Unique Bathroom Ceiling Ideas You Will Love
Written by Milan Jara on 17th May 2019
Your bathroom ceiling may be the last thing on your mind when it comes to renovating your home. Maybe the bathroom ceiling looks perfectly fine to you, leaving you with no room to convince your significant other (or yourself) that spending money on it is worth it. After all, a lick of paint to match the color scheme of the walls or add an accent color and a few basic ceiling lights is fine, right?
Well, not really! To paint the ceiling or to have flat a sheetrock or popcorn ceiling is no way to live your fabulously decorative life. If the rest of your home has enjoyed the perks of getting a facelift, your bathroom ceiling deserves it, too!
Whether you are looking to improve a suspended ceiling or drop ceiling with beautiful panels or want a floor to ceiling overhaul and finally get rid of that ugly mold and mildew that has been taking hold in the corner, you’ve come to the right place.
Let’s take a look at how to create the most unique bathroom ceiling designs. We will show you how to incorporate these decorating ideas into your bathroom ceiling and overall interior design!
1. Styrofoam Ceiling Tiles
Rustic chic meets affordability—sign us up! Your bathroom ceiling will never look so good as it does with these Styrofoam ceiling tiles that add a bit of rustic chic vibes to the space. You can see the designer coupled these quaint and dainty ceiling tiles with shiplapped walls. This is a great combination to drive your bathroom ceiling toward the full-on cottage feel effect.
2. Fake Wood Beams
Larger bathrooms tend to have a hard time when it comes to decorating. Some homeowners simply do not know what to do with the bathroom ceiling itself. However, wood beams bring the space closer together, which means you can feel cozier while taking a bath.
Real wood beams are often expensive. There are faux wood beams you can buy that look exactly like the real deal but cost you way less money. Sometimes, they can even make a (purposefully) minimalistic area look more inviting and less sterile.
3. Shiplap Everywhere
Chip and Joanna Gaines from the television show Fixer Upper really brought shiplap into the spotlight in recent years. Thanks to these two rustic chic renovators, homes across the country have started using shiplap in any possible way they can.
One way that shiplap can be used (and look good) is on a bathroom ceiling. While it might not sound like it would fit at first, considering the overall scheme of the bathroom might persuade you otherwise. Shiplap on a bathroom ceiling really brings a different level of style to the space that otherwise is left to its own devices.
4. Ceiling Tiles
Whether you opt for a synthetic material like PVC panels or an all-natural material like metal, ceiling tiles are great options for any bathroom ceiling renovations. Sheetrock is boring and doesn’t have any character whatsoever. Bathroom ceiling tiles have quite the opposite effect on the bathroom dweller.
You could choose to go with something more standard like squares, or you could choose ceiling tiles that have designs. No matter your choice, you will transform your bathroom ceiling with ceiling tiles easily. Just be sure to pick materials that are water-resistant (ceiling tiles as well as installation materials).
5. Faux Crown Molding
This one might be slightly unexpected, but it is a design technique that could be inexpensive and easy to install. Faux crown molding is great for bathroom ceilings because they are lightweight, water-resistant, and easy to manipulate. You can place them on the bathroom ceiling in specific designs like squares or put battery-operated lights on their sides to give the illusion that you have trey ceilings on your bathroom ceiling.
If you don’t want to do a design, you could simply use the faux crown molding like you would any other crown molding—place it around the perimeter of the bathroom ceiling. Either way, you’re adding character and depth to an otherwise thoughtless area.
If you have a farmhouse or chic-styled bathroom design, then beadboard may be the best option. They are basically wood strip panels that lock together and create a continuous plank covering for the ceiling. The beadboard can be installed and left as is, or you can choose to whitewash the board or paint it another color. The beadboard draws your eye upward and will create more visual texture in the bathroom space.
7. Dark Painted Bathroom Ceiling
If you aren't afraid of painting your bathroom ceiling and want to create the illusion that the bathroom space is larger than it actually is, try painting the ceiling a darker color that will contrast with white walls. You can paint the ceiling one color, including the shower ceiling, and paint the walls a bright and crisp white.
8. Reclaimed Wood Planks
Real or reclaimed wood planks are a good alternative to faux wood beams; however, keep in mind they will be heavier and more expensive. The reclaimed wood planks allow you to achieve a nature-inspired aesthetic in your bathroom space. You can then use complementary lights to illuminate the room, giving you the feeling you are out in nature when night falls.
9. Color and Height
If you are looking for small bathroom design ideas, you have come to the right place. If you are short on bathroom space but still want your design to make a visual impact, you can do so easily with the use of color. Bathrooms with shorter or angled ceilings can benefit from some paint.
Use a fun color and paint the upper part of the wall and ceiling. A painted ceiling will keep the eye from wandering to where the end of the wall and the ceiling begins, making a small space with a shorter ceiling seem bigger and taller.
10. Stenciled Ceiling
Using stencils is another quick and inexpensive way to dress up your ceiling during a bathroom remodel. Not only does this allow you to add more of a creative touch to the bathroom, but it also gives you a ton of options to choose from. If you want a more modern bathroom design, go for golds and brass colors to use with your stencils.
Or you can use more muted colors like blues and lavenders that will go well with whitewashed walls. You can even find tin tiles in the same kind of design you can use elsewhere in the bathroom to pull the look together.
Small Bathroom Ceiling Design: Lighting
When it comes down to small bathroom ceiling design, lighting will prove to play a pivotal role in interior design. So, what lighting is best for bathrooms? Here are some ceiling lights you can consider for your bathroom space:
Pendant Light – A pendant light is a good option for the bathroom as long as it isn't close to any water sources. You should place your pendant light over the vanity mirror or placed to the side of the vanity mirror where it can hang a bit lower.
Recessed Lights – if you have a sloping ceiling, recessed lights can work as long as you make sure the beam of light from your recessed lights is shining in the right direction.
The best bathroom lighting for high ceilings is suspended ceiling lights. They are ideal for use with high ceilings because they hang down more than a few inches. You can also use recessed lights with reflector time and long-lasting LED bulbs or fixtures in bathrooms with high ceilings.
How Do You Waterproof a Bathroom Ceiling?
When choosing a new bathroom ceiling design idea, you want to be sure that the materials you choose are suitable for use in a high moisture environment like the bathroom.
If you choose a painted ceiling, find waterproof paints in semi-gloss or satin paint. Semi-gloss paint, for example, can ensure maximum moisture resistance.
- Acrylic Sheets: these sheets come in various sizes, shapes, colors, and designs, including transparent and opaque options. They are waterproof, so they can be used in high moisture areas without worrying about water damage.
- Water-Resistant Fiberglass: When a resin is applied to fiberglass and it cures, it becomes fully waterproof. You can choose these water-resistant fiberglass sheets to work with for your bathroom renovation. It is an inexpensive ceiling cover option and can also be used on the shower ceiling and walls.
- Metal Ceiling Tiles: These tiles are waterproof, easy to install, and can be removed easily if you want to go through a future renovation. They are easy to wipe down and clean and are resistant to staining.
- PVC Panels and Aluminum Composite Panels: PVC panels are made with waterproof components and good options for a bathroom or shower ceiling. This ceiling panel acts as a moisture barrier and can keep your ceiling dry and mold-free. Aluminum composite panels are two aluminum sheets and a core made with thermoplastic polyethylene. They are also water-resistant and a good choice for bathroom design.
- False Ceiling and Glass: If you choose false ceiling glass for your bathroom ceiling, you will find it is a great option for modern bathroom ceilings, makes a great insulator, and allows for proper ventilation and lighting.
- Drywall: You can use drywall in the bathroom as long as it is around a non-shower or tub space. Consider using moisture-resistant drywall or green board.
Tips Before Installing a New Bathroom Ceiling
1. Always pick a water-resistant material. This might seem like a no-brainer for most of you, but you’d be surprised how many people neglect this when selecting a material. If you choose something that isn’t water-resistant, your bathroom ceiling could suffer from mold, water damage, or possible rot underneath the surface. You can easily find out whether the material is resistant to water by asking local hardware professionals.
2. Choose caulk and other installation materials that are also water-resistant. If you use regular caulk, you are not guaranteed that water won’t degrade the material over time. There are water-resistant caulk options that you can find at your hardware store.
3. Be careful of any plumbing that may be in the bathroom ceiling during installation. Make sure you know where pipes are located, what to do with the shower head plumbing, etc. Ask your builder for the blueprint plans if possible, or consult a plumber before installing a new bathroom ceiling. Their job might not be to install the bathroom ceiling for you, but they can help you scope out what to avoid and how to avoid it. Plumbing issues are not cheap, and they are definitely something you can avoid!
4. Make your cuts prior to installation. You might have an exhaust fan, light fixtures, and/or showerheads that will require special attention before installing a new bathroom ceiling. The new bathroom ceiling you’re planning to install might not require any prior cuts to the material. If it does, you should cut it before you start the installation. There is nothing harder than trying to cut while the material is on the ceiling!
5. Before installing any new material to your bathroom ceiling, inspect the current ceiling for any mold or water damage. If you find anything concerning beneath/on the surface of your bathroom ceiling, you will need to get a licensed professional to inspect the concern immediately. If you install new material over the mold or water damage, you could be risking future problems that will require much more money to fix later down the road. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
Giving your bathroom ceiling a facelift could be something you never thought of before today, but you’ll be glad you did! While most people don’t look above the shower curtain, when you do, you’ll be happy to see the overall finished product that your bathroom ceiling and how it can dramatically improve your interior.