Toilet Upgrades: 10 Ways To Level Up Your Lavatory

Last Updated on May 8, 2024 by SampleBoard

A toilet makeover may not sound glamorous, but it’s something every homeowner should invest in occasionally.

Toilets are used throughout the day, arguably our home's most important plumbing fixture.

Upgrades can improve comfort, space efficiency, water usage, cleanliness, aesthetics, and overall toilet function.

Below are just a few examples of ways to improve your toilet. 

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Reconsider the bowl shape

Toilet bowls come in various shapes, each with cosmetic and practical benefits.

The most common and traditional style is a round bowl. Square bowls have become more popular and can provide a more modern look.

Meanwhile, slimmer oval shapes are designed for narrow spaces, and more squat round bowl designs are designed to provide more legroom in shorter spaces.

Of course, changing the shape of the bowl typically involves replacing the entire toilet, so take this into account.

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Splash out on a new seat

If your current toilet seat is old or damaged, it could be worth buying a new one. Alternatively, if you fancy a fresh look, you can replace it.

There are all kinds of wild styles of toilet seats out there to explore, including glittery toilet seats, aquarium-themed resin toilet seats, and even jungle print toilet seats!

For something slightly rustic, consider an unpainted natural wood toilet seat. For a touch of faux luxury, consider a marble-effect toilet seat.

Make sure you choose a toilet seat to fit your toilet’s unique bowl shape. 

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Switch to a soft-close seat

Have you had enough of hearing the toilet lid slamming down every time someone uses it?

Soft-close toilet seats are a great solution. They are designed to close softly and quietly.

You can choose from an array of toilet seats with this mechanism or simply replace the existing hinges with soft-close hinges. 

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Go bold with different colors

White is the most popular color for a toilet because it’s often seen as the most hygienic color. However, you can buy toilets in various colors if you fancy something more daring.

Colored toilets were all the rage in the 70s and had been making a comeback.

Matt black toilets are also becoming more popular. When contrasted with light grey or white walls, they can pair well with matt black sinks and tubs.

If a non-white toilet bowl doesn’t appeal to you, you could always add a pop of color with a colored toilet seat. 

This could be matched with other accessories (for example, you could match a dark blue toilet seat with a dark blue bath mat or dark blue shower curtain). 

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Upgrade the flush

Most toilets have a single handle for flushing. However, multi-button flushes are becoming more popular, allowing you to control the water used in each flush. 

This can save you money on your water bill and have environmental benefits (check out more eco friendly bathroom ideas here).

Alternatively, you could take the opposite approach and opt for a chain flush.

Chain flush toilets with high-level cisterns can be a nice vintage touch in older properties and come in many designs. 

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Save space with a 2-in-1 toilet and sink

A 2-in-1 toilet and sink can be an innovative solution for tiny en-suites and small under-staircase toilets.

These toilets have a sink built into the cistern so that water used for hand washing is reused for flushing. 

This not only saves space but can also help you save money on your water bill by recycling water.

Unfortunately, there aren’t many designs for these toilets, which can incur extra plumbing costs. 

Hide the cistern in the wall

It’s possible to hide the toilet cistern in the wall of your bathroom. This could enable you to position the toilet bowl further back to take up less space.

Such toilets can be ideal in small bathroom spaces where there isn’t much clearance space between the toilet and the door. Buttons can be installed on the wall to operate the cistern.

The disadvantage of these toilets is that they cost more to install and can be more challenging and costly to repair. 

Explore toilet roll holder styles

Some people simply keep their toilet roll on the top of the cistern. However, toilet roll holders can make toilet paper easier to reach.

Wall-mounted toilet roll holders are the most popular option, but you may require permission from a landlord to install them if you live in a rental property.

Floor-standing toilet roll holders are better suited to renters and can sometimes contain poles or cages for stacking multiple spare toilet rolls. 

Wooden and rope toilet roll holders can provide a rustic touch, while plastic and chrome steel toilet roll holders can provide a modern touch. 

Such accessories could be matched with other accessories in your bathroom to create a sense of consistency.

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Invest in high quality rim blocks

Rim blocks are attached to the rim of a toilet and can help actively clean the toilet and keep it smelling fresh with each flush.

High-quality toilet blocks typically last longer and have a better cleaning action. Check out this guide to some of the top toilet rim blocks.

It’s worth noting that there are other accessories you can buy to reduce cleaning, such as adding blocks or chemicals directly to the cistern. 

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Lay down a toilet mat

A toilet mat is a commonly overlooked toilet accessory. These mats sit around the toilet floor and can help protect your flooring from splashing (which could be important if you have a hardwood floor).

Toilet mats can also keep your feet warm while you use the toilet (you can even buy heated toilet mats).

Such mats are available in various styles and materials—some are machine-washable, while others can be wiped down.