboards, use lighter tones from the same color family.
2. Light it up
Light brightens any room. Dark corners make a room seem smaller, while brightness appears to make it bigger. Have as much light spread across your bathroom rather than limiting it to the ones coming from the window during the day and the ceiling or mirror light at night. If possible, use multiple light sources illuminating different parts of the room so that no corner is left in the shadows. Among your options are track lights on the ceiling, sconces on walls, recessed lighting on shelves, or strips of backlight behind mirrors. If possible, use compact fixtures rather than bulky ones that take up space. For ceiling lamps, go for flush mount types rather than chandeliers or pendants that occupy air space.
3. Maximize mirrors
Double the radiance of your lights, window, and light-colored surfaces by installing mirrors. Using mirrors is the oldest trick in the trade when it comes to giving an illusion of space. They reflect light and cheats the eye into believing there are twice as much breadth and depth in a room.
And remember to go big. If there’s a vacant wall in your bathroom, consider installing a floor-to-ceiling mirror. Big, borderless mirrors give a feeling of endless space. Also, two mirrors placed opposite each other provides an illusion of boundless, infinite space.
4. Show some shimmer
Glass and other shiny materials like chrome, stainless steel, and reflective tiles do the same thing. They bounce off light and reproduce whatever brightness is present in a room. Use as much these materials in your bathroom, from fixtures to walls, shower door to shelving, bath accessory set to decor. A cheaper alternative to reflective tiles is faux glass wallpaper, which could easily be stripped off if you tire of it and opt for a different look later.
5. Cut clutter
Do an audit of all the items in your bathroom: toiletries, makeup, bath accessories, clothes on a hook, decor. See which ones you can do without and get rid of them. Let’s face it — everything on the counter, floor, shelf, cistern, and ledge takes up space. Even things hanging on the wall. Get rid of anything unnecessary and keep only those that are essential. Put away anything that’s only seldom used. Whatever you do decide to keep on counters and ledges, should be corraled neatly in trays and containers.
Anything that you can put inside drawers, do so. Others you can neatly stack on shelves should be. As much as possible, keep the counter and the floor clear.
6. Minimize the decor
Having a variety of decor, prints, and designs is chaotic. You may like floral prints on your shower curtain, or bold patterns on the wallpaper — but those only create visual noise. Give your bathroom serenity by limiting the visual accents to a single piece of art or a few simple accents here and there. Choose colors that complement the bathroom’s overall palette, and stick to clean lines and simple patterns.
7. Take the tile up to the ceiling
In many bathrooms, shower tiles often fall a foot or two short of the ceiling. This creates a dividing line, as mentioned in #1. The key to achieving an open, expansive feel is eliminating visual transitions and partitions. Take the tiles all the way to the ceiling for a smooth, seamless look. By the same token, use the same tiles for the shower as you did for the floor.
8. Upgrade your shower
If you don’t have enough space for a separate shower cubicle, install your shower over your bathtub. Or, if you think you can manage without a tub, get rid of it altogether. It may be a creature comfort you think you can’t do without, but if your bathroom is too tiny and stuffed, you won’t feel comfortable using it as you would if you had more room.
Ditch the tub for a standing shower instead, and put in luxe features that will make space appear wider: a frameless, clear glass enclosure, chrome fixtures, and a flat, ceiling mount rain shower head. These square heads are sleek and stylish, with options for body massage jets that spray you from the walls.
9. Keep things afloat
Do away with space-hogging, stand-alone furniture like towel racks, cabinets, and storage shelves.
Instead, replace them with wall-mounted fixtures like floating shelves, hooks, and soap or shampoo dispensers. Keeping things off the ground will instantly make your bathroom more spacious and airy.
If you have the budget for a sink and commode replacement, consider installing wall-mounted sinks, vanities, faucets, and toilets. They have modern, slim profiles that take up the minimal wall and zero floor space. A huge part of the floor and wall would be freed up, making your bathroom feel more open and unobstructed.
Another option would be to use a simple bowl-type vessel sinks that is elegant and in vogue these days. You can mount it on a simple steel console, a wood or marble-top table, or a large, reclaimed wood slab. The open space underneath will allow you to put in your own storage — a stylish bin or wicker basket— or keep it totally clear.
Hanging commodes offer the same advantage. They have sleek, compact designs that conceal their cisterns, further reducing physical and visual bulk. For a modern, minimalist look, try rectangular sinks and toilets. They have clean, straight lines that draw the eyes horizontally and help make the room appear wider.