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Making any changes to your home is a lot more complicated than anyone realizes. From equipment to materials to measurements, there's so much information to keep in mind. Even a room as basic as a bathroom comes with important decisions. Whether you're building your dream home from the ground up or renovating the master bath, you'll likely run into the question, "What cabinets do I put in the bathroom?" Not to worry, because we've researched bathroom cabinet height to help you decide on the best fit.
Simply put, bathroom cabinets are usually anywhere from 30 to 36 inches. The height that you and your family should choose will largely depend on the purpose of the bathroom in question. Who will be using the bathroom and how you plan on styling it will both affect how tall your cabinets should be.
While that may all sound intimidating, we're here to help. In this guide, we will break down all your cabinet concerns and ensure you end up with the bathroom of your dreams.
What are the standard sizes for bathroom vanities?
Standard bathroom vanities are typically between 30 to 32 inches tall. This standard height comes from the massive increase of suburban houses being built following WWII. After the baby boom, families began moving out of the city and into neighborhoods. The bathrooms in their homes were often shared by the whole family, and as a result, bathroom cabinets were made short enough for both children and adults to use comfortably.
Today, many homes still have standard height vanities. Because of their size, they make a great option for a guest bathroom or any other that may be used by children. In addition, if you have a family member that is wheelchair-bound, anything below 32 inches is still accessible for them. This makes standard height cabinets perfect for a mother-in-law suite or a long-term house.
For a smaller space, we recommend this 18.4" x 24" x 30" vanity. It's the perfect combination of classy and cute, and even has an excellent star rating from customer reviews.
How high is a comfort height vanity?
In more recent years, there has been a trend toward taller cabinets, especially in master baths. Bathroom cabinets that have a comfort height are about four inches taller than the standard height cabinets. This puts them between 34 and 36 inches.
But why the shift up? There are actually a few reasons higher bathroom cabinets have become available. The most obvious is that not all houses have children living in them anymore. Since the standard size was based around the idea that a child may be using the sink, it doesn't make sense to install them in a bathroom that will not be used by children. The other reason taller cabinets have become available is that the general population has become taller as well.
It may not seem like a lot, but the four inches actually make a big difference. Comfort height vanities ensure that adults using these bathrooms are more, well, comfortable than they would be using a standard vanity. Trust us, your back will be grateful for the extra four inches when it comes time to wash your hands.
Are bathroom vanities the same height as kitchen cabinets?
A couple of weeks into a home renovation is when the excitement for a new start begins to fade. By that point, you're just ready for it to be over. It's tempting to give into shortcuts when possible and avoid making any more decisions. Buying the same cabinets for your bathroom that you did for the kitchen can seem like a cost-efficient way to lighten your load, but it's not as straightforward as you'd think.
Typical kitchen cabinets are 36 inches tall and 24 inches deep. Depending on whether you opt for standard or comfort bathroom cabinets, this may be the same height as the cabinets in your bath. However, bathroom cabinets tend to be more shallow, coming only 21 inches out from the wall. Anything deeper could take up too much room in the small space. For that reason, it isn't ideal to use kitchen cabinets in place of those meant for the bathroom.
What is the best height for bathroom vanities?
After all of that information, you may still be a little overwhelmed. We threw a lot of numbers your way, and you're probably unsure of what cabinet height is best for your bathroom vanity. The thing is, there isn't a cut and dry best height. It depends entirely on what you're planning on doing with your bathroom and who will be using it.
If you have young kids, plan on starting a family, or know you will be hosting children who may use the bathroom, go for a standard height. This way, you won't have to worry about keeping clunky stools in the bathroom that will only take up valuable space and be a potential tripping hazard. After all, no one wants to stub their toe on a footstool while heading to the restroom in the middle of the night.
However, if you know that children will not be using the bathroom, there's no reason to get standard cabinets. The taller comfort height cabinets are ideal for master baths households without kids. Do the kind thing for your back and go with the extra four inches.
The other thing to think about when considering a cabinet height is the type of sink you want in your bathroom. For instance, if you decide to get a vessel sink vanity, which is when the sink sits atop the counter, your cabinets will have to be standard height. Otherwise, washing your hands can be very difficult.
How do you style bathroom vanities?
Okay, so you know what size cabinets to get. Now it's time to add style to your bathroom.
There are a couple of ways to do this. The first and easiest way to style a vanity is with a coat of paint. For a modern, neutral look, we recommend a dark gray finish to your cabinets. If you're looking to open up the space, painting your cabinets white will make your bathroom look larger. If neither of those sounds like the perfect fit, check out our more extensive cabinet color list for inspiration.
Another way to style your new bathroom vanity is with a neat backsplash. Not only are backsplashes pretty to look at, but they also help protect your bathroom wall behind your vanity. With so many options out there, you're sure to find something that fits both your style and your budget.
Want to know more about the importance of backsplashes? Check out our article, "Does A Bathroom Vanity Need A Backsplash?"
The tall and the short of the matter
Before you purchase any cabinets for your bathroom, remember to take some time to consider these two things: who will be using it, and what stylistic elements are you including? Once you have those things figured out, you can start thinking about whether you would like the shorter standard height or the taller comfort height.
You want to be certain that your new bathroom is everything you wanted and more, and it starts with a few measurements. Because at the end of the day, when it's time to brush your teeth, your family deserves a vanity that measures up.