16 Walk-In Shower Ideas for Small Bathrooms to Make Them Look Bigger

Published by: Kevin Sears

18th March 24

Bathroom Ideas

Reading Time: 7 minutes and 40 seconds

Small bathrooms often present a design challenge, but with the right ideas, even the most compact spaces can become stylish and functional. One way to maximise space and create a sense of openness in small bathrooms is by incorporating a walk-in shower. 

In this blog, we'll explore 16 walk-in shower ideas tailored specifically for small bathrooms, and designs that can make small bathrooms look bigger.

1. Corner Showers for Small Bathrooms:

Utilise corner space efficiently by installing a corner walk-in shower. This design maximises the available space by taking advantage of a corner of the room and typically using a triangular shape to provide more space in the bathroom. Additionally, there are also styles that are curved, these create a little more room in the shower.


2. Colour Zoning to Make the Bathroom Look Bigger:

Colour zoning is a design technique that involves using different colours or shades in specific areas of a space to create visual interest, define zones, and influence the perception of size and proportion. In a small bathroom with a walk-in shower, colour zoning can be used to strategically make the space appear larger than it actually is. 

Light coloured tiles (such as white, grey or a pastel colour) used solely in the shower can give a visually expanded look to the bathroom. You can also use another colour or pattern elsewhere to draw attention to it (i.e. on the floor). This can distract from the overall size of the space and add depth and visual interest. 


3. Create Boundaries with Texture and Patterns:

Creating boundaries with colours and patterns in a small bathroom, particularly around a walk-in shower, can be done strategically to enhance the perceived size of the space. Use a different colour or pattern for the shower area to visually separate it from the rest of the bathroom. This contrast can define boundaries and make the shower space stand out.

Additionally, you can solely designate one wall, perhaps the one behind the vanity unit or opposite the shower, as an accent wall. Use a bold colour or pattern on this wall to draw attention and create a focal point. This can give the illusion of depth in a small bathroom.


4. Shower Screen With No Frame:

A frameless shower screen can create the illusion of more space in a small bathroom. This design creates a seamless transition between the shower area and the rest of the bathroom, reducing visual disruptions and creating the look of a larger, more expansive room. 

Shower screen

5. Grey and Black Small Bathroom:

A grey and black colour scheme in a small bathroom with a walk-in shower can be an effective choice for creating both a sophisticated and visually spacious atmosphere. While both grey and black are neutral colours, they offer a level of contrast that can create depth in the space. The contrast can be used strategically to define different areas, providing a sense of separation without overwhelming the room.

Grey and black surfaces, especially if they have a glossy or reflective finish, can also bounce light around the room. This reflective quality enhances the overall brightness of the space, making it feel more open. The additional use of matte black fixtures and a matte black shower screen can create a visually pleasing design which ties the colour palette together.

Black shower enclosure

6. Vertical Tiles for Walk-in Shower: 

Vertical tiles can be strategically incorporated into the design of a small bathroom with a walk-in shower to create the illusion of height and make the space appear larger. Use tiles with vertical stripes or simply use bright colour vertical tiles on the walls, especially in the shower area. This draws the eyes upward and gives the impression of higher ceilings, making the bathroom feel taller.

Additionally, extend tiles from the floor to the ceiling to create a continuous vertical line. This eliminates the visual break and encourages the eye to move upward, further emphasising the height of the room.

It’s worth noting, that if you already have a tall ceiling in your bathroom but you want to create the illusion of a wider room, create a horizontal design with your tiles, instead of vertical.

We love walk-in showers for their practical use. When space is limited, not having a door makes a huge difference in a small space. We ran the marble tiles all throughout the bathroom and shower to make the space look and feel larger. We paired the marble floors with white vertical stacked tiles in a white subway tile with a lot of tone variation.


7. Bright Colours in Small Bathroom:

Bright colours can be used strategically in and around a walk-in shower in a small bathroom to create a brighter, more open atmosphere. Use light-coloured tiles for the shower walls and floor. White, light grey, or pastel-coloured tiles can reflect more light, making the space feel larger and airier. Additionally use white paint and white tiles on the walls to create a more expansive space.


8. Simple Walk-in Shower and Bathroom Design:


Sometimes less is more - having a simple and clear shower screen without any framing or patterns around it can be beneficial for creating a sense of more space in a bathroom. The absence of framing on the shower screen or patterns/colours around the shower enhances the continuity of the bathroom space.

This visual flow can minimise the perception of separate zones, making the room appear larger. Although it appears larger, this design can also feel quite flat. However, you can introduce bathroom accessories which can add more depth to the design.

9. Large Tiles in Walk-in Shower:

Large tiles in a walk-in shower can be designed to create the illusion of more space in a bathroom. Choose light-coloured tiles for the shower walls and floor. Light colours, such as whites, creams, or light greys reflect more light and make the space feel brighter and more open. Opt for large format tiles for the walls and floor. Larger tiles reduce the number of grout lines, creating a more seamless and spacious appearance.

Additionally, extend the same tiles used in the shower onto the bathroom floor. This creates a continuous flow and eliminates the visual interruption between the shower and the rest of the bathroom.

10. Curved Shower Frame for Walk-in Shower:

A curved shower frame can create the illusion of more space in a small bathroom through its design that contributes to visual openness and a sense of flow. The curvature of the shower frame creates a smoother transition between the shower and the rest of the bathroom.

The lack of sharp angles or corners minimises visual interruptions, giving the impression of a more continuous and spacious environment. Also, instead of a rigid and angular structure, the curved design softens the lines and creates a more harmonious feel. This type of shower frame also creates visual interest and is unique, creating an enjoyable and memorable bathroom design.

Curved shower escreen

11. Making Good Use of Architectural Shapes:

If your house’s interior includes some unusual architectural shapes, consider making good use of them. Curved or angled walls are great use for your shower space. These shapes not only create a sense of depth and visual interest without taking up additional floor space, they can be particularly useful in corners and making use of unused areas.

Using this space and tucking a small shower within a curved or angled wall can save space for the rest of the bathroom, and give your showering experience a real sense of intimacy. 

Shower shape

12. Tinted Shower Screen for Walk-in Shower:

A tinted shower screen can add visual depth to a small bathroom. The slight colour variation introduces a layering effect, which can give the impression of more space by creating a sense of distance between the shower area and the rest of the bathroom.

A tinted shower screen can also be used as a subtle focal point in the bathroom. The tinted glass draws attention without overpowering the space, contributing to a more thoughtfully designed and visually engaging environment.

13. Open Shower Screen for Walk-in Shower:

An open shower screen can contribute to the illusion of more space in a small bathroom.

An open shower screen eliminates visual barriers between the shower area and the rest of the bathroom. This seamless transition creates continuity, making the entire space feel more open and interconnected.

Without a traditional closing door or curtain, an open shower screen allows for unobstructed sightlines. This uninterrupted view makes the bathroom appear larger by removing visual obstacles and creating a really roomy feel.

Walk in shower

14. Dividing Wall Between Toilet and Shower:

A half dividing wall between the toilet and a walk-in shower can contribute to the illusion of more space in a bathroom. It creates a partial enclosure for the toilet or shower, maintaining a sense of separation without fully closing off the space. 

While providing a sense of separation, the half wall helps define different functional zones within the bathroom. By clearly defining the toilet and shower areas, it adds a sense of organisation without creating a fully enclosed and visually restrictive environment.

This design is also easy to maintain and practical, without the hassle of cleaning the shower screen after every use.


15. Industrial Design in a Small Bathroom:

Just because you have a small bathroom, doesn’t mean you have to compromise on using the latest design trends in your bathroom. Industrial design is one design trend that can contribute to making bathrooms and shower spaces seem bigger.

Through the use of exposed pipes, minimalist fixtures, and simple, clean lines, industrial design can make your small bathroom and walk-in shower feel much bigger than it actually is.

Read our blog specific to modern industrial design trends for your bathroom.


16. Mosaic Tiles for Small Walk-in Shower:

Mosaic tiles can be strategically used in a small walk-in shower to create the illusion of a larger space. Opt for mosaic tiles with a reflective or glossy finish. This quality helps the tiles reflect light, making the room feel brighter and more open, which contributes to the feel of additional space.

Choose light-coloured mosaic tiles. Light colours, such as whites, light greys, or pastels, reflect more light and create a sense of airiness. Light-coloured mosaic tiles contribute to a visually expanded look in a small shower.

Additionally, use mosaic tiles consistently throughout the shower area, including the walls (or one wall) and floor. This creates a sense of continuity and eliminates visual breaks, giving the impression of a seamless and larger space.



In small bathrooms with compact walk-in showers, strategic design choices can create the illusion of a bigger room. Utilise light-coloured tiles for walls and floors to reflect more light, or choose large-format or mosaic tiles for a seamless appearance. Embrace vertical or horizontal patterns to create a taller or wider room or maybe you’ll consider curved shapes to minimise visual interruptions.

Whichever design you decide to choose, we hope our guide has inspired you. We know having a smaller space to work with can be frustrating but with the right design techniques, you can create a bathroom that feels expansive, bright and airy. Looking for further bathroom inspiration? Discover our other blogs here:

Kevin Sears

About Kevin Sears

Kevin Sears is a bathroom and interior design blogger here at 34 St John. He creates original content utilising his extensive knowledge of the bathroom industry and latest trends.

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