Master Suite Bathroom Vanities - How To Choose a Design

What To Look For In Master Suite Bathroom Vanities

Remodeling your en suite bathroom is an exciting project that consists of plenty of decisions. From tiling to flooring, stand alone tub or tub/shower, you'll be making choices that both offer functionality and aesthetic beauty. One important element that can transform the style of your bathroom as well as be a major focal point in your design is your bathroom vanity.

Bathroom vanities come in a wide variety of sizes, materials, and styles. Whether your style leans toward a contemporary floating frosted glass vanity, an open shelving model, or a more traditional fixed solid wood one, you can find a vanity to meet your style.

Whether you choose a standard vanity or opt for a custom or semi custom design, here's a quick run down of what to look for when choosing the perfect vanity for your master bathroom remodel.

The Advantages of Custom Cabinetry

Before we get into details about how to choose the perfect vanity, a quick word about custom cabinetry. While there are many different choices available for this cornerstone piece of your bathroom décor, custom cabinetry offers you the ability to design exactly what you want, with no size or materials restrictions.

A quality custom made vanity is typically made using the highest quality materials, joinery, and craftsmanship. Your vanity can be custom fit into any space, unlike standard cabinets which are available in 3-inch increments (24”, 30” 33” etc.). While semi custom cabinetry offers you some flexibility on size, custom cabinetry offers a higher-quality in materials and construction.

While the variety of vanity designs today means you'll have an easy time finding what you need regarding design and storage, many designers still recommend custom cabinetry for greater efficiency. Custom designs are not always more expensive than standard cabinets, and they offer the benefit of endless design styles and configurations. Custom vanities also allow you to add amenities that you just won't get in an off the shelf vanity. You can incorporate electricity if you want to have your hair dryer, electric toothbrush or other electric appliances ready to go. Or create custom storage and any other details that often get overlooked, like special features that work if you're left handed.

Whether or not you choose custom cabinetry for your master bath is dependent upon your long term plans, creative vision, and budget. For example, if you're planning on selling your home in a few years, an off-the-shelf vanity might work, but if this is your forever home, custom cabinetry can last a lifetime.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Bathroom Vanities

When choosing a vanity, your have several factors to consider as you begin to research your best option. First considering custom, semi-custom or standard construction and materials. You also need to consider physical attributes like the space available in the bathroom, how your vanity will be placed in the space, plumbing and more. Consider these five aspects as you narrow your focus.


Make sure your vanity doesn't disrupt the flow or block the shower door swing when open. Consider access for cleaning, sharing the room in the morning, etc.

Additional Costs Like Plumbing

Let's face it; we need to keep within a budget. If you're installing a vanity that will need plumbing changes, it can eat up a much of your budget, which means you may need to downgrade your vanity or vanity top to stay within budget.


Vanities are placed in high traffic areas that are humid and wet. The materials you choose need to stand up to a pretty challenging environment. Materials that perform well in these conditions like wood veneers, laminates and thermafoil are common choices, but solid wood if properly sealed and lacquered is durable, functional and beautiful. Try to avoid MDF construction, while it's affordable, it doesn't stand up to a moist environment well. When choosing a top think solid surface or natural stone, something with no difficult to keep clean grout lines.

When designing your bathroom, try to work from the countertops first. It's easier to find other elements like tile and cabinets if you're working with a unique countertop like granite or marble.

Assess Your Storage Needs

Storage in the bathroom is important! Take inventory of what you already store in your vanity and organize everything. Will you need room for additional cabinetry for linens, drawers to store smaller items? Extra countertop space for makeup. Spend some time and really think about your needs, especially if you're planning on having custom cabinets built!


Ultimately the size of your space will determine the scale of your vanity. Cramming a huge vanity into a small space just for the storage makes no sense. The design is a significant part of the equation, and in design, balance is the key. Evaluate your lifestyle, and your needs and the size of your vanity will become apparent.


If you're planning on aging in place, a “taller” vanity will make washing easier as you age. Standard vanities are mostly 32-inches tall, but some designers suggest aiming for 34 or 35-inches.

Ultimately your goals, lifestyle, personal aesthetic style and budget will dictate the proper bathroom vanity for you. If you're planning on aging in place, universal design possibilities will affect your choice. If you're planning on selling your home, a standard vanity may be a more efficient and affordable option than a set of custom cabinets for your master bath. Work with your designer and design build firm to define your needs and understand your options!

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About Toulmin Kitchen & Bath Design - We're West Alabama's award-winning, premier kitchen and bath showroom. We're experts who are known for a design-build process that makes the construction process stress-free. Contact us to schedule an appointment for a design consultation.