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How to Make a Small Bathroom Feel Much Larger

how to make a small bathroom feel much larger
Written by Daniella

The bathroom is one of the most important spaces in our home. The bathroom is where we relax after a busy day at work and where we disconnect. That’s why it is so important to make our bathroom a comfortable and welcoming space, as well as that is should be functional.

Our bathrooms are, however, not always as spacious as we would like them to be. That is why today’s article will give you a couple of ideas on how to gain a few extra square meters (well, at least visually speaking). Designing a small bathroom to make it feel much larger is an interesting project!

Intelligent bathroom layout

Before starting any bathroom design project, you must plan the layout of it properly. Think about where pipes and downpipes will go, so all of the sanitary elements will function perfectly.

A thoughtful layout not only avoids problems in the future, but also ensures the best possible use of the available space in your bathroom. And, in case of a tiny bathroom, it is of the utmost importance to be able to include everything on our wishlist, without it taking up more space than necessary.

Maximize every inch (or centimeter)

It is crucial to divide the available space into separate corners and plan each corner specifically to make the most of our bathroom.

shower tray

Shower tray (Photo via Pinterest)

Shower or bath tub

  • Choose a shower tray instead of a bathtub, as this will make the bathroom feel more spacious and take care of coherence.
  • If your space allows, consider adding a shower wall a niche and built-in shelves to make a clever and dedicated space for your hygiene products.
  • Install a glass screen with a thin profile instead of hanging a shower curtain.
shower with niche in wall

Shower with niche in wall (Photo via Pinterest)


When choosing a type of toilet, a free-standing or wall-hung one feels spacier than another type of toilet. Opting for a smaller model will gain about 5 to 6 centimeters in space. You can add shelves or cupboards above the toilet for extra storage space, while also creating a place for decorations. 

Take into consideration that hanging toilets have a lighter effect visually, and they also are more aesthetic. 

hanging toilet in bathroom with shelves

Hanging toilet (Photo via Pinterest)


  • Hang a large mirror to create a spacious effect, because a small bathroom will not benefit from a small mirror.
  • Check available sizes of bathroom furniture and items, because they come in different depths. We recommend a depth of 30 cm if possible.
  • If you want to be organized and tidy, add bathroom furniture with drawers to place everything out of sight.
  • A wall unit always looks more spacious, and if you want to secure it, attach legs only to the back for extra support.
  • Although we are really not a fan space-wise, if you don’t have many storage options, consider a mirror with storage behind it.
Washbasin in small bathroom

Washbasin in small bathroom (Photo via Pinterest)

General advice

  • If you have a small bathroom, it is hard to include a bidet as well, so a hygienic shower is a good solution.
  • If taps are installed on the walls, this provides more space and it looks cleaner as well.
  • If there is any space left, consider hanging shelves for towels or add decorations to create a feeling of spaciousness.

Choose your bathroom materials wisely

When it’s time to decide on the materials, less is more. Avoid adding too many different types of materials, as this will make the space feel cramped. It’s much better to choose for a combination of two or three types of materials, as it creates balance and gives your bathroom character. 

  • Floors, for example, benefit from tiles that bring style and personality to the bathroom. The floor is much more attractive when NOT going for the standard 30×60 cm size tiles.
  • If you would like to add wallpaper to your bathroom walls, remember to check if it is suitable for humid areas and definitely don’t put wallpaper in the shower itself.
  • When it comes to the shower tray, resin is an excellent choice due to its versatility and easy installation.
  • If you want a more aesthetic look, consider a masonry shower tray, although it is less recommended because it requires special equipment.

Want to renovate your home to sell or rent out?

Suitable lighting

Lighting plays a crucial role in how you perceive the space is a small bathroom.

  • General lighting: choose a color temperature around 3000K for warmth, but not too yellow lighting.
  • Lights above the mirror: neutral or warm light around 3000K is ideal here as well.
  • Spots and decorative lights: consider LED strips or small lights with a sensor. A lower light intensity is preferred, while a nice temperature in the bathroom will take care of creating a comfortable and relaxed atmosphere.
Lighting in bathroom

Lighting in bathroom (Photo via Pinterest)

Choose bathroom decorations according to your personal style

Selecting the right decorations can make all the difference when it comes to small bathrooms.

bathroom with pictures

Bathroom with pictures (Photo via Pinterest)

  • Choose reusable containers for personal hygiene products. This creates unity and looks tidier.
  • Add plants for a fresh look. Plants create life in a bathroom.
  • Opt for bathroom textiles that complement already chosen colors for your bathroom. 
  • Light candles for a soft touch and cosier ambience
  • Hang pictures to give your bathroom personality and add warmth.
Decorative reusable bottles

Decorative reusable bottles (Photo via Pinterest)

Designing a small bathroom can be quite the challenge, but with smart zoning and planning, and choosing the right materials and strategic lighting, even a small bathroom can feel much larger and more functional than it actually is. ShBarcelona hopes you can make good use of the ideas mentioned in this article. Enjoy redesigning your bathroom! 

About the author


Daniella enjoys everything the city of Barcelona has to offer. She writes, translates and loves discovering Catalonia and its beautiful nature.

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