Simple Bathroom Upgrades That Make A Major Difference

Updating your bathroom doesn’t have to mean giving it a full facelift. Overhauling it top to bottom is not necessary. In fact, some of the most impactful bathroom changes involve small upgrades. You might refresh the cabinets or get new bathroom faucets, for example. You could add a tile backsplash or decide to accessorize with new towels and soap dispensers. Whatever your budget or time frame, when you’re looking for small bathroom upgrades that can make a major difference, here are some fun ideas to consider.
  1. Clean and declutter.

    It costs next to nothing to take the time to deep-clean your bathroom, but when you do this, you instantly make your bathroom look its best. Likewise, the less clutter you keep in your bathroom, the more spacious and inviting it becomes. Try this project: remove everything from your bathroom and go through it item by item. What do you actually need in the bathroom, and what’s just wasting space? Declutter for a fast, free improvement in the room.
  2. Repaint the room.

    The color of your bathroom walls makes a dramatic impact on its overall look and feel. Whether you’re going from dated beige to bright white or faded green to a deep blue, you can breathe fresh life into your bathroom simply through a few cans of paint and a weekend of work.
  3. Paint the cabinets.

    Maybe you have a vanity that’s in decent condition, but it just looks dated. Rather than swapping it out entirely, consider painting the cabinets! Painting cabinets is a great way to give them a fresh look on a dime. You could go with basic white to brighten up the room, or you could make your bathroom vanity a statement piece by painting it crisp mint or turquoise.
  4. Replace the bathroom vanity countertop.

    Another way to spruce up an existing vanity without overhauling it totally is to swap out its countertop. If you’ve currently got dated, tired looking countertops, do a little price comparison on the costs of swapping them out. Whether you go with a high-end stone or a budget-friendly option in a better style, you may be surprised at the impact. Some materials can also be painted, if you want to update the counters without replacing them, too.
  5. Update bathroom hardware.

    Here’s a change that can be done in mere minutes: swap out your hardware. You could start small by replacing the knobs on the vanity with a modern, stylish option. You could also overhaul the hardware entirely by replacing everything from the faucets to the showerhead to the lights. For the biggest impact, pick one style — say bronze or chrome — and stick to it throughout. This can give you a wonderful, seamless look throughout the room. For a bonus benefit, look for fixtures that add efficiency, such as a low-flow showerhead model that can cut down water costs.
  6. Frame out the mirror.

    Have a frameless mirror above the bathroom sink? Turn it into a piece with more impact by framing it out with wood.
  7. Add a tile backsplash.

    Adding a tile backsplash between the bathroom sink and the mirror may not be a tiny change, but it is a relatively small project that can improve your space. Consider how large of an area you wish to tile and explore your options in terms of time frame and costs to install it. Then give your bathroom a luxurious boost with a new backsplash.
  8. Accessorize.

    Another cheap change with big impact is bathroom accessorizing. Simply by picking out new towels, soap dispensers, artwork or other items for the bathroom, you can spruce up its overall appeal. Pick an overall theme and stick to it, whether that’s white on white or soothing neutrals, to make your accessories especially eye-catching.
Whether you’re on a tight budget or just looking for small changes with the most impact, the eight ideas above are a great place to start. And when you’re shopping for new bathroom products — from a new bathroom sink to new faucets — visit We offer factory-direct pricing that can save you up to 70 percent on products, provide free shipping to the 48 contiguous states, and have showrooms in Southern California for those who want to see products in person. Shop our site today to learn more!

Choosing The Right Bathroom Flooring

When you’re remodeling a bathroom, you have a lot of decisions to make — about everything from layout to vanity style to paint color. One of the key decisions centers on the flooring. Today’s bathroom market includes all kinds of options for flooring. Do you go with tile? If so, what type, style and size? Do you go with hardwood? Or will you regret using it in a high-moisture, high-humidity space? You could opt for wood-look tile floors for a best-of-both-worlds solution, but then there’s also inexpensive vinyl, among other possibilities. So how do you make a choice that will result in a floor that you enjoy for years to come? How do you choose the right bathroom flooring for your space? To help answer these questions, here’s a look at some key tips and principles for picking the best bathroom floors for you.

Pros and Cons of Different Bathroom Flooring Options

A good place to start when investigating bathroom flooring options is looking at what’s available. What does each of the different kinds of flooring have to offer, and where does each fall short? To help you feel more informed as a shopper, here’s a look at some common flooring possibilities, along with their respective pros and cons.
  • Carpeting: While it was once a common choice, carpeting in the bathroom has decreased in popularity today — and with good reason. Homeowners have realized how poorly carpet performs in high-moisture environments. As you’re regularly using the bathroom to shower, bathe and get ready, the resulting condensation and moisture affect carpet all the way down to its padding. This gives your bathroom a damp, dank smell that makes the room musty and makes thorough cleaning almost impossible.
  • Ceramic or stone tile: One of the most popular bathroom flooring options today, on the other hand, is tile. Whether you go with ceramic or stone, tile gives you a beautiful, durable, water-resistant flooring option that can handle regular moisture. Tile comes in all kinds of colors, shapes, sizes and designs, so you have a huge variety of possibilities for customizing your room to your tastes with this type of flooring. You can even choose wood-look tile to achieve the aesthetic appeal of hardwood but with better durability.
  • Hardwoods: Hardwoods are a timeless flooring choice, renowned for their beauty and quality. In a bathroom, however, they don’t tend to do well. The moisture of the bathroom environment can damage the wood, making it warp and crack over time, leaving you with a real headache on your hands.
  • Cork: Cork floors come from bark, which means they’re made of a renewable resource. Both eco-friendly and resistant to mold and mildew, these floors need to be sealed every few years to protect against moisture. For best results, they should be finished on site in order to prevent water seeping between gaps.
  • Laminate: Laminate floors come in so many different styles and colors today that they potentially can be a good choice for a bathroom. You’ll want to stay away from laminate floors with seams, however, as water can leak into the seams and cause blistering or warping.
  • Vinyl: Inexpensive and incredibly durable, vinyl also has a lot to offer. You can go with vinyl tile, which is a cinch to install and is made to be waterproof. Alternatively, you can choose sheet vinyl, for all the benefits of vinyl floors without having to deal with seams.
  • Linoleum: Last but not least, there is linoleum. Like vinyl, it’s available in tiles or sheets, and it’s water-repellant for better bathroom longevity than hardwoods or even laminates. The tiles will have seams that could potentially allow for moisture and later warping, but the sheets eliminate that concern.

Questions to Ask as You Shop

Even after you understand the ins and outs of different floor options, you may find yourself stumped about which kind to use. To help you think through the decision, here are some helpful questions to keep in mind:

  • What option is both timeless and trendy? Trends change, but whatever is “in” also appeals to buyers — at least when it’s still popular. To maximize your return on investment, look for floors that are both trendy and timeless.
  • What fits my budget? You may love an expensive ceramic tile but find that filling your large bathroom with it is out of your price range. Explore the different cost options to see what works for you.
  • Will it last? Different flooring materials have different durability potential, so if you’re looking for something that can last, stick to the water-resistant, long-lasting options.
When you want to find the best in bathroom design options, visit, your resource for factory-direct pricing on bathroom fixtures and features! We offer free shipping to the 48 contiguous states and have showrooms in Southern California, where you can see products in person. Visit our online catalog today to learn more!

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How To Add A Tile Shower Nook

Anything that adds convenience to your day and value to your home is a plus. In the bathroom, one great option for shower enclosures is designing and installing a tile shower nook. Built into the wall and then finished with tile, a nook gives you the perfect place to stash shampoo, conditioner and soap, without taking up shower space or having to hang a clumsy shower caddy. It makes the shower look more customized, and it adds functionality and style. If you’re thinking about taking on a weekend shower remodel project that you’ll simply love, here are some of the basic steps involved with adding a tile shower nook:
  1. Pick a place. Before you do anything else, you must figure out where you want your new nook. Use a stud finder to locate studs in the wall, because a sturdy foundation makes for the best anchor for anything that must be attached. Try to determine where wiring or pipes might run, and avoid those spots. Also avoid an exterior wall that lacks insulation, as your bath products otherwise will be chilled in the colder months. You may also want to line up your niche with the grout lines, although this is optional.
  2. Mark the area. Once you’ve decided where to place your nook, mark the area that needs to be cut with a china marker, which doesn’t stain or discolor tile. After marking it, measure it and remeasure it to make sure your nook will be square and level.
  3. Cut out the space for your nook. Wearing a dust mask and working slowly, use a tile saw to cut out tile from a small portion of the wall that you’ve marked. Only cut as deeply as the tile during this step. Next, cut through the existing backer board to leave an exposed hole in the wall. Starting with a small hole allows you to look through the opening to determine whether pipes or wiring are behind that part of the wall. Once it’s established that the area is clear, cut the opening to your niche outline. Make sure everything’s straight and square. Make sure your nook is deep enough (typically 4 to 6 inches).
  4. Frame out the nook. Measure the space between the studs in your opening, and cut two pieces of a 2-by-4 that will be the top and bottom bases. They probably will be about 16 or 32 inches long each, depending on the planned width of your nook. It’s better to cut them a bit long and trim some off than to cut too short! Install the bottom one at a slight angle, downward toward the tub, so any water will run back into the shower rather than accumulating. This can be done by adding a shim along the back edge for the 2-by-4 to sit on. Even a grade slope of 1/16 of an inch can be sufficient.
  5. Put in a back wall and side walls. Your best bet to avoid future leaks and the bigger problems that accompany them is to use backer board as the shell for the nook. Cut a piece that will fit as the back wall, then cut pieces of backer board for the two sides and the top and bottom of the niche. The backer board, usually made with cement, generally is secured to the framing with thinset adhesive and screws or nails. Make sure everything’s level and that your bottom shelf is angled slightly downward toward you so water will run back into the shower.
  6. Tape the seams. Use tile backer tape or fiberglass mesh tape to tape the backer board seams, and then apply quick-drying thinset to seal the seams and crevices. Waterproof the seams with a waterproofing liquid and then coat the whole niche with two coats of a waterproof applicant.
  7. Tile the niche. Using bullnose around the edges and regular tile inside, apply tile to backer board within the niche, using thinset. Tape will hold the tile in place temporarily as things set. Apply grout between the tiles, and use caulk along the seams at corners and along the bottom as needed.
Once you’ve completed your niche, you may find yourself inspired with other ideas for the bathroom, whether that means putting in a new door or rethinking the vanity. Any time you’re tackling a shower remodel, you want the best products at the best prices — which is exactly why you want to visit From shower door enclosures to fixtures and faucets, we offer bathroom products at factory-direct prices that can save you up to 70 percent off retail costs. We have several showrooms for Southern California customers to view products such as shower enclosures in person, but we also provide free shipping to the 48 contiguous states for our customers who are farther away. Ready to learn more? Come check us out at today, and find the right sinks, faucets, shower enclosures and other products for your next remodeling project!

All About Freestanding Tubs

It’s hard to beat the luxurious feeling of coming home from a long day of work to a relaxing soak in a tub. When you’re remodeling, the tough question is whether to go with a freestanding bathtub to enhance that feeling. Beautiful, eye-catching and conveying a sense of luxury, freestanding bathtubs have a lot to offer. That’s not to say, however, that they’re always the best choice. Are you updating a bathroom and trying to shop for bathtubs, wondering which one to pick? Is selecting the right bathtub upgrade proving to be tricky? If so, here’s some information that’s geared toward helping you reach your decision. When you’re thinking about adding a new bathtub, consider these pros and cons of freestanding models.

The Benefits of a Freestanding Bathtub

Designed to stand alone rather than being tucked into a corner of the bathroom, freestanding bathtubs come in a variety of styles. From the classic claw-footed model that hints at yesteryear to the smooth, sculpted varieties popular in modern style, each freestanding tub is special. Here are some of the specific benefits that come from using them in bathrooms:
  • Luxury appeal. Step into a bathroom with a freestanding tub, and you just can’t miss its beauty. Because freestanding tubs have to be placed in bathrooms with enough room to accommodate them, they are signature elements of large, luxurious baths. They are beautiful, make a strong statement and enhance the bathing experience.
  • Available in various styles. Freestanding tubs come in various styles, from modern egg shapes to vintage claw-footed designs. Because they’re not limited by the constraints of walls along the sides, they can create a stronger and more powerful design statement than built-in models.
  • Easy to install. Another benefit of a freestanding tub is the ease with which it can be installed.

The Downsides of a Freestanding Bathtub

Despite their many advantages, freestanding tubs aren’t always the best choice for a bathroom renovation. They come with a few downsides worth considering, too:
  • Price. Freestanding tubs tend to be more expensive than built-ins, partly because they have more design intricacies, and also because they are more complicated to manufacture.
  • Larger space requirements. In contrast to a built-in tub, a freestanding tub usually requires open space on all four sides. (Otherwise, what’s the point?) Thus it takes up more space in a room that typically has precious little square footage.
  • Less efficiency. Freestanding tubs also make it more challenging to store toiletries or bath items that have to be kept on hand.
  • Weight. Freestanding tubs are usually heavier than built-ins, which means they can require the expense and effort of reinforcing floors.

How to Decide

Ultimately, the decision between a freestanding or built-in tub is a personal one. What works perfectly in one space may not be ideal in another. To reach the best decision, ask yourself a few questions:
  • How much space do you have? Because a freestanding tub requires significant space, it only makes sense in a room that has it. Could your bathroom accommodate a tub that stands on its own? Or would it make the room feel cramped? Unless you have the space or can remodel the room to create it, a freestanding tub won’t work.
  • How much can you spend? As stated above, freestanding tubs tend to cost more than built-in models, even though they’re easier to install. Can your budget accommodate the expense? If not, stick to what will fit.
  • What do you like? Assuming you have the space and finances to cover a freestanding tub, your choice is all about preference. Do you like freestanding tubs more than built-in models? Are you craving the luxury they provide? If so, start shopping options to see what you like best.
When you’re ready to shop bathtub models for your new bath, head over to, the web’s leading resource for great deals on bathroom fixtures. We offer factory-direct discounts that save you up to 70 percent on tubs, as well as free shipping to the 48 contiguous United States. Or, if you’re in Southern California, visit one of our showrooms to explore products in person!