IKEA bathroom hacks - 10 upscale makeovers for a chic spa-like retreat

From floating cabinets to blingy brass sinks, these IKEA bathroom hacks will add a luxe look to your space...

Ikea bathroom hacks with dark wood fluted vanity units and dark walls by Superfront
(Image credit: Superfront/Karl Anderson)

IKEA bathroom hacks allow you to create customized pieces that blend form and function for a practical bathroom that's also visually pleasing.

You don't have to spend a fortune on any of these IKEA hacks, either. They will still look like they were curated by a top interior designer. In fact, high-end interior gurus often employ designer IKEA hacks to get a luxe look on a budget.

When it comes to creating a contemporary bathroom, everything from 'custom-built' tall cabinets to floating storage and fluted wooden double vanity units can be created with a little extra imagination.

We've rounded up some of our favorite IKEA bathroom hacks below so you can get that modern luxury spec for less.

IKEA bathroom hacks

1. Create a modern farmhouse double vanity unit

Ikea bathroom hacks with oak double vanity and unit

(Image credit: @jackie_ziz)

The modern farmhouse aesthetic is an enduring look that can be achieved with clever IKEA storage hacks.

'In our primary bathroom, we used a combination of IKEA's Sektion cabinets, IKEA's Maximera drawers, and Semihandmade's CLJ Cove door and drawer fronts to achieve the look of a custom, light wood 93" double vanity,' says Jackie, of @jackie_ziz. 

'For the vanity base built from Ikea's Sektion line, we used three 15x24" Sektion base cabinet frames for the drawers stacks, and two 24x24" Sektion base cabinets (without doors). 

'For the drawers, we used nine Maximera medium 15x24" drawers (with no fronts). We went to IKEA to order the cabinets, and they helped us plan out exactly what we needed, including door hinges, suspension rails, and cabinet legs. 

'Then, we ordered the drawer fronts and cabinet doors from Semihandmade to get the look we wanted. This method definitely took some work (and math!), but it allowed us to get a custom-style vanity in our new bathroom that fit within our budget.'

2. Pair sage green units with botanical wallpaper

Ikea bathroom hacks green vanity unit and botanical wallpaper

(Image credit: @malmrosvillan)

Just because it's a functional space doesn't mean your modern bathroom ideas can't be fun, creative and expressive, as well as calming and serene.

By introducing on-trend botanical wallpaper with soft, contrasting colors, @malmrosvillan has managed to create a space that blends serenity with personality, as well as practicality.

She says: 'We used two 80x80x60 and one 80x40x60 IKEA Metod kitchen cabinets to make our bathroom vanity unit.

'Before we put the pieces for the cabinets together we cut the sides from 80cm to 60cm so it would be a good height on the finished bathroom sink. So when we put the cabinets together, it was two 80x60x60 and one 60x40x60. 

'The floor plinth is 12cm high, so we made legs for the cabinets in that height and put it flush with the front edge of the cabinets. So when the the floor plinths would be equal to the fronts of the cabinets; it's like a box that the cabinets ate standing on. 

'We then added a countertop from IKEA called Ekbacken, and the fronts are IKEA Sävedal; the doors are 60x40 and the fronts for the drawers are 40x20.'

3. Opt for a Scandi-inspired finish

Ikea bathroom hacks Scandi style vanity blond wood by KOAK Design

(Image credit: KOAK Design)

If you're not a DIY fan, there are a number of companies that can help you get that bespoke, customized look on an affordable budget - without the elbow grease.

One such company is KOAK Design, which supplies Scandi-style oak fronts for the IKEA Godmorgen units.

Jimmy, of KOAK Design, says: 'The Godmorgon series from IKEA is popular for bathroom furniture. We make suitable fronts for this with an optional concrete top or marble top.

'If you want to use a fixed sink (eg. from IKEA), we make the side panels to replace the side panels from IKEA to prevent the furniture from becoming too wide.'

We love this look, which mixed an industrial aesthetic (hello, matte black sanitaryware), with light oak for a modern Nordic style.

4. Team a fluted vanity unit with marble tops

Ikea bathroom hacks terracotta vanity unit and marble

(Image credit: @oakappledecor)

Marble bathroom ideas are among the most glamorous finishes you can choose, but they can lean on the expensive side.

Why not pair your marble with an IKEA bathroom vanity hack for a designer look without the hefty price tag headache?

Marissa @oakappledecor cleverly did just that to create this ultra-stylish retreat. She explains: 'For the tall units at the side we replaced the glazing in the IKEA Billy/Oxburg with a reeded glass to obscure the contents. You could use a reeded glass film too. We then painted the units and replaced the handles. 

'For the vanity drawers we attached reeded stripwood to the front of the drawers. We did this across the top and bottom drawers together and then cut them apart afterwards to make sure the reeded pattern lined up. 

'We then painted with Little Greene Ashes of Roses and added handles from Superfront.'

5. Get a designer-worthy look

Ikea bathroom hack with Godmorgon vanity unit by Sarah Sherman Samuel

(Image credit: Sarah Sherman Samuel)

'Guest bathrooms are the perfect place to have a little more fun,' says top designer Sarah Sherman Samuel, who's something of a designer IKEA hacks queen. She used the IKEA Godmorgon units to create this stunning vanity in the chic guest bathroom of a beautiful post-modern house project.

She continues: 'I used all Delta Faucet fixtures, Allied Maker lighting, Villa Lagoon tile, my own SSS Quarterline cabinet doors in Desert Grey for Semihandmade for the major IKEA hack vanity, and my own wood hardware line (I used the appliance pulls for the extra large size) for Park Studio rounded out the design.

'Like I mentioned, I used Delta Faucet fixtures throughout in their Champagne Bronze™️ finish. I love that it is a warm metal but isn’t too blingy, like a polished brass, so it is perfect for anyone that wants the warmth but is too wary of going with a gold finish. The Trinsic® sink faucets have clean modern lines so the marble backsplash detail really shines.'

See more about the guest bathroom project at sarahshermansamuel.com.

6. Add a refined elegance with dark wood and walls

IKEA bathroom hacks dark wood fluted vanity by Superfront

(Image credit: Superfront/Karl Anderson)

Step up the sophisticated factor with an elegant dark wood double vanity unit IKEA bathroom hack and moody dark walls.

The white tile backsplash ensures the unit stands out, and is picked out by the stunning bone china wall lights above.

The chic fluted bathroom vanity idea was created with an IKEA Metod frame and sanitaryware, sink, legs and fronts from Superfront, which makes stylish finishes to fit IKEA frames. The pieces include: Superfront Vertical fronts in Umber Wood; Bar 60 handles in Umber Wood; Slender Low legs in Steel; Supersink in Steel and Tapwell Evo Mixer Tap in Chrome.

7. Fashion a modern floating cabinet

Ikea bathroom hacks floating cabinet by Semihandmade

(Image credit: Mitch Johnson/Anna-Lisa Horton)

Floating cabinets are a great small bathroom idea giving the illusion of more space. And what's better than small bathroom ideas on a budget?  

This IKEA Godmorgon bathroom hack allows you to create a bespoke floating vanity without breaking the bank, thanks to Semihandmade - a company that helps you create high-style looks from IKEA bases.

Semihandmade says: 'Floating bathroom vanities are a popular choice in contemporary designs, but the basin sink in designer Anna-Lisa Horton’s Rockford, Illinois home takes this one above-and-beyond. 

'The choice of Semihandmade Impression fronts in Tahoe, paired with Half Moon handles, bodes well with the space’s modern bohemian vibe, complementing the warmth of the pink tiles from Mosaic Tile Supply.'

You could also recreate the cute mini side towel rail using the IKEA Osternas leather handles.

8. Go for a contemporary country look 

Ikea bathroom hacks modern white bathroom and Godmorgon wood vanity units

(Image credit: Rennai Hoefer)

Photographer Rennai Hoefer and her 6ft husband often found themselves crouching to use their bathroom. So a bespoke IKEA bathroom hack helped to solve their stooping problems.

The vanity is actually two IKEA Godmorgon units combined to appear like a single piece topped with a custom concrete countertop with integrated sinks. The couple hung it higher at 36 inches to accommodate their height. The beautiful oak fronts are Semihandmade's Impression Tahoe fronts. 

Rounded edges and brass found in the pulls, mirrors, and sconces soften the decor, as does the ceramic lamp, original farmland print, and vintage-style rug. 'I wanted to add layers so it wouldn’t feel too cool or too sterile,' Hoefer explains.

See more about the hack here.

9. Channel big impact with a small yet mighty brass sink

Ikea bathroom hacks small grey vanity with brass sink by Superfront

(Image credit: Superfront/Peter Alendahl)

Brass finishes really pop in this stunning marble bathroom - and prove that you don't need to go large to create a big impact.

The small vanity unit manages to be a focal point in the room, and you'd never know it was an IKEA Metod hack.

It's beautifully finished with Superfront Plus fronts in Thunder Grey, Pharmacy handles in Brass, Slender Low legs in Brass, Tapwell Evo Mixer Tap in Brass and, the star of the show, Superfront's Supersink in Brass. Who said DIY had to be hard?

10. Utilise a large space with 'custom-built' tall cupboards

Ikea bathroom hacks tall wooden cupboards using IKEA Sektion and Semihandmade

(Image credit: Reagan Taylor/Semihandmade)

Make the most of every inch of space in your bathroom using ceiling height IKEA hack cupboards with a custom-built aesthetic.

These clean-lined cabinets were created with a mix of IKEA Godmorgon and IKEA Sektion frames, and finished with fronts from Semihandmade.

The experts at Semihandmade comment: 'Designer Celine Ord created this Fredericksburg, Texas, space, using Semihandmade Impression fronts in Tahoe. Their seamless style, paired with minimal tab pull hardware from Goldenwarm, lends a tranquil feel to the space - even with an impressively high (six!) number of drawers incorporated into their design. 

'The bathroom mirror, aligned flush with the tallest cabinet, make the substantially sized room look even bigger.'

Ruth Doherty is a lifestyle journalist based in London. An experienced freelance digital writer and editor, she is known for covering everything from travel and interiors to fashion and beauty. She regularly contributes to Livingetc, Ideal Home and Homes & Gardens, as well as titles like Prima and Red. Outside of work, her biggest loves are endless cups of tea, almond croissants, shopping for clothes she doesn’t need, and booking holidays she does.