We’ve found 10 ways to upgrade your bathroom for less than £50.
After months of spending a lot more time at home than anyone expected, people are looking at what work they can do.
But getting a new bathroom installed can set you back thousands – with even a plumber’s visit costing hundreds, and that’s before we get to the cost of new fittings and decorations.
The good news is that with a bit of ingenuity, and some clever purchases, you can upgrade the look and feel yourself for far less.
So we got hold of design expert George Holland from Victorian Plumbing to find out his tricks to revamp your bathroom for less than £50.
This is what he told us:
1. Revamp Your Storage
Storage can often be a bit of an afterthought for many. But making changes to storage is a quick and effective way to improve a bathroom. Adding ladder shelves, or open shelves in general, is a great way to make a room feel new. Open shelving will make the bathroom feel less boxy and more spacious too.
Pro Tip – open storage can become a feature in its own right. Add ornaments and candles alongside your soaps and towels.
2. Don’t forget your ceiling
Painting your bathroom ceiling non-white is great way to make your private space feel personal and unique.
The biggest expense is the paint itself, though you’ll need a step-ladder too. Make sure to protect the floor with an old sheet. Use a brush to paint a covering first and make sure to cut in the edges, and finish with two coats with a roller.
Pro Tip – painting any ceiling can be dangerous. Clear the bathroom, make sure your ladder is steady and move it where you need to paint. Never stretch from the ladder!
3. Swap your shower curtain
It’s surprising how many people treat shower curtains as an afterthought – it’s a huge part of the room! Getting rid of mouldy, old or tatty shower curtains and replacing them with something fresh and new is a quick, cheap way to spruce your space.
A bold shower curtain is a great way to make a statement, new shower curtains can be found online for under £20.
Pro Tip – shower curtains are so cheap that they allow designers to go wild with little to no consequences. Pick something out there – if you don’t like it you can easily change it in future.
4. Fake your floor
Instead of splashing out on expensive stone tiles or wooden flooring, use vinyl instead. This gives you the same kind of aesthetic for a fraction of the price, creating an at-a-glance high-cost look for next to nothing.
Big vinyl tiles can be found online for under £10 a square metre – so depending on the size of your space, this is a fantastic way to cheat the room into feeling more expensive than it is!
Pro Tip – installing flooring around doors is complex. So simplify this issue by starting on the wall with the most doorways. That way, the job will get easier as you work back.
5. Bring the outdoors in
Bathroom plants are an easy way to make a bathroom feel fresher. Plants add a rustic, natural quality to any space, and can go a long way to softening the harsh light and angles found in many bathrooms. You can get plenty of small plants for under £50. The more plants, the better!
Plants that thrive in humid, damp conditions – like bamboo and aloe vera – are a good place to start. Air plants – which take moisture from the air – are a no-brainer in bathrooms too.
Pro Tip – if your bathroom has low levels of light, you’ll need to find plants which do well in the dark. Think Chinese evergreens or Dracaena.
If it’s hard to make any major changes with your limited budget, then a quick and inexpensive solution is often to accessorise! Raid supermarkets for small, cheap additions you can pad out your space with.
So think soap dispensers, cute ornamental features, air fresheners, mini-makeup mirrors, toothbrush holders, candles and brushes. This is a great way to add quirky personality to your bathroom without spending a lot of money.
Pro Tip – raid the homeware section of big supermarket chains for cheap bathroom accessories.
7. Focus on one wall
Instead of trying to renovate the entire space, focus on improving one wall in such a way that it steals focus from the rest of the room.
You can do this simply and cheaply with wallpaper. This is a great solution for a quick revamp if you don’t want to paint the whole room or don’t have a lot of money to make big changes. You can cover one small wall for about £30.
Striking wallpaper – think dramatic florals – will create a focus point for the eye, taking attention away from the rest of the space.
Pro Tip – you can get special bathroom wallpaper – designed to be stickier and stronger – perfect if you’re concerned about damp and steam!
8. Paint your wooden floor
If your bathroom has a wooden floor, painting it is a really creative way to make the space feel brand new. Your biggest expense will be time as you wait for coats to dry!
Give your floorboards a quick sanding down and wash before you start painting. You’ll need to get specific wood paint for this job – it’s more durable and less slippery – and you’ll need two or three coats of it. Dark colours will make the bathroom feel cosy whilst light will make it feel bigger. Don’t be afraid to use two tones across opposing boards either!
Pro Tip – sanding back the top coat will give your space a more rustic feel.
9. Make a mini gallery
Bathrooms tend to have a lot of forgotten wallspace. So take advantage of this by creating a mini gallery! You can get pretty much all you need – picture frames and nails – from somewhere like Wilkinsons for very cheap. The more numerous the frames the better.
Pick a unified theme. Animals, plants, and flowers are all good, but find something that suits you. If you’re stuck for inspiration and want to save on spending, see if you’ve got any old interiors or fashion magazines lying about. Glossy adverts and photoshoots can look great framed in a gallery.
Pro Tip – Pinterest is your friend here. There are hundreds of gallery walls to serve as design inspiration.
10. Don’t replace – reseal!
Replacing sealant is a small solution that’ll make your bathroom feel brand new and get rid of any mould at a stroke. Plus, it’s cheap to do! All you’ll need is a cartridge gun with new sealant and a Stanley knife – all of which you can get for under £20.
Use a Stanley knife to remove the old sealant, slicing through the top and bottom edges at one end before gently pulling it from the wall. Fill your bath so that the gap between it and the tile are at their widest and use the cartridge gun in one consistent motion to reseal. Leave to dry overnight.
Pro Tip – if you want to get really creative, try using a coloured silicone other than white or grey.