Your Biggest (and Smallest) Bathroom Conundrums, Solved

Now officially the best room in the house

When the grass gets overgrown, you mow it. When your muscles are coiled up like a spring, you head to yoga. And when your jeans get too many holes in them, you toss them and try a new silhouette. You’ve always been a problem solver. So why are you letting those nagging bathroom woes nag at you incessantly?

Good news: Tackling trouble spots can be downright fun. A chic decor swap here, a well-deserved upgrade there…and a boring space transforms from pure utility to a thing of beauty and function. Here, fresh fixes to eight common bathroom design problems. No renovations necessary.

Help! I’m not allowed to drill any holes and I hate the look of over-the-door towel hooks. 

No power tools? No problem. These days, all the cool girls are hanging their towels to dry on rustic-chic freestanding ladders. Just prop it on a very slight angle to take up as little bathroom real estate as possible.


Help! My pedestal sink doesn’t have storage.

Space-sucking items (think hair dryer, curling iron, first-aid kit) definitely need concealed homes. And while a pedestal sink doesn’t offer the same storage solutions as a proper vanity, it does leave plenty of space for even prettier options. We especially love the warmth and versatility of lidded woven baskets.


Help! I want to create a vanity, but I don't have any more space.

Look no further than the IKEA BRICKAN storage mirror. Just mount this sleek unit on the wall (when it comes to storage, think vertical) and use it to hold everything from body lotion and deodorant to your ever-expanding mascara collection. Then revel in the fact that it’s also perfect for taking a full-length selfie.

IKEA ($50)

Help! I have a dark, windowless bathroom.

Neutrals and mirrors, kids. Keep your color palette soft and airy with whites, grays and pale pastels. Then add a mirror or two to disperse light, create the illusion of more space and make things appear generally lighter and brighter. Natural elements such as a hearty (or convincing faux) plant, seashells or flowers also add visual freshness.

Meredith Heron

Help! My bathroom is on the small side and the low ceilings make it feel extra claustrophobic.

Consider an oval mirror. We all know mirrored surfaces make a space feel larger, but the oval silhouette in particular tricks the eye, drawing it upward and creating the illusion of elongation so the space instantly feels much grander.

Help! My small sink offers zero counter space for things like toothbrushes, let alone decor.

Try adding a slim ledge or trim right between your sink and mirror. This sweet alternative to a wide vanity top is a super-easy install and provides a perfect resting place for small necessities and accessories, like your hand soap, candles, bud vases and the like.

Help! My powder room is a snooze.

When a tiny bathroom is drab and characterless (um, almost always), our go-to fix is a bold swath of wallpaper. Those brazen prints you totally adore but are too pattern-shy to try in the living room are in fact perfectly suited to a tiny space in need of wow factor.

Help! My claw-foot tub is so pretty, but I have no idea where to put my bath products.

Rather than an over-the-tub shelf, which distracts from its classic shape, we suggest draping the tub with tray table of sorts. This option provides a versatile, seriously chic way to get your products up off the floor...and readily accessible come bubble-bath time.