There are two competing trends in bathroom design. One is to bring back retro and historic bathrooms, hence the skyrocketing demand for antique stand-alone bathtubs and modern sinks that resemble open bowls on a vanity. The other is what we’ll call the “bathroom of the future”. What will you find in the bathroom of the future? And how does it differ from your current bathroom?
The Integration of Technology into Everything
You can probably already search the internet via a smart appliance in your home. We’re starting to see companies like Koehler tie in their plumbing fixtures to the same smart home control systems. Then you can adjust the water temperature or turn off the shower without having to touch a lever. This is convenient, and it reduces the number of fixtures you need to clean. Sensors built into water faucets have been the norm in public bathrooms for years, and they’re starting to arrive in the average home. This reduces water waste and improves hygiene. After all, you don’t have to touch faucet knobs with dirty hands in order to get them clean.
Sensors may track everything that goes on in the bathroom. It may shut off the faucet or shower after a set time to save water and report excessive water use by a toilet so leaks get repaired. And the technology is driven by the need to reduce resource usage. We haven’t yet reached the point where your house can call for help if you fall in the shower, but the benefit for the elderly in an aging society is beyond dispute.
Your renovation company is probably using more technology, as well. Smart Style Bathrooms, for example, creates detailed 3D diagrams of your bathroom and crafts equally detailed layouts for the new project. They let you see it from all angles and confirm that’s what you want before they start ripping things out. This minimizes how long it takes to get actual renovation work done, and it minimizes the risk of mistakes and last minute corrections that hurt the final product.
Accessible bathrooms are bathrooms that can be used by everyone. It means that you don’t have to worry about Mom and her walker being able to enter the bathroom, use the toilet and take a shower alone. It means having a bathroom that children can safely use alone that can still accommodate a heavy or large adult. This can be achieved in a variety of ways. Toilets that can be raised or lowered are one method. Sinks that rely on sensors or voice control to turn water on and off instead of trying to reach and turn knobs is another. Walk-in showers or full wet rooms are accessible to everyone, and they have the side benefit of creating a more open space and being easier to clean than the conventional shower stall or bath tub. Shelves that can double as seating lining one side of the shower area eliminate the need to have separate furniture for that purpose, and the shelf can double as storage if needed.
An Emphasis on Health and Safety
A number of design trends all trace back to a need for greater health and safety. For example, many minimalist features are popular because they’re easy to clean. They appeared in public bathrooms first and are now making their way into the average home for the same reason. This category includes rimless toilets and showers and tubs without exposed hardware. Touch free technology is driven by both convenience and hygiene. This is why you’re starting to see toilets that open their lids when you approach and turn on water when you put your hands in the sink.
The Growing Use of Sustainable Materials
Sustainability is affecting the material selection in bathroom renovations. It is why you see more cast iron tubs and metal work over porcelain. It explains why wood is making a comeback, too. The broader greening of society can also be literal. For example, we see more succulent plants in bathrooms, put there to bring a touch of greenery to the space.