If the time has come for you to give your bathroom a few upgrades, you’re surely buzzing with ideas. However, you can also consider implementing the eco-friendly approach into your renovation efforts. So, no matter if you’re looking to increase the value of your home or make it comfy for yourself, here are a few sustainable bathroom ideas you can try.
Get an energy-efficient water heater
When looking to save some money on electricity, it’s always a good idea to consider upgrading your water heater. Replacing your current one with an energy-efficient model can cut down on your energy bills seeing as how this appliance is probably the second-largest energy source in your home. To make sure a water heater is eco-friendly, keep an eye out for the Energy Star label. Other eco-friendly alternatives include a solar water heater, a tankless water heater, a heat pump water heater, and a condensing storage water heater, so look into the options available and decide which one works for you.
Conserve water with low-flow fixtures
In addition to using less energy, you should also think about conserving water. More than a billion people worldwide lack access to water and overuse is one of the main causes of water scarcity. With that in mind, there are also water-saving features you could include in your remodelling project. For starters, you can replace all faucets in your home with low-flow models as these use much less water than regular ones. Then, you can also swap the showerheads for low-flow models as well as look into low-flush or dual-flush toilets which also use significantly less water.
Install recyclable or salvaged fixtures
In case you’re thinking about a bigger update and want to replace some fixtures, you should do some research into items that are either salvaged or can be recycled. For instance, there are many antique stores that offer unique pre-owned pieces such as basins that can add a touch of elegance to your bathroom for half the price. On the other hand, you can also look into steel fixtures like bathtubs which can be completely recycled at the end of their lifespan. Moreover, there are also manufacturers that offer a 30-year guarantee.
Think about repurposing
Besides looking for a pre-owned basin that you can use, you can also do something else when it comes to the sink. For instance, consider repurposing some items from around the house that you no longer need for their original purpose. If you have an old desk that you’ve already replaced, perhaps you can sand it down, give it a fresh coat of paint, and use it as a vanity. Simply place a basin on top of it to complete the look. In case it has some shelving, you can also store your towels and other products there. The same approach works if you need some extra storage as any kind of cabinet or shelf can be reworked to fit the space. On the other hand, if you don’t have anything that you can repurpose and want a new piece, it’s important to check the product description when looking through trustworthy bathroom shops to ensure the product you want is eco-friendly.
Find sustainable flooring options
The next thing you should think about is your flooring options. If you’re doing a complete renovation, why not opt for sustainable floors? Fortunately, there are several alternatives that are environmentally friendly that you can choose from. For starters, you can look into tiles made of recycled content which are increasingly available. Then, on a bigger budget, natural stone and marble would also help completely transform your bathroom. Lastly, even natural linoleum is a good solution as it is sustainable durable, and water-resistant.
Look for eco-friendly wallpaper
For a smaller update, you can also refresh the walls of the bathroom. One quick solution to revamping this space is using wallpaper. Nowadays, they come in all sorts of colours, patterns, and prints so you can opt for something completely different from what you’re used to. However, no matter if you opt for solids, stripes, or floral design, you want to look for wallpaper that is eco-friendly. Simply by doing some research, you should be able to find toxic-free wallpaper that is made with natural materials or low-VOC wallpaper.
Opt for VOC-free paint
Speaking of VOC, you can also opt for VOC-free paints if you don’t want to put up wallpaper in your bathroom. Seeing as how volatile organic compounds are bad for the environment and toxic for people, you want to avoid getting paint, finishes, and coatings that list them among the ingredients. VOC-free alternatives reduce allergy-inducing toxins and don’t impact the air quality as much. These non-toxic paints are no less durable and just as widely available so pick a colour that you like and get painting.
Add green accents
While there is a huge array of projects you can take on if you’re doing a large-scale renovation, you might also be looking for something a bit smaller. In that case, don’t worry as there are also plenty of eco-friendly accessories you can turn to in order to make your bathroom green. For starters, the next time you need to change your toothbrushes, don’t reach for the plastic ones but look for biodegradable bamboo toothbrushes. When it comes to bamboo, there are many bathroom items like toothbrush holders, soap dispensers, and bathtub trays that are also made from this material. Furthermore, you can also invest in towels and washcloths made from organic cotton as they don’t use pesticides. Something else to consider is swapping your cloth bath mat with a mat made from teak wood to cut down on mould, mildew, and bacteria in your bathroom.
Don’t forget about houseplants
Finally, how can your bathroom be green without greenery? There are many houseplant varieties that can thrive in the bathroom. They love humidity and even if you’re low on natural light, you can still find some that will survive in those conditions. For example, pothos, snake plants, aloe plants, bamboo, ferns, and orchids can all add a touch of nature to your bathroom.
It’s vital that we all play a part in preserving the planet. Something as simple as thinking about sustainability when upgrading your bathroom can go a long way. Keep these tips in mind.
Jasmine Anderson is a Sydney-based lifestyle blogger and a toddler mom. She loves to spend quality time with her family, go thrifting, and spend just a little bit too much time on the internet.