Dark Bathrooms – Here’s What You Need To Know

Hi Everyone,

Thanks for all of your terrific input on Sunday’s post about an idea I had to update my “mistress” bathroom in my new place. Well, almost new place in Backbay, Boston. The closing is scheduled for November 6th. And, I just got the commitment letter from the bank. But, that isn’t stopping them from further torture. Nosiree. I know that many of you will be able to commiserate. Thank you in advance even if it’s just sending good vibes through the airwaves!

If you’re just tuning in and going WHAT???


Yes, I am in the process of purchasing a beautiful 2-bedroom duplex in a 140 year-old brownstone, in the historic area of Backbay, located in the heart of Boston. This is a real pinch-me moment in my life!

There was a comment on Sunday’s post about the mistress bathroom (I’m calling it) which has inspired me to riff off of that post.

Since I had chosen a dark, rich blue (Farrow and Ball Hague Blue) as the wall color, the comment conveyed concern that such a dark room and one with no windows would make it difficult to put on make-up. She felt that since there are no windows, she’d want to go with a very pale color.


Guys, sorry. And yes, I mean guy, guys.


You can go out and get a beer or something and come back. Or, maybe you’ll enjoy this post about mistakes guys make when decorating to impress women.

Or, this post about a crass dude who let his not-too-bright secretary order his furniture.

Some men and women will get a kick out of one of my favorite posts which has partially come true.


So, the main topic of this post is going to be dark bathrooms and why I want to have at least one, maybe both of them, in my new place.


Okay, here’s my take on the wall color and putting on makeup.

For the most part, I don’t think the wall color has a lot of bearing because if it tints what you see in the mirror, it’s going to tint everything evenly. What I think matters most is the lighting.

In fact, many of you know that I have a background in theatre and dance. In my younger days, I was in a lot of shows. And, I can’t recall one time where our dressing room had an exterior window. But, what most of them did have was terrific lighting.

I also did some film work and there were times when we were in a studio with black walls and getting our hair and makeup done.


Therefore, what is most important, I believe is the lighting.


The best lighting for a bathroom is soft and warm with little to no glare. (always on a dimmer) Plus, the lighting should be even so that there are no shadows.

As for the color of the light, you already know what your make up is. You’re just putting it on. For me, I just want to know that I don’t miss places where I didn’t blend correctly or that I have eyelashes clumped together; that sort of thing.


But, WHY do you want dark bathrooms, Laurel?


Great question. Well, for one thing, this is a chance to play up the drama of the room. This is perhaps best for powder rooms or small bathrooms like mine are, for the most part. In addition, most of my apartment will be light and bright. so, it will be refreshing having some variation for the pit stops. :]

Okay, let’s take a look at some exquisite dark bathrooms. And, maybe, by the time I’m done, you’ll want one too. If you don’t, that’s also fine.


Jean Stoffer Design - mother-daughter interior designers - Lakeside_smashing bathroom

Jean Stoffer


How gorgeous is this! I adore Jean’s work. In recent months, she has become like the BFF I’ve never met. haha.

So, the first thing I’d like to point out is when I say dark, I don’t mean a cave. Of course, you can do a dark bathroom where everything is dark, but I love dark bathrooms that have white or pale areas, as well.

Dark bathrooms also need great lighting and mirrors, of course. And, I love gold accents, as well.

And marble!


Savuti Wallpaper dark bathrooms - Cole & Sons wallpaper

Savuti Wallpaper by Cole & Sons

What a charming powder room. It is reminding me of this powder room we did a few years ago. Sorry, the photos aren’t the best.


Park and Oak Design - fabulous bathroom - gold mirror - wallpaper- Little Lotus - Galbraith and Paul

Above and below are two of my favorite bathrooms by Park and Oak.


Park and Oak Design - wonderful bathroom - brass fixtures - moulding

Yes, I realize that the only dark part of this bathroom is the vanity. However, I’d love to copy that moulding detail. I LOVE it!


Airbnb Backbay Boston - Black Marble tile bathroom - dark bathrooms - photo - LBI

This is a photo I took with my phone last month when I was in Boston. It’s the bathroom at the airbnb that my son Cale and I stayed at (yes, the one with the gloppy trim). We both loved the black and white marble in this chic little bathroom. I can’t say the lighting was the greatest. However, I don’t recall if I had struggles with my make-up. But, no one complained or looked at me like I was demented, so I guess it was okay.

By the way, when I was in Boston, you may recall this pic of me.


Well, I was standing in front of my building, the day before I went inside for the first time! Of course, it’s not a complete coincidence. That apartment had JUST gone on the market and I knew it would not last long.


House of Brinson - Dark Bathrooms - One Room Challenge 2018

House of Brinson – Dark Bathrooms – One Room Challenge 2018

Oh my! I’ll take this one! Please click the link above to see the rest of this magnificent space. If there’s a prize for the One Room Challenge, I sure hope they won it!

Oh, wow! I just read that they used one of the Laurel Home Paint Colors in my curated paint and palette collection. Benjamin Moore Anchor Gray. I’m not saying they used it because they saw it in my collection. But, it’s fantastic to see one of my chosen paint colors in situ!


Benjamin Moore anchor gray 2126-30

Benjamin Moore anchor gray 2126-30 is the quintessential charcoal gray with a teensy smidge of blue-green. It’s very sophisticated and can look fabulous in either traditional or contemporary rooms.


DXV Modulus tubs-toilet- bidet kitchen and bath kbis 2018

I don’t know what shade of gray this one is. However, I took this pic at the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) in January 2018.


Swan Architecture - chic black bathroom

Swan Architecture

How chic is this black bathroom!


You may recall this handsome English bathroom from the fabulous @tradchap on instagram.


Oh wow! He’s done a lot of redecorating!



DuPont_Corian_Peace dark bathrooms

DuPont_Corian_Peace dark bathrooms


Sabbe Interior design stunning dark bathrooms

Sabbe Interior design  Oh what a stunning bathroom. I need to check out this firm when I have more time.


Above, the fabulous bathroom by Nancy Keyes. Please follow Nancy on Instagram!



And the bathroom by Mark D. Sikes that inspired Nancy’s bathroom.


Christopher Guy windowless rooms mirrors dark walls via cozy stylish chic

Christopher Guy windowless rooms mirrors dark walls via cozy stylish chic.

This is a reminder that mirrors or at least one beautiful mirror are essential for dark bathrooms. Of course, there’s always at least one mirror in a bathroom.


Tim Barber - sage green bathroom

Tim Barber via House of Turquoise

Okay, I realize this isn’t terribly dark. It’s a mid-tone. However, from what I can see, there are no windows and I think it’s pretty freakin’ gorgeous!


Via Behance - dark green bathroomVia Behance – dark green bathroom

If this looks like it might be a restaurant bathroom, it’s because it is. But, I think this could be used as inspiration for a windowless dark bathroom with a vintage feel.


Chris Loves Julia - Dark Bathrooms - dark green and white bathroom

Chris Loves Julia

They love their dark bathroom! By the way, if you love that porcelain cement-tile-look, you can find it at Lowes!

Please also check out this post about current bathroom trends.

You might also get some good ideas from this post about windowless rooms.

Well, I think these bathrooms are too handsome! I hope you enjoyed them too.




PS: Please check out the newly updated HOT SALES.

The Serena & Lily 20% off sale is ending tomorrow 10.29.2020 at midnight PT


Welcome To Laurel Home!


Hi, I’m Laurel, and Laurel Home is the website and blog for Laurel Bern Interiors.
I’ve been creating new-traditional interiors since 1988. The blog is where I share all.

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