A few years ago I wrote about 15 Clever Things You Didn't Know You Really Needed in Your Kitchen, so it seemed only fair to give the bathroom the same treatment. Some of these ideas are things you'll want to put on your list for your next remodel, while others are great weekend projects — or even smart solutions that will work for renters and homeowners alike.
Above, a recessed shower shelf (or two or three), so you don't have to clutter up your bathroom with a shower caddy. Justina Blakeney used them to great effect in her Jungalow bathroom
Or for a big family, multiple shelves so everyone can have their own. In a lovely bathroom renovation from Wit & Delight, there are shower shelves for all.
A glass shower door that opens up for when you need to clean the tub. This clever yet minimal bathroom solution was spotted in a San Francisco home on Lonny.
A towel warmer for toasty towels are particularly welcome in cold weather. Here's one in a bathroom from Badrumsdrömmar.
A shelf for toiletries, to keep clutter off the sink. (This can be a built-in ledge, or just a simple shelf that you mount above the vanity.) This one is also a beautiful design element in this bathroom from Paris' Grands Boulevards Hotel.
A built-in cat box hides the unsightly litter box (and cuts down on litter tracking) while giving fluffy a safe, private place to take care of business. This example comes from a Tel Aviv apartment spotted on Xnet.
A built-in laundry hamper that pulls out when it's time to take the clothes to the laundry room (or the dry cleaners). This great example was seen on Better Homes and Gardens.
Above-counter storage next to the sink, so you don't need to reach down for things you use often. From Better Homes and Gardens, here's an example of such storage, with a built-in plug for charging, too.
A built-in vanity in a stylish Warsaw apartment from Design Milk, with corresponding mirror, so you can sit down while putting on make-up. (These were standard in the '80s but have disappeared. Why?)
A cabinet that's recessed into the wall, between the studs, so you don't have to look at your toilet brush and plunger all the time. A similar storage kit is available for $39.95 from Home Depot.
A curbless shower — it's easier to get into, and a lot easier to clean. The contrasting tile detail makes this curbless shower from VtWonen especially appealing.
A double shower curtain rod — you can use the outside to hang towels. (Bonus if it's a curved rod, like this one, which makes your shower seem more spacious without taking up any extra floor space.) If you like this idea, this curved double shower curtain rod is available for $36.25 from Amazon.
A place to put your phone while you're on the toilet, because we all know you take it into the bathroom with you. This Yamazaki toilet paper holder with tray is $40.99 from Amazon.
Wall-hung toilet paper storage, so you'll always know when it's time to buy more. The diagonal storage shelf is just one of the dynamic elements in this bathroom from Domino.