In the dead of winter, a home spa bathroom experience sounds like just the ticket. Fresh, fluffy towels, a spa-like shower, air filled with relaxing or invigorating scents… what’s not to love? Here’s how to boost your spa experience at home without renovating your bathroom. It can be done; just try some of these affordable updates.
Create Your Own Home Spa Bathroom
- What are Your Home Spa Experience Goals?
- Grab a Paintbrush – Color Ideas
- Upgrade Your Shower Head
- Add Natural Elements: Wood or Greenery
- Refresh Your Towels and Robes
- Splurge on Soaps and Suds
- Decant Products into Classy Containers
- Add Subtle Scent to Your Space
Home Spa Experience Goals
According to Pinterest, there has been a surge in searches for “spa-like shower” in the past few months. Perhaps because many of us are stressed out and searching for relaxation ideas? You can’t go wrong with a bathroom refresh, and it’s possible to add spa-like details without installing a home sauna.
First, consider what appeals most about enjoying a spa experience.
- Carving out a solo space, away from the demands of your life?
- Enjoying a steamy, scented, invigorating/relaxing shower or bath?
- Indulging in fancy potions and self-care rituals?
Whatever your motivation might be, use that inspiration to guide your updates. Focus your budget on that area, whether it’s a unique bath soak or a new, massaging shower head.
Now if you can afford to install a steam shower… I hear they are amazing. My friend added one to her home recently it sounds so luxurious! Here’s an overview of how steam showers work.
Grab a Paintbrush
There’s nothing better than a fresh coat of paint to update any room in your house. And because bathrooms are generally smaller spaces, this is a pretty affordable update! Keep reading for white paint colors, or jump to blues, greens, and grays or jump to dark and bold colors. If you love bright colors, check out this fun roundup for more ideas.
If you dream of a crisp, clean white bathroom, these popular white paint colors are all great picks:
- White Dove by Benjamin Moore
- Simply White by Benjamin Moore
- Alabaster by Sherwin Williams
- Silky White by Behr
- Polar Bear by Behr
You Might Also Like:
My Favorite Behr White Paint Colors
Blues, Greens, and Grays
Maybe you want a spa experience with a soothing color in the background. You can’t go wrong with light blue, green, and gray color families. Try something like:
- Krypton by Sherwin Williams
- Sea Salt by Sherwin Williams
- Palladian Blue by Benjamin Moore
- Gray Owl by Benjamin Moore
I once read that blue is the best color to paint bathrooms when you’re selling your house. That motivated me to paint our last bathroom Krypton by Sherwin Williams, and it really is a beautiful grayish-blue. That’s a solid pick.
Here’s another past bathroom I painted Sea Salt by SW, a lovely bluish-green.
Try a Bold, Dark Color
Maybe you’d find a dark color to be relaxing in your spa bathroom update. These are beautiful colors:
- Hale Navy by Benjamin Moore
- Kendall Charcoal by Benjamin Moore
- Naval by Sherwin Williams
- Indigo Batik by Sherwin Williams
- Juneberry by Sherwin Williams
Change Out Your Shower Head
Ready to try a DIY project? Change out your shower head fixture for a more spa-like experience. Here’s a tutorial on replacing a shower head.
Disclaimer: if you live in the west as I do, you might be concerned about our ongoing drought. In that case, you might prefer to stick with a water-saving shower head and create your spa experience in other ways.
These are some highly-rated shower heads on Amazon. Although you’ll find off-brand shower heads for much less on Amazon, I recommend investing in a reputable brand for a hard-working fixture like a shower. Our favorites are Delta, Kohler, and American Standard for affordable, quality bathroom fixtures.
These examples are all very different, so it’s important to read reviews to find the style of shower prefer you prefer. Would you rather have a soft rainfall experience or heavy massage jets on your shoulders? Also, I *think* these can be switched with existing, standard plumbing configurations, but you should read the fine print.
Add Natural Elements With Wood and Greenery
A home spa bathroom experience isn’t complete without natural accents in the mix. Add a little natural wood decor to your space, some baskets or woven containers, and some fresh or faux greenery. Here are a few ideas beyond a wooden tray on the countertop.
Plants Make an Impact
If you have natural light for a real plant, they love a humid bathroom environment.
Or if you have limited light, go for faux! I have no idea if the orchid below is real or fake.
This one is definitely fake, and a little succulent on the counter adds a nice punch of color.
Warm Up With Wood
Wood accents in the bathroom go far to warm up a space filled with tile and stone. If you don’t already have a wooden vanity base, you could add a wooden bench, shelves, a countertop tray, or other decor.
If you have room in your shower for a wooden bench or accessory, you might like one of these.
Want to build a DIY bathtub tray so you can stash your book and perhaps a cup of tea? It’s a simple project; here’s a tutorial using a piece of affordable $10 stair tread lumber. Lumber prices might have gone up, but you’ll get the gist. Or buy one, like these:
If you are lucky enough to have a beautiful free-standing tub, you could tuck a standing caddy or shelf nearby. (One reader commented on this photo in my newsletter last week and said the angled tub takes up too much space in the room. I understand his perspective, but rest assured, this particular bathroom was huge.)
You can bring in natural elements in other ways. Here’s that Krypton-blue bathroom again in a staging photo; you can see the custom cedar mirror frame we built. That adds a really fresh wood element to the space. I also painted the 1990’s vanity black for a modern update before replacing the countertop and faucet.
3 Ways to Build a Bathroom Mirror Frame
The Easiest Way to Paint Cabinets
Refresh Your Towels and Robes
Here’s the low-hanging fruit. No spa bathroom refresh is complete without new towels, right? You could go with the spa favorites: fluffy white towels and a cushy robe. Or you could try something new and bring color or texture into your bathroom linens.
Towel reviews abound online, but I’ve never found cushier towels than these Lands’ End Supima towels. I’ve had mine for years and they are still thick and fluffy. Hope they don’t mind that I grabbed this photo:
If you live in a humid climate and battle mildew, consider trying Turkish towels for your next bathroom update. They are incredibly absorbent and soft, and they add fun details to your decor. One word of caution: if you prefer thick bath towels, you probably won’t be a fan.
A note on Turkish towels: if you’re curious to try them, don’t miss my discount code! I partner with The Bali Market and can offer a 20% discount with the code BALI20. You can read all about my favorite towels in this post:
The Bali Market Turkish Towels – Honest Thoughts
Don’t forget a robe. You can’t create a spa-like bathroom without one. (Please tell me you’ve seen the “I Got a Robe” SNL skit. This will forever come to mind when I think of robes.)
If you love a bathmat with personality, the ultimate source is Urban Outfitters. Sometimes I’ve seen their cute mats or knockoffs for less at Amazon or other stores. Check out the selection here.
Splurge on Soaps and Suds
Can you have a spa experience without fancy lotions and potions? Here’s your permission and enthusiastic encouragement to splurge on something lovely. (I’m sure my mom is laughing at this – I’ve never needed encouragement to splurge on skincare.)
Break out from your everyday products. You could shop locally or browse Etsy for small-batch goodies to display in your home spa. Or, just grab epsom salts on your next grocery run!
I have to tell you, while I was researching home saunas, this pillow jumped into my Amazon cart. Thought it was worth a mention.
Decant into Classy Containers
Here’s an easy way to level up the look of your home spa bathroom – decant your products into beautiful bottles. Ditch the plastic packaging and create a matching set of containers to streamline the visuals in your space.
I spotted these in a laundry room once and thought they were cute. I wonder what the “sports detergent” could be? Recreate this look with brown plastic bottles and waterproof product labels.
Amazon is a good source for affordable containers.
Glass on the countertop is fine. Glass in the shower is probably not a great idea, so consider decanting into matching aluminum or plastic bottles, like these.
Add Subtle Scent to Your Space
The last idea is to add scent to your space. Do this however you prefer, but a spa would likely add scent with essential oils.
You can run a small diffuser in your bathroom to scent the air, light a candle for scent and ambiance, or plug in a wax warmer.
Add scent to your shower or bath for the ultimate steamy spa experience. If your bath products aren’t scented and you want to level up, toss a bath bomb in the tub or a shower steamer in your next shower. Here’s an easy DIY shower steamer tutorial I shared last fall. These make great little gifts, too!
How to Make Shower Steamers With Essential Oils
You could even just sprinkle a few drops of essential oil on the shower floor. When the shower steam releases the scent into the air, bliss out in your Calgon, take me away moment. A friend taught me this trick a few years ago and it really works. (Thanks, Kristin!)
Enjoy your Home Spa Bathroom
If all else fails, you can actually buy a home sauna. No joke. I discovered there are options at every price point. Even under $100, if you’re willing to sit in a sweaty camp chair. (Maybe try a wooden stool instead.) Here’s a wooden sauna, delivered straight to your home from Amazon:
Do you feel inspired to refresh your bathroom with any spa-inspired updates? What will you try? Or do you have other tricks to help your space feel more like a spa?