Most people decide to get a vanity for their bathroom just because of how practical it is. It offers convenient storage for bathroom necessities and can function as a counter-top for your daily hygiene and beauty rituals. But we mustn’t forget the effect this piece of bathroom furniture can have on the overall design and look of the space.

Every room needs a show-stopping centrepiece. And in the bathroom where there’s little space to bring in flashy furniture and ornaments, the vanity is perfect for playing this role. Picking a uniquely gorgeous unit out of the wide range of bathroom vanities for sale, can have the power to turn a safe and utilitarian room into a memorable design-savvy space. That being said, here are some tips on how to choose a piece that offers functionality and at the same time gives the space some chic vanity flair.

Settle on Layout & Size

Before you decide on materials, colours and fixtures, you need to know where the vanity will be placed and what size and shape you need it to be. Large bathrooms with plenty of room to spare can go for a galley layout which features two vanity spaces separated by a pass-through. Each vanity space can have a sink, or you can pick one to use for washing up and the other for applying makeup or other grooming rituals.

However, most bathrooms feature a traditional horizontal vanity with cabinetry. The vanities make efficient use of space and allow you to take full advantage of storage. They also have clean lines which offer a streamlined bathroom design. But some owners may go for an L-shaped layout, especially in a master bathroom. L-shaped vanities are designed to be placed in a corner of the bathroom and are a more space-efficient solution for having separate vanity spaces as opposed to a galley vanity layout. However, when used in a smaller bathroom, L-shaped vanities can make the space feel cramped.

If a lack of bathroom space is a concern for you, or you simply want to create a more open and airy feel, wall-hung vanities are a great option. The beauty of these vanities is that they look modern and sleek and free up floor space since they’re “floating” in the air. These vanities are available in single and double versions depending on how much storage and countertop space you need.

The amount of storage one requires usually impacts the decision on size. Take inventory of what you currently use in the bathroom and consider what you always need within reach. This will put into perspective how much vanity storage you really need. But remember, the vanity should also make sense for your bathroom’s size. Cramming a large vanity into a small bathroom will not only impact the ease of movement but also doesn’t look good aesthetically.

Pick the Right Materials

When browsing the market, you’ll find that most bathroom vanities are made from wood, plywood or thermofoil. Considering how the bathroom is a humid and wet, the material you pick should be able to withstand that environment. Being made of plastic material, thermofoil vanities are a great option. However, those who want the traditional and rich look of wood, should make sure that the vanity is properly sealed and lacquered in order to withstand water and humidity. However, lacquer isn’t indestructible, and water can damage the finish if it’s left standing on it.

Also, don’t forget to consider what the best material for a bathroom vanity top actually is. After all, you want the countertop to be durable, attractive and easy to clean. Tops are available in a number of materials, including marble, laminate, granite, quartz and even polished concrete. Granite and quartz are both durable, high-quality materials that are available in designer patterns for giving your bathroom a special touch. But because it has a porous surface, remember that granite needs to be sealed every one or two years.

Marble has a softer, delicate look than granite and quartz. But it also can scratch easily, which means you need to be extra careful around a marble countertop. Luckily, some minor scratches can be easily removed. Laminate countertops are more budget-friendly than stone, but are less durable and can get easily damaged despite being sealed or lacquered.

Choose Your Style

Once you figure out the layout that best suits your needs and are informed about the materials and their characteristics, the next step is to decide on a design. Do you prefer the look of a traditional bathroom cabinet? Shop the range of classic vanities in neutral colours that can blend into every space. Do you want a statement antique design that will complement a vintage space? Up-cycling an old cabinet or sideboard is a great way to save big on your bathroom remodel. You may already have something like that lying around, but if not, it’s easy to stumble upon a beautiful piece by browsing antique shops, second-hand shops and flea markets.

If your bathroom has a contemporary and minimalist feel, consider a vanity with a simple silhouette and free of any decorative touches. If your storage needs are already covered with the help of wall-mounted shelves or baskets, you can go for a simple floating vanity that doesn’t feature cabinetry. If you want to add some drama to your bathroom, you can always go for a design featuring a bold colour or an interesting pattern.

One or Two Basins?

Many couples and families these days prefer the idea of having two basins. Having an extra basin available is very convenient as it allows two people to access the bathroom at the same time. Also, separate basins allow you to keep all your products such as creams, makeup or moisturisers separate without your partner knocking anything over.

However, two basins also means you have to spend double the money and go for a larger vanity. If you have a small bathroom, this is definitely not an option for you as a larger vanity can eat up a lot of space. Vanities with only one sink are usually less than 150cm wide. The basin can be placed in the centre or to the left or right side. Larger vanities can accommodate two sinks, but if you feel that one is enough, the extra room can be used as convenient counter space.