feb-1

 

What does luxury mean to you?

Are you a romantic who dreams of a large space featuring a deep, marble bathtub, lush window coverings, and a gas fireplace?

Maybe you identify more with modern minimalism. You prefer a well-designed space – large or small, it doesn’t really matter – featuring unadorned, clean lines, solid colors, and no more furniture than necessary.

I think I sit somewhere in between. My dream bathroom would be as large as a good-sized bedroom. It would feature a bath-steam room equipped with a steam shower that’s decked out with all the accessories – aromatherapy dispensers, chromatherapy lights, wireless connectivity, radio hookup. I’d want a towel warmer, comfy seating, and floor heating.

What’s in your dream bathroom?

How’s this for the ultimate in warmth? Deep, earthy colors accented by a dramatic gas fireplace.

Photo: qualitybath.com

Photo: qualitybath.com

This one’s just plain fun. Would you deck out your bathroom in your favorite holiday paradise?

Photo: Adam Pierson/homedesignlover.com

Photo: Adam Pierson/homedesignlover.com

Here’s one for all you lovers of modern design. Clean lines, functional, yet beautiful says it all.

Photo: homeepiphany.com

Photo: homeepiphany.com

Let us know which you like best.

mon-30

 

Have you ever wondered why one of the most used rooms in your home is also the smallest?

From a plumbing point of view, the bathroom makes complete sense. Just put all water-using fixtures together in one small room. It seems like a good idea. But it never really has been.

Bathrooms become very difficult to keep clean and sanitized, thanks to an almost constant build-up of steam, dust, soap stains, and potentially contaminated water droplets that fly up from the toilet every time it’s flushed. Yikes! Suddenly, the bathroom isn’t so comfy, cozy anymore.

Wouldn’t it be great to redesign that bathroom space so that it can promote good health. Check out these 6 ideas, and let us know some of your own.

  1. Stop using chemical cleaners. Yes, it’s true. Sometimes that soap scum has built up so much that the only product that will make it disappear is a heavy-duty, chemical-laden cleaner. Use it, if you must. But, for a daily (or even weekly) cleaning, opt for natural cleaners based on citrus and baking soda. They will do a great cleaning job. They won’t potentially damage the surfaces you’re cleaning, and you’ll feel great for it, too.
  2. Dismantle and thoroughly clean the ceiling fan. Hopefully, yours doesn’t vent into the attic. Regardless, the ceiling fan can collect dust, mold, and lots of other unpleasantness. The cleaner the fan is, the better it can clean your air. Opening the windows will also help clear the air of pollution build-up.
  3. Installing showers and bathtubs with non-slip floors and handle grips will help reduce the possibility of slipping and falling. The bathroom is one of the most dangerous areas in our homes.
  4. Repair any broken tiles, cracked grout, or missing caulking. Moisture can seep into any of those spaces, and mold can grow very quickly.
  5. Toss out your toxic shower curtain. Uh huh. This is one that surprised me. Vinyl shower curtains repel water. Unfortunately, they might also release phthalates, which have been shown to be hazardous to health (particularly to reproductive health).
  6. Learn how to steam a room with a steam generator or a steam shower. These units do an amazing job at restricting steam to a specific and enclosed area so it can’t do any longterm damage to walls, ceilings, or other delicate surfaces.

Beyond completely gutting and re-designing your bathroom, these 6 tips should set you on the path toward a healthier bathroom environment.

thurs-26

 

Bathrooms are one of the most wasteful rooms in our homes … if not, the most wasteful. Just think: every time the toilet flushes, that’s clean water refilling the tank and going down the drain again; showers are notorious for using up a lot of extra water that also just goes down the drain. The bathtub, as luxurious a feature as it is, is also guilty of wasting an excess of water.

So, what is someone who’d really like to be more environmentally responsible do? Actually, the answer really isn’t that complicated.

  • Buy a sealed shower unit, a steam shower in other words. These units can be pricey depending on the size and accessories you choose to buy. But, they do save water. A steam generator only needs a bit of water to fill up, and only a little electricity to heat to the right temperature. You can use your steam shower as a regular shower, too. This dual function eliminates the need for a bathtub entirely.
  • Some home hardware stores sell a pipe system that sends sink water to the toilet tank, thereby saving on the amount of water that goes down the drain.
  • Purchase a low-flow shower head and toilet. These use considerably less water than standard ones.

What other environmentally-friendly ideas have you added (or would like to add) to your bathroom design? Check out some of our other ideas, too!