A spacious shower stand is better than a cramped bathtub. This simple recommendation is what every US owners of a small bathroom should consider thoroughly. Actual advantages of a shower cubicle over a bathtub are numerous:
- If your bathroom is incredibly small, a shower is just the solution. It takes up twice as little space as a bathtub.
- Taking a shower is more hygienic than taking a bath. All the dead epithelium cells and skin oil you wash off yourself go down the drain immediately, carried away with the flowing water.
- A drastic reduction in the amount of time required for bathing.
- A significant water economy. Taking a shower, you use four times as little water as during a regular bath.
Hints to consider before purchasing a shower.
Determine the dimensions of your shower cubicle. It should perfectly fit into the corner you’ve allocated for the purpose. Also, take into account the dimensions of your plump home-mates (if any) – everyone who uses the shower should pass through the doors easily and feel comfortable inside. However small you bathroom may be, the size of the shower cubicle should exceed 32”x32”. A tinier fixture could only serve as a decoration, as it’ll give you the feeling of being buttoned up within the four walls.
Shower fixtures are subdivided into two major groups:
- Open shower stands are cheaper, as they lack either one or two walls. Such a structure is put in adjacency to a wall or in a corner, which helps save up space in tiny bathrooms.
- Closed shower cubicles have all four walls, and a roof. Such a design may hit you in the wallet; in addition, it’s rather cumbersome, which makes it unsuitable for a tiny bathroom.
Shower plate and doors.
The shower pan type requires careful attention in the three aspects: safety, material, and depth.
- Safety. Most manufacturers add a ribbed surface to their products for safety reasons. However, the optimal shower plate should have an anti-slip coating. If you’re on a budget and can only afford the cheapest shower cubicle model, you should at least complement its pan with a non-slip rubber mat.
- Material. Its structure determines the durability and longevity of the shower tray.
- Cast iron and steel pans are the cheapest. However, they demonstrate more drawbacks than advantages in daily use. They produce a loud noise when the water falls and meets the tray surface. The enamel layer gets worn out quickly; the slightest mechanical impact may result in chippings.
- Acrylic, ceramic and marble shower pans are the most durable and long-living. Marble and ceramics are able to withstand impacts, while acrylic pieces are easy to restore when damaged.
- Depth. It ranges 2 to 10 inches. If someone of you home-mates has disabilities, opt for the flattest shower tray. A deep pan may be well suitable for washing your dog after a walk on a rainy day.
The doors of a shower cabin intended for a tiny bathroom should be of the sliding type, with two, four or six leaves placed onto roller tracks. This will save a bit of precious space for you. Shower cubicle doors are usually made of glass or polystyrene. Choosing the material, mind its properties:
- Polystyrene doors are cheaper than glass; however, they quickly lose their transparency, with ugly stains appearing on their surface.
- Glass doors increase the price of the shower cubicle, but they retain their initial appearance much longer. In addition, any stains are comparatively easy to remove from a glass surface.
Define the necessary shower functions before purchasing the fixture. A small bathroom requires a compact shower stand; however, this doesn’t mean you should opt for a model with inferior functionality. The common list of options that may be present in a shower cubicle includes:
- Finnish or Turkish steam bath;
- Swiss shower;
- relaxation and aromatherapy modes;
- contrast shower hydrotherapy;
- decorative lights.
The choice depends on your home-mates. If you’re the only person to use the shower, pick up a model to your own liking. But if the cubicle is intended for a family of several people, try taking into account everyone’s preferences and wishes.
Fitting a shower cubicle into the interior.
The shower stand occupies up to one third of a small bathroom, which means the interior design should be a masterpiece to prevent you from feeling cramped. Properly chosen finishing materials are a means of avoiding such an effect.
Light colors contribute to the desired visual expansion of the space. The classic white is not a must. A fine idea is to combine pale pink with lilac, or white with gray and willow-green. Combinations involving more than three colors are not welcome, though. For small bathroom interiors, USA designers recommend finishing the walls dark, and the floor and ceiling in lighter colors.
Designer’s idea: For visual broadening of the bathroom space, finish the shower plate skirt with the same tiles you’ve used for the floor.
Visual zoning of the bathroom with the help differently colored mosaic strips and stripes enlivens the interior, making it elegant and refined. The shower area will benefit from being accentuated with a darker wall finishing.
The play of colors should be discernible not only in the wall, floor and ceiling design, but also in the plumbing fixtures. The modern US market offers an immense choice, but the optimal idea is to purchase all the necessary fixtures – the sink, the flush toilet, the shower cubicle – from the same collection.