When remodeling a master bath, you’ll naturally want to add spa-like amenities that cater to the adults in the household: a custom tiled shower stall, a soaking tub, and adjustable lighting. However, you’ll find that entirely different features are in order when preparing a bathroom for kids. Here are just a few features you can’t do without.
Climbing onto the toilet can be as daunting as Mt. Everest to a small child, who may naturally fear falling. Make toilet training easier with a toilet seat attachment that will add safety and comfort for kids. Some are removable, or an adult can flip them up out of the way when they need to use the facilities. Others come with a step stool attached.
This is perhaps more of an accessory than a feature, but since you’re unlikely to install toilets, sinks, and mirrors low enough for small children, you definitely need step stools to help them reach the faucet without straining and get onto the toilet seat without falling in. Make sure to choose low stools with no more than 1-2 steps, which are sturdy enough to stay grounded under wobbly kids. Add rubber furniture leg caps if needed to keep stools from slipping. You can even get double-duty storage stools to stow their bath toys out of sight.
Working with a small space where a free-standing stool is constantly in the way? Consider a brilliant pull-out step stool. Some are merely a drawer with a special lid that can hold up to 90 pounds (and still work as a drawer when the lid is removed). Others are hidden in a slim, integrated, vertical pull-out, featuring steps that fold down for use and then fold up flat to slide back into cabinetry.
Raise your hand if your parents used a cooking pot to dump bath water over your head during shampooing. There’s nothing like a face full of soapy water to make a kid cranky. With a detachable showerhead, you can eliminate this hassle, directing the spray to easily rinse away shampoo without getting it in your child’s eyes and mouth. As a bonus, it’s also great for rinsing soiled kids clothes, little ones who have been rolling around in the dirt- and even washing pets!
Not every bathroom has a tub. If you’re working with a shower stall only, and have the space, consider adding a shower bench (built-in or free-standing) for kids that are just starting to tend to their own washing needs. This feature increases stability for children when they’re washing their legs and feet, scrubbing their back, or even washing their hair, helping to prevent slips when the water is running. You can even add a small bench to tub/shower combos.
If your kids are getting ready to hit the early teen years, they are establishing their independence and will fight over just about anything that needs to be shared. This point was well-illustrated when one of our customers was asked why they wanted to add a double vanity to the hall bathroom:
“My daughter is now a teenager and when I explain that she needs to share the room with the sink with her siblings, she rolls her eyes.”
If you want to avoid daily squabbles over who gets to use the bathroom sink for hand washing, teeth brushing, and other hygienic chores, double vanities are a godsend.
All kids know what lurks in the corners of dimly lit rooms, and bathrooms are already a place where kids feel vulnerable. All bathrooms should be well-lit, but especially children’s bathrooms. Bright rooms give a sense of cleanliness, which is always a plus in a bathroom. Light temperature is also important. Warm lights (3,500K or below) are preferred in a bathroom, with plenty of lighting to illuminate every corner. Recessed lighting on a dimmer switch is a nice bonus (you can tone it down at bath time to get the kids ready for bed), and it’s wise to include bright vanity lighting at sinks so kids can clearly see when washing hands and brushing teeth.
Don’t make it hard for your kids to keep their towels in order and their bathroom tidy. Hang additional hooks and racks at their level so they can each have their own, easy-to-reach space for bath towels, hand towels, washcloths, and robes. You can even leave space for a hanging hamper to encourage kids to deposit dirty clothing inside instead of leaving it on the floor.
Few women (and men - if they’re being honest) can deny the luxury of a nice, deep soaking tub. However, for safety, it’s better for kids to bathe in shallower waters. It’s also practical for parents, who don’t want to have to reach over a high-walled tub to wash a squirmy kid. As children get older and start bathing and showering on their own, having a lower tub wall creates less opportunity for slips and trips getting in and out of the tub.
Until you have kids, you can’t know the absolute chaos of a bathroom stuffed to the gills with kid shampoo, bath toys, and more. Make it easy for kids to stow all the necessities with plenty of storage solutions that are easy to reach. Consider installing multiple levels of built-in shelves around the tub or shower for toiletries and bath-time essential, or simply add shelves in the bathroom, complete with storage bins, to house toys, towels, tissues, and more.
You might like sophisticated shower tiles or marble counters in your bathroom, but kids don’t care about these high-end finishes. When creating an inviting bathroom space for children, consider how you can make it fun with finishes.
Colorful paint or wallpaper is an easy way to create a kid-friendly space that they’ll love, and with peel-and-stick vinyl wallpaper options, it’s easy to hang (and remove), and you won’t have to worry about mold or mildew. You could also opt for a bright countertop, or simply add fun accessories like a kid-themed shower curtain, bath mats, art, and more.
Creating a fun and functional bathroom for kids requires a thoughtful approach and amenities designed for people half your height, but when you include features like sturdy stools, a shallow bath, a double vanity, kid-height hooks, and a bright, colorful design that appeals to younger tastes, you’ll have a much easier time getting kids on board with bath time and a hygiene regimen.