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Simple changes that'll make the 4 areas of your bathroom luxe on a budget.

Mondella
Thanks to our brand partner, Mondella

When you watch reality renovation shows you hear time and time again how important the bathroom is to the sense of the entire house. How it sets the tone for how luxe your space is and how an outdated bathroom can bring that vibe down.

But let’s be honest, bathrooms are expensive as hell and having someone come in and pull all that out to redo tiles, plumbing and shower cubicles is such a punish on your life – I mean, who wants to be without the ability to clean your entire self for any period of time? And as far as the bank balance is concerned, sometimes a full reno isn’t in the budget for this year, this decade…or even this lifetime.

That doesn’t mean you can’t make some simple, affordable changes that will give you some immediate and stunning results.

Let’s break it down into the four areas of your bathroom.

The bath

If there’s one thing that loves a steamy environment like the bath area it’s a plant. Not only does it bring a pop of colour into the space, it also provides a natural air purifier, it can bring warmth and texture into a room that can often be all white tiles and straight lines and if you choose wisely, like a beautiful waxy-leaved zanzibar, a zygocactus or peace lily, it’s also a very low-maintenance guest.

If you don’t have a lot of surface area near the bath to put a plant, you can always bring in a nice short stool or side table tucked up to the side of the tub, also a good spot to put your book if you’re a bath reader and it’ll look great with a beautiful bottle of body wash or a nice little stack of soaps (Tilley Orange Blossom or Black Boy Rose are my absolute faves).

Turning our attention to the bath itself, the one thing that can make a major difference to this space is how your water enters the tub. There is such a beautiful range of bath spouts and taps out now and they’re so much nicer than the stubby little curved one a lot of our houses started off with.

Mondella, which you’ll find at your local Bunnings Warehouse, has a selection of waterfall spouts which range from $39 to $77.70 that makes running the bath feel like a tropical island experience. It comes in two colours: chrome or a sexy matte black. The water doesn’t just ‘flow’ from the tap – it courses down the inverted curve to ‘cascade’ into the tub. Super luxe.

black matte tap
The Rumba Black Waterfall Bath Spout ($77.70) 
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If you prefer a super modern look, there are also spouts that come straight out of the wall at a right angle in clean, sleek straight lines for a bit of square flair like this one for $37.

The Rococo Chrome Bath Spout  ($37).

The best part about changing the bath spout is it’s generally a pretty easy job and doesn’t require major plumbing knowledge but if you’re changing the taps to match then you may need to call in a professional.

And if your budget extends to installing a new bathtub (I know, this isn't the simplest change but it's worth mentioning), Mondella has inset options from $300, and freestanding options (like in the feature image) from $975. It's good value considering a stylish freestanding bathtub would usually be well over $1000.

The shower

Change out that shower head! Nothing makes a shower cubicle more luxe than removing that tiny old three-stream monster that’s been pretending to wash you from up high. Right now, the shower head is having its '80s hair moment - the bigger the better.

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With shower heads like Mondella's Resonance Rain Shower Head ($104), water falls down like rain rather than sent at you like an army of tiny stinging needles.

The shower is also all about how to stack and store your shower ‘stuff’. Short of having the area rebuilt and retiled to give you ‘in wall’ space, you can opt to have a soap holder attached, like this gorgeous matte black option:

The Rumba 140mm Matte Black Soap Holder ($51.45)..

If drilling into tiles isn’t an option, you can try an in shower free standing caddy instead of the old-school hang-over the shower head version. They can be cute little in-corner stands or telescopic three/four-shelf units that extend from the floor to the ceiling, easy to install and remove too, especially great if you're a renter.

Also consider your bath mat situation. A pretty bamboo non-slip duckboard is a great alternative to your shaggy rug and requires no trips through the washing machine. Bonus.

The vanity

There are so many ways to vamp up the vanity and it depends on whether you prefer a more minimalist look or if you love to have all the pretty things on display.

Replacing the sink is the top of our budget option here. Going for a round or square one that sits on top of the vanity unit rather than in it, changes the whole feel of the area.

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This cute matte black version is only $146, although you’ll need to pay a plumber to switch it out for you and you may need a new vanity top or entire unit too.

The Rumba Matte Black Above Counter Basin ($146).

From there you can style with a simple vase, another bathroom friendly plant, soap dish or your fave scent from a diffuser.

Don’t forget your mirror too. If it’s one that’s just stuck to the wall and not a cupboard, consider getting it framed. A cool, distressed wood frame can help break up a tiled surface with an interesting new texture.

What do you do with your towels? My advice here is don’t be afraid to roll them. A beautiful basket large enough to chuck your spares into, rolled up to give them that ‘they just fell like that’ look when you really placed them carefully to be all standing on their end with their tightly tucked ends peeking over the rim, looks great.

Of course you have matching sets right? If you don’t, grab yourself basic base colour towels and mix it up with a couple of different patterns and textures. Try some nice patterns with geometric shapes, palm fronds and leopard print broken up with classic white, blue hues or a soothing muted pink.

You’ll need somewhere to hang that towel when you’re using it and changing out towel rails is an easy job that has a lot of impact. Retiring an old style rail with its fancy rounded ends to a minimalist square-ended one gives the space a much calmer feel, and at just over $50 for something like this one towel option it’s not an expensive one either.

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The Rococo Chrome Single Towel Rail ($50.40).

You can match it with the hand towel rail too.

The toilet

Saving the best til last, let’s head to the smallest room in the house.

The toilet area doesn’t have to be basic, you can luxe the hell out of it with a range of options. If it's in its own room, a couple of shelves popped up above the toilet can make a great place to put a nice candle, a small plant and even a nice framed picture of something cool and arty. Maybe not pics of the family - being watched by people you know while you’re in there is hella creepy.

For an easy way to jazz up your bathroom space, get your hands dirty with a paintbrush and brighten it up with a coat of crisp white paint or give it a warm intimate glow with a shade of grey.

Another stylish little fix you could do is switching out the toilet roll holder for something more modern, like this one:

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The Rumba Chrome Toilet Roll Holder ($33.60).

If the budget extends to it, you could look into replacing the toilet itself, but just remember, you'll need to consult with a plumber.

The Mondella Rimless Toilet Suite ($366) is a really streamlined option that means you don't have to break your back constantly cleaning the underside of the toilet. It's like the dolphin of toilets - see the design below.

mondella toilet
The Mondella Rimless Toilet. Image: Supplied.

Otherwise, a wall-mounted toilet pan with a panel flush can also help reduce the space the loo seems to take up in our bathrooms.

See? It doesn't take much to elevate your bathroom with a few little things that make a big impact.

Got some bathroom DIY tips to share? Let us know below.

Feature image: Mondella.

Mondella

Mondella takes the hard work out of choosing your bathroom ware. From contemporary to classic, our collections offer a broad range of styles and designs that are on-trend, affordable and easy to install. Whether it’s taps, mixers, showers or vanities, baths and toilets, everything just works together.

And behind every Mondella product is our guarantee of excellence. Our bathroom range is made from carefully selected, high quality materials, all backed by a 10-year warranty.

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