Shower storage ideas have come a long way since the time when the main option was a humble shower caddy. While there's nothing wrong with a chic shower rack, there are plenty of clever ways to create shower storage solutions that will also offer a design-driven aesthetic.
'In the bathroom, it’s important to keep toiletries easily accessible,' says James Lentaigne, Creative Director at Drummonds. 'Each area of the bathroom - sink, bath and shower - should feature some form of storage in order to keep toiletries close to hand when needed.'
Storage is an important part of your walk-in shower ideas and are a fine detail that shouldn't be overlooked.
'When we design bathrooms, we are always mindful of storage, towels and toiletries that all need a practical and stylish home,' says Tom Cox of design studio HÁM interiors. 'We often use vanities with deep pull out drawers not just because they look good but are a practical option. Inside the shower we like to create recesses for the toiletries, it’s visually more harmonious to continue the repeating tile pattern and a practical space-saver, too.'
12 Shower storage ideas
1. Create an in-built bench
If done cleverly, a bench can easily be incorporated into small bathroom shower ideas, taking up only the dead space inside the shower area.
'An in-built shower bench offers a handy, easy-to-reach space to store shower products away from the floor and is also useful if you're looking to future-proof your bathroom as it gives you a place to perch,' says Richard Fox, a senior designer at Ripples. The bench need only be the depth of one tile, and doesn't need to be a place to sit on. The shower installer can easily create this while remodelling the space, and it doesn't need to encroach more than about 2 inches into the floor area.
Combine the bench with extra storage solutions, like a recessed wall niche, to optimize the space.
2. Add a rustic wooden stool
Not all shower storage ideas need to involve building work, or even cabinets. Stools are not just handy for sitting on while you boost that lymphatic drainage with a body brush, they're also the ideal storage. Not only do they break the sightline if you're focussing on wet room ideas, but they also offer the perfect spot to pop your shower gel, towels, or soap.
'Storing products on top of a wooden bench or stool (sealed) by the side of the shower is a wonderful way of adding texture and color to the room,' says Xander Shreenan, interior designer at Dowsing & Reynolds.
Wooden stools also fit within our design ethos of the eclectic approach to decor - a rustic addition to something as glam as marble bathroom ideas.
3. Make a recessed wall niche
A wall niche needs to be planned at the start of a shower project, but isn't difficult for your tradesperson to add in. It need only be the depth of around two inches, enough to be able to hold bottles of product, a razor, and no more. Subtle and elegant, niches are one of the most modern and aesthetically pleasing shower storage ideas.
'We wanted to have storage but didn’t have an awful lot of space to play with,' explains Katy of @placefortyeight. 'We decided on a niche using the same tile so it’s subtle and almost invisible.'
As seen above, it's also a useful spot to perch a trailing plant, which will love the humidity of the room. 'Instead of a traditional trim we used the same tile cut into strips: it feels more hotel-smart,' Katy adds.
4. Allow extra space with a shelf inside a wall niche
Double up on storage space inside a wall niche by adding a fitted shelf - the ideal shower wall idea.
You can pop small towels or a body brush on the top, and your shampoo and conditioner on the bottom, so your floor space stays clutter-free, demonstrated in the stylish bathroom by Kitesgrove above.
'Working with a predominantly fresh, white palette helps more compact bathrooms feel spacious,' says Clara Ewart, Senior Designer at Kitesgrove. 'By incorporating natural materials like marble, the overall scheme remains light and bright whilst the veining of the stone helps to create contrast and character. To maximize storage space within this bathroom, we incorporated niche shelving within the shower as well as designing the vanity to include subtle under-basin drawers.'
5. Fashion a double wall niche
There are plenty of options when it comes to styling your recessed wall niche but, if you have enough space, adding two is a great shower storage idea.
You'll double up on your storage surfaces, and also add visual interest at the same time.
'I'm always drawn to symmetry, so I like this approach,' says Livingetc editor Pip Rich. 'For extra visual impact, use different tiles within the wall niche to create a cool contrast with the shower wall.'
6. Use a built-in shelf space
A really sleek version of these shower storage ideas is to create a built-in shelf from the planning stages.
Not only does it look modern and contemporary, it offers storage space that utilizes the full width of the shower wall. This means you can place all your products on here, leaving the floor space clutter-free and calming.
This black and brass scheme by Bert & May above is a moody, dramatic take on bathroom tile ideas.
'Beautifully crafted, single color tiles can create a feeling of depth within the shower space, with the nuanced texture and tones softening the black and allowing the materiality to come to the fore,' says Lee Thornley, founder of Bert & May. 'The convenient and discreet shelf is tiled in the same way to make it seamlessly disappear in the space, which also has a modern feel.'
7. Hang a floating bench
We love this bathroom storage idea from Mandarin Stone - fixing a wall-hung bench, which not only offers a handy spot to sit, but creates storage space for all your goodies. What's more, it adds another layer of texture and character to the room, and works wonderfully with the terrazzo tiles and brass finishes for a balanced scheme.
You need to think about a material that will withstand water staining but also be slim enough for the the tiles behind to hold. Sealed wood veneer is the best to use for this approach.
8. Place hooks on the shower wall
A simple idea, but one that is worth repeating as it's quick and affordable to do. You can place anything on a hook, from your towel (avoiding that cold-air body-shock as you step out of the shower) to a body brush or your shower gel.
Pair with another form of storage, like a rustic wooden bench where you can place your shampoo and conditioner, for a contemporary yet characterful look.
'Covering the walls and floor of the shower area in the same tile creates a space that you are fully immersed in, with the simple geometric tessellation building an intriguing but not overwhelming background,' says Bert & May's Lee Thornley. 'Paired with a simple towel hook and wooden bench for storage, the space feels tranquil and functional.'
9. Embrace the return of the rack
Not always seen as the most desirable option, shower racks are having a renaissance thanks to a host of contemporary new designs and modern takes.
If creating a wall niche is not logistically possible or not in your budget, you can style a wall-hung shower rack to look elevated using clever shower tile ideas. You can choose from a traditional chrome rack and add elegance by hanging a separate soap holder; use appealing products for a high-end finish.
'In the shower area, if the depth of the wall allows, it is good to have a built-in alcove to house shampoo, body wash,' says Drummonds' James Lentaigne. 'Failing that, bottle racks are perfect and can be positioned in exactly the right place for easy access.'
For a more modern look, install a clean-lined brass rack, which looks particularly elegant with a backdrop of marble tiles.
10. Attach a corner caddy
Similar to the shower rack, the humble shower corner caddy is making something of a comeback thanks to its ease of installation and clever use of space.
Try stacking two or three on top of each other to make the most of the wall space and create a layered storage solution for all your shower necessities.
11. Go wall-to-wall with a recessed shelf
Supersize your recessed shelf by utilizing the entire width of the shower wall for the ultimate shower storage idea.
'Creating a wall-to-wall recess with tiles is a brilliant way to maximize space whilst maintaining style,' says Sylwia Jacob of Original Style. 'These marble-effect tiles are perfect for achieving this. They are large in format, meaning fewer cuts are required for a seamless look and striking effect.'
12. Get your loot on the ladder
Not only does ladder storage look cool, it also offers a versatile space for all your shower essentials, and works perfectly in wet room ideas.
You can hang your towels, body brushes or gels, and, if you invest in a ladder with rungs and shelves, there's also space to sit your bottles, or place a wire basket for even more storage.
Opt for a cocooning, dramatic industrial vibe (above), with matte black finishes, or choose a modern rustic look with earthy materials (below).
Original Style's Sylwia Jacob says: ‘The above minimalist scheme with matching floor and wall tiles works to give the impression of a larger space, and looks chic paired with natural textures, simple storage in the form of a practical ladder, and stylish accessories - all lending a Japandi vibe to achieve a calming atmosphere.'
How do I add storage to my shower?
'Incorporating inset shelves is a great way to add storage to your shower that works seamlessly with the space,' says Xander Shreenan, interior designer at Dowsing & Reynolds.
He adds: 'For a quick update to your storage, fixing wall-hanging metal shelves or racks that have been sealed could be a great solution. These can come in an array of finishes and colours so can be a fantastic way to add personality to your space, for example, a pink metal shelf.
What can I use instead of a shower caddy?
'Wooden footstools and benches are a popular alternative to shower caddies because they're practical but also have a lovely aesthetic,' comments Senior Designer at Ripples, Richard Fox. 'Not only do they give extra surface space to place products but they double-up as the perfect resting spot!'
How can I hide my shower products?
'Hiding products can be tricky, especially if they're in brightly coloured packaging as this can jar with an otherwise cohesive scheme,' states Xander Shreenan.
'Instead of hiding your bathroom products think about dispensing them into pumps and containers that complement your room style... Think brown glass bottles or smoked green containers, [as seen in the beautiful bathroom by Bert & May above]. These can even be personalised with tags or simply taking a marker pen in a contrasting colour and writing on them.'
And if you're happy to move your shower products as needed, you can place them in a cupboard. Ripples' Richard Fox says: 'An easy place to add storage in a shower room is underneath the washbasin; these deep drawers are great for hiding away cleaning products, shampoo bottles and other shower products.
'If you have internal stud walls, space can be maximised by installing a recessed mirror cabinet which not only adds extra storage but also lighting and a charging socket (some even have speakers).'
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.
What are 'Vanilla Girl' interiors? Here's one thing we love (and three things we don't) about this latest viral style trend
Characterized by vanilla's comforting qualities this trending aesthetic embraces warm neutrals and soft textures. The question is, is it too bland?
By Lilith Hudson • Published
What are the different types of bathroom? The 5 layouts to know, and what they mean
Learn about the types of bathrooms and the ones suited to your home size, use and function
By Aditi Sharma Maheshwari • Published