5 Quick Fixes to Brighten Up Your Bathroom

Bathrooms are at their best when they’re bright and shiny. Not only does a functional, beautiful bathroom increase the value of your home if you’re considering selling it in the future, it’s more inviting to your guests. Even if you have a small bathroom with few windows, there are several ways you can brighten up the space to make a bathroom more inviting and stylish. No matter your budget, you can find a quick fix to make your bathroom shine.

1. Repaint

Chipped walls, peeling wallpaper and mold or mildew stains make an otherwise lovely bathroom look like a dump. Luckily, all are easy fixes: Simply apply a new coat of paint. Set aside an afternoon to scrub the walls of any mildew or peel away old wallpaper and apply a coat or two of mildew-resistant paint. Put down a canvas to protect your fixtures from dripping paint; if you don’t want to spend the money on a canvas you throw away, use an old bed sheet.

2. Install Just the Right Lighting

The right lighting can transform a bathroom from gloomy to inviting. If your current lighting isn’t doing the trick, it’s time to install new light fixtures. The fixture itself can make the room more appealing. For example, go for an antique-looking ceiling lamp for an elegant, classy feeling. Opt for a sleek minimalist black lighting fixture for a more streamlined look.

StyleatHome.com suggests installing a dimmer switch so you can adjust the lighting. Keep it bright when showing off the room or when you need more light in the room, and keep it dim when relaxing in the bath or shower. Dim light is also useful if you visit the bathroom in the middle of the night and your eyes can’t adjust to bright light quickly.

3. Give It a Good Scrub

There’s nothing simpler and less expensive when it comes to brightening up a bathroom than simply doing a little scrubbing. It takes a little elbow grease, but the results are worth it. To thoroughly clean the room:

  • Take out all of the toiletries and movable fixtures; wipe these items down with a dust cloth, wet rag or cleaning cloth if they’ve accumulated any mildew or dust.
  • Use a bathroom-safe cleaner on your sink tops, toilet and bathtub or shower; some cleaners are not safe to use on metal fixtures, so double-check.
  • Use a tube brush snake to clean out all of the drains in the room; even if you can’t see the grime stuck in a sink, it could cause water to drain slowly, which will stain your sink over time.
  • Open the window or run the ceiling fan to get the room clear of fumes as you clean.
  • Use bleach to treat stained porcelain.

Finally, sweep and mop the floor. Once you thoroughly clean the room, get into the habit of continuing to clean it regularly.

4. Buy New Fixtures

You don’t have to completely remodel the bathroom in order to give the room an entirely new look. Buy a few new bathroom fixtures, and the small new additions can give the illusion of newness. Choose one thing you don’t like about your bathroom — maybe a mirror is cracked or you don’t have enough storage space; maybe the jets in your tub aren’t working. Replace the mirror, add shelving or cupboards and replace the jets — or the entire tub — for a fresh feel.

5. Swap in Fresh Towels

Decorate your bathroom with colorful, fresh and fluffy towels. No matter how old your bathroom fixtures, the addition of fresh towels will brighten and modernize the room. Having a limited budget or limited time is not an obstacle to a beautiful, spic-and-span bathroom. You can make a difference in as little as an afternoon. Just remember not to let your work go to waste. Clean the bathroom at least once a week to keep it looking great.

About the Author: Susana Dwight is a professional interior decorator and frequent blogger on decorating topics. She works with clients to find ways to make rooms pop on a budget.