Autumn is right around the corner. As the days shorten and the temperature cools, a young(ish) person’s fancy turns to … changing up their living space! This one’s does, anyway. Over the next few months, I’ll be hunting down and sharing with you some of the coolest DIY products on the home improvement market to rescue your haven from its rut without an expensive renovation.
Let’s start with that most hallowed of havens: the bathroom. It’s surprisingly easy to make a tired, run down loo look and feel like new.
This Waterpik SprayShaper™ Easy Select Hand Held Shower Head will turn your shower into a splashy massage parlor. Its six spray settings and innovative movable panels allow you to customize the water’s direction and angles after you’ve decided whether you’d rather be caressed by a gentle mist or pummeled by a powerful pulse. To install, just unscrew your old shower head from the water pipe, make sure the pipe threads are clean, then screw this one on. If you’re nervous or hit a snag, the included installation manual is great and there are plenty of step-by-step videos at http://www.waterpik.com. Available at Home Depot and http://www.homedepot.com.
Moen has some awesomely practical and simple-to-install bath/shower products. One of my favorites, their Curved Tension Rod, provides up to 5.5″ of extra shower space. It’s corrosion-resistant, comes in three gorgeous finishes (Chrome, Brushed Nickel and Old World Bronze) and couldn’t be easier to install. Simply expand the rod until it touches the spots where you’d like to mount it (don’t worry if your walls are a bit wonky, the rod’s flanges pivot to securely fit just about any surface), then use large hand-turned screws (attached) on both sides to add tension (if it’s still not holding, you can expand it a bit more from the center). When it’s perfectly placed and secure, pop the included decorative hardware covers onto both sides and hang up a shiny new curtain! Moen has a handy installation video here: http://www.moen.com. Another cool addition is something from their Grab Bar collection. Not your grandma’s grab bars, these come in the same finishes as the curved tension rod and feature three different lengths and accessories like shelves and towel bars. They’ll also rescue up to 250 pounds of slipping human! Installation does require a power tool or two and a few other tools but, if I can do it (the chrome 16″ with shelf now keeps me safely upright while it holds my shampoo), so can you. Installation videos for all three versions can be found at http://www.moen.com. Find your nearest retailer here: http://www.moen.com.
Next stop: toilet! Short of dressing it up in furry tank and seat covers, there hasn’t historically been much one could do to jazz up their commode. Leave it to Kohler to usher the throne into the 21st century! Their Nightlight Lighted Toilet Seat is sleek, low profile and available in five styles. It also has an incredibly funky, glowing blue light that illuminates the tank (then the bowl when the lid is lifted) and serves as a beacon in the night for the half-asleep. Installation is as easy as a plain old, boring seat and its Quick Release feature makes it easy to remove for cleaning. Just replace the four AA batteries every six months and you’ll never go in the dark again. While you are going, you might be thinking about how annoying it is to flush a toilet. Pushing that handle when who knows who/what else has touched it … ewww. Kohler’s got you covered there, too! Easily transform your standard toilet into a sanitary marvel with the Touchless Toilet Flush Kit. It took less than 20 minutes to install in my toilet tank (it’s compatible with most of them), thanks to the handy video you’ll find here: http://www.us.kohler.com. Now all I have to do to flush is wave my hand over a spot on the top of the tank (dramatically … it’s even more fun that way). This unit is also battery powered, but this one will beep at you when it’s time for replacement. Find out where to soup up your loo at http://www.us.kohler.com/us/storelocator/whereToBuy.jsp.
Now that your bathroom looks fresh and new, let’s make it smell that way. A perfect decorative, flameless, non-squirty option is a Scenterpiece™ Warmer from Yankee Candle. This Owl-shaped version looks like an adorably ambient LED nightlight (with an adjustable timer and automatic shutoff) while keeping Easy MeltCups safely warm and fragrant inside. Choose your favorite warmer and stock up on scents at http://www.yankeecandle.com. Finally, return those rolls of glorified sandpaper … I mean TP … to the office from which you swiped them last week and treat yourself to the cushiony coziness of Cottonelle Clean Care Toilet Paper. You can’t go wrong with any of this brand’s products, but this one manages to be super absorbent and strong while remaining friendly to both your skin and your septic system. Pair it with their Flushable Cleansing Cloths and you’ll always be squeaky clean and comfy. Available at all major department stores and drugstores.
I hope you have as much fun jazzing up your bathroom as I did! Next month, let’s tackle our kitchens!