Small Bathroom Remodel Ideas to Maximize Space

Remodeling a small bathroom can seem like a daunting task. With limited square footage to work with, it can be challenging to create a functional and stylish space. However, with some smart design choices and clever storage solutions, you can transform your cramped bathroom into a spa-like oasis. In this article, we’ll explore ideas to help you maximize every inch of your small bathroom.


Small bathrooms present a unique set of challenges. With minimal floor space and limited wall areas, it can be tricky figuring out the optimal layout and design. At the same time, a small bathroom remodel is a great opportunity to upgrade storage, lighting, and amenities. The key is maximizing every bit of available space.

Proper planning and design are crucial when remodeling a small bathroom. It’s important to think through the layout and have a strategy for where to place fixtures and features. Careful product selection can also make a big impact in a compact room. Choosing the right vanity, toilet, lighting, and accessories can help create the illusion of more space.

Design and Layout Ideas

The design and layout of your small bathroom will set the foundation for your remodel. There are several effective strategies to employ:

Use Light Colors

Painting the walls, ceiling, and cabinetry in light colors is one of the easiest ways to brighten up a small bathroom. Light blue, green, gray, and off-white are great options. The pale palette will make the room feel airy and expansive.

Install a Pedestal Sink

Pedestal sinks are ideal for small bathrooms because they free up precious floor space. Rather than a vanity, the sink is mounted to the wall on a pedestal base. This allows more room for moving around.

Use a Corner Shower

Tucking a narrow shower into the corner is a great space saver. Look for corner shower units with glass doors rather than shower curtains, which encroach into the room.

Install a Pocket Door

If floor space allows, consider a pocket door rather than a standard swing-open door. When closed, a pocket door slides discreetly into the wall keeping the doorway clear.

Use a Wall-Mounted Toilet

Wall-mounted toilets are elevated off the floor with a tank that mounts to the wall. This frees up a few extra inches of floor space compared to standard toilets.

Storage Solutions

Lack of storage is one of the biggest complaints in small bathrooms. However, there are many ways to tuck in specialized storage that keeps toiletries neat and organized.

Shelves Above Toilet

Take advantage of the empty wall space above the toilet by installing floating shelves. These are perfect holding baskets for extra toilet paper, candles, and other bathroom essentials.

Ladder Shelf

A ladder shelf nicely utilizes awkward narrow wall space often found in bathrooms. Use it to neatly store hand towels, toiletries, and decorative items.

Medicine Cabinet

An over-the-sink medicine cabinet serves dual purposes – concealed storage and a mirror in one. Look for a recessed style to allow wall space for additional shelving.

Shower Caddy

Install a corner mounted shower caddy in your shower. It will provide plenty of shelves and hooks for organizing shampoo, razors, loofahs, and more.

Towel Rack

Opt for a double bar towel rack to hang multiple towels. Or go vertical with a rack that has multiple rungs to hold rolled towels and washcloths.

Lighting and Mirrors

Proper lighting and mirrors are important design elements in a small bathroom. They can make the space feel bright and expansive.

Large Mirror

Hang an oversized mirror on the wall to instantly make the room feel doubled in size. Surround it with sconces or pendants to amplify the effect.


Wall mounted sconces save space on the vanity top and illuminate from the ideal angle for grooming. Pair with a mirror for task lighting.

Recessed Lighting

Installing recessed can lights in the ceiling is a streamlined way to evenly light the entire bathroom. Place on a dimmer for ambiance control.


Introduce natural light and an airy feel with a skylight. This will make the small bathroom feel like a bright, expansive oasis.

Flooring and Wall Ideas

Creative choices for flooring, walls, shower enclosures, and more can give the illusion of a more spacious bathroom.

Large Tiles

Covering the floor with large format tiles (12×24 inches or larger) makes a small bathroom appear bigger. The fewer grout lines the better for a seamless look.

Floating Vanity

A floating vanity is elevated off the floor atop of a pedestal or wall mount. The absence of cabinetry below expands the visual space.


Minimize busy patterns on wallpaper or paint. Instead look for smallrepeats or tone-on-tone textures that won’t overwhelm.

Glass Shower Door

A floor-to-ceiling glass shower enclosure adds modern appeal and makes the shower feel more spacious.


Remodeling a cramped bathroom may seem daunting, but it’s entirely possible to transform it into a luxurious space. The key is working with what you have and playing up the strengths of the room’s existing footprint and architecture. Employing smart design tricks and tailored storage can make all the difference. With the right products and layout, your small bathroom can feel like a relaxing spa retreat.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are some good colors to use in a small bathroom?

Light, neutral colors like white, beige, gray, and pale blue tend to work best to make a small bathroom feel more open and airy. Avoid dark colors, which can make the space feel closed in.

2. What type of flooring is best for small bathrooms?

Porcelain or ceramic tile is a great option for small bathrooms. Use large format tiles with minimal grout lines to create the illusion of more space. Avoid busy patterns.

3. Should I get a shower curtain or glass door for my small bathroom?

A glass shower door can make a small shower feel more spacious. Shower curtains take up room when opened and can make the space feel closed in.

4. What kind of vanity works best in a compact bathroom?

Floating vanities or pedestal sinks take up less floor space than traditional vanities in a small bathroom. You can also look for wall-mounted vanities.

5. Should I install recessed lighting in my small bathroom?

Yes, recessed can lights in the ceiling create even, ambient lighting without taking up space. Place lights on a dimmer switch for flexibility.

6. How can I add more storage to my small bathroom?

Creative storage solutions like corner shelves, medicine cabinets, built-in niches, and vertical towel racks can help maximize storage.

7. What type of mirror works best in a small bathroom?

An oversized, wall-mounted mirror will make the room feel bigger. Surround it with lights for a double spatial effect.

8. Should I get a separate tub and shower?

In a very small bathroom, combining the tub and shower into one unit can save space. Look for tub showers with space-saving doors.

9. What size tile should I use on the floor?

Larger tiles, 12 x 24 inches or bigger, make a small bathroom seem larger. The fewer grout lines the better.

10. Should I install wall-mounted faucets and toilet?

Yes, wall-mounted fixtures increase floor and counter space in a small bathroom. You can also gain a few extra inches.

11. Will painting my bathroom make it look bigger?

Painting the walls and ceiling a light, neutral color can make a small bathroom feel more spacious and airy.

12. How much space do I need for a standalone shower?

Most standard tub showers are at least 32 x 32 inches. For more elbow room, try for 36 x 36 inches or larger.

13. Should I get a skylight for natural light?

Skylights are a great way to introduce natural light and an airy feel into a small, windowless bathroom. Place away from the shower area.

14. What type of vent fan works best?

For a small bathroom, install a low profile, recessed exhaust fan to efficiently cycle air without impacting head space.

15. How do I make a small bathroom feel less cluttered?

Frequent removal of clutter, use of concealed storage like cabinets and drawers, and multipurpose furnishings help maximize space.

16. What size medicine cabinet should I get?

In a compact bathroom, look for a recessed or surface-mounted cabinet at least 16 inches wide and 26 inches tall for adequate storage.

17. How do I clean my small bathroom regularly?

Install an organized system of pull-out bins, baskets and organizers to keep everything tidy. Wipe surfaces frequently.

18. Should I hire a contractor for my small bathroom remodel?

Yes, an experienced bathroom contractor will know all the right design tricks and products to transform a cramped space.

19. What kind of lighting works best in a small bathroom?

Opt for streamlined lighting like recessed cans, sconces, and undercabinet lighting. Avoid bulky fixtures that take up space. LEDs maximize brightness in a small space.

20. How do I make a small tub/shower feel more spacious?

Clear glass doors, a wall-mounted showerhead, and light tile colors visibly expand the shower. Add a skylight above the tub for openness.

21. What style of sink is most space-efficient?

Vessel sinks and pedestal sinks are great space-saving options as they don’t require vanity cabinets underneath. Wall-hung sinks also optimize space.

22. How can I add more counterspace in a small bathroom?

Floating shelves on either side of the sink can act as extra counter area for toiletries. A glass shelf above the toilet also adds space for decor.

Roger Angulo
Roger Angulo
Roger Angulo, the owner of, curates a blog dedicated to sharing informative articles on home improvement. With a focus on practical insights, Roger's platform is a valuable resource for those seeking tips and guidance to enhance their living spaces.