A Guide on How to Design a Shower Room


Designing a shower room might not be one of the easiest tasks in the world but it’s certainly rewarding. Just think, after hours of research, planning and fitting, how satisfying it would be to see your dream shower room in the flesh. Keep reading for advice and inspiration.

How to Design Different Types of Shower Rooms

While you may think a shower room is simply that (a bathroom with a shower instead of a bath) you would be wrong. There are many different types of shower rooms to choose from, which is why we’re going to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each type, below.

Walk in Shower Room


A walk-in shower room features a walk-in shower enclosure with a shower tray. This style of enclosure, however, can vary significantly depending on the size you choose the type of tray and whether you choose to include a return panel. Keep reading to find out more about these different walk-in shower aspects.

One of the first considerations in a walk-in shower room should be the size of the shower enclosure. This allows you to look at appropriately sized shower trays and shower screens. Available in a range of styles, from classic chrome frames to black crittall glass and even fluted designs, there’s a shower screen to suit all.

Once you’ve chosen the size of your enclosure and the design of your enclosure screen, now’s the time to consider the type of shower tray you need. Two of the most common shower tray options are deep and low profile, but you’ll also find plenty of non-slip shower trays.

If you’re looking to create a minimalist, streamlined, look we suggest purchasing a low-profile shower tray as this will fit in seamlessly with both your shower screen and flooring. What’s more, due to the low-profile design it means there won’t be any unnecessary steps in and out of the shower, making it ideal for those with mobility issues.

Wet Rooms


Wet rooms vary slightly from a walk-in shower enclosure, their main difference being the lack of a shower tray. While all other aspects of the enclosure are the same, instead of fitting a shower tray, a wet room features a built-in drain within the floor. This is usually installed at a slight slope, allowing water from the shower to drain away quickly and in the correct direction, to prevent any unwanted flooding.

While the choice of shower screen is still important in a wet room there are other areas to consider. For example, it’s best to choose high-quality nonslip flooring, as flooring in a wet room is likely to get wetter than in a standard shower room or bathroom. This is particularly important if the wet room will be used by the elderly or those with mobility issues.

As wet rooms aren’t as straightforward to create as a bathroom or shower room, we advise contacting a professional wet room installer to advise on the positioning of your shower and the work needed. This certainly isn’t a job for a DIY novice.

Accessible Shower Room


If you’re designing a shower room for the elderly or disabled, the space must be fully accessible and free of trip or slip hazards. Depending on the needs of the individuals intending to use the space, you’ll likely want to create either a standard shower room with a large walk-in enclosure and a low-profile anti-slip tray, or a wet room.

Both designs have their positives and negatives. While wet rooms can allow for designs perfect for those in a wheelchair, they can, however, create a slightly more dangerous, slippery environment due to the lack of a shower tray, especially if you don’t choose anti-slip floor tiles.

However, wet rooms and walk-in shower rooms provide a wonderful opportunity to install items such as shower seats and grab rails due to the larger design of the shower area when compared to a standard shower enclosure.

Small Shower Room


While you may think designing a small shower room is more difficult, you may be wrong. As you don’t have to fit in items such as shower baths or freestanding baths, this tends to leave you slightly more usable space. No matter their design, shower enclosures don’t need to be as large as a bath and can fit neatly into one corner of the room.

Shower enclosures such as square and quadrant designs are ideal for smaller shower rooms, however, please bear in mind the space needed to get out of the enclosure and the opening style of the enclosure doors.

If you find it difficult to get an enclosure with suitable shower doors for your small space, why not consider a small walk-in shower enclosure? With no shower door, simply a small entrance to get in and out, this could be the perfect solution. Walk-in shower enclosures do, however, tend to be slightly larger than square or quadrant enclosures but they can fit in perfectly across one wall or into a space where a bath once was.

Design Considerations for Shower Rooms

Depending on the type of shower room you decide upon, there are plenty of considerations to make other than the style of shower enclosure you choose. From storage and décor to lighting and ventilation, there’s plenty more to consider. Keep reading for more info on these further design considerations.



Storage for a bathroom or shower room can often be neglected, even though it can be one of the most important aspects of the room. After all, without any storage space, where would you keep your spare toilet rolls?

With plenty of bathroom and shower room storage options available, it’s simply a question of choosing the best design for your needs. However, if you’re designing a wet room or shower room with a walk-in shower, you might need to consider the distance of the furniture from the shower. The last thing you want is a damp vanity unit or a wet and steamy mirror cabinet.

Alternatively, if you’re working in a small space, it might seem impossible to fit any storage into your shower room. However, this isn’t the case. One of the easiest ways to include storage in even a small shower room is with a bathroom mirror cabinet, allowing you to store small items such as make-up and toiletries out of sight.

If you’ve got a narrow but tall section of wall free, why not consider a tall storage cabinet, instead of a standard vanity unit? This clever storage solution features just as much storage space as most vanity units, while also allowing you to store items such as medication up high and away from children.



There are plenty of ways to add your design to a shower room, from wall and floor tiles to eye-catching pieces of furniture and even your bathroom sanitaryware, such as your toilet or basin.

If you’re looking to create a bright and vibrant shower room, you could fit patterned tiles or colourful bathroom wall panels to make your space stand out and catch the eye of envious visitors.

However, if you’re looking for a more classy and muted style, why not choose brushed brass fittings such as taps and your shower and shower screen? This will create a real tranquil adult feel to the space, even if the kids do have to use it once in a while!

If you want to create a natural space with plenty of touches of nature, wood tones are a great way to go. From natural wood vanity units to stylish yet practical wooden wall panelling, there are plenty of ways to add a touch of nature to your bathroom. You could even add one or two house plants or a jungle to the room.



Lighting is an important consideration in any shower room, and getting it right is essential. The last thing you want is one main light that’s too bright, and no smaller direct light options, for tasks such as shaving and applying makeup.

We would advise investing in a couple of different lighting options, such as spotlights to create atmospheric lighting that can be targeted at certain areas of the room, as well as more direct lighting such as a mirror cabinet with lights. This allows you to make the most of your shower room, no matter what you’re doing in there.



Even though ventilation isn’t one of the prettiest shower room design considerations it is, however, essential. Without sufficient ventilation, you could find yourself with a whole host of issues such as damp and mould, which not only look awful but can cause serious health and financial issues too.

One of the best ways to ensure your shower room has plenty of ventilation is to install at least one window and a bathroom extractor fan. If your shower room doesn’t have a window, however, this makes it more essential to have a bathroom extractor fan fitted.

Whether you have one or both ventilation options, it’s best to use them during and after every use of the shower, to ensure any damp and moisture are sucked out of the room. If possible, we suggest keeping your shower room window open as long as possible when at home to keep fresh air circulating in the room. Just because you can’t see any steam doesn’t mean there isn’t a build-up of moisture in the room.

On the other hand, if you only have an extractor fan, it’s a good idea to turn this on before showering and leave it running for a while after you have left the room, to ensure as much moisture as possible can be sucked out of the room. It is possible with extractor fans to purchase ones with automatic timers that turn on and off when the room reaches a certain humidity level. These, however, do tend to come with a slightly higher price tag.

Discover Plumbworld's Shower Room Range


At Plumbworld, we stock a wide range of shower room essentials, from showers to shower enclosures, shower trays, and shower doors. No matter your budget, we’ve got something for everyone, from classic contemporary square shower enclosures to high-end smart showers. Take a look at our website today to view our full range of shower room essentials.

If you found this post useful, you may also like – How to Design a BathroomWet Room and Walk-in Shower Enclosure Ideas - Shower Room Ideas for Small Spaces.

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