Looking to give your bathroom a beautiful update? Chances are you’d like to do so without wasting money. We hate wasting money too.

Luckily, you don’t have to. Whether you’re happy with the current layout of your bathroom and all it needs it a little refresh or you need to completely take it down to the studs, the following three tips can help you update your space without throwing money away.

Select the Right Sheen

“Back in the day,” bathroom paint either had a glossy or satin finish for one simple reason — humidity. But technology has progressed substantially and many paint manufacturers have produced special paints with matte finishes that have been specially formulated with withstand humidity. Populated with anti-microbial additives that protect against moisture and mildew.

The downside of these matte finishes is that they can be up to two times more than traditional glossy or satin paint. So if you’re looking to save some money, it’s best to skip the matte finish.

If you’re looking for additional ways to protect your bathroom, it’s also strongly recommended that you properly vent your bathroom with an exhaust fan to your exterior. And, avoid using the shower for at least 24 hours before or after painting your bathroom. This ensures there’s no moisture which can disrupt the paint’s curing process.

Pick Your Faucet First

Of all the features in your bathroom, your sink faucet is the most visible and used piece of hardware in your bathroom. You want to make sure you select one you like. Look for a faucet that matches the other hardware in your bathroom — this is especially important if you don’t plan on replacing those pieces.

Often you can find attractive bathroom faucets used. In order to match them focus on selecting a similar finish.

Consider Your Storage Needs

When it comes to your bathroom storage, your sink and vanity are the most crucial areas. Depending on the type of faucet (and sink) you choose, you’ll provide more or less storage.

In very small bathrooms, a pedestal sink can be a good solution, as it’s slim profile doesn’t take up nearly as much of a physical footprint. However, pedestal sinks also offer very limited counter and storage space. So you’ll want to think about what other storage alternatives you’ll have.

Vessel sinks are sinks with a bowl that sits on top of a vanity. These sinks typically offer the maximum in storage space. And, they can be created affordably by repurposing an old piece of furniture — such as an old cabinet with drawers, providing counter space and drawers beneath.

Pick a Quality Throne

When’s the last time you shopped for a toilet? For most of us, it’s been a while or never. You might be in for a bit of a surprise. There’s a lot of options out there. Heated toilets. Toilets with built-in LED lit seats. Toilets that double as bidets. Water saving toilets. Self-cleaning toilets. High toilets. Low toilets. The possibilities seem nearly endless. So when it comes to selecting a quality toilet, one of the most important factors to consider is a toilet flushes well. This can be determined by the Maximum Performance (MaP) score. You want a score that’s 500 or higher.

Make Lighting a Priority

Lighting is one of the most commonly overlooked features in a bathroom. And yet, it’s one of the most important when it comes to making the space beautiful. Natural light is by far the most flatting type — so if you have a window, don’t cover it up. Let it be as big and bright as possible, even if that means using frosted glass to provide privacy or a half blind.

Additionally, layers of light are another way to provide a flattering space. This includes placing task lighting on either side of your sink. Wall sconces on your walls and overhead lights. Undercabinet lighting is another way to provide extra layers of light.

Consider Porcelain

Cement and encaustic tiles are extremely popular at the moment. The problem is, they can often be expensive to install. They are prone to being damaged by harsh detergents. And, they need to be sealed annually. Porcelain, on the other hand, offers a high-quality and affordable option. It’s crack and stain resistant. And, it can be made to mimic handmade tiles, so it gives you the finish you want.

Get more tips in part 2.