The Ambient Guide to Creating an Eco-Friendly Bathroom

If you start thinking about eco-friendly resources from the first phase of designing your bathroom remodel, you can incorporate many more green attributes. Don’t forget that conserving water, reclaiming unrecyclable materials, and using non-toxic supplies are all just as important to a green design as energy efficiency.

Conserve Water with Your Eco-Friendly Bathroom Design

Since installing new plumbing fixtures in your bathroom might involve modifying the plumbing pipes, you should consider these changes first. Once you know which eco-friendly plumbing fixtures you want, you can design the rest of your bathroom around them.

Eco-friendly bathroom with low-flow faucets and ceramic basins for better water efficiency.

Start with a New Toilet

Installing a low-flow toilet can become problematic when flushing solid waste. You may need to flush several times, wasting more water than a traditional toilet. This doesn’t mean conserving water when it comes to toilet flushes is a no-go.

When looking for green living tips, a dual flush toilet may be the best answer. This type of toilet features two flush buttons. One button will give you a half flush that’s perfect for getting rid of liquid waste, while the other button gives you the full flush needed for solid waste.

Install Low-Flow Faucets

Every eco-friendly bathroom should use low-flow faucets in sinks to reduce water waste. Since water pressure isn’t as important in the sink, you can use low-flow faucets without experiencing a significant inconvenience.

When it comes to the bathtub, don’t get rid of it. People assume a bath wastes more water than the average shower, but that isn’t always true. As the video below demonstrates, your ability to conserve energy and water depends on the size of your bathtub and the average time you shower.


If you do decide to keep a bathtub, consider refurbishing your current tub or buying an antique tub. These options will save you from contributing to the consumption of limited resources used in the manufacturing process.

Use Lighting Wisely in Your Sustainable Bathroom

Lighting is another concern in creating a sustainable bathroom design. Here are a few ideas that will help you use lighting wisely.

Take Advantage of Natural Lighting

Modern, marble bathroom with natural lighting.

If there are windows in your bathroom, replacing the glass with frosted glass can help you maintain privacy while letting more natural light into the bathroom. You can also install skylights in top-story bathrooms for more natural lighting.

Use Several Layers of Lighting

Think strategically about using lighting in your interior design. A vanity mirror with brighter lighting can save you from needing the high-wattage bulbs in your ceiling lights. Use canned or recessed lighting for a softer glow in your bathroom.

Make Sure All Fixtures Use LED Bulbs

Ditch the incandescent bulbs in your bathroom if you still use them. This is a common suggestion among eco-friendly design tips since LED bulbs use less energy and won’t emit nearly as much ambient heat. A cooler bathroom will help you keep your overall cooling costs lower.

Use Environmentally Friendly Flooring Ideas

When it comes to redesigning your flooring, eliminating flooring that utilizes toxic materials in the manufacturing process is essential. This doesn’t mean you won’t still have beautiful flooring options.

Get Rid of Vinyl Flooring

You should avoid using vinyl flooring in your bathroom remodel for a few reasons.

  • The manufacturing process produces toxic byproducts
  • Once installed, vinyl gives off fumes from VOC (volatile organic compounds)
  • Vinyl has a short lifespan, increasing the need for frequent flooring replacements

Fortunately, you’ll find that eliminating vinyl from your options will open up new possibilities in choosing beautiful flooring designs.

Have a Wood or Tile Floor? Just Paint It

An option many people overlook is to simply paint the existing floor in your bathroom. This is best done with a floor comprised of wood or ceramic tiles. Use VOC-free paint to create a geometric design, or paint the floor one solid color.

Switch to Stone Tiles

If you want to use modern flooring trends, you can still find plenty of options. Since stone tiles come from nature, this is the best option for your sustainable bathroom. Alternatively, ceramic tiles are also eco-friendly.

Keep Your Eco-Friendly Bathroom Concept in Mind When Decorating Your Walls

You can add to your environmentally-friendly bathroom design by choosing green wall design ideas. This includes choosing safer wall coverings as well as hanging green decor.

Use Ceramic or Stone Tiles

Much like the eco-friendly design tips for bathroom flooring, you can also use ceramic or stone tiles for your walls. Make sure the tiles you choose are specifically intended for wall use, and look for water-resistant tiles.

Use VOC-Free Paint or Recycled Wallpaper

If you want to avoid using tiles on every wall of your bathroom, you can paint the walls any color. Again, make sure you use VOC-free paint. A different option is to look for recycled or antique wallpaper. This option helps you choose an intricate design without contributing to tree loss or paper waste.

Bring Nature Inside to Enhance Your Design

Even after you have your walls papered or painted, you can enhance the appearance of your eco-friendly bathroom when you decorate with green materials. Take a walk on the beach or through a nearby forest to find seashells, stones, or reclaimed wood.

A sustainable bathroom design that uses reclaimed wood and live plants to enhance an eco-friendly design.

Look for plants that thrive in humid, dimly-lit environments, such as Chinese evergreen, staghorn fern, gardenia, or tillandsia.

Final Thoughts on Building a Sustainable Bathroom

Creating an eco-friendly design for your bathroom doesn’t have to feel dull or frustrating. Have fun with it, and use your imagination. Bringing a sense of creativity to your plans can help you create something unique and friendly to the environment in your community.


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