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Bathroom Living Blog

  • Furniture Style Bathroom Vanities

    The typical bathroom vanity seen in most homes are usually wall-to-wall and integrated into the bathroom space. These bathroom vanities definitely serve their purpose and provide a lot of storage and counter space but they do so in the least fashionable possible. These vanities are basic and add nothing to the bathroom design space. When considering a bathroom remodel, take your bathroom vanity from dull to beautiful with an actual furniture grade bathroom cabinet and vanity.

    Designer bathroom vanities are not typically seen in your local home improvement store. These top quality vanities have been meticulously created to provide your bathroom space with the focal point it so desperately needs. Whether you’re looking for an antique reproduction, transitional or contemporary style, there are vanities out there to fit your style needs. A quality vanity should have at least a five-layer plywood construction to stand the test of time with a solid wood construction on the exterior.

    Here’s an example of one of our more popular bathroom vanities. The Providence line is made of solid wood and a natural stone top to compliment the wood grain texture. It features a unique cabinet door opening hardware while still having ample room for all your necessities. The wood backsplash and the wood framed mirror complete the look and tie the room together. This vanity along with many vanities for sale will truly turn your bathroom space into one fit for a magazine spread.

  • Relax With A Water Massage From Your Whirlpool Tub Or Air Jet Tub

    With many types of bathtubs on the market today, choosing the right one that fits your needs and desires can be difficult. From standalone to corner tubs, from antique design to a more modern look, the type of tub you end up choosing comes down to a couple basic factors, from price to design and function to features you’d like included. In this article, we feature two distinct tubs for you to consider, the whirlpool tub vs. air jets tub.

    The benefits of either a whirlpool tub or air jet tub vary in degree. Both offer benefits that are hydrotherapeutic, that is, they can help ease muscle tension and joint pain by using water as a form of message therapy. Additionally, both a whirlpool tub and air jet tub are believed to assist in improving circulation among other types of benefits.

    While the benefits may be similar, the way that a whirlpool tub vs. air jet tub works may be very different and here are a few major differences for you to consider:

    • A whirlpool tub uses water already in the basin of the tub to circulate through jets at a high pressure that are located around the sides of the tub.  This is a major function of a whirlpool tub, high-pressure water being pushed out from the side of the tub and directed toward the user to create a heavy “massage” inducing sensation.  It’s just like being at your masseuse and being pushed and pulled and rubbed all at the same time from multiple “hands” that are in this case, water.
    • An air jet tub uses compressed air that is shot back through rows of tiny holes in the bottom of the tub to create a bubble effect. Much like a glass of carbonated soda, you can see the bubbles rising to the surface.  This creates a light, airy effect that is soft and soothing in comparison with the high-pressure whirlpool tub effect.
    • Since it uses the water already in the basin, for cleaning purposes, a whirlpool tub needs to be cleaned regularly with a cleaner and/or bleach to prevent mold or mildew from building up or accumulating in the piping or in the pump.  A solvent can be homemade or store brand, but should be used on a weekly basis to help prevent this kind of trouble.
    • Air jet tubs don’t use water in their process so cleaning is much easier than with a whirlpool tub.  Traditional weekly tub cleaning and occasional attention to the air valves should prevent any potential for mildew.

    The differences between a whirlpool tub and air jet tub are minor but the benefits of either come down to a matter of preference.  Both types offer the same hydrotherapeutic benefits of water massage, so it’s simply a matter of preference.  Hopefully by knowing the differences and similarities of a whirlpool tub and air jet tub will make your decision a little easier.

  • Consider A Corner Tub For Your Dream Bathroom Remodel

    You’ve decided that its time to renovate your bathroom, and you’re busy exploring ideas and options that match your needs with your pocketbook. From color scheme to the type of vanity to fit your bathroom, there’s a lot to consider. We know you want to place your stamp on your renovation, but we also know that space can be fairly limited. If that’s the case, you should consider a corner tub that will not only fit your pocketbook, but also accentuate your bathroom design.

    Before you run off to your contractor with the idea of purchasing a new corner tub, there are a few factors that you need to consider.

    1. As with any type of tub, a corner tub may be made of multiple types of materials each with their own strengths. With a new corner tub it isn’t much different. Most corner tubs can be made of either fiberglass or acrylic. With a fiberglass corner tub it will be easy to find one to position in your bathroom, but understand that fiberglass tubs lose heat fairly quickly and don’t usually offer a large variety of color schemes. On the other hand, an acrylic corner tub retains heat longer and is usually produced in many color schemes to give you the flexibility to match your new corner tub with the rest of your bathroom renovation.
    2. It’s easy to want a larger and larger corner tub for your renovation, but take into consideration that while a large corner tub may help open up the room, it may also take up more space than a more traditional tub. It is positioned in a corner, meaning it’s adjoining two walls and while it frees up the middle of the room, it also extends outward.  So in this case, size DOES matter.
    3. There are two main types of corner tubs.
    • The first type is the triangle corner tub and these fit nicely into a corner of the bathroom. These are perfect for tight spaces and help open up the room.  Imagine placing your new second-story bathtub underneath a window.  You can soak away the day’s stress while sipping on a nice Chardonnay and watching as the sun is setting just outside with all your troubles slipping away.
    • The other type of corner tub to consider is the more traditional oval tub.  An oval tub may be harder to place in the corner of a room but it allows for more “leg-room” to stretch out and relax.  It could just as easily be used to relax and unwind from a hard day it just won’t fit as snuggly into the corner of the room.

    Depending on your specific needs and desires, you should be able to find a nice corner tub to accommodate your bathroom renovation.  You’re putting a lot of time, money and energy into your remodel, and you want it to be perfect.  Hopefully these little facts will help you make an informed decision that will save you time and money so that you can make your bathroom the one you’ve always wanted.

  • Cast Iron vs. Acrylic Bathtubs

    Whether you’re considering renovating your bathroom or designing your dream house there are many different things to consider for your bathroom design. From kitchen and bedroom design, to bathroom vanity types, shapes and colors, and finally, your bathtub design it can be a little overwhelming to make a decision.

    The best way to make a decision is to be informed. There are a number of options available for you and knowing what all the strengths and weaknesses of your bathroom tubs will help you make the right one. From porcelain to acrylic to cast iron tubs, there are a number of different ways to go with your choice. We focused on two options, cast iron vs. acrylic bathtubs, to help you make your decision.

    Here are a few facts you need to know before you decide:

    • Acrylic is lighter of the two. If your bathroom is located upstairs or difficult to get to, this may make the most sense.
    • Cast Iron tubs are heavy but last longer than most other types.
    • Acrylic bathtubs are insulated by fiberglass and cheaper than most other types of bathtubs.
    • Cast Iron tubs are melted iron that is poured into a mold and therefore inflexible and nearly indestructible.

    Now that you know a couple basic facts about the differences in cast iron and acrylic bathtubs, you need weigh a few other factors about each before deciding. By looking closely at each of the strengths you’ll have a better idea of what you should purchase that meets your needs.

    Here are some facts about cast iron tubs to help you:

    1. Cast iron tubs are more expensive than most tubs. As they are melted steel, they are also more durable and longer lasting then almost any other type.
    2. It takes longer to heat water in cast iron tubs since the heat is pulled out of the water to the iron to warm it. Once that happens, cast iron tubs will help keep your bath water warmer, longer.
    3. Cast iron tubs are solid pieces of steel. This fact makes them nearly indestructible as well as appears both classy and glamorous. You get style and function with a cast iron tub.

    Now that you have an idea of the strengths of cast iron tubs, let’s compare those with acrylic bathtubs for you to have a better idea of their benefits.

    1. Acrylic bathtubs are composed by various molds that make them easy to design for many shapes and styles. This will help match your tub with your overall bathroom design.
    2. Acrylic bathtubs are firm but susceptible to occasional scratching or scuffing. If your tub isn’t sealed correctly, you may do irreparable harm to the tub with the wrong type of cleaning agent or brush.
    3. Acrylic bathtubs are easier to heat water in but won’t contain the heat as well as natural cast iron tubs. Acrylic bathtubs are insulated with fiberglass and are typically warmer even without water, which is helpful during cold winter months, but they also don’t help retain the heat as well as cast iron tubs.

    We know there’s a lot to consider when you’re looking at options for your bathroom design. It’s your bathroom and you’re committed to making it all that you want it to be. We've pointed out some relative strength of cast iron tubs and acrylic bathtubs to help you make an informed decision. It’s your home and plans your bathroom design how you want.

    We hope that with the information we've provided you’ll see that there’s no wrong decision with a cast iron tubs vs. acrylic bathtubs and that you’ll soon be able to sink into the warm water and relax in a sea of bubbles, washing the world and all it’s stresses away.

  • How to Care for Natural Stone Counter Tops

    Granite and marble are two natural stones that make for beautiful countertops. Whether in the kitchen or atop your solid wood vanity, taking care of your natural stone counter tops can be tricky if you don’t know what to do. The best thing is to be proactive with any spills, but if you don’t know what’s the right way to clean your counter top you may end up causing it more damage than you prevented.

    To prevent damage, etching or stains here’s a list of 4 things to know before getting started:

    1. Have your natural stone counter tops sealed with the appropriate sealer. Contact a professional stonemason to place the sealant before you begin using your countertop. 
    2. Have your natural stone counter tops sealed annually to prevent wear and tear on the seal creating pores that may cause stains or etches. 
    3. Clean your natural stone counter tops regularly with a soft towel and soap free cleaner. 
    4. If you must drink coffee (or other liquids) while in the bathroom, place your cup on top of a coaster to prevent water rings from forming.

    If you take the precautions mentioned above, you’ll see a much longer life of your natural stone counter tops.

    So now that you know what you need to do proactively, what else do you need to know about how to care for natural stone counter tops?

    Here is a short list of a few things to do that will help you maintain the life and beauty of your natural stone counter tops:

    • Use a clean soft, towel, or sponge to wipe the counter top and edges.
    • Blot any liquids, don’t rub it or scrub it, as it will push the liquid into the stone’s pores creating etching or staining. 
    • Use disinfectants specifically designed for your specific natural stone counter tops. Others may cause harm to the sealant and creating pores that liquids can get to the stone.

    Now that you have an idea of what you need to do, there are some things that you need to know what NOT to do to preserve your natural stone counter tops. These tips will help you save time and more importantly money as they will save the integrity of your granite and marble stone counters.

    The most important thing to know is that the number one cause of damage to a counter top is improper cleaning and is also the leading cause of stone restoration. Additionally, know these dangers below before you clean, and you’ll save yourself the headache of having to call a professional stonemason to refurbish your counter tops.

    • Never use scouring powders, creams and cleaners. These will wear away your sealant and burrow themselves into the stones pours creating stains and etches.
    • Never use any cleaner that has acids.
    • Never use cleaners designed for other types of cleaning such as grout, tile, tub or glass cleaners. These will damage your seal and the stone.
    • Never place or use nail cleaners, polish removers, perfume or cologne on your natural stone counter tops. These all have chemicals that will damage your stone.

    By getting to know these dangers can help you maintain the health of your counter tops. And by knowing how to care for natural stone counter tops will save you money in the long term.

  • Remodeling a small bathroom

    If you've been thinking about remodeling your bathroom chances are that you're in the same boat as the majority of us. That is you don't have much space. Of course you want something that looks good but let's not forget that the room also needs to function in order to meet the needs of your family. So that means you need storage space.

    Sites like Pinterest & Houzz are great resources for you to start planning your perfect re-model. Not only will they help you keep up on current trends, they will help make sure that design and storage don't become an afterthought.

    Aside from the cabinets, shelves and storage in a small bathroom, it's important to select the right vanity. Often times people will select a small vanity in a small bathroom believing that they are saving space. By selecting the largest vanity for your space you can add not only valuable cabinet space but counter space as well. Small or petite vanities may seem like a good idea at first but you end up sacrificing the valuable counter space for your everyday bathroom items.

  • Five Bathroom Remodel Tips

    Once the decision to remodel has been reached, there are many things to consider during the beginning phases of your project. Here are our top 5 bathroom remodel tips that should not be overlooked.

    1. Make A Plan and A Budget:Take into account the bathrooms in your home. If you have multiple bathrooms, do they all need a face lift? Many companies offer discounts for larger purchases. You may save in shipping fees or receive a discount if supplies are purchased in quantity. Consider remolding multiple bathrooms at once to take advantage of these savings.
    2. Order Samples: Once you've begun looking into bathroom materials and furniture options, find out if paint, tile, wood, grout or stone top samples are available. Obtaining samples can streamline the remodel process. Having quick references to the tones, colors and textures you have selected can aid in smaller decision making with items such as hardware and fixtures. Selecting as may items up front will save you time and money.
    3. Buy Quality: Consider the quality of your items. Make sure you are purchasing good materials. Take into account all the options including name brands. Spending a little more time researching and a little more money in the beginning can pay off in the long run and will add to the value of your home.
    4. Check Stock and Order Early: Think about timing. The beginning of the year is the busiest time for home remodels. Make sure you check available as soon as you are close to making your final decisions. Even if you do not need an item until the end of your remodeling project, order it at the beginning of your renovations. If you delay, it is always possible a crucial element to your design could be discontinued or go out of stock, derailing renovation plans. If an item is damaged during shipping, replacements take time as well.
    5. Lighting and Colors: Color and lighting play a large part in bathrooms. Keep this in mind when remodeling as they can enhance your space significantly if done correctly. Stay away from darker colors in small spaces. A neutral color pallet and natural lighting is best, especially for resale in the future. Supplement natural light with overhead lights and large mirror to make any bathroom feel larger and more welcoming.

    If you keep these few remodeling tips in mind when starting your own bathroom renovations, your experience is sure to run more smoothly. Being prepared and making good decisions from the beginning will ultimately result in a beautiful end product which you can enjoy for many years to come.

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