Tips For a Toasty Warm Bathroom from Home Experts

A bathroom's cold, hard surfaces may be functional, but nothing you would want to snuggle up to on a chilly morning. Kiss the shivers goodbye with these 10 simple-to-sumptuous ideas for keeping your bathroom cozy without turning up the thermostat.

  • 01 of 10

    Pre-Warm Your Towels

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    John Keeble/Getty Images

    There are several ways you can get the job done. You can throw your bath towels in the dryer or store on a hot radiator for 20 minutes before using. You can also consider investing in a towel warmer, says NYC architect, John Mochelle. As a bonus, it can also perform double duty as a room heater. Towel warmers are available in two types: Freestanding models that plug directly into an electrical outlet and wall-mounted versions (shown on the right) that you will need to hard wire into your electrical system. 

  • 02 of 10

    Pre-Heat Your Bathroom

    porter heater in bathroom

     Deirdre Sullivan

    Invest in a small and portable electric heater. You can plug it in outside the bathroom and point it in for 15 minutes before you shower. 

    For your safety, do not buy or use a space heater that is not recognized by a testing laboratory says the U.S. Department of Energy. An excellent way to check is to look for a UL certified label. Also, never leave a portable heater unattended. Models that shut off automatically can help you rest easy.

  • 03 of 10

    Warm Up a Bathroom With Plants

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    Andy Baxter, the interior design and garden expert behind U.K. based internet Gardener, says plants can make your bathroom warmer. "It's all about how plants release moisture into the air, which increases the humidity, which helps to make the room appear warmer."

  • 04 of 10

    Blame Your Exhaust Fan

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    Real estate agent Joel Moss of Warburg Realty offers this piece of solid advice. When you are showering, make sure your exhaust fan is turned off. Leaving it on pulls all the heated air and warm steam out of the bathroom. He also suggests keeping the door closed to prevent the warm air from escaping.

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Seal Windows and Unblock Heat Vents

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    "There is no point in filling up a bucket of water with holes in it, so do not try to heat a bathroom with drafty gaps in the windows," says NYC Architect John Mochelle.

    You can seal any window with inexpensive silicone caulk made for weatherizing. Your goal is to fill any gaps or holes around window frames. 

    Also, you want to make sure nothing is blocking the heating source in your bathroom. "For example, if your hamper is directly in front of a heat vent, move it," adds Mochelle.

  • 06 of 10

    Install a Heated Bathroom Floor

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    If you plan on renovating your bathroom, you can heat things up next winter with radiant floor heating. They are essential heating mats that you install under a stone or tile floor. 

    "For many of my clients, heated bathroom floors have increased their quality of life in winter," says Katie Anderson, an interior design consultant based in San Francisco, California.

  • 07 of 10

    Change Your Color Scheme

    white bathroom

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    Do you have a freezing bathroom color scheme? According to California based interior designer, John Linden the wrong palette can leave you feeling cold. 

    "One easy fix is to incorporate warmer colors into your bathroom. Too often, people decorate their bathrooms in cool colors like white or baby blue. That's great if you have a heated bathroom. But when your bathroom is cold, the cool colors will make it feel a lot colder. Some reds, yellows, and pinks can help you warm it up a little," adds Linden.

  • 08 of 10

    Add Warm Lighting

    warm toned bathroom

     Contrastaddict/Getty Images

    Besides changing your bathroom color scheme, there is another way you can create the illusion of warmth says Katie Anderson, an interior design consultant.

    Combining warm colors like red and orange with warm lighting can create some visual heat. "Bathrooms feel better and more heated with bulbs that emit K2500 and CRI 90 or higher," adds Anderson.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Cover Your Cold Bathroom Floor

    Bathroom rug

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    NYC architect, John Mochelle points out that no one likes walking on icy bathroom floors. But if you cannot afford to install radiant heating, he suggests piling on the bathroom mats or rugs.

    "The thicker, the better. In my bathroom, during winter I cover my entire bathroom floor with plush, washable rugs," he adds.

  • 10 of 10

    How to Stay Warmer in the Shower

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    A large shower head will help you stay toasty while you are bathing. 

    "Their oversized heads are designed to immerse you fully with water, like getting caught in a heavy downpour," says John Mochelle an NYC architect. 

    "The trick is to install them directly overhead and not an angle," adds Mochelle. That way your entire body gets covered with hot water instead of just your front or backside."