A bathroom renovation can completely transform the look and feel of your home. Seeing dramatic before and after photos of bathroom remodels shows just how much of an impact small and large-scale upgrades can have. From simple DIY projects like repainting cabinets or replacing fixtures, to full gut renovations – it’s incredible what’s possible.

In this article, we’ll look at 5 stunning bathroom makeovers. For each one, we’ll overview the before space, the problems and goals, the renovation process, and the jaw-dropping after reveal. These dramatic transformations demonstrate how renovated bathrooms can become contemporary, elegant, and highly-functional spaces.

1. Converting a Tired 80s Bathroom into a Relaxing Spa Retreat

The Before

This master bathroom was stuck in the 1980s. The outdated salmon pink tile, mismatched fixtures, and poorly planned layout made the space feel cramped and disjointed. The homeowners disliked the dark, dreary aesthetic and inconvenient functionality.

The Problems and Goals

The main problems with the original bathroom included:

  • Salmon colored tile and outdated fixtures
  • Poor lighting with only a single overhead fixture
  • Cluttered layout with the tub and toilet too close together
  • Lack of storage space and insufficient counter area around the sinks
  • Not enough room for two people to comfortably use the space

The homeowners wanted to renovate the bathroom into a relaxing spa retreat with the following goals:

  • Fresh, soothing color palette using white and gray tones
  • Improved lighting for brightness and visibility
  • Open, uncluttered layout with clear divisions between spaces
  • Additional storage solutions and more usable counter space
  • Ample room for two people to get ready comfortably

The Renovation Process

To renovate this outdated and cramped bathroom into a modern, spa-like retreat, the homeowners hired a contractor to complete a full gut renovation. This involved:

  • Removing the outdated tile, sink, tub and toilet
  • Knocking down a wall to open up the space
  • Installing new flooring, tiling, cabinetry, sinks, tub, toilet and lighting fixtures
  • Adding recessed lighting and sconces for improved visibility
  • Building a large walk-in shower with glass doors
  • Adding more storage space with built-in cabinetry and shelving
  • Widening the space around the double vanity for two people
  • Painting the walls and ceiling a serene gray

The After Reveal

The results of this whole-room renovation are stunning. The space is now a tranquil, spa-like retreat with hotel-style luxury.

The fluid layout has clear zones for the walk-in shower, tub, toilet, and double vanity. Premium surfaces like quartz countertops and glass shower tile create an upscale look. Soothing grays and whites give the room a bright, airy aesthetic. Details like the floating wood shelving, modern chrome fixtures, and wall sconces add warmth.

The enlarged footprint, new storage solutions, and double vanity make the bathroom infinitely more functional. Overall, the homeowners achieved their goals of opening up the space, simplifying the aesthetic, and making the bathroom more usable. It’s a truly dramatic transformation!

2. Opening up a Cramped, Galley-Style Bathroom

The Before

This narrow galley-style bathroom was dark and cramped. The awkward layout made the space feel disconnected and claustrophobic. The homeowners felt the bathroom was an inefficient use of square footage.

The Problems and Goals

Key issues with the original bathroom included:

  • Long, narrow footprint with no natural light
  • Insufficient counter space around the pedestal sink
  • Shower stall was tiny and cramped
  • Poor ventilation with no windows or exhaust fan
  • Visually disjointed space with separate zones

For the renovation, the goals were to:

  • Create an open, airy layout
  • Increase natural light
  • Maximize counter space
  • Enlarge the shower
  • Improve ventilation
  • Make the space feel unified through design choices

The Renovation Process

To open up this long, narrow bathroom, the homeowners knocked down some walls and added a skylight. The key changes included:

  • Removing walls between the sink area, shower, and toilet room to open up the space
  • Adding a skylight to bring in natural light
  • Installing a new vent fan ducted to the exterior
  • Replacing the tiny shower stall with a larger walk-in shower
  • Switching the pedestal sink for a vanity with quartz countertop
  • Reconfiguring the layout to have better flow and sightlines
  • Adding new contemporary light fixtures for brightness

The After Reveal

Knocking down walls and adding natural light completely transformed this bathroom. The space feels airy and open instead of cramped.

The new open concept layout makes the room feel larger. The contemporary linear glass shower and floating vanity add to the visual spaciousness. The skylight floods the space with natural light.

The new walk-in shower with frameless glass doors offers ample room. The double-sink vanity provides abundant counter space. New surfaces, fixtures, and lighting give the space a fresh modern look.

By opening up walls and improving functionality, the homeowners turned this disjointed, cramped bathroom into an inviting contemporary retreat. The renovated space is now a beautiful, efficient use of the square footage.

3. Gut Renovating an Outdated Master Bathroom

The Before

This large master bathroom felt outdated and disjointed. The mismatched tile, old jetted tub, and dingy aesthetic made the space feel more like a relic than a retreat.

The Problems and Goals

Key issues with the original master bathroom included:

  • Mismatch of outdated surface materials and fixtures
  • Poor lighting with only overhead fixtures
  • Jetted tub took up too much space
  • Lack of style cohesion or luxurious details
  • Insufficient storage for toiletries and towels

For the renovation, goals included:

  • A unified, elegant design aesthetic using neutral colors
  • Ample lighting for visibility and ambiance
  • Removing the jetted tub to create space
  • High-end details like marble and brass for luxury
  • More storage for organization

The Renovation Process

Gut renovating this master bath involved taking it all the way down to the studs and starting over. The process included:

  • Demolishing old tile, surfaces, tub, shower, vanities, and lighting
  • Reconfiguring the layout and plumbing
  • Waterproofing and installing new surfaces like porcelain tile and marble
  • Building custom cabinetry, shelving, and double vanities
  • Adding a frameless glass walk-in shower with designer fixtures
  • Installing a freestanding soaking tub
  • Upgrading all lighting fixtures and adding sconces

The After Reveal

The new master bathroom is a luxurious, spa-like space with high-end materials and a soothing vibe. The neutral color palette keeps things simple but elegant.

The marble surfaces, brass details, linen cabinetry, and designer fixtures give the space an upscale hotel aesthetic. New lighting casts a soft glow for ambiance. The spa-like soaking tub and glass shower provide tranquil spaces to unwind.

Lots of storage keeps toiletries decluttered. The double vanities and open layout allow for shared use. By gutting and starting over, the homeowners transformed this bathroom into a truly inviting master retreat.

4. Modernizing a Dated Bathroom on a Budget

The Before

This bathroom was outdated but functional. The mint green tile, worn fixtures, and mismatched decor gave the space a disjointed, grandmotherly vibe.

The Problems and Goals

Issues with the existing bathroom included:

  • Dated surface materials like mint green tile
  • Worn-out fixtures including the laminate vanity
  • Poor lighting with a single overhead fixture
  • Clashing decor that felt busy and random
  • Lack of storage for supplies and towels

Goals for the renovation were to:

  • Modernize the space on a tight budget
  • Replace outdated surfaces and fixtures affordably
  • Improve lighting for visibility
  • Create a clean, simple, contemporary aesthetic
  • Add storage for organization

The Renovation Process

To give this bathroom a modern makeover on a budget, the homeowners shopped sales and bargains. Key updates included:

  • New paint in light gray tones
  • Replacing fixtures like lights, faucets, and shower head
  • Installing peel-and-stick vinyl tile flooring
  • Swapping in a new budget-friendly vanity
  • Adding a mirror with built-in lighting
  • Organizing with budget-friendly storage baskets
  • Accessorizing with neutral towels, shower curtain, and decor

The After Reveal

Without gutting or replacing major elements like plumbing or tile, this homeowner gave the bathroom a major style upgrade for under $500.

Fresh gray paint covers the mint tile and gives the space a neutral backdrop. New modern chrome fixtures add shine. Peel-and-stick floor tiles lend dimension. The budget vanity, mirror, and accessories keep costs low.

Small upgrades like new lighting, shower fixtures, and woven baskets made big visual impact. Overall, the space is now a serene, spa-like retreat on a budget.

5. Converting a Former Closet into a Chic Powder Bathroom

The Before

This cramped closet was an underutilized waste of space right off the home’s entryway. The homeowners saw unused potential.

The Problems and Goals

While the closet was functioning as storage, it was an ineffective use of the square footage. The homeowners set goals to:

  • Convert the unused closet into a powder bath
  • Make space for a petite sink, toilet and narrow vanity
  • Create an eye-catching powder room with bold style
  • Add dramatic lighting and accessories for visual appeal
  • Build in functional storage with floating shelves and cabinets

The Renovation Process

Turning a closet into a half bath took creativity and compact design. Key steps included:

  • Demo of existing closet with proper plumbing rough-in
  • Installing a slim floating vanity with vessel sink
  • Adding a wall-hung toilet with concealed tank
  • Waterproofing and tile for space-saving walk-in shower
  • Bold black and white mosaic tile to make a statement
  • Floating shelves flanking the vanity for folded towels
  • Pocket door, lighting, and accessories for drama

The After Reveal

This former closet is now one of the most striking spaces in the home. The dramatic black and white tile immediately grabs attention. Clever space-saving design choices like the floating vanity and wall-hung toilet maximize every inch.

Vessel sink, black accents, and modern chrome finishing touches lend style. While still quite petite, the vanity and shelf storage add function. The statement powder room is now an artistic focal point.

Key Takeaways

These five dramatic before-and-after bathroom transformations demonstrate just how much is possible with bathroom renovations.

Here are some key lessons:

  • Even modest budgets can achieve big style through paint, fixtures, lighting and accessories
  • Knocking down walls and selecting space-saving compact design elements can make small bathrooms feel more expansive
  • Gut renovations allow for full customization from layout to finishes for your ideal aesthetic
  • Unity of design through cohesive styles, materials, colors, and details makes spaces feel polished
  • Goal-oriented remodeling focused on specific problems like lighting, storage, or layout prevents hassles down the road

With some vision and the right improvements, almost any outdated or inefficient bathroom can be converted into a relaxing and functional oasis. These dramatic makeovers offer inspiration to breathe new life into your own bathroom space.

Frequently Asked Questions About Dramatic Bathroom Transformations

How much does a dramatic bathroom renovation cost?

The cost of a dramatic bathroom overhaul can vary greatly depending on the scale and scope of the project. Limited renovations can be done for as little as $2,000-$5,000 by refinishing surfaces, replacing fixtures, updating lighting and accessories. Full gut renovations generally start around $10,000-$15,000 and go up significantly depending on finishes.

What makes a bathroom remodel dramatic?

Dramatic bathroom transformations usually knock down walls, update layouts, improve lighting and ventilation, replace surfaces and fixtures, and choose bold or luxurious new finishes. Going for an updated, unified aesthetic is key. High contrast “before and afters” showcase the striking metamorphosis.

How do I choose a style for my bathroom renovation?

Consider how you want the finished space to feel and function. Look at inspiration photos online or in magazines. Establish priorities like relaxation, utility, or luxury. Choose cohesive finishes that align with your aesthetic like neutral and soothing or bold and elegant.

Should I do a full gut renovation or more limited remodel?

It depends on your goals, timeframe and budget. Gut renovations fully customize the layout and finishes but are more disruptive. Targeted upgrades like new tile, vanity or lighting make big visual impact with less work. Focus on the improvements that fix problems and upgrade usability.

How long does it take to renovate a bathroom?

Bathroom renovation duration depends on the project scope. Small DIY upgrades may take 1-2 weekends. Pro remodels typically take 2-4 weeks from demolition to finish. Extensive full gut renovations often take 4-8 weeks with more time needed if moving plumbing fixtures.


These dramatic before-and-after bathroom remodels illustrate how renovations can utterly transform tired, dysfunctional spaces. Implementing goal-oriented upgrades opens up possibilities for fresh new aesthetics and improved utility.

Even modest DIY makeovers can modernize a bathroom on a budget. Knocking down walls and reworking layouts create expanded sanctuaries. Full gut renovations allow for unbridled customization. With strategic and creative renovations, virtually any bathroom can become a relaxing retreat for getting ready and unwinding.