Choosing bathroom mirror with shelf: shape, materials and color for different interiors and budgets

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In modern bathrooms mirror plays essential role, being both decorative and functional element. That is why it becomes so important to choose a right mirror. Such features as size, configuration, framing, style, color and lighting help to define interior theme in one particular interior and take advantage of some optical effects as widening of space or eliminating of corners. On the other hand, utilitarian features of mirror help those who use it to perform hygienic and grooming routines with more comfort. Bathroom mirrors with shelves could be a great practical solution, combining esthetic and practical features. By means of mirror with shelf bathroom gets very useful piece of furniture which doesn’t occupy much space, too.   

Pros and cons of bathroom mirror with shelves

To make up your mind, you need to weight pros and cons of choosing this type of bathroom mirror.

Advantages of bathroom mirrors with shelf:

It is an obvious space saver. In a small room it can substitute a cabinet, providing a place for keeping toiletries.

As opposite to cabinet mirrors, bathroom mirrors with shelves don’t require extra space and will not look too big even in the tiniest interiors.

It is a convenient place to put watches or jewelries which are to be taken off before washing hands or taking bath or shower. A shelf with low side will prevent those jewelries from falling.

Bathroom mirror with shelf can become a central figure in bathroom interior.

Putting some elements of décor on top of shelf can add some color accent and give bathroom interior finial “put together” look.

Disadvantages of bathroom mirrors with shelf:

Shelves of bathroom mirror need to be cleaned and wiped daily because of stains caused by drops scattering from the sink and occasional spill of toiletries. It is especially true for glass shelves.

Poor quality of shelf surface looks cheap and sloppy.

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Configuration and design of bathroom mirrors with shelf: choosing optimal ones

Essential aspects in choosing mirror are its size, shape and framing.

Frameless mirrors are the most versatile ones and suite most of interiors. They are highly recommended for small bathrooms since mirror without sharp borders optically adds some extra space to the room.

Framed mirror with shelf should match the whole interior concept and colors.

Mirrors can come with one shelf or a complex set of shelves. Large symmetrical mirrors with one substantial shelf in the bottom will look best in spacious bathroom designed in classic style.  For modern and high-tech inspired bathroom interiors mirrors with asymmetrical row of shelves will look very stylish. In general, mirrors with multiple shelves are more practical: they accommodate more cosmetics and other necessities and allow separating belongings of people sharing the bathroom. There are shelves on suction cups which can be fixed at needed altitude on the mirror surface and moved or removed if needed. Being a convenient and smart idea at its basis, this type of fixing is not solid enough unfortunately and can collapse easily causing potential damage of toiletries, sink or even bathroom floor tiles.  Complex combinations of shelves, situated horizontally, vertically or gradually on mirror surface influence the appearance of bathroom in different ways. Gradually set shelves visually make ceilings appear higher while horizontally set shelves optically “set walls apart”. Thus, choosing right configuration, we can eliminate some flaws of the room.

Bathroom mirrors with shelves come in multiple shapes. Rectangular shape can be said to be the most popular. Framed rectangular mirror will look to heavy in small bathroom. For tiny rooms or minimalistic interiors it’d be better to go for frameless rectangular mirror. Oval mirrors due to edgeless shape tend to harmonize space and can be mentioned as the most versatile ones. Oval mirrors with shelves fit in any bathroom interior concept – from minimalistic to classic, Victorian inspired, vintage and antique styles. Asymmetrical mirrors of uneven shapes look good in modern and hi-tech interiors.

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Especially for women who prefer applying makeup in bathroom there are models of mirrors with attached stretching cosmetic magnifying mirror. This mirror can be stretched as needed and turned at wanted angle and it usually comes two-sided where one side gives normal reflection while other side provides magnifying reflection.

If there are two sinks in the bathroom, it gives several options for mirror design:

One wide rectangular mirror over both sinks with one solid shelf attached in the bottom of the mirror.

One wide rectangular mirror over both sinks with multiple shelves, set symmetrically on each side of mirror.

Two mirrors above common wide shelf.

Two identical mirrors with shelf or multiple shelves.

Two last options can be performed with different shaped mirrors – rectangular, oval and uneven shapes so far as they are symmetrical to each other.

Materials of mirror shelves

Mirror shelves are made of various materials such as glass, metal, plastic, natural or fax stone, ceramics and, rather seldom, even wood. This wide range of materials enables us to choose right one for any interior, taste and budget.

The most durable shelves are made of stainless steel. They will look natural in minimalistic, contemporary and high-tech interiors while will completely ruin the spirit of classic, vintage, romantic shabby chic, Victorian and Antique inspired or rustic bathroom interiors.

Plastic shelves are quite fragile and will last less. On the other hand, plastic is very versatile modern material which can be designed in various colors and textures. Plastic can look great in most contemporary interiors and also in some bright-colored retro styles. When choosing a mirror with plastic shelves, material quality should be examined very carefully. Poor quality surface will show slightest water drops and will look very cheap.

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Glass transparent shelves look very subtle and sophisticated and look good even in small bathrooms. They are usually made of a special shockproof glass, covered with special foil, so that in case it is broken, pieces of glass would stay on the foil instead of scattering around the floor.

Marble mirrors come as a monolith construction. They look very solid and expensive and will look appropriate in spacious bathrooms designed in classic or antique style and accompanied by matching massive furniture.

Wooden shelves would look good in a country style. This kind of material is very impractical in bathroom though. Because of steamy humid environment and frequent contact with water wood will not last long.

Colors of shelves

Most versatile option suitable for any interior is transparent glass.

Metal shelves should match handles of bathroom furniture as well as tapes and faucet.

Very beautiful and classy looks total white bathroom interior. White bathroom mirror with shelf is a must for this design solution.


Mirror shelves made of marble and other kinds of natural or fax stones make a statement in bathroom interior and should match either tile décor or furniture.

Plastic shelves can be of any color. It is important to keep in mind though, that neutral colors not only create relaxing atmosphere but easily fit in interior and tend to look more elegant. Planning bold colored plastic shelves as a bright accent, careful considering of a whole interior plan is crucial unless you don’t want bathroom will look grotesque and kitsch.



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