This past Labor Day we rented out a vacation home for the weekend. The house was lovely with an incredibly luxurious bathroom. While I loved the idea of luxury I hated the idea of how much water the body spray shower and jetted tub used. It got me thinking: how can we achieve a luxurious bathroom with sustainability in mind?
1. Trade the body sprays for a steam shower. When steam showers are used correctly you can steam for 20 minutes using only 2 gallons of water. But remember, they do use some electricity, so that's a consideration when deciding to add one in. Read our post about how body sprays are now banned here.
2. Ditch the tub. Getting rid of your bath tub can achieve a few things: 1. You save water. 2. You gain some great space in the bathroom. If you really can't live without a tub make sure you buy the smallest one possible.
3. Choose low flow shower head fixtures. While you're not getting as much water you get lots more pressure for a better showering experience. Check out our posts on low flow shower heads here and here.
4. Choose natural materials. Natural materials are not only eco-friendly they are incredibly beautiful. Natural palettes in the bathroom create a timeless space. Find some great eco-friendly tiles here.
5. Pay attention to your floor. Be sure to choose a flooring material that is waterproof. By avoiding carpet or hardwood you avoid costly and wasteful repairs and replacements.
6. Warm up your toes. What's more luxurious than a heated floor? Heating your floor is an eco-friendly way of warming up your bathroom. Find out more in our post here.
7. Think about your water heater. While (usually) not in the bathroom, your water heater makes an enormous impact on how much energy you use in the bathroom. Make sure that your heater is insulated and if it's on its last legs consider upgrading to a more efficient model. Read about Tank vs. Tankless Water Heaters.
8. Choose an eco-friendly toilet. Old toilets can use as many as 5 gallons of water per flush. Switch to something more efficient like the new Niagara Stealth Toliet.
9. Use beautiful low flow sink fixtures. Few things can make a big of a statement in the bathroom. Lovely, low flow, sink fixtures are all over the place these days.
10.Take advantage of natural light. If at all possible put in a window or make an existing one bigger. Nothing makes a room look larger better than natural light.
11.Add a focal point. Find a design element that you love and make that the focus of the room. Choose your finishes and other elements to compliment that object. This will create a cohesive and luxurious looking design.
12. Install great task lighting. Think about what you will do where in your bathroom. Do you have a vanity area for makeup? Will you shave over the sink? Make sure that the lighting you choose is not only beautiful but also oriented to the correct task.
13. Pick out a fancy mirror. Mirrors are both jewlery and space enhancing features in the bathroom. Why not pick out an extra special one for your new bathroom? Check out some great mirrors here.
14. Add something unexpected. An unexpected element instantly turns a boring bathroom into something spectacular. Whether it be a LED chandelier, a bright paint color, a fainting couch or quirky bathroom accessories, use this as an opportunity to put your stamp on your bathroom.
15. Design with care. We've been writing a lot about buying and designing for the future these days. Choose your bathroom finishes and fixtures not along with the trends but instead think about what you will still love 20 years from now. By saving up and really thinking about what you love you can avoid the huge environmental impacts of remodeling. Avoid wasting by using your products for their entire lifetime.