Bathroom Vanity Ideas

The vanity is one of the centerpieces in the bathroom, and it will likely be the first item that your family and guests see when they enter. Do you want your bathroom’s focal point to look sleek, modern and effortless? Do you prefer a more classic, sophisticated style? What about if you have a big family requiring a blend of form and function to avoid conflicts over surface space? Regardless of what you want, a great place to start is by reading our helpful guide of bathroom vanity tips, below!

Choosing the Right Vanity Style

Most bathroom vanities fall into one of three style categories: antique, transitional and modern. These reflect the outside appearance of the unit, though all three are available in a variety of finishes, colors and models. They can accommodate a number of sinks and mounting styles (more on this later).

Antique Vanities

This vanity style echoes eras past through flourishes and more ornate details. Antique vanities are ideal for people who want an opulent or traditional look to their house. At Modern Bathroom, our James Martin range offers a selection of beautiful and richly finished oak and cherry cabinets. For a big family, consider the Brookfield Double Vanity. Meanwhile, for a compact single unit that will work with any space, the 26” Mykonos Single Vanity is a perfect fit.

Transitional Vanities

This style bridges antique and modern with a midcentury sort of feel. These pieces would be equally at place in a Frank Lloyd Wright-style home or your apartment. The Wyndham Collection offers these vanities in a tremendous range of colors and shapes, including some units that are 78 inches or longer, ideal for families that like to have a lot of countertop room. For a clean and classic look, try the Deborah 36" Single Bathroom Vanity in white to brighten the room.

Modern Vanities

Do you love to stay on trend with the latest in design aesthetics? If so, you’ll be sure to find a modern vanity in a style that shows off your personal taste. Colors and designs vary, but you can expect clean lines, sharp angles, metal accents and perhaps color blocking. If you like the minimalism of ash grey, consider the Madeli Metro 48” Vanity with quartz top.

Choosing the Right Vanity Design

Single vs. Double Vanities

Bathroom vanities come in many styles and layouts. The first thing you need to consider is the room’s dimensions. Do you have space for a wider vanity with double sinks? Even if you do, you may still prefer one sink. This gives you access to extra counter space. A rule of thumb is that a double vanity requires a minimum width of 48 inches. If you’re interested, take a look at the sleekly designed Madeli Soho series.

Type of Sink Mounting

The sink or sinks can be mounted above the counter top, level with it, slightly recessed or as an under-mount. Each style has distinct advantages and disadvantages: 
  • Above-counter or vessel sinks are stylish and elegant, but are generally slightly more expensive. It can also be more difficult to clean in the nooks around them.      

  • Integrated or level sinks are the standard for many households, and you’ll find a wide variety of prices and selections available to suit your design and budget.      
  • Recessed sinks can create an interesting visual impact in a room. They lend themselves well to a modern, minimalist aesthetic.    
  • Under-mounted sinks are another popular choice, but they may require extra steps for installation.

5 Tips for Choosing the Right Bathroom Vanity

1. Measure the space.

This tip may seem simple, but don’t skip it while brainstorming bathroom vanity ideas. Because, you might end up falling in love with a unit that can’t fit in the space. Remember to account for doorway width, as well.

2. Consider the user.

There is no one-size-fits-all vanity. Different households will have different needs. A working professional couple who gets ready for work at the same time every morning may appreciate double sinks. A vanity for a teenager’s bathroom should have lots of shelves and extra storage options. If the unit is going in a guest bathroom, you may opt for a more minimalist design.

3. Decide on materials.

A stone countertop looks elegant, but may need more maintenance than sturdy materials such as acrylic or porcelain. You may prefer an integrated sink for easy cleaning, but that limits your choice of materials, as well.

4. Consider placement.

You want plenty of space for people to move comfortably past the vanity. Lighting also matters. Look for sources of natural light, consider where the lamps are, and if all else fails, have more lighting sources wired in place.

5. Plan your budget.

This includes both the price of the unit itself, installation fees and the cost of yearly maintenance for certain materials. There are ways that you can get the look you want at varying price points. For instance, if you love the look of natural stone, there are a number of materials that mimic it. It’s also possible to splurge on the countertop you want, if you opt for a more affordable base. Hopefully the above guide has given you some inspiration and guidance on choosing the perfect vanity for your bathroom. For even more bathroom vanity ideas, we encourage you to browse Modern Bathroom’s extensive selection!

All About Bathroom Lighting: 4 Need-To-Know Lighting Details

If you’re remodeling your bathroom into the luxurious home spa you’ve always wanted, you’ve probably poured over tubs, tiles and faucets. Don't forget light fixtures, though — bathroom lighting has a huge impact on your bathroom’s overall design. The right lighting can turn your bathroom from the place where you brush your teeth into a sanctuary of luxury. First, consider the following four essentials of bathroom lighting.

1. What’s the Color and Temperature of Your Bathroom Lighting?

Have you ever noticed how the clothes you try on in the department store never quite look the same in your bathroom mirror? Don't blame the mirrors; it's probably your bathroom lighting. "Plain" white light can have a multitude of shades, colors and temperatures that impact how your clothes and makeup look. You’ll almost instinctively notice that every light bulb or lamp has a “temperature” or color tint to it that makes it cooler or warmer. 

Bathroom lighting experts often recommend sticking to the warm white light, as shown in the color/temperature breakdown below. (Hint: Try warm white 2700-3000 kelvins (K) for the most flattering bathroom lighting). 

• Daylight: 4600-6500K 
• Cool white light: 3100-4500K 
• Warm white light: 2000-3000K 

Remember that different parts of the bathroom may benefit from different light temperatures depending on room size, decor colors and natural light from windows.

2. What Is the Color Rendering Index of Your Bathroom Lighting?

To take the color and temperature concept of bathroom lighting a little further, it’s a good idea to understand the Color Rendering Index (CRI). This number can indicate how accurate colors look under certain lighting sources.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) designed this 0-100 scale (100 having the best color rendering), based on how well lights display pastel colors. This scale assumes that lights closer to 100 CRI that bring out the best in pastels will also work well with richer colors. Try for at least 80 CRI in your bathroom lights. 

Note: The CRI is fairly accurate with most standard bathroom lighting options, but can be a little off with LED lamps. NIST and other lighting experts are trying to come up with a scale that accurately measures color rendering for LED lights as well as other lighting sources.

3. What Wattage Is Best for Bathroom Lighting?

We’ve covered the color, temperature and color-rendering factors of your bathroom lighting; now let’s discuss brightness, which is measured in wattage. There are several factors that will impact how bright you want the lights in your bathroom to be — 75-100 watts go well in guest and master bathrooms. However, for half-baths or powder rooms, 45-60 watts is fine. Keep in mind that as you age, or if the users of the bathroom are seniors, staying around 100 watts will aid with vision and safety. 

If you want to have more bathroom lighting options in the wattage and brightness department, consider installing dimmers. That way, you can use all 100 watts to wake yourself in the morning and apply makeup or shave without cutting yourself. Later that evening, you can dim to 35 watts for a relaxing bedtime bath.

4. How Many Lights Do I Need in the Bathroom?

Each light in your bathroom should serve your ability to see what you need to see, as well as providing the right ambiance and design effects. You’ll need to consider your bathroom’s size, ceiling height and how your bathroom lighting can diminish glare and unflattering shadows. There are also different types of bathroom lighting to consider: 

• Task lights: Essential to any bathroom lighting scheme, task lights usually go around vanity areas in the vicinity of the sink so you can put on makeup, shave, brush your teeth, etc. We recommend installing task lighting on either side of your mirror instead of above the mirror. Lights above the mirror tend to create glare and shadows you want to avoid. Though lighting on the sides casts an even glow for your morning routine. Consider vertical bathroom lighting bars, pendants or sconce light fixtures. 
• Ambient lights: These are the lights that cast general illumination across the bathroom. You can accomplish this with rows of recessed lighting; ceiling-facing light fixtures that reflect light across the entire bathroom; and decorative central light fixtures that radiate light in all directions. 
• Accent lights: Directional recessed lighting can be angled to illuminate artwork or impressive design elements in your bathroom. Hanging light fixtures such as chandeliers can lead the eye toward a beautiful claw-foot tub or other features; while enhancing the general ambient bathroom lighting. Some of the hottest styles include under-cabinet, floor-level lighting that sets off bathroom floor designs as well as providing low levels of light for middle-of-the-night bathroom visits. 
• Decorative lights: These bathroom lighting ideas stand out as design elements on their own. Chandeliers, sconces and other “eye candy” lights can brighten your bathroom and add decorative touches that highlight your unique style. 

Instead of thinking of each of these bathroom lighting elements as independent items, try to imagine them as layers of lighting. Each lighting element should complement and enhance the others, while also standing alone beautifully. 

From mirrors to vanities to baths, Modern Bathroom can help you create the oasis you want. We encourage you to browse our products and contact us with any questions.

Should You Add A Medicine Cabinet in Your Bathroom Remodel?

When you’re remodeling a bathroom, there are a lot of decisions to make, about everything from layout to fixtures to the bathroom mirror. One of those decisions involves medicine cabinets: Should you include a medicine cabinet in your design? Are these mirrored storage cabinets useful, or are they outdated? What are their pros and cons? If these questions look familiar, and you’re wrestling with including one in your new bathroom design, the following post is for you. Here’s a look at factors worth remembering when you’re making a decision about medicine cabinets in the bathroom.

The Age-Old Issue of Bathroom Storage

No matter if you’re talking about a half bath or the bathroom in a master suite, questions about bathroom storage are bound to come up in bathroom design. From your everyday items such as a toothbrush and toothpaste to daily medications, you don’t want to keep everything on your counters, or your bathroom will feel cluttered. You need a way to keep items out of sight — but still have them easily accessible. That’s where a medicine cabinet and other storage options come into play. With a medicine cabinet, you have a convenient, concealed area to stash products you use regularly.

Pros and Cons of Medicine Cabinets

Like most bathroom features, medicine cabinets have pros and cons worth considering. Here’s a look at the advantages and disadvantages of including them in your bathroom design:
  • PRO: Easy-to-access storage.

    Being able to store everyday products such as contact solution, Q-tips, toothpaste, etc. — while still having them at your fingertips when you need them — is a huge asset in bathroom design. Medicine cabinets provide that sort of convenient, concealable storage for everyday items you want nearby.
  • PRO: Variety of options.

    When you want to incorporate a medicine cabinet in the bathroom, you have several options: You could go with a wall-mounted cabinet that protrudes from the wall or a recessed cabinet that’s flush with the wall. Then, even among options with the type you pick, you can find all kinds of designs and styles available.
  • CON: Expense to recess cabinets. 

    If you choose to go with a recessed medicine cabinet, you may face higher expenses, depending on what’s in the wall. Should there be existing plumbing or electrical wiring, for example, those will need to be rerouted, leading to increased costs.
  • CON: Shallow storage. 

    While medicine cabinets provide easy-to-reach storage, that storage can be somewhat shallow, which limits what and how much can go inside. If you need storage for large, bulky items, the medicine cabinet won’t be the right solution.

How a Medicine Cabinet Adds Functionality to a Bathroom

Whether it’s surface-mounted or recessed into the wall, what’s great about a medicine cabinet is the built-in functionality it adds to the bathroom. Tucked right behind the mirror, you have the perfect place to stash everyday bathroom items you want to be easily accessible. From perfume and lotion to pills and contact cases, your goods can get off the counters and organized easily. This makes the bathroom more usable and convenient, thanks to extra storage and space. Likewise, accessing products is as simple as opening the mirror and checking the cabinet shelves — a welcome feature in a high-traffic space.

How a Medicine Cabinet Adds Bathroom Value

Whether you’re looking to sell your home in the near future or planning to stay in it for a long time, it’s nice to know that upgrades such as built-in storage can boost your bathroom’s value. Medicine cabinets add appeal to potential buyers because they make the bathroom more functional. If you’re thinking about whether or not to incorporate one into your design, consider your needs, as well as the pros and cons of cabinets, and decide what works best for you. If you’re in the process of tackling a bathroom remodel — or you’re about to be — take time to think about the benefits of medicine cabinets. At Modern Bathroom, you’ll find a variety of options you could incorporate into your bathroom design, offered at low, factory-direct prices that save you money. Our company is pleased to offer free shipping throughout the 48 contiguous United States, as well as a low-price guarantee. Meaning, if you find a lower price, including shipping elsewhere within 30 days of purchase, we’ll refund 110 percent of the difference. Head to our online catalog at Modern Bathroom to learn more!