Green Bathroom Ideas & Inspiration

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I’ve got a great guest post for you today that will hopefully give you lots of green bathroom inspiration if you’re considering refurbishing the smallest room in your house.  It’s been written for Moral Fibres readers by Rebecca Moore, who is currently studying for a degree in interior design.

Rebecca has a particular interest in eco-friendly design and says growing up on Hayling Island, with its beautiful surroundings, sparked her interest in eco-friendly design.  Rebecca is looking to start her blogging journey whilst she studies, so is dipping her toes into the world of green blogging with this green bathroom post for Moral Fibres.

green bathroom ideas

The History Behind Environmentalism

Being eco-friendly has a lot more history than most of us know!  Believe it or not, the environmental movement can be traced back as far as 1830’s America. However, it didn’t begin to gain public recognition until around 1903, when Teddy Roosevelt made a visit to Yosemite National park in California and the US Government began to take preservation action.  

Widespread public recognition of the need to protect the environment didn’t really occur until the 1960s though. This was when Rachel Carson published her seminal book Silent Spring, about the damaging effects of agricultural chemicals.  This raised public awareness massively. As such, between the 1960s and 1990s, we saw various ‘acts’ put in place and the start of some radical movements such as PETA and Greenpeace.

Fast forward to 2015 and the environmental movement has stood the test of time, proving to those who have doubted it that it isn’t just a ‘trend’ or a form of hysteria but an important crusade that is slowly but surely integrating itself into our daily lives and in more recent years, our homes.

Green Bathroom Ideas

The bathroom is one room in the household that is used most frequently and it is common to overindulge in water and energy!  But fear not, it IS possible to create a green bathroom and lower your consumption while creating an elegant and enviable space.  The green attitude of ‘Generation Y’ has forced the luxury bathroom industry to comply. As such, it is now an easier task than it once was to find beautiful fixtures and fittings, and building materials, whilst also reducing your carbon footprint.

red metal clawfoot bath tub

Photo by Adi Tatarko via Decoist

Eco-Friendly Baths

Baths are one of the biggest statement pieces of furniture you will find in any bathroom. In modern times acrylic has overtaken steel in retail sales.  However, buying a steel bath is the best option with more eco-friendly credentials.  

A raw natural material, steel is 100% recyclable when it comes to the end of its life. It’s also a far ‘greener’ option in its production compared to acrylic.  Steel doesn’t exhale environmentally harmful waste products into our precious environment during the manufacturing process like its acrylic counterparts.  

Although steel baths are invariably more expensive, there are some beautiful styles out there. These will create a real ‘wow’ factor, regardless of the size of the room.

Not only that, but a steel bath can aid you in reducing your water and electricity consumption due to its conductive powers.  Initially cold to the touch, once you fill your bath with hot water, it will stay warmer for far longer. This will eliminate the need to top up throughout your soak.

Floor and Wall Coverings

Flooring and wall coverings are another great way to inject your personality whilst upholding your green bathroom standards.  Natural or sustainable materials such as glass (made from recycled bottles), and cork are becoming increasingly popular. This is in part because interior designers are having to seek out materials that are eco-friendly for their carbon-conscious clients.

Sheet metal is another industrial material that is becoming a popular design trend this year.  Shimmering and highly stylish – sheet metal is predicted to grow rapidly in popularity. Both for those wanting to create distinctly designed spaces and those wanting to create eco-friendly surroundings.  Meanwhile, corrugated steel is having a bit of a moment in bathrooms.

corrugated iron bathroom

Photo by Sandberg Schoffel Architects via Decorfox.

If metal isn’t to your taste, and you want to go down the traditional bathroom tile route then there are some greener tile options out there too.  Recently thrust into the limelight by the house and home guru, Kevin McCloud, Eco Friendly Tiles are the first Carbon Neutral Company in the UK to offer innovative and quality products that are sourced ethically.

Water Usage

When it comes to water, although it is widely known that showers use less water than baths, you can still use between 40-60 litres per shower.  Water-saving showers and faucets have been around for some time now. As such, they are the number one way for the modern family to save water in the bathroom.  Some of the newer models even claim to save you over £150 per year on water and heating bills.

If you are redesigning your green bathroom on a budget. Or, if you already have the suite of your dreams, it is actually possible to make your dream bathroom eco-friendly. Simply change your existing showerhead to a flow-regulated showerhead, rather than replacing the whole shower system.  The buzzwords to look out for when choosing your showerheads are ‘Aircore Technology’ and ‘Flow Regulator’.

Sustainable Bathroom Lighting

Another easy way to go green in the bathroom is to switch to LED lighting.  LED lights typically use 85% less energy than standard light bulbs. What’s more, they can last up to 25 years, making them a great green bathroom option.  Look for lights suitable for use in Zone 1 if you plan on installing them inside a shower, or Zone 2 if you plan on installing them above a shower or bath.

Green Bathroom Accessories

recycled glass bathroom accessories

Photo by Rail19 via Etsy.

When it comes to accessories there is a huge range of stylish bathroom accessories available.  These are made from natural and recycled materials, such as coconut husk, bamboo, resin, and recycled glass accessories.  With such a wide range of products available it will be no problem making sure that your green bathroom theme can be carried on throughout your whole bathroom.

Some will argue that the term ‘eco–chic’ is a widespread marketing strategy.  However, in reality, it is the latest shift in the environmentalist movement.  With the emerging trends in eco-friendly fashion for the house and home, being ‘green’ is now resonating with a far wider audience.  This makes it a much more viable trend to bring into every room in the home.

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