The best bathroom remodel ideas have the power to transform a tired space into one that fosters a sense of relaxation and restoration.
Renovating a bathroom or giving it an overhaul tend to be one of the last jobs homeowners get round to — perhaps something to do with the fact that this is a room that lies mainly out of sight to visitors. However, the bathroom really should be somewhere to look forward to spending time in, whether that is to wake up and face the day ahead or switch off and unwind before bed.
Bathrooms are hardworking spaces with a primarily practical function, but there is no reason why they should not beautiful too.
Here, we have pulled together a whole range of remodelling ideas, from those that address awkwardly-shaped spaces to inspiration for those with small bathrooms or on the hunt for ways to treat a family bathroom.
Bathroom remodel ideas for all budgets
If you have been putting off addressing an old-fashioned, tatty or poorly laid out bathroom because you are worried that your budget won't stretch to it, it may well be time to think again.
There is no need to spend a fortune on a bathroom remodel, and within our round up of inspiration ideas we have included tips and ideas to suit those after bathrooms on a budget as well as suggestions for those who are keen to splash the cash on creating their dream space.
We also take a look at remodel ideas for all styles and sizes of houses, including how to deal with small or narrow rooms, as well as the best ways to work with original features.
1. Work with your existing layout to save money
Even if your bathroom isn't currently working for you, striving to keep sanitaryware in its current position is likely to make you significant savings.
Take some time to assess your bathroom design before you start ripping it all out and shifting larger items around. By keeping fixtures such as the bath and basin where they are, you will avoid the costs involved with repositioning plumbing and pipework — and this is particularly true when it comes to the toilet and soil pipe. If nothing else, try to find a new layout that works while keeping the soil pipe in its current position.
This doesn't mean you can't swap your toilet, basin and baths for new ones of course — perhaps bring in the changes by opting for a wall-hung toilet, countertop basin and neat built-in bath, as seen in the above example. Here, the modern Glide II 700 unit and marble effect worktop, from Crosswater, really complete the look.
2. Make stud walls your best friends
Where would we be without the good old stud wall? Easy and cheap to construct, getting to grips with how to build a stud wall makes it possible to divide spaces up and create smaller zones within the same room.
They are particularly useful in bathrooms, where they can be used to separate the toilet from the rest of the space or form a shower enclosure, as has been done here. Many people also choose to mount a bath on one side of a stud wall, with the basin and toilet to the other side.
Here, the Coast Corner Bath by Waters Baths of Ashbourne is separated from the walk-in shower by a tiled stud wall.
3. Consider curves in a small bathroom
If it is small bathroom ideas you are in need of when it comes to your remodel, you should strongly be considering introducing some curves into the space — they are the ideal way to distract the eye from the proportions of the room and create an easier flow.
Baths with curved ends, bathroom vanity units with softly rounded edges and even curved shower trays all work. Here, the eye is further tricked into thinking the space is bigger than it is thanks to the star-shape pattern of the floor tiles from Walls and Floors.
4. Incorporate plenty of built-in storage
If there is one thing that is often lacking in bathrooms, it is good storage. If your current bathroom isn't delivering on the storage front, use your remodel to change this.
Bathroom storage ideas can range from simple wall cabinets or shelves, to under-bath storage or beautiful vanity units which can also act as a surface on which to place the basin.
Many older bathrooms will feature alcoves or wasted areas — use them for built-in storage as has been done here, to make the most of every inch of available space.
5. Make the most of a narrow bathroom
Narrow rooms can be difficult to work with. Not only can they feel a little claustrophobic, but it can be hard to create a sense of flow and to pull in light. That said, it can be done.
In the case of narrow bathrooms, you need to avoid creating a feeling of stepping into a tunnel when you enter the room and while the space should be designed as a whole, it is also necessary to break the space up for each individual stage of your bathing ritual.
In the above picture, for example, the basin, shower enclosure and bath all lead on from one another down a single wall, while the toilet is nestled away at the very end of the room. Using large mirrors and keeping things pale and neutral also helps, as does the almost completely frameless Matki Boutique Wet Room panel.
6. Use partitions to create bathroom zones
Using room dividers or partial stud walls can add interest and perform a practical role too in bathrooms.
Not only do they provide a sense of being protected when showering or bathing, but they can also help contain water from being splashed all over the place — and so are particularly useful for those after family bathroom ideas.
In this bathroom, a small partition wall has been built to separate the stunning freestanding bath from the rest of the room, while the striking Paradise Ceramic Tiles from Porcelain Superstore make a bold style statement.
7. Grab some extra storage by building in the bath
Not only does building in the bath instantly create a smart, cohesive and stylish look in the bathroom (far better than a flimsy bath panel), but they are also more practical, particularly in family bathrooms.
You can choose to build the frame around your bath to whatever size suits — the deeper the surround, the more space you will have for all those lotions and potions. Do think twice before going too deep with your surround along the long edge of the bath if accessibility is likely to be an issue, however.
Here, providing plenty of space at the end of the bath and mounting the taps on the bath itself ensures access is easy. Hexagon Grey Wall Tiles from Tile Mountain have been used to tile the surround.
8. Get creative with sloping ceilings
Whether the upper floors of your home have sloping ceilings or you are after the best ways of treating loft conversion bathrooms, there are plenty of great ways to approach this.
"Loft conversion bathrooms are tricky to make the most of — they’re often small and may have to factor in sloping ceilings," says homes and interiors journalist Rebecca Foster. "Despite their limitations, a bathroom in a loft conversion can be super effective design-wise. With such a wide range of bathroom fittings available these days, it’s not hard to find quality fixtures for a compact space."
Aim to position your shower in the centre of the space, or wherever has the greatest headroom and locate you bath and basin under the eaves. This beautiful loft bathroom, designed by Simon Taylor Furniture features many bespoke fittings to make the most of the space.
Due to the room's low vaulted ceilings and original windows, every aspect had to be designed to suit the unusual shape. For the shower enclosure, a screen had to be made completely bespoke to perfectly fit with the different angles and ceiling heights.
9. Use you bathroom to express your personality
If there is one room that you can really be bold and brave in when it comes to decoration it has to be the bathroom (closely followed by the downstairs loo...).
As a room that will likely be primarily used by you and other household members, rather than guests, you should really feel you can be little wild when it comes to colours, patterns, fixtures and fittings — in short, express yourself.
From bathroom wallpaper in fantastical patterns to eye-popping wall colours, let your imagination stretch its legs when remodelling your bathroom — you can still pick a classy white suite and let the walls, your bathroom lighting ideas and accessories do the talking.
In the above image, Ca' Pietra Carrara Miscela Honed Marble Tiles from Hyperion Tiles have been combined with ditsy dotty wallpaper, pastel green painted woodwork, a bold botanical blind and an eclectic collection of artwork for a look that is totally individual.
10. Turn your bath into a cosy cocoon
Few things feel more luxurious and comforting than slipping into a steaming bathtub at the end of a long day and to make the experience even better positioning your tub so that it nestles into a corner or against a wall is a great idea.
While there is no denying the appeal of a stunning freestanding bath located centrally in a space, it can leave the bather feeling a little exposed — plus it may not always be a possibility for those with compact bathrooms or people after small ensuite ideas.
In the picture above, the bath has been built in, with a small nib wall separating it from the basin. The window has been set high up the wall for privacy and by using tiles in the same warm, creamy shade – Soho Ivory Wall Tiles from Porcelain Superstore – all over, the cocooning effect is complete.
11. Turn your bathroom into a spot to linger
While bathrooms need to be, primarily, practical spaces, there is no reason why this should mean they end up looking and feeling cold or sterile.
Consider using pieces of furniture not commonly associated with bathrooms within your remodel — armchairs, a chaise longue, plenty of framed artwork, plants and greenery, for example. The effect of this will be to turn the bathroom into a space you look forward to spending time in — plus it could just make the children's bath time a little more tranquil.
In this room pictured above, the navy walls, chunky column radiator, striking fireplace, squashy armchair and selection of personal items make it the ultimate retreat. The stunning bath that takes centre stage is the Haze Freestanding Bath by Waters Baths of Ashbourne.
12. Build in alcoves for extra storage space
This is an idea perfect for bathrooms of all sizes, but can come in particularly useful in the case of smaller rooms, where finding space for storage can be an issue. That said, anyone looking for modern bathroom ideas, where sleek and unfussy is the order of the day, can also benefit from this one.
You will need a stud wall in order to build in an alcove, creating a smaller frame within the larger one for the shelf. This is a useful idea in showering spaces, next to the bath or above the basin, where it helps to minimise clutter.
In the bathroom above, Montblanc tiles from Original Style have been used, in different shades, to finish off the wall and interior of the alcove.
13. Step into the past with a traditional suite
If you live in a period property, don't feel that a bathroom remodel has to mean fitting a super modern bathroom suite (although you can of course choose to do this if it is your preference).
It can be nice to embrace the period your house was built in when it comes to your bathroom, picking a traditional suite that ties in with any original features in the space.
Opting for a high level toilet, such as this one that is pictured above from Retrobad, instantly gives a bathroom a traditional feel, as will a rolltop bath. If you are worried about space, choose a corner model like this Hampton 1700 freestanding shower-bathtub, also from Retrobad.
14. Work with the shape of the room
There is no point in trying to squeeze in sanitaryware or furniture of the wrong size or shape into your bathroom — however much you might love it. Instead, work to make the best of what you have, whether that is an awkward narrow room or one that is irregular in its shape.
Look at existing features, such as a bulkhead above the stairs, sloping celings and alcoves as 'design challenges' as opposed to problems.
Here, the narrower space at the far end of the room has been put to good use as a shower enclosure while a neat, curved vanity unit takes care of the under sink bathroom storage ideas.
Istanbul Marble Mosaic tiles, from Artisans of Devizes have been used to cover the floor.
15. Save space with an 'almost wet room'
On the hunt for wet room ideas for your bathroom but worried about flooding the space with water? Step forward the 'almost wet room'.
This idea is perfect for bathroom remodels that will be used by households of all ages, retaining the idea of eliminating the traditional shower enclosure and still enjoying a level threshold, yet containing water through the use of a simple, frameless shower screen.
This idea works well in bathrooms of all sizes — it works far better than installing a cramped enclosure in small bathrooms.
This room has been completed with Cottage Pale Ceramic Tiles from Porcelain Superstore.
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Natasha is Homebuilding & Renovating’s Associate Content Editor and has been a member of the team for over two decades. An experienced journalist and renovation expert, she has written for a number of homes titles. Over the years Natasha has renovated and carried out a side extension to a Victorian terrace. She is currently living in the rural Edwardian cottage she renovated and extended on a largely DIY basis, living on site for the duration of the project. She is now looking for her next project — something which is proving far harder than she thought it would be.