bathroom trends - heated flooring

The 5 Hottest Bathroom Renovation Trends of 2021

The past year has allowed many people to make tons of home renovations since they were spending so much more time at home. For 2021, that trend isn’t slowing down, and many households are renovating their homes, especially their bathrooms. This is especially true because more and more people opt to work from home and are spending more time in the bathroom to wash their hands and escape from their desks.

Not many of us have the time to watch hours and hours of home renovation shows for ideas. Avoid making the mistake of renovating your bathroom in an outdated style or one that won’t last, and follow this list of the five hottest bathroom renovation trends of 2021.


Wood-Styled Tile and Heated Flooring

Imagine taking a nice, hot, relaxing shower or bath, and when it’s time to come out, you immediately tense right back up because you’ve touched the ice-cold floor. Cold floors are a bathroom curse any time of the year, and more people are adding “wood” tile floors and heated flooring to their bathrooms for maximum comfort.

Nowadays, people use ceramic, vinyl, and porcelain tiles that look like wood in their bathrooms. The benefits of using vinyl, porcelain, and ceramic are infinite, such as how easy it is to clean them and how they don’t trap dust or hair.

Adding heating to the floors, whether it’s the baseboard heating or underneath the tiles, is excellent because the tiles conduct the heat faster than wood or carpeting (who still has a carpeted bathroom?). With that said, if you still have a carpeted bathroom, it might be time for a renovation.

To make your home warm and eco-friendly, consider not only updating the floors in your bathroom but around your home using a solar heating pump to create heat for your floors and home.

Bathroom trends - natural light and floating vanity

Smart Plumbing and Bathrooms

Every day there’s a new type of gadget out to make our lives easier and more comfortable. Nowadays, those gadgets have made their way into our homes and bathrooms. The possibilities for a smart bathroom are endless, from smart sinks and toilets to tablets to control the bathroom atmosphere.


Smart Toilets

Toilets have come a long way since we started using indoor plumbing, even further now with smart toilets that have bidets that spray warm water and warm air to dry you off. They are an ideal addition to any bathroom renovation, especially during the pandemic with self-closing and opening lids and self-cleaning properties. You may never have to clean your toilet again!

Smart toilets also have a sleek design. Even if you don’t have to clean the bowl itself, you’ll still have to clean around the toilet, which, as many of us know, cleaning behind the toilet and dusting the piping can be a real pain. The sleek design of smart toilets makes it easier without wedging yourself to clean around the toilet.

An additional benefit to smart toilets runs along the same lines as adding heating to your tiling. Many smart toilets come with heated seats. No more sitting on an ice-cold toilet seat when you wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom.

Even if you can’t or don’t want to update your whole toilet, smart toilet seats are available with many of the same features a smart toilet would have, except the easy cleaning around the toilet.


Smart Showers

We have smart toilets and sinks. Why not showers? Smart showers are an excellent addition to any bathroom. Some key features of smart showers are:

  • Automatic start– no more waiting for the water to warm up.
  • Built-in Bluetooth speakers with a water-proof touch screen so you can set up your relaxing playlist for your evening shower.
  • Voice-activated controls for the lighting, temperature, and water flow.

Smart showers can come in all different aspects, whether it is a fully integrated feature throughout a smart home or simply just a smart showerhead. Smart showerheads are also great because they can control the amount of water flowing through the showerhead, so it’s more eco-friendly. Additionally, you can time your showers to reduce the amount of water used.

If you already have a smart device in your home, such as an Alexa, there are already some smart showers that will work with Alexa, so you don’t even have to open your phone to start your shower.


Smart Sinks

Sinks have changed plenty over the past few decades. Most public restrooms have hand-sensor soap dispensers and faucets (that you usually battle with, wondering if they really do see you). Smart sinks are even smarter than those in public restrooms and are available to make your home easier, sleeker, and updated.

While smart sinks and faucets for the bathroom aren’t as advanced as smart toilets and showers, the motion sensors allow you to wash your hands without having to touch any surfaces that you touched with your dirty hands after scrubbing. Touchless faucets have become essential for health and safety during this pandemic.

Smart faucets for the kitchen, such as U by Moen, are paired with Alexa and Google assistant. You can control the temperature and amount of water that comes out with just your voice. Possibly this year or by next year, we will have something similar for the bathroom.

bathroom trends - floating vanity

Floating Vanities and Integrated Lighting

There’s never enough space to put all of your toiletries and towels. Floating vanities and integrated lighting have become all the rage due to their space-saving techniques and infinite storage options. They also give your bathroom a clean and sleek look, holding back much of the clutter that naturally builds up in a bathroom.

Floating vanities can come in any possible design and combination of sink, faucet, and countertop that you can imagine. They can also have electrical outlets easily built into them to plug in a hairdryer or beard trimmer. An additional plus side to a floating vanity is that you can easily clean your bathroom floors and not have to worry about anything getting stuck.

Integrated lighting is another sexy and sleek way people are renovating their bathrooms, and even if they don’t update their plumbing or their walls, people are adding integrated lighting behind their mirrors and medicine cabinets and on the edges of their vanities.

Having light behind the mirror and on the edge of the vanity prevents glare and uneven lighting when you’re looking in the mirror. While you’re adding integrated lighting to your mirrors, you might want to add in an automatic mirror defogger.

bathroom trends 2021-plants

Bringing the Outdoors in

With so many of us craving to be outside with nature and the pandemic keeping us cooped up inside, many people opt to bring the outdoors inside to their bathrooms. There’s something about being outside that is relaxing, and more people are going to their bathrooms to feel relaxed. There are several ways you can bring the outdoors to your bathroom.

Almost any popular, minimalistic color scheme you choose for your bathroom will work beautifully with bringing in the outdoors. Pick colors that will match natural plants or allow the plants to be that accent color.


Adding Plants

Adding a few plants to your bathroom can add a relaxing effect to your bathroom experience. It is a great way to bring the outdoors in. Studies have also shown that since plants produce oxygen, the oxygen levels will make you feel more relaxed. This is also a wonderful option if you don’t get a lot of natural light into your bathroom.

You can place your plants in many different places around your bathroom. Recently popular are draping over shower doors and showerheads. Opt for plants that do well with high humidity and, if you don’t have much natural light in your bathroom, plants that can survive with little light.  Some popular, excellent plants to add to your bathroom are:

  • Spider plants
  • Aloe Vera (especially if you burn yourself while styling your hair!)
  • Boston fern
  • Pothos
  • Snake plant
  • Bromeliad

Adding plants to your bathroom is also a way to be eco-friendly. You’re decreasing carbon emissions, and you can also use the leftover gray water from your shower to water your plants.


Windows and Natural Light

If your bathroom is on the edge of the house, add new windows or bigger windows to bring in the natural light! Natural lighting is sexy and comforting. It also brings warmth into your bathroom, and the feeling of being outside while soaking in a nice hot tub is pure ecstasy.

If you live in a dense neighborhood, you can still get away with this, so your neighbors aren’t peeping in on you. Go for translucent glass windows, so the light comes through, but shapes don’t. You also won’t have to worry about gazing at what your neighbors are doing while you’re trying to relax.


Getting the Forest Feeling

If you’ve already chosen minimalistic colors, decided on your light source and plants, you can bring the outdoors in even further. As mentioned earlier, tiled floors that look like wood are hot right now. Wood furniture is also an amazing way to bring the outdoors into your bathroom, whether you only want it to be an accent piece or most of your furniture.

home spa - bathroom trends

Big Tubs and Open Showers

Taking a bath or a shower can be one of the most relaxing things, but no one wants to get stuck in a small shower stall or a cramped tub. The bathroom has easily become a sanctuary for many people working from home during the pandemic, so why not make it look like one?

Many people who are renovating their bathrooms choose to have big, comfortable tubs and open showers with benches inside to truly relax while getting clean. Some people are even opting to add their bathtub to their open shower. Separate tubs and showers, along with flat-bottomed tubs, are more popular than a bathtub-shower combination.

Not only are big tubs in style, but tubs outside of just plain white are also hot this year. The most popular color for tubs is black, while other accent colors are right behind black to make your bathroom stand out but still feel relaxing.


Color Schemes

With all of these hot bathroom renovation trends, it may be difficult to pick out color schemes for your bathroom. All aspects of the bathroom need to be considered when choosing your colors, such as the plumbing fixtures, tiles, and hue of the lighting.

Some of the hottest color schemes for bathroom renovations for 2021 are

  • Bold colors like emerald green and navy blue.
  • White walls with black outlines and a bold or bright accent color.
  • Natural, earthy tones ranging from rust to charcoal.
  • A fun patterned wallpaper.

This past year, companies have developed better paints to use in the home that are more durable, stain-resistant, and antifungal to prevent mold growth. Even if you’re not completely renovating your bathroom, you should definitely look into antifungal paint to have your bathroom paint last longer.

Empty bathroom of luxury house

Before Your Renovation

Once you’ve selected a style and color scheme for your bathroom renovation, decide how you want to go about doing your renovation. Will you do it yourself, or will you hire a contractor? Some things to consider when renovating your bathroom are:

  • Bathroom size
  • Pipe placement in the walls and floors
  • The age of your home
  • Shopping for materials and fixtures
  • Medical equipment
  • Finances


Bathroom Size and Pipe Placement

Before committing to any type of renovation, you need to know the amount of space you have to work with. You also need to be familiar with the space you have. Get measurements of the room and understand where the piping is before falling in love with a shower or bathtub.

If there are any bathroom windows, consider if you will keep, change, or remove them. The window placement can affect where the toilet, sink, and shower go. The windows will also affect how much light gets into the bathroom. You can go for more translucent windows to maintain privacy if you don’t want to put curtains in your shower.

You will also have to look at the blueprints to know where the pipes are running if you’re thinking about changing where some of your fixtures are. Unless you know what you’re doing, consider hiring a contractor and a plumber to reroute any pipes if you’re moving bathroom fixtures around.


The Age of Your Home

Even though many homeowners and house-flippers are renovating bathrooms that probably have been renovated in the past decade, some are giving their homes a much-needed makeover, inside and out.

Remember, any homes built before the 1980s in the US will have asbestos in the floor, walls, and pipes. Asbestos was used for insulation before polyurethane foam. If you improperly remove asbestos, you can put yourself at risk for a specific form of lung cancer, known as mesothelioma. Here is a thorough list of where you can find asbestos in your home.

Unexposed asbestos poses absolutely no risk to you or your family. Consider hiring a contractor if you have an older home or think you may have asbestos in your home. If you’ve already done renovations in your home, you should know if and where there is asbestos.

Older homes may also have piping that may need to be replaced. If you’re doing a full renovation, including the walls, definitely hire a plumber to examine your piping and let you know if it needs to be replaced. It would be awful to do such a beautiful renovation to your bathroom to have to destroy part of it to replace old, damaged piping.


Shopping for Materials and Fixtures

Going shopping is a fun activity for many people and an absolute dread for others. Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, many contracting companies and stores have allowed online or in-home shopping where they send a store representative to your home with samples to safely shop and design from your home. Many stores have been reopening for shopping as well.

Before going shopping, research the plumbing fixture brands that you want if you’re replacing any of them. Learn about their warranties, installation, and the cleaning products to use for them. After all, you’d want all your hard work and money to last a while.


Medical Equipment

Are you renovating your bathroom in your forever home? Are you taking care of an older family member? When renovating your bathroom, consider any possible medical equipment that might be needed now or in the future. Some things to consider spacing for are:

  • Grab bars in the shower or tub
  • A bench or a shower chair
  • Non-slip tiles or mats in the shower
  • Commode or safety frames


Once you’ve imagined your dream bathroom renovation, you must consider how you are going to fund this investment. You may have saved up for this or plan to take out a loan. Many contractors and stores also offer low-interest payment plans for the materials and work done on your home. Some will require a deposit before any work is started.



Last year thousands of households learned to adapt to being in their home and trying to find a sanctuary within their home. For many people, it was the bathroom. Following this guide for the hottest bathroom renovation trends for 2021 will not only give your bathroom a new place for you to escape to, but you’ll also be increasing the value of your home.

Element Home Remodeling is a Bay Area remodeling company specializing in designing and building beautiful bathrooms to suite any size and style. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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