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How to to upgrade your bathroom on a budget

Updated: Nov 27, 2020

1 of 24Color-Coordinated Accessories A like-new bathroom doesn’t require a major remodel. Pick a favorite color scheme, then carry it throughout your bathroom with linens, storage containers, and small accessories. Here, soft blue towels stand out against clean white fixtures and brushed chrome finishes.

2 of 24Flower Power Breathe new life into a powder room with bold floral wallpaper. This is a great way to create an upscale look at an affordable price tag. Add gold accessories for a refined and polished look.

3 of 24Vanity Upgrade Replacing the vanity instantly changes the look of a bathroom. Shop online and at in-store retailers for vanity combos that come with a countertop and sink already installed. These off-the-shelf solutions can save you big bucks. Repainting a vanity in a bold shade is another low-cost solution. Related: Learn How to Make This DIY Vanity



4 of 24Tiled Delight A statement wall in a small bathroom is easy to create with a dynamic chevron tile installation. For even more impact, add playful patterned tile to the floor. For a more budget-friendly option, use inexpensive 3x6-inch subway tiles. You can run them in a traditional running bond pattern or create your own herringbone pattern. Related: Our Best Bathroom Backsplash Ideas

5 of 24Accessorize with Color There’s no need to lift a hammer to get a new look. Refresh any bath in a day by updating soft surfaces. New window treatments, rugs, towels, and shower curtains will brighten the bath. If you’re feeling crafty, back a storage unit with colorful adhesive paper and wrap storage bins with wide ribbons for an added dose of color.

6 of 24Add Some Wow Add some glam into your powder room with affordable new features, such as a dramatic round mirror and bold patterned wallpaper. There’s no faster way to update a small space than with a DIY weekend wallpaper project. If you already have a vanity, consider updating the faucet for another quick refreshed feature. Related: How to Wallpaper Like a Pro



7 of 24Rustic Win Snag a flea market console or occasional table for just a few dollars and convert it into a stylish primitive vanity. A table also offers a comfortable surface height to support a vessel-style sink. Retrofit the top to accept a faucet. Or, use a wall-mount faucet, and there’s no need to cut into the table. Moisture-proof and protect the wood top with several coats of clear polyurethane.

8 of 24Top Tactic Replacing the countertop, when the vanity is solid, refreshes the bathroom overall. For affordable options, consider preformed laminate, or check out costs for a remnant granite slab for a luxury look for less. If you replace the countertop, it’s an ideal time to update the faucet.


9 of 24In a New Light You’ll see your bathroom in a whole new light if you change out a dated light fixture for something that’s new and dramatic. Glass features and an angular look give this new light fixture mysterious sparkle. For a more romantic look consider a chandelier in the bathroom.

10 of 24Easy Enhancers Paint or refinish the cabinet doors for a quick and easy update. Also, install a new toilet seat and add a few matching accessories such as towel bars and a toilet paper holder. Switch out your shower controls and other hardware to create a unified suite look in just a few hours.

11 of 24Give Walls Texture Add architectural interest to a basic bath with beaded board. Installing panels is quicker and more affordable than installing individual boards. The panels are virtually indistinguishable from authentic beaded board and are sold in lightweight 4x8-foot sheets for about $20 each. Adding shiplap to the bathroom walls will create a farmhouse feel. Ceramic tiles are another way to add interest.


12 of 24Vintage Charm Find a great deal and inject a dose of personality into your bath with flea market gems. Architectural salvage yards and Internet auction sites are great suppliers of vintage tubs, sinks, countertops, flooring, benches, and unique accents.

13 of 24Repurposed Storage Add stylish storage using flea market finds. If your bathroom is too small for a freestanding piece of furniture, consider adding floating shelves with a storage bin for each family member. Repurpose an old vanity by removing the doors, repainting it, and adding shelves to fit your needs. Complete with decorative baskets to organize bathroom essentials.

14 of 24Think White Pick out basic white components for your must-have bath features and save thousands in remodeling dollars. White sinks, tubs, and toilets all cost less than those in colors because manufacturers make and sell more of them.


15 of 24Fields of Possibility Low-cost white field tiles are an affordable choice to finish a shower surround and the lower portion of bathroom walls. Spice up the look with a band of accent tiles, such as these sleek black liner tiles that visually link the shower and vanity area. Even more affordable? Clean the grout for a like-new look.

16 of 24Paint Refresher When your existing vanity cabinet offers good storage, nice lines, and sturdy construction, renew the look with a fresh coat of paint or stain. For a previously stained cabinet, sand off the old finish and apply updated stain color. You should also sand the gloss off a previously painted cabinet and smooth out any damage with filler, and then apply a coat of primer. Finish with a top coat of color. Related: How to Paint a Vanity

17 of 24Add Function Make taking a bath and maintaining the tub more convenient by installing a handheld sprayer. It eases chores such as rinsing hair and cleaning the tub.

18 of 24Boost Cabinet Efficiency Add pullout shelves to deep cabinets to keep necessities in order and viewable. Equipping cabinet interiors with these sliding surfaces helps you avoid digging around in the dark or buying more of the things you already have on hand.

19 of 24High-Style Vanity Turn an existing piece of furniture into a vanity. Save on expensive cabinetry by cutting a hole in the top of a dresser or chest for a drop-in sink and faucet. Use open shelves for baskets and bins. Related: More DIY Vanity Ideas

20 of 24Panel Discussion Smartly patterned fabric curtain panels stand in as shower curtains to give this bathroom a designer touch that’s easy and budget friendly. Pair fabric panels with a clear plastic shower liner to block splatters. If your bathtub and flooring have seen better days, consider having the tub surface professionally refinished and opt for a new tile floor.

21 of 24Beat the Band Glass mosaic tiles look sharp but can be pricey. Incorporate a thin band among field tiles on a floor and instantly give your bathroom an expensive custom-designed appearance.


22 of 24Storage Convenience A medicine cabinet can fit neatly between wall studs above the bathroom sink, adding storage and style right where you need it. Add a mirror to the inside back to brighten the interior and make belongings easier to spot.

23 of 24Home Spa Pamper yourself and give your shower a luxury spa feel by switching out the old showerhead for a large rain-style showerhead. Many affordable models are readily available from home centers and thread easily onto existing plumbing.

24 of 24Spice is Nice White porcelain or ceramic tiles cost as little as 50 cents each so you can cover a lot of wall space for a paltry sum. No one will ever suspect you spent so little, however, when you kick up the look by mixing in a few decorative bands of sleek glass liner tiles that lend color and sparkle.

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