The Window In The Shower Dilemma In The Contemporary Home

Having a window in the shower provides natural light and offers a way to ventilate the room. A well-placed bathroom window also acts as a key design element and can make a small room feel larger.

The Window In The Shower Dilemma In The Contemporary Home

But, you must choose the right type of window and the correct proportions to maintain privacy. 

Bathroom Window vs. Regular Window

The biggest difference between a regular window and a bathroom window is its size. Bathroom windows are much smaller.

The type of window is also different. Chances are you don’t want skylight or textured glass in other rooms, but they can work well in your bathroom setup. 

Types of Bathroom Windows 

Types of Bathroom Windows 

Slider Windows

Sliding windows are long rectangles, ideal for narrow spaces like the shower. These windows open by sliding a sash to one side. They come in many sizes, frame materials, and glass options.

Crank Windows

Crank windows are one of the most energy-efficient options and include awning and casement styles.

Unlike other styles, crank windows don’t have weatherstripping where the sash and frame meet. Closing the window creates an airtight seal, allowing for almost no heat loss. But, this increased efficiency comes with a cost – they are about 20 percent more expensive than slider windows.

Skylight Windows

Fixed skylight windows go in the ceiling and don’t open for ventilation. They can provide privacy and natural light. 

The downside is the extra cost of cutting into your roof and ceiling. Installing a double-glazed skylight costs between $60 and $100 per square foot.

Textured Glass Windows

Textured glass windows are a great option if you want light and privacy. They obscure views while maintaining an abundance of natural light. 

You can order textured glass windows or a regular window and cover it in textured contact paper.

Transom Windows

Transoms windows go high on the wall. Designers often pair them with larger windows or put them above a door frame. But, if you’re opting for a small privacy bathroom window, you can use them on their own. 

Transome windows range in price from $200 to 570 dollars, including installation. 

Hopper Windows

While hopper windows are high on the wall, they open downward to provide ventilation. You can open a hopper window for natural circulation if you have excess moisture and humidity following a hot shower.

These windows range in price from $260 to $720, depending on the size and material.

Types of Bathroom Window Glass

Types of Bathroom Window Glass

In most cases, privacy glass is a good choice for having a window in the shower. There are several types of privacy glasses you can choose from:

  • Textured Glass -Textured glass incorporates a design or pattern into the pane. It provides a decorative element while allowing light to pass through. 
  • Translucent Glass -Translucent glass is frosted glass created by sandblasting or acid-etching transparent sheet glass. The surface diffuses and scatters light. As a result, images are blurred while still allowing light to travel through.
  • Smoked Glass -Smoked glass is transparent and does not obscure images, but its darkened color increases privacy.
  • Colored Glass – As with smoked glass, colored glass is crystal clear, but the color provides additional seclusion.
  • Glass Block – You can use glass blocks for ornamental and practical purposes. They allow visual texture and natural light to enter a home while maintaining privacy. Also, their thickness reduces noise, insulates against high and low temperatures, and aids energy conservation.

Bathroom Designs and Their Windows

Bathroom Designs and Their Windows

Having a full-height window in the shower allows for great views as long as it doesn’t compromise your privacy. Check out this amazing bathroom we found on Lotosconstruction. Showering in here is like showering outside, in the middle of nature.

Regular window in shower

A regular window placed at a safe height can be an option too. You can enjoy a warm shower while looking out the window.  {found on Theskyisthelimitdesign}

Large shower window

A large shower window opens to a private garden in this bathroom. If you live in a secluded area, this is a fun option.

Full height shower window

In this bathroom, a full-height window to the left connects the shower (and bathroom) to an outdoor patio. We love the frosted glass door. It’s a perfect compromise. {found on mdarch}

Shower skylight window

What if you want natural light in your shower but cannot make a full-height window work? Perhaps you could opt for a long, horizontal window under the ceiling. It’s high enough to offer total privacy but still serves as a natural light source. {found on zigersnead}

Horizontal shower window

A high, horizontal window works for almost any shower or bathroom, regardless of style. You can even have more than one window, as seen in this contemporary bathroom featured on Ogawafisher.

Symmetrical shower with window

The two showers in this bathroom ensure a symmetrical interior design. There’s one tall, narrow window at the far end of the bathroom, illuminating the entire room. The source of inspiration is Designplatformllc.

Indirect shower window

You can also illuminate the shower indirectly. Instead of having a window in the shower, position one on the opposite wall. {found on Spiveyarchitects}

Tiny shower windows

What about tiny shower windows? Check out this bathroom layout featured on marydewaltdesigngroup. The shower is positioned in the corner, framing the tub. In addition, there are four tiny windows in the shower, high enough to maintain privacy.

Clerestory shower window

When choosing a window for your shower, consider your unique bathroom needs. It’s possible to combine two or more of the ideas we presented, as pictured above. {found on Anthonywilder}

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

What Is the Minimum Size of a Bathroom Window?

Typically, the width of a bathroom window ranges between 36 and 84 inches, while the height measures between 24 and 60 inches. That means that the minimum size for a bathroom window is 36 x 24 inches. Naturally, this depends on the type of window you choose.

Why Are Bathroom Windows so Small?

The bathroom is often the single room in the house where people can actually have some privacy (parents, you know what I’m talking about). With that in mind, you want a bathroom to be designed in such a way as to be both practical and private.

Small bathroom windows are intended to keep visibility to a minimum. They are frequently elevated above the internal walls to ensure maximum privacy. Despite this, they allow natural light to enter the room.

Can You Have a Full Size Window in a Shower?

Having a window in the shower is generally a good idea and, while you can totally opt for a full-sized window if your space allows it, is that always a good decision?

A very large shower window could be detrimental to your privacy, but that’s a situational dilemma. For instance, if your shower window is facing a secluded area of your backyard and you get to see blooming cherry trees while taking a shower, you should totally go for it.