Mirrors & Mirror Cabinets

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Pretty much every bathroom needs to have at least one mirror in it and many bathrooms benefit from having more than one.  With our range of bathroom mirrors and mirror cabinets, you will be able to get both the functionality you need and the style you want.  Here is brief guide to how to choose the right mirror or mirrors for your bathroom.

 

Think about your tasks first

People often use their bathrooms for shaving and/or putting on make up, both of which require mirrors.  Shaving mirrors are typically placed as close to the basin as feasibly possible, mirrors to be used for putting on make up are best placed where they are most conveniently used.  Think about any other tasks you need to perform in your particular bathroom, for example, if that’s where you actually get dressed (as opposed to just pulling on a bathrobe), then you may benefit from a full-length mirror as well.

 

See if there are any areas could benefit from reflected light

bathroom mirrorEach room has its own individual characteristics and generally speaking some parts of each room will get more natural light than others.  One way to counterbalance this is, of course, to put in lights, but in some cases a mirror may be a better choice since it can be used without electricity and can also help to make a room look bigger, plus it can be used for practical purposes too.

 

Look at your decorating goals

Mirrors can be included in a bathroom simply to look good or to draw the eye where you want it to go.  Think about how mirrors and mirror cabinets can fit into your overall decorating plans.

There are several types of mirrors which can be used in a bathroom, here’s a quick rundown of them.

 

Venetian mirrors

These are a rather unusual choice for a bathroom, but are occasionally seen in bathrooms with period or fantasy themes.  Venetian mirrors have designs etched into the glass and typically have ornate frames as well. 

 

pivot mirrorPivot mirrors

As their name suggests, pivot mirrors can be tilted forwards and backwards (to at least some degree), which makes them useful, multi-purpose mirrors.  Pivot mirrors tend to be fairly simple in design and hence can fit in to a variety of decorative styles.

 

Extension mirrors

Also known as swing-arm mirrors, this is the type of mirror you see in a lot of small bathrooms.  When out of use, they tuck away neatly against the wall but when needed they can be pulled out ready for task use.  Although these mirrors are generally quite attractive, they tend to be mainly practical rather than decorative.

 

Lighted mirrors

Lighted mirrors generally work best in more modern bathrooms and they are great news in many ways.  If you have a dark area in your bathroom, they can add light at any time (rather than just during the day) as well as creating the illusion of extra space.  Even if you’re bathroom is as light as can be, the fact of the matter is that there’s something about lighted mirrors which just looks extra special.

 

vanity mirrorVanity mirrors

Vanity mirrors tend to be double-sided in that they will have one side with a standard mirror and the other side with a magnifying mirror and the user will literally flip the mirror over to choose between them.  Many vanity mirrors have lights on them too.  They are generally used for putting on make up rather than as the main mirror in a bathroom, in fact most of them are far too small to use as the main mirror.

 

Captain’s mirrors

Like Venetian mirrors, captain’s mirrors are rarely used in bathrooms these days, but they can be a nice touch if you have a nautical theme.  They are round and hang down on a chain.  This means that you need to be somewhat careful with them, particularly when there are children around, since they can literally be knocked off the wall and if they are they will probably break, leaving splinters everywhere, hence the reason why they are rarely used in bathrooms, where people often walk around in bare feet.  If you want a more practical option, which is still in keeping with the nautical look, a modern, round mirror will usually do every bit as well and be a lot safer.

 

mirror cabinetMirrored cabinets

Mirrors plus storage equals a winning combination for pretty much any and every bathroom, which is why you’ll hardly ever find a bathroom without a mirrored cabinet.

Regardless of what type of mirror you choose, (except of course mirrored cabinets), you will have a choice of frame types as well as frame styles.

 

Framed mirrors

A frame sets off a mirror just as it does a picture.  The frame can also help to tie your mirror in with the rest of your decor, for example if you have lots of white, then you can frame your mirror in white, alternatively you can use a frame to make your mirror really pop from the wall.

 

Frameless mirrors

If you want your mirrors just to seem to be a part of your wall then frameless mirrors may be the way to go.  Frameless mirrors are generally best suited to contemporary, even minimalist looks.

 

Ledge mirrors

Sometimes called shadow-box mirrors these are essentially mirrors with frames which are deep enough for the top and bottom edges to be used as shelves.  You can either buy these or simply improvise by taking a frameless mirror and creating the “box” effect around it.  Ledge mirrors tend to be a love/hate option.  Some people love to accessorize them and feel that they add a touch of charm to a bathroom.  Others feel that they just look cluttered.  Generally speaking, ledge mirrors are more for decoration than practical purposes and if you are going to try using them, the trick is to think about how many you have and how you fill them.  For example, a single ledge mirror filled with just a (scented) candle can look beautiful when the candle is unlit and absolutely stunning when it is lit.

 

Choosing the right mirror or mirror cabinet for the right space.

bathroom cabinetFirst of all, you obviously need to check what space is available and in the case of mirror cabinets this includes making sure that there is sufficient depth as well as sufficient height and width.  After this, you should be guided by the shape of your bathroom and the other elements in it.  The basic idea for choosing the right mirror(s) for the right location are much the same as for choosing the right art for the right location.  In fact you can even use mirrors instead of art or mixed in with art, such as for a “gallery wall” effect.  That being so, the basic rule is that vertical spaces are the places to put vertical mirrors and horizontal spaces are the places to put horizontal mirrors.  Square spaces offer great flexibility.  Here are some examples of how to use mirrors.

If you have a square space, you could opt for one big square or round mirror, but instead, how about clustering smaller mirrors?  They could even be of different shapes as long as they fit comfortably into the squareness of the space.  Alternatively, cluster smaller mirrors and art to fit your space.

If you have a long, horizontal space, you can still use vertical mirrors, you just need to put them in a row beside each other, to give the breadth such spaces need.  Again, you can use a combination of mirrors and art.

If you have a vertical space you can create height by stacking mirrors (or mirrors and art) to pull the eye upwards.  Depending on the shape of your room, you can even take this a step further to play with perspective.  If you have a small room and want to make it feel bigger, you could stagger the mirrors (or art) so that they are spaced more widely apart as you go higher up the wall.  This encourages the eyes to move outwards, helping to make a space look bigger.  If you’re really up for a creative challenge, you can even use the sizes of the mirrors (or artwork) to enhance this effect.

 

Maintaining your mirror

Even though mirrors are much lower cost than bathroom appliances, they are still more expensive than many other forms of decoration and as such can be considered to be investment pieces.  With that in mind, it’s a good idea to think about how to maintain them.  The number one step in maintaining bathroom mirrors is to ensure that they are mounted firmly to the wall to stop them dropping and shattering, thus breaking the mirror and causing a hazard to bathroom users.  After this, the key point is to clean your mirror gently.  Many cleaners are actually too harsh to use on mirrors.  You can buy glass cleaners or you can just make a solution of one part vinegar to one part water and apply this gently, using newspaper or a soft cloth such as microfibre.  Make sure you get all of it off as the two main reasons for bathroom mirrors getting black marks on them are harsh cleaners and excess cleaning liquids being left on them.