4441 Six Forks Road, Ste 106-393, Raleigh, NC 27609
NC GC License# 82954

How to Make a Small Bathroom Feel Big

Designing the Illusion of Space:
6 Tips & Tricks

Just because you have a small space doesn’t mean you can’t make a big statement. In this article we’ll cover small bathrooms and how to make the feel larger.

6 Important Areas to Make Any Small Bathroom feel Big:

  • White or Light Airy Color
  • Large Mirrors
  • Floating Vanities
  • Glass Frameless Shower doors
  • Minimal Decor & Accessories
  • Lots of Good Lighting

Use the above list to go over with your Riverbirch Remodeling designer when it comes time to make your selections. Think of it as your shopping list.

Perhaps your small bathroom maybe your master, kid’s bathroom, guest bath, or a powder room. No matter which one it is, we’ll give you some tips to help make your plan for your remodel much smoother. You’ll know what things need to be changed and why.

The key is selecting the correct elements that will make your bathroom feel spacious when adding square footage isn’t an option.

1. White or Light Airy Paint Color

With any space, it’s good to start with color. Depending on the problem we either choose light, medium, or dark colors. In this case, we need your space to feel larger than it is. This illusion is accomplished by selecting white tones or very light airy paint color, tile, and flooring.

White and light paint colors let the light bounce throughout the room. Additionally, when you paint your bathroom these colors, it will help make your room relaxing and calm.

How to make a small bathroom feel big - soft light paint color

Bathroom Remodel using light paint color to make a small bathroom feel big

2. Large Mirrors

A trick for any small room is to use a large mirror. Don’t feel like you have to stick to a “bathroom vanity” mirrors. Actually, vanity mirrors are usually a little plain. A mirror can be a great statement piece.

Large surface area mirrors will reflect light and give the impression of a larger room. You can choose between framed or unframed based on the size of the wall.

How to make a small bathroom feel big - Large Mirror and Pendent lighting

How to make a small bathroom feel big - Use large mirrors

The ability to see the full wall on the opposite side of the room will make the space double in size visually.

Go tall! Create height with the use of tall mirrors. Also, with a larger mirrored surface more light is able to bounce off and fill the room.

If your mirrors are taller than vanity lights allow, pendant lights from the ceiling are a fabulous option. You’ll have even better options to pick from when you switch to this style lighting. And as an extra bonus, more character to your room.

Extended bathroom mirror for a small bathroom

TIP: You don’t have to be stuck with finding a mirror the width of your sink. You can extend the mirror along the wall. Creating a large reflection, creates the illusion of more space.

3. Floating Vanities

With a small bathroom, floor space is limited. How do you increase your square footage? Floating vanities. This option allows the floor to be uninterrupted giving the visual effect of a larger room.

There is a wide range of styles, materials, colors, and sizes to get the look you want. You can find premade with drawers. Or if custom is what you are looking for you can go with an exotic wood with an amazing grain.

Another option is stone. Your remodeling expert can have granite, marble, onyx, etc fitted for a thick top with or without a matching skirt.

Bathroom Remodel Floating vanities

Bathroom Remodel Bathroom Vanity Floating Counter Tops

Bathroom Remodel How to make a small bathroom feel big

4. Frameless Shower Doors

Frameless shower doors and walls keep your room from feeling small chopped up. You will eliminate builder partition walls that create shadows and dark areas in your bathroom.

Choose from a fully enclosed shower or an extended shower wall. With the correct size along with correct drains, you can have an ultimate spa experience in your very own home bathroom.

This simple design with minimal metal gives you a clear view of all the beautiful tile, plumbing fixtures, lighting, etc. that you want to stand out.

Glass enclosures can be one wall, doors on hinges, or sliding glass doors.

How to make a small bathroom feel big - glass shower enclosures

shower glass enclosure bathroom\

5. Lots of Good Lighting

Lighting in bathrooms is so important and always seems to be an issue. Include lighting updates and additions in your bathroom remodel plan. Your remodel design professional can help give you an idea of what a good budget will be to meet your needs.

When your bathroom is full of good light, it will help you while you give your bathroom a thorough cleaning. You will be sure that you won’t miss a spot.

Lighting also makes your bathroom feel luxurious. Go into any high-end hotel bathroom and they do not skimp on lighting.

This does not mean that you have to spend a lot to get the same effect. What a difference it makes. Getting the right amount of recessed lights, vanity lighting, shower & toilet area lighting is crucial.

Bright bathroom with different type of lighting

Bathroom Remodels need to include lots of different types of lighting

It is very important to add different types of lighting to ensure the light is bouncing in different directions. While shaving or putting on makeup, you do not want shadows to make it difficult to see yourself clearly. So, having lighting from above, the side, and in front solves this problem.

If natural light is lacking, this is another reason to add several good sources of light. This will help keep your beautiful bathroom from feeling like a dungeon.

6. Minimal Decor & Accessories

Last but not least, use minimal decor and accessories to keep your small bathroom from feeling cluttered.

Keep the floor clear. Use no more than 3 items on the vanity area. When selecting art it’s good to go with a large-scale piece.

Use minimal shelving styles when it is necessary to use them. In a powder room, you may have the need to add a shelf to store items like extra toilet paper, and personal items.


TIP: Choose to use wallpaper instead of art or wall decor. In a powder room or other small bathroom it will make HUGE statement. This is also a good option when your wall space is limited.

Small Bathroom remodel wallpaper

Your Raleigh Area Bathroom Remodel Contractor

The fun for us with bathroom remodels is that just as every client is different, so is each and every project. Through our remodeling process, we offer useful design advice for fixtures & tiles, tubs & showers, lighting & storage. We love a good challenge to design a room that our clients have dreamed of and make it a reality.

If you live in the greater Raleigh, Cary, and Apex area of central North Carolina, call or text us at 919-205-9550 to schedule a consultation with our remodel design expert. We look forward to meeting you and your goals!

Schedule an appointment with our experienced remodeling designer to get your remodeling project started.