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  • Gina Everett

7 Tips to brightening a dark bathroom

Small, windowless bathrooms/WC's can sometimes be dark, boring and incredibly uninspiring, but they are in a good percentage of our homes. Fortunately, there are always things you can do to add some life and interest to these tiny rooms - even if they don’t have windows to add light!

Here are my seven top tips on things you can do or add to a tiny windowless bathroom that could help brighten it to feel more welcoming and pleasant to be in.

1. Add air or shade-loving plants

We all know plants in our spaces are fabulous, life-giving accessories, but it's often difficult to work out how you can make that look work in bathrooms. Air plants (Tillandsi) are a great option here as they don’t need a lot and can be moved around easily. They take the majority of what they need from the air - hence the name. You could also try a really hardy shade-loving plant-like Bamboo or cast-iron plant (Aspidistra elatior) to see if it can live in your bathroom.

2. Have plenty of candles and lamps

Relying on one terrible over-head ceiling light is the worst idea for small spaces. They can create horrible shadows which enhance the gloomy feel. If you’re short on space, consider mounting sconces or wall lights onto the wall to add functional light without taking up to much space, this balanced with a ceiling light create a lovely layering effect with is practical and pleasant. If there is room and it works for your space, a fun and unexpected hanging light can help make up for a lack of natural light and add a unique wow factor.

3. Consider your furniture

A stool or tiny chair and some unusual accessory or lighting — will banish boring and add lots of personality which is great for small spaces. Or for more simple rooms, white fittings will enhance the sense of light and space in the room.

Additionally, wall-mounted basins and/or toilets will leave the floor clear, creating the illusion of more floor space and helping create an overall brighter and fresher look. A similar effect is created using a glass shower enclosure if you have a shower - the more minimal the framing the better. Concealed, wall-mounted fittings, like the bath tap, also help towards the streamlined look. Basically, the less clutter, the less time your eye linger and so the larger / more spacious a room feels.

4. Paint (or tile) in all one light color

If you can, painting everything — the walls, the ceiling and the floor — in a single colour this will expand the feel of the room’s size by blurring its edges. Or if you want to do something more drastic, adding in a lot of glossy tile can add a reflective quality which can bounce more light around.

Personally, I like to go big and bold in my bathrooms or closet rooms. They are small and you don't spend a lot of time in them - so you can afford to go a little OTT! Really give it some personality with a vibrant wallpaper or funky tile.

5. Add extra mirrors and reflective surfaces

You might think the big one over your sink is enough, but if you’ve got the wall space for it, consider adding some more mirrors to help expand the space visually. It is a great way to spread light throughout the room, however, take care to avoid the infinity effect that results where mirrors are placed opposite one another. Reflective or mirrored accessories can also be a fun addition and help to the same effect.

6. Bring in so much colour and pattern you forget

You might be limited if you rent, but if you can get away with it, as I mentioned, it's a great place to go big and go bold! Wrap your small windowless bathroom with bold wallpaper or tiles so bold and fin that you forget all about not having any windows. Even when the pattern is dark or busy, it brightens a small space by adding in lots of excitement!

If you have trouble designing a small space to gain more light, a feeling of space and to be practical - please do get in touch.


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