What Is a Powder Room?A powder room is a small bathroom, usually under 50 square feet, designed for general use by both residents of the house and guests. It's usually located on the ground level, near common areas.
At its most basic, a powder room consists of a toilet and a sink (after all, you don't expect your guests to take a shower or bath). A powder room allows guests to relieve themselves and wash their hands.
Contrast this with a guest bathroom--for overnight guests--which may be adjoining a guest bedroom, consisting of a toilet, sink, and a bathtub or shower.
Powder Room FAQs
- Continuous Flooring is Fine: The standard recommendation about not putting wood flooring in a bathroom does not apply to powder rooms. It's fine to continue water-averse flooring such as solid hardwood into the powder room because you do not expect this floor to be subjected to large quantities of water. Carpet is the one exception.
- Sinks and Their Bases Make a Difference: Sink bases are the single largest piece of furniture in your powder room. As you'll see in this guide, big box-like sink bases eat up tons of space. Pedestal sinks, by contrast, do not require a sink base cabinet.
- Powder Room Is Your Public Face: So, make it shine. Be creative and take chances you might not ordinarily take with your private "working bathrooms."
- Things You Can Do Without: Since space is at a premium, you can leave these things out of your powder room: large towel racks (a small rack for a hand towel is fine); large mirrors (overwhelming in this small space); hooks (one hook on the back of the door for purses or a coat is fine); storage space (store cleaning products and towels elsewhere; exception would be baskets where storage is more for display than function).