Amanda Naccarato is a lifestyle writer passionate about pop culture, crafting, and all things DIY. When she's not writing, you can find her binge-watching Netflix or spending an unhealthy amount of time wandering IKEA. Published work appears in Today's Parent, Emerge Magazine, and GH360.
Clean lines, minimal décor, neutral colors — these are all elements of modern home design. While the style boomed in popularity from the 1940s to 1980s, the modern style has a rich history. The modernism movement began in the late 19th century as a rebellion against romanticism and the traditions of the Victorian era. Instead of the once strict marriage to realism, modernism ventured into abstract designs and experimentation with colors, shapes, and artistic techniques. By the early 20th century, architects and designers alike had also rejected elaborate styles of the past, in favor of simple furnishings with functionality and purpose. Hence, what is known as modern design in interior decorating was born.
Nowadays, modern designs can be found all over the home, but it is in the bathroom that the earthy tones, use of natural materials, and sleek finishings can truly shine. So whether you plan to completely gut your washroom and build it from the ground up, or are simply searching for a way to add a modern touch to your current space, take a gander through these modern bathroom ideas sure to inspire your next home project.
From the long floating double sink to the built-in soaker tub, this elegant master bath features many signatures of the modern bathroom. A neutral color palette, rounded metallic faucets, and large windows allowing plenty of natural light are all on the list. However, it is the use of rectangular structures and sharp edges that gives this washroom its sleek modern appearance.
Earthy tones are a staple in the modern bathroom. Shades of white, beige, gray, and black are often used to achieve the polished design, but the truth is, this minimalist palette doesn’t always work for every space. So what do you do to break up all the neutrals? The answer is simple — incorporate a single pop of color that can carry throughout the entire space. Check out the blue marble accent of the sink, shower bench, and niche in this bathroom. The color is bright enough to contrast the neutral, but does so without completely overpowering the simplistic feel.
White walls, white vanity, white lighting, white bathtub — the list of white elements in this bathroom feels infinite. This smaller space might appear to just take on a monochromatic aesthetic, but the design is actually quite purposeful in that it is simple and lacks the clutter of elaborate décor. The minimal room is therefore light and airy, yet still balanced with a dark window frame and gold accented hardware.
While this master bath may not automatically scream modern as much as it does serene, upon closer examination, this zen bathroom is as modern as they come. The shower is built above a skylight, allowing plenty of natural light to seep in and make the bathing area feel more spacious. Clean, sharp edges are present in the space through the floating double sink vanity, large mirror, and doorless shower base. Finally, the entire washroom oasis exudes an earthy tone with its use of beige tiles made to appear like natural wood.
Modern design embraces natural structure elements like poured concrete and exposed beams. The soaker tub and floating double sink in this minimalist bathroom are both formed from concrete. The rigid structural pieces add neutrality to the space while simultaneously maintaining the harsh lines of typical modern lavatories. Paired with the floor-to-ceiling windows, simple décor, and accent partial-wall, this natural washroom is effortlessly modish.
A bathroom doesn’t have to have all the typical characteristics of modernism to be considered modish. Rather, experimenting with the hallmarks of the interior decorating style is, in itself, innately modern. One designer took that to heart when designing this chic lavatory. The black and white theme of the guest bath brings the traditions of modernity to the space. Where the pops of the Mediterranean come through are in the elaborate floor tiles, vintage rug, and wooden elements.
Modern bathroom décor ideas tend to adapt the no-frills philosophy. As such, most modern washrooms are either left unadorned for a minimalistic finish or decorated with simple statement pieces that define their place in the neutral space without completely overthrowing the earthy tones. This bathroom meets somewhere in the middle, in that its décor seamlessly meshes with the natural, simplistic design of the bathing area.
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As the previous modern bathroom ideas demonstrate, embracing natural light can make a room feel much more spacious and open. The large windows in this washroom are no exception, creating a bathing oasis that is both sophisticated and airy while delivering a stunning view of the Santa Monica mountains.
A single accent wall, like the subtle marble slab in the shower of this bathroom, is another effective way to interrupt an all-neutral bathroom. This is especially functional for washrooms that also have other trademarks of modern design, i.e. harsh lines, minimal décor, and an abundance of natural light.
Mixing modern and vintage may sound like a potential recipe for disaster, but when pulled off successfully, these two design aesthetics can mesh really well. Examine exhibit A, a sleek bathroom from The House of Silver Lining that blends the clean lines of the neutral vanity, floating shelves, and fireplace insert with the rounded edges of the clawfoot tub and oblong mirror. Take notice of the large 10-foot tall windows, gold rectangular hardware, and contemporary chandelier that also help create a unified space.
The LED lighting under the vanity and in the shower niche makes this smaller lavatory one of the most futuristic modern bathroom ideas on the list. Other elements, like the rigid rectangular structures of the double vanity, mirror, and door, as well as the metals accented in the faucets and wall-mounted fixtures, create a simple yet stunning space sure to wow guests.
Maintaining unity in a space that is completely open-concept can be a challenge. But this neutral spa oasis takes the modern bathroom game up another level and proves how simple unifying a large space can be. The exposed beams, pair of parallel vanities, and double glass showers provide the structural elements customary to the modern design. Similarly, the neutral palette and minimal décor help tone down the busyness of all the different sections of the room. Instead, the bathing area appears so tranquil, you’ll completely forget that you’re relaxing in your house and not a five-star resort.