Walk-in Shower Ideas for Small Spaces and People on a Budget

Evelyn Long

Aug 29, 2023

walk-in shower ideas

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A walk-in shower can be a game-changer for homes with limited dimensions. It has no enclosure doors or walls, creating the illusion of more space. With this feature comes the benefit of it being easy to maintain. The best thing about a walk-in shower is the creative freedom to customize it based on your personality, preference, style and design. If you’re looking for walk-in shower ideas, check this out. 

Walk-in Shower Ideas for Small Bathrooms

Small spaces can feel limiting. Fortunately, a walk-in shower concept can make a tiny bathroom appear spacious. Here are some ideas you can try. 

1. Larger Walk-in Shower

If you opt to eliminate the tub, expand the walk-in shower to occupy the space where the tub was previously attached. You will need to spend money on this renovation, but it’s worth it as it will widen the shower area. Thanks to added dimensions, you can enjoy a more comfortable shower experience. 

2. Fixed Glass Shower Shield

The panel is permanently attached to the shower to prevent water from splashing into other dry areas, like the toilet or vanity. The shower shield separates the doorless shower and the toilet. Since it is glass, it creates a visual illusion of more space ideal for small bathrooms. 

3. Stone Mosaic Tile 

This tile costs a bit more but is highly durable and easy to maintain. When you can’t further optically enlarge the space, changing the design can make the feel and atmosphere in a small walk-in shower way better. Stone mosaic tiles are versatile to any color and style, so feel free to mix your choices. 

4. Floor-To-Ceiling Glass Panels

Another excellent idea is a glass panel that reaches from the floor to the ceiling. Some people prefer their shower completely open — no door and walls — but some may choose to enclose one or two sides to partition spaces. Floor-to-ceiling glass panels provide an air of sleek luxury and modern touch. The glass panels look seamless and go well with nearly all designs and colors, creating an impression of spaciousness. 

5. White and Blue Combination

Blue promotes a calm and soothing atmosphere in any space. Meanwhile, white has an airy and bright effect. Together, they can make your area appear larger and more vibrant. The individual benefits of each color can transform the ambiance of your small walk-in shower. You can go all-white or all-blue or explore other shades if you want a different pair of colors.

6. Large Mirror

Interior designers use mirrors to create an optical illusion of more space. Since mirrors have reflective powers, it stretches the area and makes your small walk-in shower seem bigger. On top of that, having a mirror gives you visibility into how you care for yourself. You can set up a mirror on top of the vanity or position it in an area where it can maximize the reflection of light. 

7. Half-enclosed Shower

Another idea is limiting the wall enclosure to half the height between the floor and the ceiling. This design offers a unique spin to your walk-in shower and a seamless transition from the shower to the toilet, sink or vanity. It prevents trips, which is beneficial for elderly family members. 

Walk-in Shower Ideas on a Budget

A walk-in shower project can be expensive, but here are some suggestions to minimize the cost. 

1. Multiple Shower Heads

It may not have crossed your mind but installing multiple showerheads is one of the perfect walk-in shower ideas. Each showerhead fulfills a particular purpose and having more can make your showers more efficient. For example, you can use a handheld for shaving and a fixed showerhead for rinsing your body. It’s helpful if you have senior family members with limited mobility — one of the reasons people shift to a doorless shower. Above all, it turns your bathroom into an at-home spa, helping you relax after a stressful day. 

2. Subway Tiles 

Subway tiles cost $1 to $65 per square foot, making them inexpensive for walk-in shower renovation. They create a timeless appearance in your space and are durable enough to last long. Offering a variety of colors, finishes and versatile features, they add texture and aesthetics with practical benefits. Moreover, you can DIY-install subway tiles and save on labor costs.

3. Slate

Slate is a type of stone and is perfect for walk-in shower flooring. It provides a highly durable, slip- and water-resistant surface, making an area look high-end and beautiful. The variations of designs and hues are abundant, giving you more options for a bathroom makeover. 

Slate is sourced from nature, so it’s very affordable. Flooring from this material can last for years, so you don’t have to worry about the quality of wearing over time. It’s ideal for a shower renovation if you want to give your space a rustic or modern appearance and feel. 

4. Pebble Tiles

These tiles are a cost-effective and convenient way to maintain the beauty of your walk-in shower. They create a natural, relaxing ambiance that makes you want to linger in the bathroom. With their earthy colors and tones, you can use them flexibly from walls to floors and vanities. The rugged material balances the contemporary and rustic feel of the shower area. 

5. Shower Niches

Walk-in showers often feature a minimal layout without any ledge to put bath essentials. Shower niches can hold the shampoo and soap off the floor and at arm’s reach. They will greatly benefit you if the shower has limited square feet and can accommodate a little storage. You can also treat this as a DIY project and learn how to custom-install it. 

Cost of Building a Walk-in Shower

Building a walk-in shower ranges from $3,121 to $10,168, depending on many factors. Expect to pay an average price of $6,641 for a remodeling project. Consider the size, style, materials and labor if you’re gearing to jump on the modern bathroom trend. All of these can add to the cost.  

You can save by choosing more affordable materials for flooring, walls and accents. Consider partial or minor renovation or do-it-yourself for tasks you can, like tile installation.

Walk-in Shower Ideas to Expand Your Space on a Budget

A walk-in shower offers the most accessibility for people with physical limitations. It makes going in and out of the area more manageable and safer. Furthermore, it can also reduce the risk of slips, falls and injury in the bathroom. 

It’s a new trend that optimizes a tiny area to give you more elbow room and make the space inclusive and easy to maintain. You have several options in designs, materials and styles to personalize it. Complete remodeling can be expensive, but it’s a worthwhile investment, especially for people living with older family members.


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