10 Tips for Decorating a Bathroom Counter

bathroom counters

Desiree Burns Interiors

Your bathroom counter deserves a little love! While this space is primarily functional, it definitely can be styled to look a little less utilitarian. Below are 10 easy steps to take to make your bathroom countertops shine (and make getting ready for the day feel a little more enjoyable).

1. Be Mindful About Storage Choices

"Find vessels and trays that complement the finishes in your bathroom and speak to the rest of the items in your home," designer Emma Kemper of Emma Beryl Interiors suggests. "Using these bath accessories will create uniformity and minimize the visual noise that having too many countertop items can create."

2. Decant Unsightly Items

"Your mouthwash does not have to live in the boring plastic container it came in (or be hidden from sight and never used)," says designer Alice Kuaban of Oddessence. Say goodbye to that less than stylish packaging and opt to house your mouthwash a chic, clear glass jar instead. "Pouring some into a beautiful glass decanter invites you to freshen up each time you walk into your bathroom," Kuaban adds.

bathroom counters

@houseofchais / Instagram

3. And Say Goodbye to Packaging

On a related note, any plastic packing should be tossed, states Lucy O'Brien of Tartan and Toile. She notes, "Having everything removed from their packaging and in containers helps to create a much more clean and cohesive look, even if it is just toilet paper."

4. Combine Form and Function

You're dealing with a bathroom, after all, so function is of course essential, but it's ok to "look for functional items that are pretty, too," designer Courtney Sempliner says. She suggests keeping an eye out for a unique hand soap pump or a chic tray. Trays in particular are excellent for stashing jewelry pre-shower or before bed. And don't be afraid to think outside the box a bit in terms of style. "Never underestimate the use of an interesting shaped basket or tray," O'Brien shares. "Sometimes having an unexpected piece that you would not normally see in a bathroom gives interest and can double as a storage container."

bathroom counters

Molly Culver for Mary Patton Design

5. Mix Materials

No need to stick to a uniform look when choosing bathroom accessories, designer Caroline Agee of Tuckahoe Home says. "I love combining polished nickel, acrylic, and rattan," she explains. "For instance, you could style an acrylic tray with a polished nickel soap dispenser and a candle in a rattan candle holder."

6. Set Out a Vase

A small arrangement of flowers is most definitely welcome in the loo! O'Brien suggests setting a small bud vase on the countertop. "It is an unexpected place to have flowers, but it really makes you smile," she adds.

7. Or Display a Plant

A plant (real or faux, depending on how much sunlight the room receives and how much time you can devote to maintenance) will also look nice and cheerful on your bathroom countertop, if space allows. Plus, if your bathroom mostly features neutral finishes, the pop of green will really stand out.

bathroom counter

Laurey Glenn for Mel Bean Interiors

8. Style With Usable Items

A bit of styling will ensure your countertop appears a bit more luxurious looking, but don't feel the need to purchase decorative pieces specifically for this purpose. Rather, focus on elevated versions of everyday items that you would use anyway, comments designer Maggie Burns Hornby of Maggie Richmond Design. "I always recommend styling with things that you'll actually use versus having too many decorative items that don't serve a functional purpose," she reiterates. "In most bathrooms, countertop space is sacred, so I love styling with antique vanity dishes, sea sponges and a beautiful handmade soap."

bathroom counters

Whittney Parkinson Design

9. Source Pretty Towels

Say goodbye to those raggedy towels with holes and stains and pick up some new, fluffy towels and washcloths to stash on your countertop in a small basket. It's like bringing the comforts of a fancy restaurant or hotel bathroom to your own home.

10. Set Out a Jewelry Box

If you have more than a few pieces of jewelry that you would like to store in the bathroom, opting for a sophisticated looking, lidded jewelry box is your best bet. After all, there's nothing worse than wondering whether that special bracelet or ring accidentally rolled into the sink!

bathroom counters

Interior Impressions