Upgrade Your Bathroom With A Steam Shower

You’re ready to take the next step towards bathroom bliss. You want your bathroom to become an oasis of calm and serenity. What bathroom shower ideas will take your bathroom to the next level?

What features do you add? In this post, I’m going to make a case for adding a built-in steam shower. We’re not going to stop there, because we’ll also look at:

  • Shower accessories
  • Bathroom organization ideas
  • Bathroom shelf ideas
  • Master bathroom ideas
  • Bathroom storage
  • Steam shower ideas
  • Steam shower design ideas
  • Bath accessories
Why a bathroom steam shower, in particular? Read on to find out.

What Is A Steam Shower Good For?

bathroom steam shower

There are a good few benefits. Throw in some shower shelves, a sanitary toothbrush holder for your bathroom, maybe a few other designer bathroom organizers and you have your own personalized, stylish spa space.

Great Skin

Steaming has long been used as a skin-saving treatment. The heat opens up the pores and causes you to sweat. Take things up a notch by scrubbing down, and you’ll find it easy to maintain clear, glowing skin.

It’s also a great way to ensure a clean, even shave and reduce razor burn. A razor and toothbrush holder for shower will help you achieve all your male grooming needs.

Better Circulation

Heat causes blood vessels to dilate and stimulates circulation. This, in turn, helps to speed the removal of toxins from the body.

It’s Easier To Breathe

There’s nothing quite like the agony of sinusitis. Fortunately, steam showers help unblock the nasal passages gently. It doesn’t matter if you’re suffering from a cold or hay fever.

Relief From Aches And Pain

steam shower ideas

Professional athletes have been relying on steam to help speed up recovery. The warmth eases aches and pains. The steam induces sweating and speeds up the removal of waste products like lactic acid.


This is one of the primary reasons to consider installing a steam shower. It’s soothing and relaxing. You’ll easily be able to nod off after a session.

Does A Steam Shower Need To Be Enclosed?

Yes. The shower should be completely enclosed to trap all the warmth inside. If it isn’t, the steam will condense on countertops, towels, and other surfaces in your bathroom, which increases the likelihood of mold.

It’s also important to watch the ceiling. Make sure the ceiling is watertight and slightly sloped. If it’s flat, steam will condense on it, and you’ll cold droplets of water dripping onto you.

How Much Does It Cost To Put In A Steam Shower?

The cost depends on your fittings. You’re looking at around $2,000 for a standard model. Double that if you want to add mood lighting or a sound system to the mix.

Is A Steam Shower The Same As A Sauna?

You’d think so, considering both use heat—but they are quite different. Saunas work on dry heat, whereas steam showers have high humidity levels.

Let’s look at the main differences:

What Is A Sauna?

sauna bathroom steam shower

A sauna is created using wooden planks, which enclose the floor, ceiling, and walls. The benches and the shower shelf are also wooden. These are standalone units, normally separate from the bathroom.

Traditionally, a fire is kept burning in the center of the room to provide the heat. In modern versions, however, this is replaced with a gas or electric heater. Volcanic rocks are put over the top of the heater to further raise the temperature.

As the heat is drier, you can increase the temperature more in a sauna. If you would like to add humidity, sprinkle water over the rocks. Ordinarily, though, humidity is lower.

Thanks to the higher temperature, you’ll sweat a lot more, which is great for detoxing.


What Is A Steam Shower?

Steam showers are different. They’re designed to be watertight and not to allow steam through. The whole area is kept sealed so that the steam is contained.

Unlike the natural wood in a sauna, non-porous materials are used in a steam shower design.

With a sauna, the heater is inside the room. In the steam shower, a generator heats the water. When it boils, steam is released into the shower area.

Humidity levels are high, which is one of the reasons you won’t achieve the same kind of heat as a sauna. It will feel just as hot, though.

The humidity is also great for respiratory health.

Are Steam Showers Worth It?

Now, we get to the crux of the decision. This is a pricey investment when you’re looking at shower ideas. Whether the extra expense is worth it is a matter of personal choice.

Start by asking yourself how often you’ll use it. Is this something you really need? Can you handle the heat?

Why not go to your local gym and get a day pass for their sauna? It’s not the same thing, but it’s close enough.

Personally, I feel it is a worthy investment. If you’re going to be putting in a new shower anyway, why not go with this luxurious option? The steam helps you relax, clears your skin, and soothes your muscles.

You will need to account for the extra electricity, but if you’re in great physical shape and operating on a tight budget, you will be able to reduce your number of sessions.


Can You Take A Regular Shower In A Steam Shower?

Yes, you can. This is easily done by changing the setting.


How Long Should You Stay In A Steam Shower?

That depends on two aspects—benefits and comfort levels. I find that a fifteen-minute session is more than ample. I do have a seat in the shower, though, for added comfort.

I’d be wary of staying in the steam shower for much longer than that. Firstly, dehydration becomes a problem. Secondly, you’ll get bored (you can’t read a book in there, after all).

Can You Convert A Shower into A Steam Room?

It’s not the easiest conversion in the world, but it is possible. You’re probably wondering what’s so hard about adding a generator. The truth is nothing.

It’s all the other adjustments that complicate the process.

The base should be completely watertight, and you’ll need to enclose the shower from floor to ceiling. You’ll also need to ensure the ceiling is completely watertight.

Can You Add Steam To An Existing Shower?

Yes. If you don’t have the budget to do a complete overhaul, you can convert your existing shower. For your DIY steam shower, remember to:

  • Seal the upper part of the door, so you have an enclosed cubicle. This keeps the steam where you want it and saves on electricity.
  • Ensure all the joins are watertight.
  • Prime the ceiling, exposed walls, and the cover with enamel paint. Steam can get very messy when it comes to walls.

Steam Shower Ideas

steam shower design ideas

So, you’ve decided to take the plunge. Want some ideas for the perfect steam shower? Here are a few:

Steam Shower Cabin

It has the natural, warm look of a sauna, with the humidity of a steam shower. Create the benches out of wood and cover at least one wall of the room with wood as well. This creates a natural feel with a stunning design feature.

Built-In Steam Shower

Ideally, a steam shower should be built from the ground, up. Every element is chosen to improve its utility. A built-in steam shower allows space for more than one person.

It can also be stylishly decked out. Think long gray tiles for a serene spa look or a Turkish steam room effect with tiles from that region.

Steam Shower Bench

Standing for fifteen minutes is not a big deal for most people. That said, adding a bench here makes sense. It allows you to completely relax and let the steam do its work.

There are several options for benches:

  • A standalone bench: This is simple to remove and replace. Use it when you feel like it or ditch it when taking a normal shower. Wood is great because it’s a poor conductor of heat.
  • A built-in bench: Why not create an alcove and run some slats of wood across to as seating? This is appropriate when you’ll be relaxing in the heat a lot of the time.
  • A design feature bench: Why not incorporate a wave-design wall? Get creative. You can tile it to match the rest of the décor. The advantage here is no one will even know it is seating.

Steam Shower With Reclining Bench

A reclining bench is the ultimate in luxury. These look something like a daybed and allow you to lie down. It doesn’t get more comfortable than that!

Modern Steam Shower

If you’re worried that the seventies will call and ask for their sauna back, a more contemporary design works well. Don't forget to incorporate unique bathroom organizers like The Arnold, removable hooks that go with any sleek bathroom decor. Think:

  • Clean lines and less clutter
  • Modern tiling choices
  • Updated faucets

Simplicity is your key to pulling this off.

Go Caveman

There are a lot of choices here. Don’t stick to standard options. Why not use dark tiles and colors to enhance the impression of being in a cave?

Incorporate lighting to tinge the water, for example, so it appears to be coming directly from the ground.

A Frameless Door

Where space is limited, a frameless door creates the illusion of more space. The design will feel less hemmed-in. It’s also a good option when you’re looking for a minimalist look.

Create Your Dream Bathroom

A shower room doesn’t need to just have a shower in it. What if you love relaxing in the tub? That’s fine – put a tub into the shower as well.


Bathroom Shower Organization

bathroom organization ideas

Now that you’ve narrowed down your options when it comes to the shower, the next thing to consider is storage. What are the aspects to consider?


Bathroom Shower Caddy

A hanging shower caddy is useful in taking full advantage of the vertical space available to you. A plastic shower caddy is relatively inexpensive but won’t last as well as one made from stainless steel.


Storage Alcoves

If you have a smaller space, a built-in alcove allows plenty of space for your shampoo dispenser and any other dispensers that you desire. The advantage of the alcove is there is nothing sticking out to bump or break.

Shower Corner Shelves

Corner shower shelves can be built into your design. If the idea of using shower caddies is not ideal, this could be a better option. They take up space, but they’re permanent.

You also don’t need to worry about upending a shower caddy and spilling all your toiletries. Try The Frank if you're looking for the perfect shower organizer for your shower.

Shampoo And Conditioner Dispenser

If you’re going to the trouble of installing a new unit, we’d recommend making your life easier. A built-in wall mounted shampoo dispenser could be amazingly convenient.

DIY Shower Storage

There are plenty of options when it comes to storage. Why not get a little creative? I know that some great ideas out there and the list below will help spark your imagination:

· Find a great piece of driftwood for a shelf: A solid, broad piece can easily do duty as a simple shower shelf. You’ll just need to find a way to mount it.

· A wine rack: This is a bit wacky, but a smaller wine rack is easier to mount and makes a good spot for shampoo bottles. Install it outside the shower and use it as a place to store towels.

There’s a lot to consider when creating the perfect spa-like environment in your bathroom. A steam shower is a simple way to achieve this atmosphere. It’s pricier to start with, but the long-term benefits make it a worthwhile investment. Interested in more bathroom storage ideas? View Tooletries' range of bathroom storage here.

You may also like

View all
Example blog post
Example blog post
Example blog post