10 Space-Saving Small Bathroom Design Tips

A bathroom should be one of — if not the — most relaxing rooms in the house. It’s where you get ready, bathe the kids, and find alone time for pampering. When space is limited though, the bathroom can begin to feel cramped and congested not ideal for creating bathtime memories or an at-home spa vibe. 

Use these small bathroom design tips to plan your next remodel. You’ll build a space that’s perfect for every use and doesn’t skimp on storage!

10 Small Bathroom Design Tips For a Functional Space

No matter your style, color, or design preferences, these practical tips help make even the smallest bathroom feel breathable.

1. Keep Shelving Open

Storing things like towels and toilet paper on open shelves creates the illusion of space (and makes them easy to find!) If privacy is a concern for your not-so-pretty bathroom essentials, consider storing them in a medicine cabinet and other things like bath salts and hair products in the open spaces. 

Whether it’s an open vanity or shelving above the toilet or on a wall, open shelving allows you to store everything you need!

Open wooden shelving on subway tile in bathroom

2. Extend the Mirror

Mirrors do wonders for visually expanding small spaces! A large mirror above the sink can naturally add dimension to your small bathroom. You may even consider extending the mirror across the wall rather than stopping it at the vanity edge. This could allow more than one person to use the mirror and can aid in creating space. 

A mirrored medicine cabinet is another great option for additional mirror coverage!

3. Use a Shower Curtain (or a Glass Shower Wall)

A shower curtain that moves back and forth saves space over a glass door that moves in and out. You could even forgo the curtain altogether and opt for a shower wall. A glass panel will keep most water in the shower and free up space. If you’re worried about water spraying out, try hanging the showerhead extra high so it sprays more downward than out. 

4. Hang Towels on the Door

Utilizing towel hooks on the back of the bathroom door is a great space saver! You’ll have room for everyone’s towel, but minimize the bulk of storing them on the wall. If you prefer to have a towel handy post-shower, consider mounting a towel bar on a glass shower door. 

5. Utilize Space Over the Toilet

You’ve got a couple of options for making use of the space above the toilet. You could extend a wood or slab counter, creating space for a few toiletries while maintaining a minimalist and clean look. Or, you could install a medicine cabinet or other shelving above the toilet, which hides personal items a bit better.

Either option opens the room up more than built-in cabinetry can!

6. Go With a Floating Vanity

A mounted vanity visually helps the bathroom appear larger. Freeing up space above the floor leaves room for small items like a scale that can easily slide away.

Floating bathroom vanity with circular mirror

7. Install a Corner Sink

Sometimes even the smallest sink can disrupt the only walking path through the bathroom. Home renovators often don’t think to move the sink, but opting for a corner sink across from the toilet may help literally open your walking space. 

8. Use a Large-Scale Pattern

A large-scale pattern like, say, six alternating stripes painted horizontally on the wall, can trick the eye into expanding space.

9. Take the Shower Tile up the Wall

Horizontal divisions can cause your eye to break up space, making your bathroom feel smaller. By taking the shower tile all the way to the ceiling, you’ll add an illusion of height that draws your attention away from how close the walls are. White subway tile is a great option for a modern, classic look.

10. Keep Your Color Palette Light (and Minimal)

One of the most fundamental design tips for a small space is to use light colors. The lighter colors open up the space, giving you room to breathe. This is especially critical in a small bathroom with many built-in features. Additionally, plan to keep your colors and materials to a minimum to avoid a cluttered the feeling of clutter.

Start your next renovation with these small bathroom design tips for a space that you’ll actually enjoy using. If you’re not sure where to begin or what your space can accommodate, don’t panic! Give our design experts a call for a personalized renovation roadmap!