What Is a Vanity Unit: Styles, Finishes, Sizes, a Guide
What type of furniture most easily combines the functions of a sink basin and storage space into one piece of furniture?
A vanity unit is a versatile, stylish storage solution perfect for your existing bathroom or remodeling project.
But what exactly is a vanity unit? What styles do they come in and where can I get one?
Read on to find out.
A vanity unit is a piece of furniture which comprises a sink, countertop and usually drawers. Depending on the style it might have cupboards, built-in-shelves, lights and mirrors. Vanity units are commonly used in restrooms and bathrooms to house a single or double sink, with added storage features.
So now we’ve got the mini takeaway nailed. For anyone wanting to understand more about what a vanity unit is, let’s begin by exploring its modern terminology and some background details.
What is a vanity unit?
In our more contemporary world, a vanity unit or sometimes simply referred to as a ‘vanity’ can be easily described as a piece of bathroom furniture that generally combines a sink, countertop, and mirror.
Vanities can certainly have more than just these features, and many modern vanities incorporate modern features such as:
- Architectural styling details
- Built-in shelves
In terms of design and functionality, vanities are an important element of your bathroom installation or remodel.
While they can be a clever way of keeping any pipes and plumbing work out of sight, they also provide a perfect way to decorate based on the size of your bathroom.
Whatever the amount of space you have to work with, there are a range of styles and sizes that will suit you.
So now we've got the definitive answer for those of you wondering, what is a vanity unit? Let's delve a little into the past and find out some history of this attractive and useful bathroom and restroom accessory.
“a ‘vanity’ can be easily described as a piece of bathroom furniture
that generally combines a sink, countertop, and mirror.”
Where are vanity units from?
What we all know and understand as a vanity unit was originally called a toilet table.
Interestingly, there are records of the famous and world-renowned Cabinet Maker, Thomas Chippendale, producing a ’toilet table‘ way back in 1762.
These toilet tables were often ornate, grand pieces of furniture and were often used in gentleman’s salons or suites.
“There are records of the famous and world-renowned Cabinet Maker,
Thomas Chippendale, producing a ‘toilet table’ way back in 1762.”
Toilet tables and Washstands
While running water still wasn’t as widespread as it is now, many of those ‘toilet tables’ merged into what we now commonly call a ‘dressing table’.
These tables provided an area in homes of the past where large bowls and jugs for water were available for washing.
The popular Victorian-style Washstand is a version of the more historic vanity table/toilet-table and has become a popular addition to those homes who are looking to keep a more original look to their bathroom remodel.
“many of those ‘toilet tables’ merged into what we now
commonly call a ‘dressing table’.”
Dressing tables and vanity tables
Over the next century, the popular term became ‘dressing table’, and then eventually the term ‘vanity was added.
This type of vanity table evolved into the ‘farmhouse’ styles we are familiar with, which include mirrors, drawers, and cabinets for you to stash away all your pretty and essential bathroom bits and pieces.
This type of vanity has a wealth of storage for towels, toiletries, and more.
This type of classic vanity unit is probably the type we are most familiar with and brings an elegant look to any bathroom or restroom.
So for anyone wanting to add the best stylish vanity unit in their bathroom, you might be wondering what size to buy, and if they come in standard sizes.
“What we now call a vanity unit was
originally called a toilet table.”
Read on to discover more
What size is a vanity unit?
Originally, most Vanities were built at a standard height to accommodate bathrooms and restrooms shared by children and adults. They were a common addition to homes in the post-war housing boom.
Today, most vanities are designed to prevent hunching and bending and many can be customized to your own requirements.
The only limit is your imagination!
It’s worth knowing, however, the standard height for bathroom vanities in the US is around 32 inches, but many manufacturers design them around 36 inches for maximum comfort.
Many of the best vanity unit online retailers understand that size is important and not all homes and needs are the same!
Here at Mizzlebaths, we offer a range of sizes to fit every sized bathroom and anywhere in your home, such as a cloakroom or even your summer chalet!
Our beautifully crafted vanity units are offered in a range of comfortable heights:
- 20" Vanity Unit
- 24" Vanity Unit
- 36” Vanity Unit
- 48” Vanity Unit
- 60” Vanity Unit
- 72” Vanity Unit
“Originally, most Vanities were built at a standard height to accommodate
bathrooms and restrooms shared by children and adults.”
Classic vanity units
For those looking for a more classic type of vanity unit, one of the most popular styles contains cabinetry which includes cupboards along with drawers and mirrors.
Some of the best classic vanity units offer expert cabinetry detailing, along with luxurious extras such as:
- Detailed cabinets and door trims
- Marble marble tops
- Soft closing door hinges
- Elevated counter height to avoid back strain.
“Some of the best classic vanity units
offer expert cabinetry detailing, along with luxurious extras “
Floating vanity units
With slick modern designs becoming more and more popular, some of the more contemporary vanity units are known as ‘floating’ vanity units.
The best floating vanity units are often constructed of solid timber such as beech and have luxurious touches such as ‘self-closing’ or ‘soft closing’ drawers and solid chrome hardware.
Larger floating vanity units ( usually around 72”) also add the opulent feature of a ‘his and her’ or a double sink.
What finishes do vanity units have?
There is almost an endless choice of finishes for vanity units.
Some may be finished with satin nickel hardware, with solid wood finishes and others have a more modern and contemporary look with white gloss to update your existing bathroom.
What type of bathrooms are vanity units suitable for?
Ok so now we know exactly what a vanity unit is.
We’ve discovered some of the styles and range of heights available, so let’s explore the kinds of bathrooms suitable for a vanity unit.
With the huge wealth of sizes and styles, vanity units are offered, it’s not surprising to find out that a vanity unit is perfect for any size bathroom!
If you are looking for a statement piece in a larger bathroom, if you want to make the most of space, or even if you are looking to remodel a smaller second bathroom or restroom, a vanity unit will bring a stylish and useful addition to your project.
“It’s not surprising to find out that a vanity
unit is perfect for any size bathroom!”
Whether you’re looking for a vanity with sleek contemporary detailing, or a floating vanity with double sinks for your bathroom or restroom remodel, don’t forget to check out our full range.
Here at Mizzlebaths, we are proud to have built a reputation offering both style and quality.
Our expert team supplies our customers with the best online bathroom products available to style your bathroom remodel with confidence.