10 Pieces of Decor Every Bathroom Needs

Ensure your bathroom makes a good first impression.

Related To:

No matter what size or style bathroom you have, there are a few decor essentials that every bathroom needs to make a good first impression. Here are our 10 bathroom styling go-tos.

1: Artwork

Classic and Modern Small Bathroom

Classic and Modern Small Bathroom

Brian Patrick Flynn

Brian Patrick Flynn

If you don’t currently have any art in your bathroom, this is usually an easy one to start with. You can really bring some personality and color into your space by adding a pretty piece of artwork or two. Depending on how much wall space you have, you can even try bringing in a bunch of pieces and doing a gallery wall. Just make sure any artwork you hang in your bathroom is properly framed under glass so that the steam from your shower won’t mess it up.

2: Greenery

Bathroom Vanity with Accessories

Bathroom Vanity with Accessories

Brian Patrick Flynn

Brian Patrick Flynn

A plant is another easy must-have decor piece for your bathroom. If you happen to have a windowsill in your shower, that’s always a great spot for a plant. And even if you don’t have enough counter space to add a plant, consider putting a small succulent on a shelf or on top of your toilet. (You could even add a hanging plant in an open corner.)

3: Candles

Aromatherapy Display in Spa Bathroom

Aromatherapy Display in Spa Bathroom

Displayed on white quartz countertops, aromatherapy soaps and candles add to the spa-like atmosphere in the master bathroom of HGTV Smart Home 2014.

Photo by: Jason Kisner ©2014, Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved

Jason Kisner, 2014, Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved

A candle is a great way to keep things smelling fresh and clean in your bathroom. They’re also a lovely touch to add around a bathtub. When you find one you love that’s in a pretty glass container, you know you have a great candidate for your bathroom decor. I always like to keep three or four of my favorite candles on hand so I know I’ll never run out. And don’t forget to make sure you have some matches nearby for guests!

4: Hand Soap Dispenser

Black and White Country Bathroom

Black and White Country Bathroom

Kelly and Co. Design

Photo by: Jane Beiles

Jane Beiles

Kelly and Co. Design

Sometimes hand soap comes in not-so-pretty bottles. Purchase a nice dispenser and transfer your liquid hand soap inside. Make sure that whatever you have sitting on your sink looks snazzy enough that you’ll be proud to show it off to your guests.

5: Basket for TP + Extra Towels

Slipper Tub Surrounded by Marble in an Elegant, Traditional Bathroom

Slipper Tub Surrounded by Marble in an Elegant, Traditional Bathroom

This gorgeous traditional bathroom turns a dormer window into a striking architectural detail by covering the barrel walls in Calacatta marble tile. A slipper tub nestled in the nook is a sunny spot to enjoy a long soak.

Photo by: Mark Williams

Mark Williams

There’s nothing worse than being in a guest bathroom and not knowing where the extra towels or toilet paper are. I always like to make sure that extras of everything are easily available in a pretty basket or container. But don’t be afraid to get creative with these! I use a big glass vase to store extra rolls of toilet paper and a large planter bust with an open head to store extra towels. (Isn't she pretty?)

6: Storage Containers

Relaxing Master Bathroom With Storage

Relaxing Master Bathroom With Storage

With smart technology, a relaxing color scheme and exceptional storage options, the HGTV Smart Home 2015 master bathroom is quite possibly the best room in the house.

Photo by: Eric Perry

Eric Perry

Another way to add a bit of design style to your bathroom is by taking some of your essentials and putting them into pretty storage containers. Cotton balls and cotton swabs look great in glass containers, makeup can be stored in acrylic boxes and hand soaps can be stored in jars. You could even use unusual items like cake stands to hold everything.

7: Fab Hand Towels

Small White Tile Bathroom

Small White Tile Bathroom

Brian Patrick Flynn

Brian Patrick Flynn

This is another super easy way to amp up the style game in your bathroom: add some colorful hand towels. If you’re not a big fan of color, choose some fun, patterned towels. Try to add something to your space with a bit of texture and interest. And don’t forget to get three or four extras when you find something you love.

8: Laundry Solution

Pocket Door Into Small Yet Bright Bathroom

Pocket Door Into Small Yet Bright Bathroom

Paige Morse

Photo by: codyulrich.com


Paige Morse

Speaking of laundry, it’s a good idea to have an attractive solution in your bathroom to deal with the inevitable piles of laundry. Beautiful baskets are always a great option, and they work with so many different design styles. I like baskets with covers so you’re always able to keep your "dirty laundry" under wraps.

9: Tray

Sleek Bathroom With Smart Storage

Sleek Bathroom With Smart Storage

This sleek sink still offers a spot for toiletries and tissue, while a mirrored medicine cabinet stores all other bathroom necessities.

Photo by: Laura Bohn

Laura Bohn

A tray is a great piece to add to your bathroom to help things feel a bit more pulled together. They come in various sizes, styles and shapes, so you can really make them work no matter how big or small your space is. You can collect things such as candles, toothbrushes, soap or other necessities inside. A small arrangement of flowers is another nice addition for a chic tray.

10: Quirky Item

Modern Master Bathroom with Floral Floor Pattern

Modern Master Bathroom with Floral Floor Pattern

This master bathroom has a high window allowing light and privacy and a contrast of modern cabinetry with classic subway and decorative concrete tile. A floral floor pattern brings life into the all white modern design.

Photo by: Hugh Jefferson Randolph Architects

Hugh Jefferson Randolph Architects

I always like to add one or two small quirky items to mix things up. This small "men's" room sign is a fun accessory that doesn’t take away from the overall design of the space. Other ideas include an old postcard, vintage magazines or an old bathroom key (like the ones we had in elementary school).

More Quick Design Ideas for Your Bathroom

See All Photos

Bold + Bright = Beautiful

Small bathroom color palettes don't have be limited to whites and grays. In a small space, you can use bright, bold colors and patterns that might be overwhelming in a larger room. This small bathroom from Dabito of Old Brand New is bursting with rich colors, quirky patterns and geometric shapes.

Photo By: Dabito, Old Brand New

Go Small or Go Home

Small bathrooms unfortunately call for smaller fixtures. Instead of overwhelming your bathroom with a large sink and bulky vanity, choose a smaller, vintage-inspired sink. This piece serves its purpose while allowing extra room underneath to stow two small step stools.

Choose a Petite Tub

Yes, you can make a tub work in a small bathroom! This otherwise cramped enclosure is the perfect spot for a small soaking tub. From bright, tribal pattern flooring to towel hooks that double as fun art, this is a great example of a small bathroom that gets everything right.

From: Prairie

Create an Oasis

Your bathroom should feel simultaneously invigorating and relaxing. Designer Justina Blakeney's jungalow bathroom is inspired by the baths she experienced on her travels to Turkey and Morocco. The blue color choice came from a family trip to Lake Tahoe.

Photo By: Dabito

Break the Rules

"Powder rooms are usually where I really go all out, break all the rules and use materials that might look 'over the top' in larger spaces," says interior designer Melissa Miranda. In tiny powder rooms like this one, small, medium and large wallpaper patterns work well. In larger powder rooms and bathrooms, wall coverings featuring small patterns can look cluttered.

Photo By: Rustic White Photography

Try an Accent Wall

Even petite bathrooms can benefit from an accent wall such as this forest green wall featuring a vintage map. Instead of making this small bathroom seem smaller, the accent wall adds much-needed color to an otherwise neutral space.

Photo By: Mandi Gubler, vintagerevivals.com

Pick a Patterned Floor

Patterns look great in small bathrooms. Try a quirky patterned floor and see how the small square footage actually works in your favor. For another decor trick that adds interest to your bathroom without taking up space, try brass or gold fixtures instead of more common chrome.

Welcome to the Jungle

A small space, like this powder room, can be a fun place to try out bold colors or patterns. Here, green leafy wallpaper gives the space jungle fever and is imaginatively contrasted by the reds and yellows of the rug.

Light + Airy

Lighten up a small space with white trim, white patterned wallpaper, white shower tile and a sweet, traditional vanity.

Floor-to-Ceiling Tile

Up the style ante and make your small bath look larger by installing a panorama of chic, colorful wall tile.

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Show Your Stripes

While vertical stripes might make you look thinner, they can make your bathroom look bigger (and more dramatic!) Copy this nautical-inspired space from HGTV Dream Home 2018.

Photo By: Robert Peterson, Rustic White Photography

Or, Think Horizontal

Adding long, uninterrupted horizontal planks to a small bathroom is also a great way to make it seem larger than it actually is. In this small bathroom, the shiplap walls maximize horizontal space and keep the room from feeling closed in.

Go Big

An advantage of small bathrooms? Smaller prices. "Since the space is usually so small, you can get away with using higher priced materials as you need so little of them," says interior designer Melissa Miranda. Sparkling damask wallpaper creates a stunning setting for a pair of contemporary pendant lights and golden sunburst mirror in this ultra-glam bathroom.

Kick Up the Color

Sometimes bold color is all you need to make a big statement. Although this space is small, the bold salmon-pink walls give it fresh personality. A simple white vanity and sleek fixtures balance the vibrant color.

Keep Clutter Controlled

While you'd never want clothes lying all over the floor even in a palatial bathroom, it's especially important to keep things neat and tidy in a small bathroom like this one from the HGTV Dream Home 2017. The rolling wire laundry basket shown here is a great design choice that blends function and style.

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Bring On the Charm

A repurposed wooden ladder adds instant charm above the toilet in this farmhouse-inspired bathroom, offering a place to hang a hand towel and a basket to store extra towels and any other bathroom necessities.

See More of This Bathroom's Remodel

Go for Glass

Walk-in showers are far from your only option for high-style bathing. This bathroom features a subway-tiled tub married with a barely-there glass enclosure. The use of glass keeps the full expanse of the room visible for a spacious feel.

Photo By: Tessa Neudstadt

Float It

The vanity is often the largest piece of furniture in a bathroom and therefore has a big effect on how spacious the room feels. In this small WC designed by Marian Parsons, a floating vanity takes up less physical space without compromising style.

Take a Trip to the Country

A yellow, footed tub framed by yellow, floral curtains create a cozy, French country-inspired bath. A wood cabinet, antique door with glass handle and a blue, distressed footstool complete the aesthetic. Design by Sarah Richardson.

Make Shelving Matter

Small bathrooms can't afford to be cluttered. If your bathroom doesn't have space for large amounts of storage, the storage you do have should pull double duty as an accent piece like these sleek natural wood shelves with well-placed essentials and decor pieces.

Lose the Rug

Besides a bath mat, small bathrooms don't necessarily need rugs. Take a tip from this bathroom that's not much bigger than a corner and decorate your floor with a cheeky tile design instead. The message adds spunk without taking up space.

From: Kim Lewis

Photo By: Molly Winters Photography

Skirt the Issue

Careful attention to design ensured that this already-small bathroom would not feel closed in. Wine boxes add beautiful, warm color and create easy storage. A skirt for the sink provides extra storage underneath, and the pages of an old book are taped to the wall for inexpensive and effective decoration.

Add Spa-Style Extras

Luxury can be found even in a small space. This bathroom has just a standard-sized tub, but the black tile, glass shower and brass accessories turn it into a retreat.

Photo By: Regan Baker Design Inc.

DIY Your Way to a Fresh Look

No matter how small your bath, gutting and replacing fixtures is an expensive undertaking. Save money by updating what you can yourself. For example, give a builder-basic vanity a trendy cottage-style update by stripping the paint or stain down to the natural wood, then adding a coat of whitewash.

Install a Large Mirror

It's a well-known design truth that mirrors can create the illusion of more space. The floor-to-ceiling mirror shown here is a perfect example of this tactic. The floating marble vanity and soft, clean color scheme further complete the posh, airy look of this bathroom.

Go Quirky

Quirky, colorful book cover wallpaper makes a major statement in this small bathroom. Simple decor, like thin brass wall sconces, a retro mirror and white marble vanity, balance the bold paperback pattern.

Coordinate Fixtures

From the mesmerizing floor tile to the slanted ceiling, this bathroom is nothing but first-rate design inspiration. One of designer Emily Henderson's tactics for decorating this small bathroom (photographed by Tessa Neustadt) was to match metals, from towel bars to faucets, for a more cohesive appearance.

Photo By: Tessa Neustadt, Design by Emily Henderson

Light It Up

The right lighting choices in a small bathroom can maximize the space and provide the adequate light you need for your daily bathroom routine. This bathroom combines recessed lighting with a retro fixture for task lighting over the vanity.

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Getty Images

Add Style Underfoot

The lack of square footage is a good thing when it comes to purchasing new flooring. Even a pricey pick, like this black, gray and white marble hexagonal tile, won't set your budget back too much.  

Look Up

Try a bold, dark ceiling color in your small bathroom, such as the black ceiling in this room from Sarah Gibson, designer and blogger at Room for Tuesday. The dramatic shade also helps expand the height of this small bathroom by drawing the eye upwards.

Photo By: Sarah Gibson, Room for Tuesday

Show Off Your Shower

Fish scale tile is a hot bathroom trend and using it on a small shower accent wall is a great way to elevate your bathroom in a very subtle way. Bonus: Having less wall space to cover also means you'll spend less on this crave-able tile. Finish off the shower with a sleek glass door to strut your shower's new style.

Photo By: Chipper Hatter

Try Open Shelving

Floating shelves provide storage space for style-boosting accesories and bath necessities while making the room appear bigger.

Eliminate Enclosures

Any kind of enclosure or barrier in a room can divide it up and make the space feel smaller. While that might be desirable in some spaces, it's not what you want in a small bathroom. In this ultra-modern bathroom, the shower has no enclosure at all, which lends a roomier feel.

Keep Reading

Next Up

6 Oversized Art Pieces That Prove Bigger Can Be Better

It turns out a single piece of high-impact art can be just as stylish as a perfectly curated gallery wall.

10 Outdoor-Inspired Accessories That Bring Nature Into Your Home

Because sometimes you just need a little greenery.

Eye Candy Alert: 10 Perfectly Styled Coffee Tables From Instagram

Stuck on how to to style your coffee table? Try on these ideas for inspiration.

10 Boho-Chic Beach Finds Under $50

Trade in the anchors for a laid-back bohemian look.

Forget a Kitchen Reno: Try These 10 Low-Cost Upgrades Instead

Your dream kitchen is right around the corner, and you don't have to spend the weekend wielding a sledgehammer!

10 Things Every Taco Lover Needs

Is every day Taco Tuesday for you? Then keep reading.

10 Easy, Last-Minute Holiday Decorating Ideas to Try Today

Attention, procrastinators: There's still time!

Meet the Team

Get to know the talented writers and editors of HGTV's show and design blog. 

Go Behind the Blog

From the Archives

Take a look back at our past posts, from entertaining and design trends to up-and-coming HGTV shows.  

Read All Our Past Posts