Can I Put Any Mirror in the Bathroom? (3 Mistakes to Avoid)

Can I Put Any Mirror in the Bathroom

Deciding what type of mirror to put in your bathroom can be overwhelming, considering all the different types of mirrors out there! It’s important to do your research so you don’t make any mistakes. So, which type of mirror can you put in the bathroom?

You can put any mirror in a bathroom, however, mirrors made for bathrooms have additional qualities that make them ideal for humid environments. Moisture and humidity can warp mirrors over time, this is why bathroom mirrors are made to be moisture resistant so their quality stays intact.

Moisture can warp mirrors and the frame around them, so it’s important to know what mirrors are best for the bathroom, especially if it’s a full bath with a shower or bath. There are also other features in mirrors that can add a touch of luxury to the space. 

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Here’s a Quick Pro Tip!

Bathroom mirrors are best when they are rust-free, fog-free, and will not warp while the shower fills the room with steam. Unfortunately, moisture causes many issues for bathroom mirrors.

Here are a few mirror choices from Amazon that are perfect for your bathroom:

1. LOAAO Metal Framed Bathroom Mirror – This mirror has an anti-rust black metal frame which is simple and goes with many bathroom sets. The glass for this mirror is tempered, which means it’s safe for use in a bathroom.

2. Zelieve Bathroom Vanity Mirror – This luxurious mirror has a dimmable set of LED lights around the perimeter of the mirror for optimal lighting. It is also anti-fog and waterproof. This way the mirror is clear of any steam after a bath or shower.

3. KOHLER Medicine Cabinet with Mirrored Door – This is perfect for small bathrooms because it includes a medicine cabinet behind the mirror. It is also rust and chip resistant with adjustable tempered glass shelves. 

All About Bathroom Mirrors

Bathroom mirrors have specific designs and standards that are different from other mirrors. They are also the most used mirrors in a house or building.

In this section, we will cover what makes a bathroom mirror different. 

What Kind of Mirror Should I Put in My Bathroom?

A mirror made from tempered glass is best for safety guidelines. It’s also best to mount it or frame it on something moisture resistant because of the humidity in bathrooms. Plastic or waterproofed wood framing and mounting work well. 

If you are making the bathroom handicap accessible, place the bottom edge of the mirror no higher than 40 inches from the ground.

If the mirror is a full-length mirror, make sure the top edge is at least 70 inches from the ground.

Is There a Difference Between Bathroom Mirrors and Regular Mirrors?

Bathroom mirrors, especially those up to code and specific standards, are different from other mirrors in other areas. Differences include what the mirror is mounted on, what the mirror is made of, and how far the mirror is off of the ground. 

The ADA has specific standards for facilities to make mirrors accessible to disabled individuals. For example, bathroom mirrors should be made from tempered glass for safety.

And the material that the mirror is mounted on should be moisture resistant. 

What are the Requirements For a Bathroom Mirror?

In bathrooms, the bottom of each mirror should not be more than 40 inches off of the ground or floor if it is above a sink or counter. If a mirror is not above a counter, the bottom of each mirror should not be more than 35 inches off the ground or floor. 

A full-length mirror should be capable of capturing the whole self of someone in a wheelchair, and the top of the mirror should at least be 74 inches from the ground or floor in a bathroom. 

These required standards come from the ADA. They are required for businesses and government facilities but are also suitable for residential spaces to be accessible for all. 

You might also enjoy our post on If You Can Use Clear Windows in a Bathroom

Do Bathroom Mirrors Need to be Tempered?

According to federal, state, and local building codes, bathroom mirrors should be tempered. When the mirror’s glass is tempered, it will shatter into tiny pieces that are broken or knocked down.

A tempered glass mirror is safer because if it falls or breaks, many tiny pieces fall on whoever is in the path of the fall.

If a mirror falls and breaks that is not tempered, the weight and sharp shards could be fatal or cause serious harm. 

Bathroom Mirror Requirements

The requirements for a bathroom mirror include making them out of tempered glass and having them meet ADA requirements. For example, ADA states that mirrors should not be higher than 40 inches from the ground. 

Additionally, the ADA states that the top edge of a full-length mirror should be at least 74 inches above the ground.

It’s also good to have the mirror mounted on a waterproof or humidity-resistant back. Plastic or waterproofed wood works well in bathrooms.

Can I Put Any Mirrors in the Bathroom?

Specific mirrors do not work well in the bathroom. Metal mirrors can tarnish, plastic can become scratched quickly, and un-tempered glass can be dangerous. So, the best type of mirror for the bathroom is made out of tempered glass.

Glass is often used for mirrors because it is cheap and widely available, doesn’t tarnish, and is easy to clean.

Tempered glass is the safest choice because it breaks into tiny pieces that are less likely to severely cut someone if it falls and breaks.  

Can Decorative Mirrors be Used in Bathrooms?

Decorative mirrors can be used in bathrooms. Many interior design artists pick out lovely mirrors framed in various designs and colors. The main concern for bathroom mirrors is that it is framed or mounted on waterproof material.

There are metal and wood frames that can stand the moisture when treated, and mirrors can be mounted on or framed.

There are many more options today for bathroom mirrors with the number of professional stylists and design artists. 

Can You Put a Wood Mirror in the Bathroom?

You can have a mirror mounted or framed with wood if the wood is treated and waterproofed. If you have a well-ventilated bathroom, moisture resistance might be just fine. However, the main concern is that wood absorbs too much moisture.

Wood can warp, mold, and eventually start decomposing if left untreated and becomes wet too often.

So when you buy a mirror with a wood frame by today’s commercial standards, it will be treated wood and at least water-resistant. 

Is a Bathroom Mirror Different?

Bathroom mirrors are made with different standards. They are usually made of tempered glass and are stabilized to be shatter-resistant. They are also mounted or framed with waterproof or moisture-resistant materials.

Some materials that do well are coated metal, treated and coated wood, and various types of plastic.

The mirror part is almost always made of glass because of its affordability and sustainability. 

You might also enjoy our post on If You Can Use a Mirror in the Shower

Is There a Difference in Mirror Quality?

Mirrors made on plastic or metal will either tarnish or scratch. Mirrors made on glass last a long time and are smooth. A plastic mirror might warp and distort the reflection, but a smooth glass mirror will remain a clear, undistorted reflection. 

The first mirrors were made from metal. Glass mirrors weren’t invented until 1939, but today glass mirrors are more favorable because they are lighter in weight.

However, metal mirrors tarnish, and the more you clean them, the more the polish comes off, making the metal reflective. 

Bathroom Specific Mirrors

There are specific qualities you want to have in a bathroom mirror. Having the mirror in a bathroom means it will be exposed to the most moisture in the house. 

How Do You Waterproof a Bathroom Mirror?

Glass mirrors are waterproof, but what the mirror is mounted on or framed with might not be waterproof, and this part needs your attention. If the frame is wood, it will need to be sealed with a waterproofing wood finish.

Wood finish and sealer that is waterproof will aid in the wood not becoming warped or molded from the humidity in a regularly used bathroom.

Waterproofing a mirror frame is much less important if the bathroom is a half bath and doesn’t have a shower. 

What Type of Mirrors are Used in Bathrooms?

Most mirrors in bathrooms are tempered glass and are mounted or framed with a water-resistant material. In addition, wood frames or backings are treated and sealed with a waterproof finishing product. 

Some bathrooms that do not have showers or hot water will have mirrors that are not explicitly made for bathrooms because the humidity is less of an issue.

Some restrooms in public facilities use metal mirrors.

How Do I Choose a Bathroom Mirror?

You can choose a bathroom mirror that fits your style or matches the space’s style. There are many options in all sorts of price ranges. You can also find bathroom mirrors that come in a bathroom set. 

You can buy mirrors that come with the matching sink vanity. Most of the time, people enjoy having their bathroom mirror above the sink.

You can also buy a separate mirror, but be sure it is moisture resistant. 

Are There Moisture-Resistant Mirrors?

There are moisture-resistant mirrors. Glass is moisture resistant and can be mounted or framed with moisture-resistant wood or metal. You can also buy mirrors that will not fog up and limit the amount of moisture on the mirror.  

You can buy fog-free mirrors as well as moisture-resistant mirrors. These mirrors are good when face shaving and applying makeup in a humid bathroom after a shower.

Most of these are small but perfect for traveling. 

What are the Three Types of Mirrors?

The three types of mirrors are the plane mirror, convex mirror, and concave mirror. A plane mirror shows you an actual image in the reflection. A convex mirror creates a distorted image, and a concave mirror shows objects smaller or larger than they are.

Depending on the placement, a concave mirror can enlarge your features to see certain things better or minimize how things look when further away.

This type of mirror is helpful for skincare and makeup. 

What Type of Mirror is a Bathroom Mirror?

Most bathroom mirrors are plane mirrors that show you the reality. Some bathroom mirrors are concave and used to apply makeup, skincare, and face shaving. 

The frame or backing material holding a mirror is usually treated with a waterproofing product. You can also buy mirrors that won’t fog up in the bathroom.

The waterproofing or water-resistant products are less necessary in a bathroom without a shower or bath. 

How do you Know if a Mirror is of Good Quality?

If a mirror is good in quality, it will have a clear image, the glass will be thick, and the mirror will be flat and smooth. However, if the glass has any scratches or is dull, the mirror is of poor quality. 

You can also buy high-quality mirrors that will not fog up when you take a hot bath or shower.

Most mirrors are flat, but some have a curve and can enlarge your features to see details better. This is handy when applying makeup or shaving. 

What Do All Mirrors Have in Common?

All mirrors are reflective and are made on a hard surface. Most mirrors are made from glass today, but a good number are made from metal and plastic. Metal mirrors are heavier, and plastic mirrors are excellent and safe for children. 

Metal mirrors eventually lose their reflective coating and can tarnish and rust. Because of the coating, they cannot be cleaned frequently.

Plastic mirrors scratch and smudge quickly. Glass mirrors are easy to clean and are less expensive than metal. 

Related Questions

Can You Use Soap and Water on a Mirror?

You can use soap and water on a mirror, but it can leave streaks. Afterward, you can go back over the mirror with vinegar or glass cleaner to remove any streaks. It’s unnecessary to wash a mirror with soap and water first unless it’s greasy or covered in dirt.

You can also clean a mirror or streaks with water and a microfiber cloth.  Many use paper towels and a glass cleaner as their first and last step.

However, paper towels are not as effective as microfiber cloths in removing streaks, and they can leave behind lint from the towel.

Should Bathroom Mirrors be Wider Than the Sink?

A bathroom mirror doesn’t have to be wider than the sink it’s over, but it can be helpful. The wider and taller a mirror, the more you can see. So it can look more aesthetically pleasing if the mirror is at least the size of the sink, if not wider.

Many bathroom mirrors are the width of the vanity.

If you have a long vanity with two or more sinks, one long mirror is appealing and makes it easy to see yourself, and it makes the space seem larger. 

How Do You Match a Mirror to a Vanity?

You can purchase a mirror and vanity set or use a simple design for both. For example, a simple flat mirror without any framing or detail will work for all vanities. The goal is to either keep the mirror the width of the sink or the width of the vanity.

Some mirrors are oval, and some are framed. If you are choosing one that is framed or has detail to it, make sure it matches the style of the bathroom.

Another trick is to use a metallic color for the mirror frame and match it to the hardware in the bathroom. 

How Long Do Bathroom Mirrors Last?

Bathroom mirrors can become damaged over time due to the moisture in a bathroom. For example, if a bathroom is not well ventilated, the moisture can warp the mirror. Also, if the mirror has metal in it, the moisture can get to the metal and oxidize the metal leaving black spots.

To prevent mirror damage, put a fan in the bathroom, or crank up the AC. You can also buy a portable dehumidifier.

This will also help with moisture damage to the frame or backing of the mirror. 

Final Thoughts

After reading this article, I hope you have an idea of what kind of mirror you want. If you are planning a bathroom for a public facility, be sure it meets ADA standards.

If you hire a professional interior design artist, they can pick the perfect mirror for the room. 

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