5 practical bathroom tips
Australia is famous for its bright sunshine and clear skies, so who wants a dark, dingy bathroom that looks and feels like an underground cave? Who wants to spend their weekend scrubbing mould off the floor when there are better things to do? Not me!
Aussies are well-known for being laid-back and easy going but we’re also busy people and very family focused, so when it comes to bathroom designs, practicality and functionality are just as important as luxury and style.
So, if you’re about to embark on a bathroom renovation project or are lucky enough to be designing your dream one from scratch, here are five practical tips for a fabulous Aussie bathroom from the design and renovation professionals at WA Bathrooms.
Tip 1: No more mouldy oldies
Bathrooms are wet spaces and if they’re poorly ventilated, mildew and mould will form. This can be problematic in terms of health (possible negative reactions to the spores) as well as from a cleaning and aesthetic perspective, so you need to make sure that the area is well-ventilated and that the air circulates freely.
Allowing natural light into the space and creating a through draft is the ideal way to prevent mould from growing but if a window isn’t possible, you will need a ventilated skylight or a quality exhaust fan (that doesn’t sound like a jet engine) to remove the moisture-filled air.
Mould-retardant paint is another good practical option for bathrooms.
Tip 2: Easy, breezy cleaning
The bathroom is probably the least popular room in the house when it comes to cleaning, so consider these design options to help keep it spick and span:
- Wall hung toilets and cabinets are much easier to clean and have far fewer little gaps and hard-to-reach niches that attract dust and grime. They also make mopping floors a breeze
- Undermount basins, which sit flush with the benchtop, make cleaning the surfaces quick and easy
- Larger tiles have less grout, which means they’re easier to keep clean
- Floor to ceiling tiles are easy to clean (especially large format ones) and you avoid that pesky tile edge where the paintwork starts that always seems to attract dust and dirt
- Mirrors look great, but if you want to avoid daily elbow grease getting rid of streaks and splashes from the taps and the basin, consider ones that have a wide frame that will make the marks less evident
Tip 3: Towel tricks
Does your family leave wet towels on the floor or over the back of a chair? Insufficient hanging space for towels is a common bathroom design mistake, but here are some clever solutions:
- Add towel rails on the wall adjacent to the bathtub (often an under-utilised space)
- Have a towel rack or hooks behind the bathroom door
- A towel rail can be added around a pedestal basin or wall hung cabinet
- Roll up towels instead of folding them, and stack them horizontally on a shelf or stored vertically in a wicker basket on the floor
- A heated towel rail doesn’t use very much electricity and is a very effective way of drying towels
Tip 4: Niche living
Recessed niches provide an excellent storage solution and are a great way to de-clutter your countertops, making them easier to keep clean and looking good. A recessed shelf into the wall cavity in a shower is a practical and streamlined way to add storage space for your products and what’s more, it won’t impact on your elbow room like corner shelves and shower caddies do.
Recessed shelves can also be installed next to a bath, or above the basin or toilet.
Tip 5: Choose your materials and products carefully
Low maintenance surfaces, smooth taps and streamlined sanitary ware will make a huge difference to the functionality of your bathroom and thanks to all the advanced new products on the market today, you won’t need to sacrifice style for practicality.
- Tumbled pebbles and small tiles on the shower floor improve slip resistance – helping you to put your family’s safety first
- Choose tiles that won’t show every speck of dust or drop of water like grainy stone, textured or patterned tiles. Dark shiny tiles tend to mark more quickly, so for a busy family bathroom, tiles with a matt finish are ideal
- If the tiles allow, consider tight grout joints to minimise the likelihood of dirt building up
- Consider putting an electrical plug inside a cabinet, so that you can store your hairdryer and other electrical products out of sight
- Think about installing a mirror that is set away from the wall, so you can have a narrow pull-out shelf behind it for storing bottles and other bathroom products
All images courtesy of WA Bathrooms.