(ARA) - Creating a feeling of luxury in your bathroom doesn't have to come with a high price tag or a shockingly high water bill. You can create an indulgent spa sanctuary with water-sipping faucets and toilets, as well as other water smart choices, following these simple tips:
Saving water with style. Choosing a water conserving faucet, toilet, or showerhead no longer means sacrificing style or performance. When shopping for a new low flow fixture, check the package for the Environmental Protection Agency's WaterSense certification, which lets you know the manfacturer's claims about water savings and performance can be trusted. When you see the WaterSense label, you can be sure you're making an eco-friendly choice.
If you're looking for high style in addition to water conservation, the new Pyke and Stoic Collections by JADO are two new and strikingly elegant examples of beautifully designed faucets that can save the average household 500 gallons of water every year. For toilets, look for WaterSense-labeled toilets that attain top ratings in independent Maximum Performance Testing or MaP toilet tests.
Steam instead of soak. For some, a deep soaking tub is an appealing luxury, which has a place in many bathrooms. Averaging about 75 gallons of water per bath, however, a more sustainable option is a home steam shower, which uses only two gallons of water and negligible electricity for a 20 minute steam experience.
Adding a home steam shower can be a surprisingly easy and affordable indulgence. The Virtual Spa System website makes it easy to figure out the elements of a steam shower to suit your needs and tastes. For those with a smaller bathroom or a smaller budget, the new Steam@Home generator from Mr. Steam brings a home steam shower within reach for nearly all bathroom remodel plans.
A steam shower can also promote wellness and relaxation in ways that a soaking tub can't. Steam showers can help soothe tired muscles, promote restful sleep, and can open pores to reveal cleaner, softer skin. During cold and allergy season, steam can even improve breathing by helping to clear mucus and allergens from your lungs.
Keep shower systems simple. The "human car wash" style of shower system with lots of additional body sprays was once a big trend in luxury bathrooms. However, as interest in water conservation continues to rise along with the price of water, this style of shower- which can use as much as 160 gallons of water for a 20 minute shower - has declined in popularity. Instead, limit your shower system to two outlets: one fixed showerhead and one handheld.
A rain showerhead is a great option for the fixed showerhead, as it provides a luxurious drenching feeling. An accompanying hand held shower such as Monoglide has the force to rinse shampoo from long hair, and is useful for cleaning the shower walls, washing pets. Its adjustable settings provide a variety of spray experiences in one showerhead. Most important, it provides an easily accessible bathing option for older guests and family members with limited mobility when used with a secure shower seat.