Bathroom Accessory Ideas That Add Style & Function

Bathrooms have come a long way over the past 100 years. Along with the kitchen, bathrooms are the rooms in the house where style and function are in high demand. A bathroom that promotes hygiene is also important. Below are several affordable bathroom accessory ideas to consider that add style, function, and lend to good hygiene.

When you walk in, the most important area to capture your attention is generally the vanity and mirror area. Or, if you have a beautiful soaking tub, that could be the main focal point. Bathroom accessories should complement, not overpower, the major focal point in the room. They should not add clutter.

affordable bathroom accessories

Think about the color scheme and the style when choosing accessories. For a calm and serene ambiance, choose a few light colors. For a more invigorating and energetic feel, choose bolder or more intense colors. Since bathrooms are spaces that people generally do not stay in for hours at a time – feel free to choose bolder colors.

Bathroom Accessory Ideas – Vanity Lighting

Bathroom lighting fixtures are a great way to add style and function. Bathroom vanity lighting typically consists of either a wall light with multiple bulbs located above the mirror or two sconces located along each side of the mirror. Lighting located to the sides of the face makes a person look better than overhead lighting which can cause shadows on the face. For a Powder Room, strong lighting is not as necessary as lighting for a primary bathroom where shaving and applying make-up is needed.


Bathroom Wall Mirrors and Magnifying Mirrors

Bathroom vanity mirrors are also a powerful way to add style and function. You can easily go from very simple and Modern to very ornate and Traditional. Full-length mirrors are also something to consider. These are typically installed on the back of the door. But, if you have a large bathroom – a leaner mirror or Cheval floor mirror could be quite stunning.

Magnifying mirrors are quite useful bathroom accessory for applying make-up or for shaving. These come in many forms. Some attach to the wall and some set on top of the vanity. Other types attach directly onto a mirror or other slick surface with suction cups.


Bathroom Wall Art and Wall Decor

Bathroom wall art is personal – and it is a great way to show your personality. In the bathroom below, almost all the colors are neutral. The purple in the wall art adds a big pop of color that is really needed. Think about how the wall art colors will integrate into your overall design. Instead of wall art, another choice is a wall sculpture. This could be almost anything: metal wall sculpture, primitive wooden face masks, or some other type of objects that you have collected.


Bathroom Wall Paper

Bathroom wall paper can change the look of a bathroom instantly. If it is a bold pattern, consider using it on just one wall. If it is a more subtle pattern, then it may be appropriate to use on all walls. If you can do the labor yourself, then you can get the look you want for a fraction of the cost.


Bathroom Accessory Ideas – Area Rugs

Solid colors usually work best. However, a rug with a subtle pattern could also work well. The area rug is typically an area that you do not want to draw a high degree of attention – focus attention to other areas. However, there are always exceptions. The color of the rug does not need to match the color of the towels, although it could. Area rugs are typically an affordable bathroom accessory idea.


Bidet Seats & Bidet Attachments

It used to be that to get the function of a bidet – you would need to purchase a separate bidet fixture. Not only did it add another cost, but it also took up more space in the bathroom. Today, your toilet can also function similarly to a traditional bidet: It sprays water to your private parts. Wallah (viola)!

Using a bidet seat combined with water power from BidetGenius will give your hygiene a big jump in cleanliness and efficiency. Depending on the type and model, prices range from around $80 to $1000. Shown below is an example of a type of bidet seat that ranges between $300 -$600.


Bathroom Storage and Shelving

Clutter will destroy the ambiance of a room. It’s the same thing with your bathroom. You will need some place to store all the various sundries and devices that are typically used in a bathroom: cleaning supplies, soap, shampoo, hair dryers, razors, shaving cream, etc. Make sure the shelf or storage unit you choose enhances the envisioned style for the bathroom.


Hair Dryer, Electric Curler, Razor Storage

A great bathroom should have space allocated for grooming accessories like a hair dryer, curler iron, electric razor. These items can be quite bulky and add to the appearance of clutter. Bathroom vanity drawers or cabinets are a great place to keep these items tucked away. For optimal use, you will need to have a wall socket located behind the cabinet so that you can use the hair dryer or other device without plugging it in every time – very convenient! (Yes, a hole would need to be cut in the back on the cabinet to get to the wall socket.)


Glass Shower Enclosure or Shower Curtain

If you have a sufficient budget, a glass shower enclosure is certainly a good choice. However, the glass does show water spots and you will need to clean it frequently to remove the spots.

The shower curtain is the other more affordable bathroom accessory and it can look nice also. Use two curtains. One curtain should be a clear, anti-mold plastic liner. The other curtain should be a decorative cloth curtain. The plastic curtain hangs inside the tub / shower and the cloth curtain hangs outside the tub / shower. The cloth gives the bathroom a softer look – in contrast to all the hard surfaces.

Refrain from using the single plastic curtain with the pink flamingos, happy fishes, or other type of graphics. If you must, limit using these for the children’s bathroom. Again however, there are exceptions. I have seen some clear plastic shower curtains with black text (words) that give a hip Urban look. For the right bathroom, for the right person – something to consider.

Notice in the photo below that the designer has deliberately mixed various metal finishes: chrome, brass (light fixture), and bronze (towel bar) – it works!


Quality Shower Fixtures

Quality shower fixtures are not inexpensive, but certainly a nice feature. However, if budget is important – just invest in a high quality shower head. Nothing beats a slow, hot shower after a long day. To achieve this, you’ll need a shower head that gives off a strong water spray that will create a massaging effect on your scalp and body. The more you can control the kind of water spray (i.e., wide, focused), the better the shower head. Fixtures are typically available in chrome (silver). However, brass (gold) is a very popular fixture color now – for the bathroom or the kitchen.


Towel Bars, Toilet Paper Holder, Trash Can, Etc.

General Accessories: These include toilet paper holder, towel bars, trash can, magazine holder, toothbrush holder, soap dish, wall hooks and etc. To match or not to match? Do not try to make everything match – just a few things. For example, do not try to match the trash can with the toothbrush holder / soap dispenser set – even though you can buy sets like this. Perhaps, just use the matching toothbrush holder, soap dish, and drinking glass set. If you have several items that need to be placed on the counter, consider placing the items on a tray – to give a more organized look.

Metal Accessories & Fixtures: If your plumbing fixtures are chrome, you should generally keep your other metal features in the bathroom chrome (silver) also, rather than switching to bronze or brass: towel bars, toilet paper holder. However, brass (gold) lighting fixtures could be mixed in with the chrome fixtures if they were tied into the overall design scheme.

For example, if brass sconces were place adjacent to a gold framed mirror, they could blend well with the other chrome features. See image above with the gray shower curtain. Also, you could opt to mix in wooden towel bars, toilet paper holder, etc with the chrome. However, wooden accents might go better with bronze fixtures.


Bathroom Towels, Hand Towels, Wash Clothes

Nothing makes a bathroom cozier than clean, good-smelling towels ready to be indulged in. Solid colors are typically the best choice for bathroom towels. The hand towels and wash clothes could have a pattern. As shown below, wall hooks rather than a towel bar make another way to display the towels. The wall hooks are a low-fuss option because you don’t have to worry about the towels being folded correctly as you do with towels on a towel bar.


Final Thoughts – Bathroom Accessory Ideas

Compared to centuries past, even today’s most humble bathroom with running water, a shower, and toilet would have been something only to wish for. A little over a hundred years ago, many homes and apartments only had an outhouse. No doubt, the modern indoor bathroom is indispensable. Over the decades, the bathroom has continued to evolve and improve in terms of style, comfort, technology, and promoting hygiene.

The bathroom, like the kitchen, is one of the most important rooms in a home. The good news – it does not always require a lot of money to make the bathroom look and function great.  Hopefully, these bathroom accessory ideas will help you achieve the look you seek.  To make your bathroom more accessible for everyone including the physically impaired or the elderly, check out this article >>>  Universal Design Makes Living Easy.


About Us is located in Florida and has been in operation since 2009. We feature home decor items such as bathroom lighting, wall mirrors, and wall art at discount prices. Top name brands include Wildwood Lamps, Chelsea House, Frederick Cooper, and Decorative Crafts, to mention a few.

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