7 Awesome Small Bathroom Design Tips

by Jane | Last Updated: October 28, 2017 When you buy something using the links on our posts, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Learn more.

If your bathroom feels small and cramped right now, you can change all that by making little tweaks. We believe that any space can be fixed up to look bigger than it is – the secret is applying small, clever design ideas.

By the time we’re through, your cramped little closet will be magically transformed into something that looks as if it’s come straight out of a fashion magazine – a beautiful and relaxing getaway.

Here are seven small bathroom design hacks that will trick you and your guests’ brains into thinking you’ve got a bigger space.

Small Bathroom Design Hacks

1. Use lighter colors

When we’re dressing to look thinner, we wear dark clothes to look more slim, right? Well, the opposite is true to make a room look bigger. Light colors and bright walls and ceilings will make a room feel bigger and brighter. And when natural light hits, you create a vision of an open and airy space.

If you’ve got dark colors in your small bathroom right now, it is absorbing light and actually making your room look much smaller.

For best effect, choose very soft tones of blue, green, and the safe off-white.

Pro-tip: If you paint your moldings and wall trims in a shade lighter than your walls and ceilings, your walls will give the optical illusion that they are further back so your bathroom will look bigger.

2. Clever storage options

small bathroom storage ideas

Via pinterest

You’ll need a place to store towels and other things you use daily in the bathroom, like your Korean beauty products, hair dryers, and other toiletries. Wisely-placed cabinets can do just the thing.

According to storage experts from the Henfield Company, depending on who’ll be using it, you can create storage spaces up above the sink for adults, or almost ground level below it for small kids. In the end, it’ll be left up to preference, so go with what’s best for you and your family.

Make the most of the vertical space in your bathroom with polished wooden shelves or a sleek rack. There are so many DIY bathroom storage tutorials on the internet and on Pinterest that you can have fun with.

Pro-tip: I’m personally obsessive about dirt and gunk collecting underneath cabinets and storage spaces so I like most everything off the floor. Instead of having a mildewed cabinet underneath the sink, opt for a floating vanity instead.

floating vanity

Source: sophiecarpenter

3. Add strategically placed mirrors

Have you ever entered a store or restaurant and realized you’ve been fooled into thinking the space is twice as big because of mirrors? Mirrors give the illusion of depth, reflect light, and brighten rooms. Take advantage of this hack in your bathrooms too.

Pro-tip: Use large mirrors, mirrors near windows, mirrors on multiple walls, or mirrors on top of countertops to create the illusion of a bigger bathroom.

Feng shui tip: Apparently it’s bad luck to have mirrors pointing at each other.

4. Compact toilets + sinks

compact toilet and sink

Via pinterest

Placing toilets and sinks diagonally from each other can help keep everything consistent. A compact toilet and a pedestal sink is one combination that works for nearly all types of bathrooms because they take up so little space. After all, a toilet is a toilet–no one needs a massive one!

5. Fun flooring

fun flooring small bathroom

Via pinterest

Unique flooring can certainly make your bathroom “pop”. There are all kinds of intricate floor tiles ready to be installed and help the light and soft colors you installed earlier become a much more interesting place to look into.

Pro-tip: Diagonal tiles can help skew the viewer’s perception and make it appear as if the room is larger than it really is.

Artistic tip:  Why not use black and white geometric tiles to get that ‘Vermeer Effect’? The eye is drawn around the room like in one of his paintings.

6. Unique wall decor

small bathroom unique wall decor ideas

Via pinterest

Don’t forget the wallpaper! If you prefer a cleaner, more elegant look, you could always opt for marble. It’s appealing to look at and so smooth. Other natural stones would also be great bathroom textures.

If you’re trying to stay on a budget, though, warm, light colors can always do the trick.

Pro-tip: Bigger tiles in softer tones give the illusion of a bigger room.

7. Play with the lighting

small bathroom designs lighting

Via pinterest

A little bit of natural light can go a long way. Many small bathrooms totally do away with windows, and the result? Everything just feels tiny and cramped (and smelly too)!

If you want a clean and well-lit bathroom but are worried about privacy, translucent windows and frosted glass are always a great choice. Or you could install higher windows–they’ll let light in without compromising your safety.

BONUS: Consider frameless showers

Another addition to add a sense of space (that’s severely underused) is a frameless shower. By frameless shower, we mean going without the tub attachments and instead making do with a thin glass that slides to open and close.

If you keep it spotless everytime, this is another way to create a bigger illusion of space.

Summing Up

So, these are just a few tips and neat ideas that can help enliven your own tiny bathroom. Remember: just because a room is small doesn’t mean it has to feel that way. With a few clever “hacks” and some inventive solutions, your bathroom can be your relaxing bubble in a stressful world.

Jane NeuAuthor: Jane Neu

Jane is the creator of Complete Home Spa – “It’s a good idea,” she said. But even she has been taken aback by its success. She lives with a cranky Englishman in a quiet countryside retreat. And in the past year, has become mom cat to a spunky rescue named Mina. Connect with her on Twitter @completehomespa.