Designing and remodeling a bathroom can be an exciting project. With so many options for finishes, fixtures, and layouts, it’s important to choose designs that are not only stylish but functional. Professional bathroom designers and contractors have a wealth of expertise when it comes to which features work best. Here are 10 bathroom design elements that pros always recommend for an optimal space.

Spacious Showers

A roomy shower is one of the most requested bathroom features today. Showers have gotten larger over the years, a trend that pros say is here to stay. Walk-in showers that are at least 4 feet by 4 feet are ideal. This gives ample space to move around and makes the shower feel luxurious. Glass doors, instead of shower curtains, also enhance the spa-like vibe. Making the shower bigger often means scaling down the tub size or eliminating it altogether. For many homeowners, a dream shower is worth sacrificing a rarely-used tub.

Double Sinks

Even in master bathrooms, one sink used to be the norm. Now double sinks are commonplace. Installing two sinks in the vanity provides personal space for both partners. It also helps the room’s functionality when two people are getting ready at the same time. Double sinks are especially useful in jack-and-jill bathrooms between bedrooms. Pros recommend choosing two identical sinks rather than mismatched ones for a cohesive look. Allow counter space between for toiletries and decorative items.

Drawer Storage

Maximizing storage is a priority in bathrooms, but cabinets below the sink or vanity are not always the best use of space. Pros often recommend installing drawers instead of standard cabinets. Drawers provide more organized storage for all types of bathroom essentials. They make items easy to access since contents are visible at a glance. Custom pull-out drawers that fully extend are an even smarter option. They allow you to see everything in the back and eliminate stooping down to reach things.

Heated Floors

For comfort underfoot, heated floors are a detail worth investing in. Heating coils under tile or laminate flooring give off a gentle warmth. On chilly mornings, heated floors take the sting out of getting ready. They also provide cozy comfort when getting out of the bath or shower. Heated flooring runs on electricity, so installation cost depends on the room’s size. But pros say the luxury and comfort are well worth the initial expense. A thermostat allows adjusting the temperature as needed.

Built-In Niches

Making use of all available space is a hallmark of good bathroom design. Niches integrated into the shower or walls provide customized storage nooks. Niches eliminate clutter on the vanity and give a spot for shampoos, bath accessories, candles, and decor. Pros recommend niches at least 2 feet wide by 1 foot deep for storing necessities within easy reach. Niches come in endless shapes and sizes. Multiple niches along the shower and above the toilet maximize storage capacity.

Dual-Flush Toilets

Water conservation is important for homeowners today. An eco-friendly way to lower water usage is installing dual-flush toilets. These high-efficiency toilets have two flush options: a half flush for liquid waste and a full flush for solids. The dual design uses only the water needed rather than flushing the same volume every time. Pros recommend dual-flush toilets as an effective way to save water and lower utility bills. Top brands like Toto and Kohler offer stylish dual-flush toilet models that add elegance to the room.

Curbless Showers

For a clean, contemporary look, curbless showers are increasing in popularity. As the name implies, there is no curb or threshold to step over, just a continuous floor into the shower. This open design has a sleek, seamless style. It also allows easier access without climbing over a curb. Those with mobility issues benefit most from a curbless design. However, they work well in any bathroom. Using linear drainage along the wall, instead of a center drain, is best practice for curbless showers. The linear drain promotes proper water flow.

Smart Toilets

High-tech toilets are booming in today’s market, and pros say they are absolutely worth the investment. Top brands like Kohler and Toto offer toilets with advanced features. This includes heated seats, automatic lid opening and closing, hands-free flushing, air drying, odor control, integrated lighting, and more. Touchscreen remotes even control bidet functions. Intelligent toilets elevate going to the bathroom into a truly luxurious experience. Once people try the features, they don’t want to go back.

Built-In Seating

A thoughtfully placed bench or seat in the shower is a handy feature many homeowners overlook. Built-in seating provides a place to set shaving essentials, rest while shampooing, or simply take a load off. Seating also offers convenience for those who need it when bathing, such as the elderly or ill. Pros recommend waterproof, moisture-resistant materials like teak or tile. The seat can be integrated into a niche or positioned beneath shower heads. This detail checks both the boxes of function and comfort.

Smart Technology

From lighting to mirrors to showers, smart tech is taking over bathrooms. Pros recommend integrating tech features that add both convenience and aesthetic appeal. Voice-activated lighting allows adjusting brightness and color temperature to set the desired mood. Backlit or anti-fog mirrors make grooming easier. Digital shower systems let you pre-set and program preferences for water temperature, spray patterns, and duration. Water leak detectors prevent extensive water damage. Appliances like high-tech toilets and touchless faucets boost the bathroom’s cutting-edge factor.

10 Bathroom Design Features Pros Always Recommend

These recommended design elements promise to increase enjoyment, convenience, and resale value. By incorporating luxurious trends like spacious showers and high-tech toilets along with functional touches like customized storage and double sinks, homeowners can create a bathroom oasis. Focusing on these smart features professionals recommend allows you to get the most out of your bathroom remodeling project.

Why Choose Top Recommendations

Bathroom design and remodeling involves many important decisions. Products, layout, finishes, fixtures, and more must be carefully chosen. It helps tremendously to rely on the expert advice of pros who work on bathrooms every day. They know the top trends and have first-hand experience with the designs and features that work best.

Lean on their years of expertise. Bathroom pros consider elements like comfort, functionality, convenience, aesthetics, and durability. They advise on options that check all these boxes to create a space homeowners will truly love. While personal style is still important, the design recommendations that bathroom pros stand behind are smart choices homeowners can feel confident about.

Research Popular Design Elements

The latest design trends give great inspiration for bathroom projects. Homeowners can browse Pinterest boards, design websites, and magazines to find styles they love. However, just because something is trendy does not mean it functions well. This is where the practical wisdom of professionals comes in.

They may confirm which eye-catching trends are worth investing in. But they can also guide homeowners away from flashy features that look nice but don’t perform well. For instance, pros may recommend a wall-hung toilet that appears sleek over less stylish floor-mounted ones. However, they may advise against impractical vessel sinks in favor of standard vanity sinks. Leaning on their functional expertise helps target design choices that look fabulous but also work flawlessly.

Customize With Personal Style

One of the joys of remodeling is selecting finishes and fixtures that reflect personal taste. The recommended design elements provide a functionally sound foundation. Homeowners can then customize with colors, textures, patterns, and materials they love. Pros understand how to merge great design with personal style.

For instance, if large showers are trending, incorporate one but use mosaic tiles in your favorite soothing blue tones. Or take advantage of a built-in niche’s convenience but surround it with marble slab walls and add brass sconces. This thoughtful mix of popular elements with customized details results in a one-of-a-kind bathroom space. The pros handle the functional planning, while you focus on the finishing touches that express your unique style.

Consider Resale Value

Along with livability and style, resale value is a reality to consider when remodeling a bathroom. Even if not planning to sell soon, most homeowners want to protect their investment. Using top design recommendations that pros advocate helps safeguard resale value.

Bathrooms with spacious glass showers, vessel sinks, air jet tubs, and open floor plans are likely to recoup costs at resale. Outdated features like carpet, whirlpool tubs, and tiny corner showers feel dated and detract value. Focusing on the latest trends backed by experts optimizes appeal when it comes time to sell. Homeowners get to enjoy a luxuriously updated bathroom now while protecting their home’s future resale value.

Frequently Asked Questions About Professional Design Recommendations

Many common questions come up when soliciting design ideas from bathroom pros. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.

Should I completely gut the bathroom?

Whether to gut the bathroom down to the studs or work within the existing footprint is a big decision. Pros look at factors like the current layout, whether plumbing and electrical systems need updating, and how extensive your goals are. Cosmetic upgrades like new finishes and fixtures can often work within the existing framework. But if the layout feels cramped, fixtures are outdated, or water damage is present, pros typically recommend starting fresh. This allows creating an optimal layout and correcting any issues lurking behind walls and under floors.

How do I make a small bathroom feel bigger?

Pros recommend several tricks for making a small bathroom feel more spacious:

  • Use wall-mounted sinks and toilets to save floor space
  • Install large mirrors or reflective surfaces to create the illusion of more room
  • Choose light colors for walls, floors, and cabinetry to brighten the space
  • Incorporate glass shower doors rather than shower curtains
  • Ensure proper lighting in all areas and near the mirror
  • Store necessities in built-in niches and drawers to minimize clutter

What are the most popular kitchen backsplash trends right now?

Some of the most popular backsplash trends pros recommend include:

  • Large-scale tile formats like 12×24 inch subway tile
  • Bold patterns and textures like Moroccan fish-scale tile
  • Metallic finishes like iridescent glass or stainless steel tile
  • Natural stone slab backsplashes or architectural stone tiles
  • Creative mixes of materials like glass and stone mosaics
  • Brick-look ceramic or faux brick panels

How much does a bathroom remodel cost?

The average bathroom remodel costs $10,000-$25,000 or more depending on the extent, with luxury bathrooms reaching $50,000 and up. The main factors affecting total cost include the room’s size and layout, chosen finishes and features, the complexity of the project, and geographic location. Labor accounts for 50-65% of the total budget. Getting multiple quotes is the best way to estimate pricing for your specific bathroom.

Should I remodel in stages or all at once?

The size of the bathroom and scope of changes determines whether staged remodeling works. For smaller updates, completing in phases prevents a long period without a functional bath. Staging works well when the layout remains essentially the same. However, significant layout changes or relocating plumbing and electrical lines make phasing more difficult. Disruption is limited by doing all the work at once. Pros can advise the best approach based on the project’s specifics.

How do I add storage to my bathroom?

Some smart ways pros recommend adding storage include:

  • Install floor-to-ceiling cabinets for maximized space.
  • Use shelves or stacked drawers in existing cabinetry.
  • Incorporate pull-out drawers under sinks instead of doors.
  • Add a storage cabinet with integrated hamper near the shower.
  • Use wall niches and cubbies placed at convenient heights.
  • Consider displaying towels on open shelving or a ladder rack.

Achieve the Bathroom of Your Dreams

There are so many options when designing a bathroom. The key is choosing features that are both high-performing and stylish. Relying on the expert advice of professional bathroom designers and contractors ensures you invest in elements that deliver form and function. Keep their top design recommendations in mind and customize to reflect your personal taste.

By focusing on the details that matter most, like spacious showers, customized storage, spa-like soaking tubs, and smart technology, you can create a luxurious oasis. Your bathroom can become a soothing, refreshing space you are excited to spend time in every day. Leaning on the pros helps blend ideal design with real-life livability. Before you know it, you’ll have the bathroom of your dreams that both looks and functions beautifully.