8 Tips to Pick the Perfect Bathroom Vanity

8 Tips to Pick the Perfect Bathroom Vanity

Picking a bathroom vanity can get overwhelming pretty fast. There are so many things to consider, from style, to size, to countertop material. You also need to consider the vanity backsplash and remember to caulk it. 

If you’re wondering how to pick a bathroom vanity, you’ll want to also consider how to pick the fixtures that surround it, including the bathroom mirror, vanity sink and sconces. The reason is that you can’t really make the right choice of one of these bathroom fixtures without considering the others.

In this post, I share 8 great resources to help you pick the bathroom vanity that will work best for your space, style and budget.

1. Determine the Right Size Vanity for Your Space

One of the first decisions you’ll want to make is what size vanity are you looking for? There are standard vanity sizes and comfort sizes (for taller people). You may want a single vanity with one sink or a double vanity with two sinks. 

And if you’re getting a floating vanity that isn’t built into the ground but instead into the wall behind it, you’ll need to consider the height, width and depth for that as well.

Read our post The Complete Bathroom Vanity Size Guide for much more information regarding how to measure for your bathroom.

2. Test the Height Before You Pick a Bathroom Vanity

If you want to be sure that the vanity height you’re planning to order will actually be comfortable, read THIS Is How High Your Bathroom Vanity Should Be. In it, we explain how to test the height before you even order your bathroom vanity. 

We also explain the differences between floating vanities, vessel vanities, and open shelf vanities, and how these vanity types impact vanity height. 

And if you have a vanity you generally like but you’re not happy with the height, find out how to change the height in this post.

3. Decide If You Want a Vanity That Comes With a Sink

farmhouse rustic vanity with sink
Antique blue cottage-style sink cabinet. Available with or without the porcelain under-mount sink. See it on Etsy.

If you’re hoping to simplify your remodeling process, you might want to get a bathroom vanity that comes with a perfectly matched sink and faucet. This is only partially realistic. Read Do Bathroom Vanities Come With Sinks and Faucets? to find out what you can expect and exactly how to find it.

Also, while most bathroom vanities come with a countertop, you might have your own countertop that you want to use. So in this post, we also explain how you can find bathroom vanity cabinets and countertops that are sold separately.

Not sure what of style sink will work best in your bathroom? Read my post Classic to Contemporary: 17 Bathroom Sink Styles to learn which sink style will work best for your bathroom.

4. Measure for the Sink Correctly

handcrafted solid brass drop-in sink
Handcrafted solid brass drop-in sink. Customizable width and depth. See it on Etsy.

Assuming you’re buying a sink separate from the vanity, you’ll need to know how sinks are measured and what size sink will work best with the vanity you’ve picked out. 

What’s the Perfect Size Bathroom Sink for Your Vanity? contains a complete size guide that will tell you exactly how to choose the right sink.

Also, we walk you through the different sink types and how they are measured. These include vessel sinks, integrated sinks, drop-in sinks, under-mount/integrated sinks, and double sinks.

Choosing the right dimensions for your sink will be critical to your being able to enjoy your bathroom vanity. You wouldn’t want to be left with too little or too much counter space, right? That’s why we urge you to check out this important post.

5. Know Which Countertop Materials Are Lower Maintenance

bathroom vanity with quartz countertop
Bathroom vanity with quartz countertop

When choosing your bathroom vanity, the countertop material is going to be key to your happiness. You don’t want to get a material that is gorgeous but shows water stains if you’re not up to wiping it down daily. 

In Quartz, Granite or Marble for Bathroom Vanity?, we compare natural stone and engineered quartz to help you determine if you want a countertop made from one of these popular and pretty materials. (We certainly have a favorite in mind.

6. Caulk Your Vanity the Right Way

caulk around vanity
Try a caulking gun for more control.

Whether you need to caulk all around your bathroom vanity depends on what type of vanity you have: floating, cabinet, or freestanding. But you’ll certainly want to do some caulking. 

In Should You Caulk Around a Bathroom Vanity?, you’ll learn what type of caulk to use, what color will work best, and exactly how to apply it.  

We also dive into what to do if you already have a bathroom mold problem, and what steps to take to avoid one in the future. (Hint: Never caulk over existing mold. Just because you can no longer see it, doesn’t mean it’s not growing and damaging your walls!)

7. Choose a Bathroom Vanity Backsplash

single sink tile vanity backsplash

Read Does a Bathroom Vanity Need a Backsplash? And discover what types of vanity sinks require a backsplash. 

We discuss the common backsplash heights, including 4-inch, 8-inch, countertop-to-ceiling and floor-to-ceiling backsplashes. And then we’ll tell you how to size the height of your faucet relative to the bathroom vanity backsplash you’ve selected.

8. Use a Mirror That’s Proportional to Your Vanity


Half Half circle modern steel mirror
Half circle modern steel bathroom vanity mirror. See it on Etsy.


Put the wrong size mirror over your vanity and your whole bathroom decor is thrown off-kilter. So if you already have a mirror you love and want to keep, measure your mirror and then choose your bathroom vanity accordingly.

Alternatively, if you’re getting a new bathroom mirror, make sure it’s the right size for your new vanity. Find a complete size guide in our post What’s the Perfect Size Bathroom Mirror for Your Vanity? We’ll tell you how much space to allow between the edge of the vanity and mirror, as well as how wide the mirror should be relative to the sink.

You’ll also get advice for how much room to leave between a bathroom vanity mirror and the adjacent walls, and how tall a bathroom vanity mirror can be without ruining proportions. We’ll also discuss how to hang the mirror relative to your vanity countertop and backsplash.

How to Pick a Bathroom Vanity

reclaimed wood floating vanity
Reclaimed wood floating vanity. See it on Etsy.

There’s certainly more to picking a bathroom vanity than meets the eye! 

First, you want to pick a vanity that is comfortable for you—and whoever you share the bathroom with—to use on a regular basis. This means not only is the height right, but also there’s enough countertop space to meet your needs.

Second, you don’t want a bathroom vanity that only looks great on the first day! You want to choose a countertop material that allows you to easily sustain its beauty.

Third, you can get the most gorgeous bathroom vanity but if it’s not the right size for your space, it’s not going to ever look right. But after you get the right size vanity, you’ll also need to correctly size and position the fixtures around it, including a bathroom mirror and sconces.

Note: A bathroom vanity can be a considerable expense. Download Genius Hacks to Save Big $$ on an Expensive Bathroom Remodel. You’ll get lots of designer tips, including several on how to save big on a bathroom vanity. Just fill out the form below and I’ll send the PDF straight to your inbox.

Tags: backsplash, bathroom vanity, caulk, Round-Up, size guide

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