Should I Use Wallpaper in my Bathroom?

Wallpaper is making a major come back lately, and it is no longer a symbol of a 1980’s bathroom to have wallpaper in it. However as most of us are aware: just because you can do something does not mean you should do it. Is wallpaper in your bathroom one of those things? Well, it could be. There are situations where wallpaper could be right for the area in your home, but there are reasons to think twice before you install it.

The first, and perhaps biggest, determining factor is whether this area is a bathroom or a powder room. If this area of your home is a powder room then there is not any difference between putting wallpaper in that area and installing it in your bedroom or living room. If you are asking what is the difference between the two, here it is: a powder room is, usually, only a sink and a toilet and may commonly be referred to as a half bath whereas a bathroom has a tub and/or shower, a sink and a toilet.

There really is nothing wrong with putting wallpaper in a bathroom, but it may not retain the look you want over the long term. The reason for this is because your bathroom has a lot of moisture in it and wallpaper is, well, paper. If you think about what happens to paper when it is exposed to water you might get a better idea of why it is not recommended to do

You might have noticed there are tons of design magazines out there pushing wallpaper in +, and there are lots of people who are putting it up without any issues. So how does this work for them? Well, there bathrooms that is can work in. If your bathroom is very, very well ventilated and you do not have anyone in your home that takes long, hot showers then the chance of moisture gathering on your walls is less. As we know, moisture build up can grow mold and mold can be dangerous to your health.

You can avoid the risk of mold and mildew build up by using special primer and application glue at the time of installation. By using these special products you are reducing the risk of mildew growing in your bathroom which will inevitably extend the life of your wallpaper. If you install it in a standard bathroom you will likely get between 3 and 5 years before it starts to bubble a little under the paper, or peels back at the edges.

Pro Tip: if your bathroom is set up so the wallpaper is going to meet the edge of the walls or tile around your shower or bath area you should apply a layer of waterproof filler and sealant to prevent it from curling around the edges as this is the area that will be exposed to the most moisture and potential water damage.

If you are determined to go through with wallpaper in your bathroom it is recommended that you purchase a clear, acrylic varnish to put on top of the paper. By doing this it will help to protect it from steam and water splashes that happen often in bathrooms.

Overall it is not that wallpaper is a bad idea to install in your bathroom, and really there are some great modern and edgy designs out there that can bring a finished look to your bathroom regardless of your style. The biggest thing is to make sure you prepare the walls appropriately for the kind of use your bathroom gets, and to make sure you install it correctly. With the right products, finish and maintenance you can easily get years out of your newly decorated bathroom and at the end of that time it might just be the best excuse to redecorate, anyways.


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