By Shelley Little
There’s nothing quite like a relaxing bubble bath after a long day of work. Sounds heavenly, right? Unfortunately, your de-stressing can be overshadowed by the dingy and dull design of an outdated bathroom. Though updating your bathroom into a luxury spa may sound great, limits on space and spending can quickly crush those indulgent dreams.
Don’t give up those daydreams just yet! Fresh paint, new faucets, mirrors, lighting and even a new tub can absolutely transform your entire space in less than 48 hours. Here are five ways to bring your bathroom out of the dark ages—and how to do it without spending a fortune.
1. Make paint your BFF.
Paint certainly has all the qualities of a good friend: It’s easy to work with, can fit into any situation and is a low-maintenance problem solver. Not only that, but a gallon of paint can change the entire feel of a space for around $30.
Brighten up your space with lighter hues of yellow or blue for a cheerful yet calming effect. Earthy tones like greens and browns can add the comforting feel of nature, while rich colors bring a sense of elegance and indulgence to the room. Paint is your gateway to setting the tone for whatever personality you want your new bathroom to have.
2. Stash the clutter.
No matter what your dream bathroom may look like, there is one thing that enviable spaces never have: clutter.
Ditching the clutter in your bathroom will make it feel welcoming and streamlined. There are many clever, low-cost storage solutions to hide your items out of sight but still have them accessible. Consider repurposing storage pieces such as baskets or an old armoire from other areas of your home. Turn your loose jewelry, perfume and other toiletries into decor by incorporating mirrored trays on your vanity or creating unique wall displays. Attractive storage solutions can even be as simple as rolling your towels and visibly storing them in a basket. Regardless of personal style, an organized bathroom is a relaxing one.
3. Add at least one luxury feature.
Begin by deciding which special projects fit in your budget, and add others over time. Upgrading your showerhead into a quality rain-style or massaging fixture can turn every day into a spa day. Installing attractive light fixtures can brighten your life—no pun intended. Framing a builder’s grade bathroom mirror is an eye-catching and inexpensive DIY project.
Even some nice new towels or a shower curtain with a modern graphic print can be budget-friendly additions to your space. Don’t be afraid to use pieces beyond average bathroom decor, either. Nothing adds the creature comforts of home better than draperies, a corner chair with a plump pillow or even a small bookshelf.
4. See beauty in the details.
While not necessarily glamorous, replacing outdated factory-grade faucets, towel racks and toilet tissue holders can drastically modernize the room’s aesthetic. Something as simple as switching out the knobs on your cabinets will give a fresh feel to cabinetry without replacing the entire unit.
5. Don’t ignore the worn elephant in the room.
The largest focal point in your bathroom is likely your shower or bathtub. If modernizing your bathroom calls for getting rid of that discolored or beyond-repair tub, you may be afraid that your list of expenses is about to grow exponentially.
Instead of hauling that beast out of your bathroom, you can change the outdated color or give new life to a scratched and damaged unit by installing a custom tub or shower liner. These liners come in many iterations and are made to fit like a glove over your old bathtub, shower and walls. Most shower and tub liners come with a manufacturer’s warranty against peeling, cracking, chipping, rust and mildew. You’ll soon be on your way to years of luxurious, bubbly relaxation.
Updating your bathroom doesn’t have to break the bank. A new liner can be put in for a very reasonable cost, and in just a few days you can have that beautifully designed modern bathroom you’ve been dreaming of.
Iowan Shelley Little often shares her tips on home decor and design, and writes about her ideas for The Home Depot. Shelley's advice on ways to economically update your bathroom may be just the thing for an early autumn indoors project. Choices for tub and shower relining referenced by Shelley can be viewed on the Home Depot website.