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How to Renovate a Small Bathroom

Last modified: 2020-02-21 | Approximate reading time 5 mins

Léa Plourde-Archer

In an ideal world, each home would be equipped with at least one big and bright bathroom. However, such is not the case in most dwellings. Some homes only have the ability to contain a small bathroom, and in these instances, it’s important to work with what you’ve got. Of course, this doesn’t mean that renovating your small bathroom won’t lead to spectacular results. In fact, a small bathroom renovation can have a huge impact on comfort and design.

In order to make the most of your small bathroom, we’re going to offer a few recommendations on ways to improve this space including different projects you may consider taking on.

Renovation ideas for a small bathroom

Light and airy

Small bathroom

Photo: Pixabay

Finding ways to make your bathroom feel more spacious will be your first goal. There are plenty of renovation techniques that will allow you to open up a space, and these methods apply to the bathroom as much as any other. Adding extra lighting will work to make this room appear more open. Consider recessed lighting, as it isn't too overwhelming and adds an atmospheric touch that’ll work to brighten up smaller spaces.

Another suggestion would be to install a mirror, or a few. This is one of the best ways to add light and depth to a small or dark room. You may also consider setting up a glass bathroom door. This will add transparency and open up the space. A traditional door may make things feel small and cramped, and thus, should be avoided in very small rooms.

Ceramic tiles are often used for their shiny surface and reflective aspects. This characteristic also applies to other materials in the bathroom such as plumbing accessories, storage furniture, and decorative elements. Bronze, gold, and silver or other metallics will reflect any natural light inside your small bathroom. Work with these materials, as they’re a winning option to bring in a healthy amount of light into this modest space.

Decorating a small bathroom: a question of colour

When it comes to the walls of the room, you should be looking towards options that are light and bright. This includes painting with colours such as pastel tones, neutrals or shades of white. If working with wallpaper, work with a colour or pattern that is primarily white or bright. This will create the illusion of more open space. A decorative mural on the largest open wall can help expand the depth of the space, especially art that offers a view of a landscape or seascape. Anything that offers additional feelings of serenity will be much appreciated.

Bathroom flooring
small bathroom

source: unsplash

As we mentioned, working with ceramic tiles in the bathroom is an excellent way to reflect the available light in the space. More specifically, big tiles will create the illusion that the space is larger than it is, affecting the perception of the room’s size. In order to accentuate this effect, choose ceramic tiles with light colours and a glossy finish. If you’re not so keen on tile flooring, remember to work with a light colour material regardless. Darker flooring will definitely make a small bathroom appear cramped and heavy. If you already have flooring measures in place and do not want to renovate, consider the addition of a light coloured rug.


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Shower-bath: a winning choice in a small bathroom

Although some prefer the bath and shower to be two separate entities, by bringing them together, you can save a considerable amount of space. Even in the smallest of spaces, nothing is keeping you from enjoying one or the other, and the luxury of having both will allow you to decide which you use depending on your mood at the moment.

Another note is that it’s possible to choose a bath with an opening on the side. This type of structure will not crowd the space like a piece of furniture might and offer the extra room for your shower gel, your towel as well as additional bath accessories.

Rely on visual continuity

In order to bring your bathroom décor together in a harmonious manner,  if you’re installing a new flooring material make sure it continues right to the edge of the bath. This will avoid creating a visual separation between these elements, as this split can make a room appear cramped.  

In the same vein, try to limit the number of materials you plan on using. If there are too many textures, this creates divisions, making your bathroom look even smaller than it really is. Avoid any forms of excess clutter, as this will make a small space appear cramped.

Make sure that if you’re including decorative pieces in this space, you limit it to one or two larger items in place of several small ones. If something in this space isn’t serving an immediate function, we’d suggest leaving it out of the room altogether!

A few extra tips on how to renovate a small bathroom

Another tip we’re offering is the consideration of setting up cabinets that reach the ceiling. This design recommendation will help you to avoid losing space and further, will increase the storage available inside your cabinets. There is no better way to maximize your space than by using up every nook and cranny available.

It would be impossible to write an article about renovating a small bathroom without mentioning the practical aspect of sliding doors. Whether you decide to install a mirror whose lateral sides open horizontally or to integrate storage furniture that operates in a similar fashion, this would be an excellent choice for any bathroom. The main advantage will be that you will take up less space when using these elements.

Concerning your choice for a toilet, think about opting for a wall-mounted model. Any additional visual obstructions should be eliminated to open up space. That translated to the rest of the appliances in the room, as you should consider built-in options as they will help you save even more space. A delicate pedestal sink in place of a larger model will work wonders in a tiny bathroom where there’s hardly the space for a bulky countertop.

Renovating a small bathroom: a project that pays off

For information purposes, you will be happy to know that renovating a small bathroom often ensures a return on investment amounting to 75% to 100%. Very interesting, isn’t it?

To see examples of bathroom renovation projects completed by contractors, check out "10 examples of beautiful bathroom renovation projects". 

We also suggest that you check out our checklist for bathroom renovation projects, as this article contains a ton of information and comes with a document you can use to organize your project. 

Get 3 quotes for your bathroom renovation project can help you find a trustworthy contractor for your bathroom renovation project. By submitting your project to us, we’ll be able to put you in contact with the best companies in our network. Fill in the form on the homepage (it only takes a few minutes).

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