Projects & Improvements

59 Small Bathroom Ideas You’ll Want to Try ASAP

updated Aug 4, 2023
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Credit: Photographed by Susie Lowe, Designed by The Pink House

When it comes to small-space living, it often seems like the first room that suffers is the bathroom. And if you’ve ever tried to carve out more storage space in a small bathroom, you know that it feels like an impossible task. But don’t worry: we’re delivering some of Apartment Therapy’s favorite small bathroom ideas — both from our archives and some fresh additions from Instagram, to lend you some inspiration for a water closet work-over.

The following homes have incorporated everything from floating shelves and tiny sinks to mosaic tile and chic towel racks, but they all have one thing in common: a beautifully designed small bathroom. 

Continue scrolling for 59 ingenious small bathroom ideas to maximize even the smallest of spaces — all without sacrificing an inch of style.

Storage & Organization

1. Cut-out shelving.

If your bathroom is so small that you’re struggling even for room to get around, consider tucking shelving into a cut-out like @enchantedberkeley did. If it’s possible, it allows you to keep your crucial bathroom storage without having to worry about bumping into shelves that are sticking out from the wall. 

2. Picture ledge power.

Working with little to no surface space for storage on your pedestal sink? Mount a floating picture ledge above your sink to store cosmetics, perfume bottles, and other small bathroom necessities, as we saw in this Paris apartment.

3. Install built-in storage.

We love the clever built-in storage shown here from @alima_studio_architetto. Two shelves right next to the bathtub allow you to stow frequently used items, while the top functions as a great place for pretty bathroom decor or accessories. 

Credit: @dany_living

4. Use a basket to corral clutter.

Using a basket to keep small items together in one handy spot is a great small bathroom idea if you want to keep your space looking clean and uncluttered. We love this modern black basket that uses as a tiny towel basket. 

5. Turn to hanging storage.

Installing hanging baskets for shower storage makes your bathroom look so much more fun—just take a look at this chic Pennsylvania home as an example. Your walls also won’t feel as cluttered, and you’ll avoid the pain of drilling or putting together a flat packed shelf.

6. Choose wallpaper over artwork to create more storage space.

With little space for art or hanging decorations, you can fix a boring bathroom with a maximalist wallpaper, as is the case in this vivid New Jersey home. This small bathroom idea infuses fun, lively color into your space but still leaves room for wall-mounted storage if needed.

Credit: Liz Calka

7. Mount a few floating shelves.

A pair of wall-mounted shelves turn a cramped bathroom corner into a storage-savvy scene. Let a chic Washington, D.C. apartment show you how it’s done.

8.  Collect toiletries in a cute tray.

A well-placed tray instantly creates an additional storage opportunity on top of your toilet tank, as we saw in this modern Chicago home.

9. Try an atypical towel rack.

Score some extra sink-side storage space by replacing your wall-mounted towel rack with a multifunctional leaning ladder, like the one in this Australian home.

10. Forge some floating storage.

Invest in a sleek and slender hanging rail system, like the FINTORP series at IKEA, so you won’t waste an inch of precious sink space on toiletries. Jordan and Brittany Griggs take their storage strategy to the next level in their RV with this hack.

11. Take a seat.

A petite side chair provides a place to perch and surface space for tub-side storage in a small bathroom, as seen in this English farmhouse.

12. Go geometric.

A shapely wall-mounted storage unit, like the floating circle shelf we spotted inside an Oakland apartment, adds some geometric flair (and a storage opportunity) to a tiny bathroom.

13. Float on.

If you’re working with little to no storage space around your shower or bathtub, mount a floating shelf or picture ledge on the wall above the tub to store your shampoo, conditioner, and soap. This Buenos Aires home strikes a balance between form and function.

Credit: Minette Hand

14. Keep a low profile.

When you don’t have any surface space around your pedestal sink, a great small bathroom idea is to consider employing a petite, tiered side table to create some instant storage opportunity. This Austin abode shows how to get the job done in style.

Flooring & Tile

15. Rely on tile.

Smaller square footage means less room for decor, but when you install striking tile, like what’s seen in this cozy Vermont getaway, who needs anything more? The colors and patterns in the ceramic squares instantly brighten up the room and take up zero precious space, since they’re used as a countertop material and to trim out the shower.

16. Pick a bold paint color.

Bright turquoise blue walls provide a stylish contrast to traditional white tile floors in a tiny bathroom, as we saw in this colorful New Orleans home. 

Credit: Rikki Snyder

17.  Give your space the tiled treatment.

Add mosaic tile to the walls surrounding your bathtub or shower to create an artful display in your small bathroom, just like we saw in Shana Cohen’s cozy cottage in Florida. 

Shower & Tub

18. Tub/shower combo.

If you’ve never thought of putting your tub right in your shower, you’re missing out on a key small bathroom idea. We love this design from @imperiumimmobilier, which allows a homeowner to choose between a luxurious shower or an equally relaxing bath, all in the same small space. 

19. Play with complementary colors.

The orange shower curtain and blue walls in the bathroom of a stylish New Orleans shotgun house pull the eye up and around the space. They also help visually elongate the room, emphasizing the tall ceilings and taking attention off of the narrowness of the space.

20. Hang a plant.

An extra-long hanging plant—like the wall-length heartleaf philodendron we spotted in this Los Angeles bathroom—naturally draws the eye up so a cramped space seems larger than it actually is. Many of the best small bathroom ideas incorporate ways to trick the eye.

21. Make a splash with a shower curtain.

A cheery shower curtain can amp up just about any space, and the one in this boho-style Bronx apartment creates an artful display. When it comes to small bathroom ideas, adding decor in your favorite style will make up for a lack of space. 

22. Make it a shower room.

Even if your shower takes up your entire bathroom, you can still make the most of the space, as evidenced by this gorgeous Swedish studio. A water-resistant bench for holding your belongings and towels is a great small bathroom idea. 

Credit: Chase Daniel

23. Add seating to your shower.

Even the smallest bathroom has at least one place to sit… and we all know what that one place is! But if you need extra seating and simply don’t have room for it, cop the look we found in this Austin, Texas home and add some seating to your shower. 

Credit: Erin Shirley

24. Incorporate a bold shower curtain.

Short on space? No one will even know when you opt for a super bold shower curtain like the one in this Washington, DC bathroom

Sink & Cabinets

25. Color your cabinets.

Bring a burst of color into a small, minimalist bathroom by painting your sink cabinets in a vibrant hue, as we saw in this soothing space in a Michigan kit home.

26. Incorporate a micro sink.

As proven in this maximalist Philadelphia home, a micro sink doesn’t mean micro style. The sink features stately gold fixtures, which helps it stand out in this teeny powder room.

27. Save space with a wall-mounted sink.

Floor space is precious in a bathroom, especially when it’s small. This bold, artful bathroom by @origins_living beautifully incorporates a barely-there mounted sink with an oversized hexagonal mirror, which gives the tiny space just a bit more room.

Credit: Andrea Mous

28. Mount extra accessories.

When you’re short on space, you’ve got to use every inch. And that often means hanging things from the ceilings and walls (instead of using the cabinetry), like this Ontario bathroom displays. 

29. Reduce clutter with teeny tiny cabinetry.

This small bathroom idea from @Homestyle_byCarly incorporates the philosophy that when it comes to bathroom cabinets, smaller is better. After all, this helps reduce clutter and encourages you to keep only what you use regularly. Do you really need space for 26 colors of nail polish? A small vessel sink fits perfectly atop this tiny bath vanity.

30. Install built-ins for very small spaces.

In a very small bathroom, built-ins are an absolute must to save wall space. This white built-in cabinet is sleek and doesn’t crowd this teeny bathroom in an Airstream trailer. And a coordinating rug and shower curtain give the space cohesiveness.

31. Utilize under-sink storage.

Just because you’ve opted for a floating vanity doesn’t mean you can’t store things below. These oversized jute baskets are the perfect touch in this rustic bathroom in a 500-year-old Italian countryside home, and allow for plenty of storage space as well. 

32. Hide pipes with a plant.

Name something a plant can’t fix—we’ll wait. While you may be disappointed with certain things in your tiny bathroom that you don’t have the means to fix, like unsightly pipes or a boring cupboard, you can use a plant to take the attention off the area like these California renters did in their bath. What a great small bathroom idea! 

Small Bathroom Design Ideas

33. Play with texture.

Take a cue from this Santa Barbara home by bringing some boho flair to a small bathroom. Here, you’ll see a mix of textures and textiles, like the woven rug, linen shower curtain, and rattan baskets.

34. Swap out your mirror.

Looking for easy small bathroom ideas for a chic upgrade? Replace your current mirror with a more sophisticated one—like the round floral bone mirror we found in this San Francisco apartment—to elevate the entire ambiance of your bathroom. No renovations necessary!

35. Fake it ‘til you make it.

An oversized mirror, like the round one we spotted in a Michigan home, reflects light and creates the illusion of more space in a tiny bathroom. Using mirrors to create the illusion of extra space is one of our favorite small bathroom ideas. 

36. Just keep it simple.

A bathroom in a tiny home is about as small as you can get, but this Washington DC abode’s bathroom doesn’t feel cramped. If you keep products to a minimum and select only your favorite plant or candle to display, things will feel more spacious, even if they’re actually far from it.

37. Gallery walls galore.

A pair of gallery walls filled with eclectic artwork brings color and personality to a small bathroom—no floor space required, as we found in Apartment Therapy editor Adrienne Breaux’s New Orleans home.

38. Wow with a wreath.

No room for a house plant in your small bathroom? Take a cue from this Michigan farmhouse and hang a wreath for an organic touch.

39. Spice it up with sconces.

Searching for a stylish way to free up space around your sink? Swingarm sconces—like the ones in this Michigan home—are a great small bathroom idea. They’ll  provide plenty of accent lighting without taking up an inch of surface space.

40. Mirror match-up.

In this bold bathroom, owners Brian Huddleston and Emily Cosper used a family heirloom mirror and matched it with several other coordinating pieces of vintage artwork for a beautiful, pulled-together look in this art-filled New Orleans home.

41. Create a chalkboard wall.

Cover a single wall in a fresh coat of chalkboard paint to make an artful statement in a small bathroom, which is not only a great small bathroom idea, but a handy source of entertainment while you’re in there. Let this Rhode Island home serve as the perfect bathroom inspo.

Credit: Katie Currid

42. The trim treatment.

Bring a pop of color and contrast to your small bathroom by painting your baseboards and door trim in a bright hue. The owner of this Kansas City home nailed this design trick.

Credit: Photographed by Susie Lowe, Designed by The Pink House

43. Embrace the awkward.

Maximize a small, awkwardly shaped bathroom by covering the walls with some playful wallpaper, as we saw in this charming house in Edinburgh, Scotland.

44. Go green.

Place a few gorgeous leafy green houseplants in your small bathroom to naturally energize the space—and purify the air. This Albuquerque, New Mexico home proves that it’s very easy being green (her vibrant shower curtain that’s beloved by Apartment Therapy editors doesn’t hurt, either!).

45. Lean in.

Not working with a ton of wall space to hang art in your tiny bathroom? Learn from Cupcakes and Cashmere founder Emily Schuman and prop a piece of art above your toilet tank. Let it lean against the wall for a sleek, nails-free display like she did inside her Los Angeles home.

Credit: Emma Fiala

46. Think pink.

A bold shade of bright fuchsia wall paint turns even the smallest of powder rooms into a glamorous scene, as we saw in a very colorful Minneapolis loft.

47. Make mirror magic.

In this dramatic Brooklyn brownstone, small but stately twin mirrors bring a touch of grandeur to a small bathroom.

Credit: Brit Arnesen

48. Dive into the decor deep end.

Dark walls allow flashy gold-finished fixtures to shine in a small bathroom, as we found in an Art Deco-inspired Indiana home, which hits a high note in our book.

Credit: Max Maloney

49. Create a glamorous glow.

Switch out your humdrum flush mount for a more striking overhead style, like the pendant light we spotted in this San Francisco remodel, to upgrade a small bathroom in seconds. Playing around with lighting is a great small bathroom idea, as the right lighting can create the perfect ambience for a room of any size. 

Credit: Carly Fuller

50. Edit your palette.

If you feel a busy color scheme cramps your style, select two colors—or even just one—and stick with it. This small but stylish New York apartment shows how black and white can make a bathroom appear larger than it is.

51. Be bold.

Too much of a good thing can be wonderful, and gallery walls in a small bathroom are no exception. Take a cue from this eclectic Nashville home and install floor-to-ceiling gallery displays on every wall of your bathroom for an impactful maximalist scene.

Credit: Minette Hand

52. Dare to be woodsy.

You can always count on wood-paneled walls to create an outdoorsy atmosphere in your tiny bathroom, just like we saw in this inspiring Austin, Texas bungalow. Who needs to trek to a log cabin when you have this?

53. Fashion flower power.

In the bathroom of a Highland Park, California home, a commanding shower curtain creates a colorful centerpiece in a tiny white-tiled space

Credit: Ryan Garvin

54. Be bold and botanical.

When you don’t have enough room to place houseplants in your powder room, but you’re looking for small bathroom ideas to add a touch of nature to your space,  consider vibrant leaf-patterned wallpaper. This trick definitely pops in a lush Beverly Hills home.

Credit: Lauren Kolyn

55. Keep plants in the shower.

Plant parents don’t need to sweat it, if shelf space is taken, and there’s no room on the floor. Many plants do perfectly fine chilling with you in the shower. Just take note of how the owners of this stunning Montreal home did it and research to see if your green-fronded friends can find a home in your bathroom. You can even hang a few off of your shower rod!

56. Embrace the extra.

A floor-to-ceiling gallery wall gives a compact bathroom a maximalist upgrade when displayed against a bright green-painted wall. Look to this colorful Los Angeles home for some inspiration.

Credit: Ana Kamin

57. Try textured walls.

Chevron-style marble walls a la Brian Mitchell and Ericka James’ San Francisco home bring a touch of texture and movement to a tiny bathroom without taking up any floor space.

Credit: Max Maloney

58. Create contrast.

In this modern and airy San Francisco home, clean-lined black accents create depth and contrast in a small earth-toned bathroom.

59. Go big or go home.

Don’t let a lack of square footage hold you back from designing your dream bathroom. Take a cue from Lauren Naimola and Chad Pratt and paint the walls a bold color and hang a statement plant in your bathroom to prove that good style will always trump size.