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5 Space-Saving Bathtub Alternatives


Pamper yourself and enjoy a relaxing time in the bathroom even when it doesn't come with a bathtub by getting any of these practical, space-saving, and cozy alternatives.

Back view of a woman soaking in the tub with scented candles.

There are only a few things in life that can beat the experience of soaking in the tub after a long and stressful day. For people with hectic schedules, spending some time in the tub is equivalent to pampering themselves. Having a bathtub is also practical especially when you have children.

On the other hand, having a bathtub isn’t feasible when you have a tight space and budget. The joy of soaking in the tub may also drain as you age. When physical movement becomes more challenging, getting in and out of the tub becomes not just difficult but also dangerous.

Check out the options below to find bathing solutions and alternatives to bathtubs that are space-saving, inexpensive, and accessible for people of all ages.

Related: Types of Bath Bomb | Freestanding Tubs Bathrooms | Bathtub Parts

1. Small Bathtub

Small bathroom with a small bathtub-shower combo, pedestal sink, end table, and heater.

You need to be able to clean up, and many people feel like a bath is the best way to do it. When you are living in a small home, it can be difficult to find the space for a normal-sized bathtub. If you are struggling to figure out the best solution for your bathroom, then you may want to consider a small bathtub. You just might be surprised for how practical a small bathtub can be for your small bathroom.

Small bathtubs can actually be very small and will fit in most bathrooms. In some cases, tubs like this are only large enough for one person to squeeze into. This does mean that it might feel a little bit cramped inside of it. You aren’t going to be able to have the comfort that you normally would in a traditional bathtub, but many people will see it as better than nothing.

Of course, there are some practicality issues that may prevent people from wanting to go this route. Small bathtubs are only going to be practical for people who can fit in them comfortably enough. If you are a tall individual or bigger than average, then this is likely going to feel very uncomfortable. This will either be a viable solution for your bathtub problems or it will be completely unacceptable.

Pros:

A small bathtub is going to be able to fit in most bathrooms. You won’t have to worry about it taking up too much space, and you will have a spot where you can bathe. This allows people who thought that they didn’t have the room for a bathtub to install one in their homes. It’s something that is worth your consideration, even if it is a method that may not work well for everyone.

Cons:

Not everyone is going to be comfortable using a bathtub that is this small. This solution isn’t going to work for everyone simply due to the fact that everyone is not the same size. People who are shorter and have small frames may feel very content in one of these bathtubs. Another individual might wind up being so uncomfortable that using the bathtub is going to be very annoying.

2. Sunken Bathtub

Sunken bathtub with wall tiles.

A sunken bathtub is another option that you may want to start thinking about. This is basically a bathtub that is sunk into the floor itself. You will build it into the floor so that you won’t have to worry too much about space. This solution can be quite nice, and it is possible to create some really interesting looking bathtubs using this method.

Really nice sunken bathtubs can wind up looking gorgeous if you install everything properly. You won’t have to worry about the tub touching the walls if you are sinking it into the floor. This method is going to involve doing some home improvement, so it isn’t going to be the simplest method that you could use. Even so, it could wind up working out beautifully.

Sinking a bathtub into the floor doesn’t magically make your bathroom larger, though. You will still need to have enough floor space to be able to fit the bathtub. It can still be a good idea for cramped space, but you have to ensure that it will be practical enough to make it a reality. If you need a bathtub in your life in order to be happy, then this method may wind up working out well for you.

Pros:

You won’t have to worry so much about the tub not fitting between the walls if you go with the sunken bathtub idea. It can also look really beautiful. You can make the bathtub somewhat deep if you would like so that it can be more comfortable. Even if the tub has to be a bit narrow, you will be able to create space for yourself so that it can be a decent bathing experience.

Cons:

You still may not have the proper amount of space to make use of a bathtub like this. Even if you do, installing a sunken bathtub is going to take quite a bit of work. You need to do some home improvement before you can even think about installing the tub. This idea is only going to be good for people who have the means to modify their bathroom area.

3. Shower

Water flowing from the shower head.

Sometimes the most practical bathtub alternative is going to be to simply have a shower instead. Showers are a little simpler than bathtubs because they do not have to take up as much space. You will be able to install a shower in a much smaller space, making it more practical than pretty much any bathtub. For this reason, showers are far more commonly seen in smaller bathrooms than either of the options mentioned above.

It should be noted that taking a shower is different from taking a bath. Even so, the idea is to get cleaned up and to be able to relax. Both showers and baths are methods of accomplishing this, so a shower can certainly be considered a bathtub alternative. There are people who love taking baths so much that they will not be satisfied with only being able to take a shower, though.

If you are living in a small environment, then you may not be able to use a bathtub properly. It might be in your best interests to just make use of a shower. Installing a small shower that can fit one person is going to take up very little space. You will be able to get cleaned up, and it shouldn’t feel too cramped so long as your bathroom isn’t absurdly small.

Pros:

Showers are great because they allow you to get cleaned up very quickly. You won’t have to worry about taking up too much space when you install a shower in your bathroom, either. This is going to allow you to stay clean without having to worry about things being too cramped. If a bathtub just isn’t going to be practical in your living space, then you can always try to install a simple shower.

Cons:

This is a method to get yourself clean but it doesn’t necessarily replicate taking a bath. Showers and baths are distinct from one another, and some people vastly prefer baths. There are also people who prefer showers and don’t enjoy taking baths. Whatever side of the fence you fall on, you should be aware that this method may be your best recourse.

4. Shower Chair

Shower for the disabled with shower chair.

There are situations where showers are not practical for people. Sometimes people have medical problems or injuries that prevent them from standing up and taking a shower. This can be frustrating when a shower is the only real viable means of staying clean. People who don’t have room for a bathtub will often have to make do with a shower, so this can be a bit of a dilemma.

The solution to this problem is to purchase a shower chair. For those who aren’t familiar with shower chairs, these are chairs that are meant to be placed inside of showers. They allow people to sit in either a shower or a bathtub more comfortably. You can clean up while using the shower chair and will be able to do everything that you need to do without having to worry about falling.

This sort of makes your experience more akin to a bath than a traditional shower. You’re definitely still going to be taking a shower, but the chair winds up making it an activity that feels somewhat like a combination of a shower and a bath. If you have problems with being able to stand while showering, then this is going to be a very important purchase. It will make your life a lot easier and will allow you to stay clean without having to worry.

Pros:

Being able to shower without having to worry about hurting yourself or falling down is nice. If you have some type of medical condition or a problem with your balance, then this is going to be an absolute necessity. Even people who just want to be able to sit in the shower will be able to appreciate these shower chairs. It’s a convenient chair to use that can make your shower experience much nicer overall.

Cons:

This is an item that is meant to help people who have medical problems. It isn’t really a luxury item that is designed for your comfort. It should make things more comfortable, but some people find sitting in the chair to be a bit of an annoyance. As long as you buy a chair that you think feels right, you should be able to feel fine during your showers.

5. Portable Bathtub

Woman kneeling on the floor and posing with hands on the portable bathtub.

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There are even portable bathtubs on the market that you can purchase if you so choose. These bathtubs are actually very small and can fit in just about any room. People also use these portable bathtubs outside. There are those who like to take these portable bathtubs on camping trips so that they have a method to stay clean.

If you are working with an extremely limited amount of space, then this can be a practical solution to help you to get by. You will be able to use this bathtub in order to bathe comfortably enough. It is definitely going to be a bit cramped, but as long as you are small enough to fit, it will be something that you can use. This bathtub isn’t going to be practical for people of all sizes, so keep that in mind before you get too excited.

Pros:

This bathtub is small enough to fit just about anywhere. You can use it both indoors and outdoors if you wish. For those who are looking for a very small bathtub solution, this is going to fit the bill.

Cons:

This tub is really quite small, and it is not going to work for everyone. The fact that it is small is actually really nice because it fits in most spaces. It just also means that many people will not be able to make use of this option due to its small dimensions.

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