So, you’ve just brought home a gorgeous new mirror for your bathroom — and you’re excited to put it up and admire the effect it has on the space. But wait! There’s one question that is often overlooked, at least until it comes time to hang the mirror. How high should you hang the mirror? The answer depends on a variety of factors, which we’ll explore below.
Deciding How High to Hang a Mirror Above the Vanity
Your height is perhaps the most important factor to consider when determining how high to hang a bathroom mirror. The mirror above all else needs to be functional. That means that when you’re standing in front of it, your face should be in full view, near the center of the mirror. If you’re particularly tall or short, the mirror shouldn’t cut off the top of your head or your chin. Aim to place the center of the mirror around average eye level for the people who will be using it. In a kid’s bathroom, for example, you may need to hang the mirror lower than in a bathroom that adults use.
Account for Your Vanity Height
This is another important consideration. Unless you’re installing a full wall mirror that spans from the top of the vanity to the ceiling, it’s best to place the mirror above the vanity’s highest point — usually about five to 10 inches above the top of the faucet. This not only helps the mirror look properly placed, but it also helps prevent splashes that you’ll have to wipe off later.
Don’t Forget Light Fixtures
If you have wall-mounted light fixtures above the mirror (or ceiling mounted close to the mirror), then you may have to disregard the height of the faucet. Instead, center the mirror between the top of the vanity and the light fixtures.
Shape and Size Matter
Rectangular and square mirrors should be centered vertically above the faucet, but each shape may have a different horizontal center. Whichever way you choose to hang them — portrait, landscape or square — try to make sure that you have the same amount of space above the mirror as below. For round mirrors, you’ll need to center them the same way horizontally so that they look nice between the vanity and light fixtures or ceiling. However, when you center them vertically, make sure that the lowest part of the curve is centered on the faucet.
Think About Wall Space — and Wall Design
Naturally, you’ll need to measure how much wall space you have when you’re shopping for mirrors. Make sure to account for whether you need one mirror or two in case you want to hang a matched pair over a double sink. While you’re taking these measurements, also think about wall design. For example, if your bathroom features bold, colorful wallpaper, then you might want smaller mirrors so that you can show off more of the pattern. On solid-colored walls, feel free to go for a larger mirror, since you won’t be missing out on patterns.
Consider the Size of Your Vanity
The size of your mirror should reflect the size of your vanity — to a degree. For instance, if you have a small pedestal sink, it’ll likely look dwarfed by a huge mirror hanging above it. Something smaller will be the better choice. If you have long, sweeping counters? Small mirrors might look odd, as if they’ve been carelessly placed. Choose something larger to balance out a bigger vanity. Now that you know how high to hang a bathroom mirror — and how to choose one that will work perfectly in your bathroom — it’s time to start shopping for mirrors to complement the look you want. Be sure to check out Modern Bathroom for a wide selection of great styles.