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Bathroom travertine red rug bathtub window

Bathrooms have been thought of as purely functional spaces only until recently. In the 21st century, the bathroom has been redefined not only as a place for practical concerns, but also as a kind of oasis for people with busy lives. These oasis-like atmospheres have been achieved through choosing the right bathroom materials , and thinking about good design, to create a spa-like space at home.

So, if you’re looking to move more in that direction yourself in creating that spa atmosphere in your own bathroom, writer and interior designer Jane Whitale is here with a few pointers for your consideration. 

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Choosing your bathroom layout and furniture can be a tough decision. The first hurdle for many is the average home bathroom is not a large area, especially in built up areas, flats or older semi-detached houses where room in the building was used for living space when constructed.

The second issue is piping, as plumbing work and refitting can quickly add up onto a budget, and even then some fixings are stuck where they are and cannot be moved for various reasons.

Both of these can make choosing your bathroom fittings and furniture a drawn out task of picking, choosing and rejecting potentials for space and layout.

Never fear though, you don’t need to have a bland bathroom short of luxury just because you lack the space! Here are some tips to get the most out of your bathroom and make it a great place to soak and relax!

Bathroom design is everything!

Just because a space is small or even if your ready fitted bathroom furniture is bland it doesn’t mean your bathroom can’t look great. Wooden or tiled skirting around the side will instantly give your bathroom a glamorous look over cheap plastic side panels.

Taps, fittings and even your choice of matching towels can make a bathroom look great, and any room that looks great is a place you’ll be proud to spend time in!

Embrace what you find soothing and relaxing; think colors, textures and surroundings. All too often I walk into a white wash bathroom lacking character because people assume it’s not an important part of their house and they don’t spend a lot of time in there. You’d be amazed how much time you would spend in there if it didn’t look so depressing!

Splash out on bathroom accessories for relaxation

There are many features you can add to a bathtub. Some are installations or come fitted with a bath, like bubble streams or jacuzzi features. You can also buy these as external devices as well as other luxury gadgets like massage pads, waterproof iPod speakers and more.

It’s not limited to pricier electronics either. Simple and cheaper touches like scented candles, incense and the cosmetics you use when washing can all add to the atmosphere of a relaxing soak.

Bathroom moisture

It’s fairly obvious that anywhere tidy and clean is nicer than a messy or dirty space. Bathrooms require extra care for a number of reasons.

The first is damp. It’s a room where water is a key element of its function, furthermore warm and hot water which cause steam and condensation. Without proper care this can lead to damage and mould on paint, windowsills, fixings and in some cases the inside of the wall foundations.

Regular cleaning of all surfaces including the walls will prolong the interior and keep it looking fresh, whilst opening windows or having proper ventilation fitted will get rid of damp and steam before it has a chance to settle in and cause  major damage.

Limescale, odor, and regular bathroom maintenance

The second issue with bathrooms is lime scale. Water damage will ruin the shine of your pipes, stain surfaces and make things look much older and worn than they actually are. Again, regular cleaning is the best way to prevent this whilst using the best cleaning products designed your specific jobs, surfaces and grime.

The final issue for bathroom cleanliness is smell. We do a lot of business in the bathroom that gets flushed away, but continual use without correct upkeep and care alongside it can cause drains to block and the smells we thought we’d got rid of to come back up along with other nasty stuff like stagnant water. Regular bleaching of drain enclosures will help prevent build up, and avoid forcing large clumps of hair or other likely block causers down plug holes.

There’s a fantastic guide to bathroom cleaners and which product to use for each job on how to clean anything, although keeping on top of grime and wiping down surfaces thoroughly twice a week should avoid build-up of any stubborn dirt.

If you have any more tips, advice or your own personal experiences with bathroom design or relaxation let us know in the comments! We’d love to hear from you!

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Thanks, Jane!

Jane Whitale, who works in the interior design team at Brilliant Bathrooms, Hampshire, UK. She specialises in dimensions and space awareness, assessing which fittings and furniture would make best use of the room for looks and practicality.

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Cate Morgan-Harlow

Cate Morgan-Harlow is an all arounder, writing about how-to, DIY, and design with gusto. She is a shadowy figure with a mysterious past.