The Shower Curtain Alternative Guide That Will Transform Your Bathroom

Choosing a shower curtain alternative could be what you need to take your bathroom to the next level. Maybe looking for ways to refresh your bathroom into the space of relaxation and renewal you need?

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There are plenty of options below to make that dream a reality.

Why Is The Traditional Shower Curtain Out?

Shower Curtain Alternative GuideView in gallery
SweisKloss

Yes, the classic vinyl curtains are cheap and do their job (most of the time), but in reality, you get what you pay for. They’re not always as efficient at blocking water as they should. 

Traditional curtains are also less desirable when you consider the overall aesthetic of your bathroom. The nicest of bathroom updates can easily be diminished by a plain vinyl curtain. 

Why Choose A Shower Curtain Alternative? 

Why choose a shower curtain alternativeView in gallery
Blender Architecture

Shower curtain alternatives are generally longer lasting than the traditional choices. When a traditional curtain takes on mold, most people just toss it out and grab a new one. Overtime, that’s going to add up. Alternative choices made of washable materials or easy to clean glass and metals make for a lasting investment. 

As previously mentioned, using a shower curtain alternative can drastically change the feel of your bathroom. Alternatives are easy on the eyes and bring a sense of uniqueness to your space. 

Framed WindowsView in gallery

Interestingly enough, sustainability is one of the biggest reasons to choose an alternative option. Vinyl curtains often aren’t recyclable and thus flood our landfills each year which clearly isn’t an environmentally-friendly choice. 

Last, is that traditional curtains don’t stay in place. Not only does this cause water to fall outside your shower, it also creates that ever so annoying problem of the curtain sticking to your legs. 

How Much Can I Expect To Spend On A Shower Curtain Alternative?

How much can I expect to spend on a shower curtain alternativeView in gallery
Mike Kelly

That’s reliant on which alternative you choose. Depending on your budget, you can spend as little as twenty dollars or into the thousands for a bigger project. Here are a few examples:

  • Cotton Curtain: $20+
  • Framed Shower Doors: $600 – $1800
  • Frameless Shower Door: $1,200 – $2,900
  • Hinged Shower Door: $1,000 – $1,600 
  • Hemp Curtain: $25+
  • Glass Block: $1,000 – $1,200
  • Standard Sliding Glass: $250 – $780

Types of Shower Curtain Alternatives

With so many reasons to choose a shower curtain alternative, let’s take a look at the options. From a simple install to renovation inspiration, there’s something for everyone. 

Roll Up Shower Curtain

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A spin on the traditional, but without all the issues, the roll up shower curtain offers a tidy look. With no rings, rods or hooks, it’s a frustration-free solution. 

Just mount it above the shower, pull it down when you enter and roll it up when it’s dry and you’ve got a clean, minimalist look. 

Sliding Glass Doors

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Linc Thelen Design

Probably the most popular choice as of late, sliding glass doors are an option that meshes with any style. Clean lines give your space a larger feel, no matter the actual shower size. Plus, you have two operating doors that slide, as opposed to just one that some other systems offer. 

Sliding glass is generally more affordable than a pivot system, so if budget is an issue, sliding glass is the way to go. Durable and easy to clean, it’s clear to see why it’s a favored option. 

Cotton Curtain

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Hannah Dee Interiors

Still, looking for shower curtain ideas apart from vinyl? The easiest of the cloth options to wash, cotton shower curtains are a common alternative. If you prefer something without hooks or rings, grab a grommet curtain instead. 

More attractive than vinyl options, these curtains come in a variety of colors and textures that satisfy every aesthetic. 

Doorless – Open Wet Room 

Doorless - Open Wet Room View in gallery
modern house architects

Trendy and on the rise in popularity, doorless showers are both stylish and functional. The options for customization are endless which is an added bonus as well. 

An open tub and shower wet room allows you to move safely between the two, atop a protective coating that makes it one of the best choices in regard to durability. Since it’s all tiled too, you can spray everything down at once for a quick clean. 

Pivot Doors

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Marcelle Guilbeau

Pivot shower doors are a familiar favorite since they open the same as an average door. Usually crafted without much trim work, these give your bathroom a particularly polished finish.

Also, pivot doors don’t use tracks as sliding doors do, so there are less cracks for scum and mold to invade. They can also be sized more easily to fit both a smaller opening for small bathrooms or a bigger opening if space isn’t an issue.

Hemp Curtain

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Another option in bathroom shower curtain ideas is hemp. Made of strong, natural fibers, a hemp shower curtain is a reliable option with a ton of benefits. Not only is it a fast-drying fabric, it also has a natural resistance to mold.

Odor resistant and toxin-free, this option is also very eco-friendly. They’re not made with vinyl and are easy to clean, so unlike vinyl curtains, you won’t be tossing them in the trash every other month. You can buy and keep hemp curtains for years.

Frameless Partitions

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A stylish and minimalist choice, frameless partitions give an upscale vibe to any bathroom. Without framing you don’t need to worry about replacing worn parts.

This option also gives your shower an extraordinary level of light. The lack of liners and curtains throw light on the entire area which prevents you from having to install extra or stronger lighting throughout. 

Barn Style Frameless Partitions

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KSDesigns

Yes, the barn style partitions are frameless but they’re a system all their own. The rolling mechanism is meant to mimic that of the popular sliding barn doors that have been on the rise in farmhouse-style homes. 

With rollers set on top of a plain metal bar, these doors slide back and forth with ease. Much like normal frameless partitions, the lack of parts leads to low maintenance and easy cleaning. 

Glass Blocks

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Shasta Smith

Coming in a surprising amount of textures and colors, glass block showers are a notable shower curtain alternative. Further, customize your glass blocks by creating a curved wall or even a ceiling-high wall for an extra level of privacy and heat retention. 

Macrame Curtain

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If you’re searching for a touch of the boho vibe, macrame shower curtains are the way to go. Many options come covered in a resin coating that repels water on contact, making them less prone to molding. 

Macrame shower curtains might be the easiest of DIY bathroom shower curtain idea as macrame has become extremely trendy. That said, there’s many tutorials that can help you on your way should you choose to let your creative juices flow. 

Framed Windows

Framed WindowsView in gallery
Denise Quade Design

Less expensive than the frameless option, framed windows are a modern take on glass enclosures. With a track that catches leaking water, this option keeps your floors safe from potential water damage.

Constructed in different types of metals, you can choose a color that matches your bathroom’s design.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

Can I install these shower curtain alternatives myself?

That’s dependent on your level of handiness. Most of these alternatives require tools homeowners are likely to already have in their tool belts, so that’s a plus. There’s also so many free tutorials offered online if you feel it’s a project you can take on yourself.

How do I wash a cloth-based curtain?

Wash on a delicate setting in warm water with your favorite detergent and white vinegar. Be sure to let your curtain air dry, heat settings on a dryer could shrink your curtain. Always be sure to check your curtain’s tag in the event it requires hand washing.

Can I use any of the cloth-based curtains without a liner?

You can, but it’s not recommended. The liner adds a barrier of protection against water intrusion which can lead to mold and mildew. Ultimately, the liner will prevent unnecessary washing and wear and tear of your cloth-based curtain.

Can the alternatives mentioned in this article work on any shower?

That will be determined by the size of the bathroom you’re working with. If you choose one of the cloth-based options, it’s likely to work on any shower size. However, you’ll need to measure your space for options that require more work like a glass door or partition.

What is a standard size for a cloth-based curtain and should it touch the floor?

A standard size usually falls at about 72 inches. Your shower curtain should not touch the floor. To keep it clean, dry and safe from mold, it needs to hang above the floor.

What products do I use to keep my plastic or glass shower curtain alternative clear?

Calcium and lime build-up is inevitable but there’s several products and hard water cleaners that make it manageable. Check your store’s cleaning aisle for something that specifically cleans soap scum. For a more natural cleaner, try dish soap mixed with vinegar.

Shower Curtain Alternative: Conclusion

It’s clear that in every bathroom, there’s a need for protection against shower water. Offering privacy and protection, it’s a necessary purchase. But that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice style for safety. 

Whether you’re looking for a more simple shower curtain alternative via a washable cotton curtain or small remodel with an added door, there’s no shortage of options. You can ditch your traditional shower curtain and easily upgrade your bathroom with an attractive, effective alternative today.