July 23, 2014

Ideas to Update your Almond Bathroom – Toilets, Tubs, Sinks and Surrounds

Post Gist: What to do with Almond Bathroom Fixtures (tub/surround/sink/toilet) to make them work in your space – on a budget.

I’ve come across many almond tub surrounds in my day-to-day work and the 1st question I get asked is I can’t afford to replace it, but how can I possibly make it look good…?”

For those of you with an almond bathroom, let me just say this…”I feel your pain.”  I too, have an almond tub in my home and when we redecorated the bathroom our budget did not allow for it’s replacement (which can cost between $1000-$3000).  However our budget DID allow for 2 bottles of Bailey’s which helped me come to terms with the fact that we couldn’t afford to replace it.

Lucky for me (and you!) I’m an Interior Designer so I’m able to come up with some solutions for you to check out…(and if you haven’t checked out The Best Paint Colours for an Almond Bathroom then do so when you’re done this one!!)


The Sink and Countertop

If you have an almond tub, surround and/or toilet you can have a white sink.  BUT (and this is like a Kardashian sized but…) your countertop has to have the almond and white in it (tone on tone blend) or be a steady and consistent cream colour.  The goal is to have your countertop act as a ‘go between’ between your white sink and almond fixtures as it will be a visual link between the pieces that ties them together.

undermount sink and cream coloured quartz countertop will help camouflage or neutralize an almond tub and toilet

Example of a countertop that contains cream and white

close up of travertine vessel sink with dark wood base and purplish accent tiles and purple walls

This is one sink that is GREAT with an almond tub. It’s a travertine sink so it is a mix of cream and white.

almond  bathroom with white sink

The creamy toned countertop and floor/wall tiles let the white sinks blend in to this room

almond bathroom with almond tub and blue sink

Another great countertop. And the blue sink makes it so that it doesn’t matter that the tub and toilet are almond – in fact it all looks quite natural

The only time you can’t have a white sink is when your bathroom has only a toilet and sink in it.  Chances are this is an itty bitty bathroom and therefore the space is too small to have different coloured fixtures in it without other things (like tubs and all that jazz) to distract from it.


The Toilet

Bathroom with travertine sink, almond toilet and almond tub. the tub and toilet are too close for them to be different colours

This almond toilet is right next to the almond tub, therefore it stays almond

If you are replacing your toilet YES you can have a white toilet AS LONG AS it is not DIRECTLY next to your tub (as in between 12-24″).  It can be a few feet away, separated by the vanity or on the opposite side of the room – it just cannot be directly beside it.

This is because when your eye roams around the room there needs to be enough distance between the 2 so that they are not in the same visual sight line as this will only accent your almond tub and make it look dirty compared to the toilet (which seems very hypocritical of the toilet.)



close up of warm toned tile floor with almond tub and cream walls to help neutralize the almond tub

almond bathroom  with toilet on cream tile

Notice how this almond toilet looks completely at home on this creamy neutral tile

tile with cream in it for almond bathroom

A great example of flooring that would suit an almond tub/toilet/etc…Note the strong cream running through this tile

tile with cream for almond bathroom

You can even use a colourful tile, as long as it’s ‘lightest’ colour is cream – not white

 Avoid the use of a dominant white in your flooring.  Try to find a tile or linoleum that is a either a mix of creams (which can include a bit of white) or a tile with other colours in it and a dominant cream coming through.  The cream in the tile will blend in with your tub when they meet at the base which will help the tub tie into the colour scheme of your bathroom.  While you can get away with a touch of white (mixed with cream) in your flooring, TOO much white will contrast directly with your tub when they meet at the base and will only serve to accent the “almond-allure” of it.

The only exception to this rule is Travertine tile.  Travertine is such a lovely blend of whites, creams, beiges, etc… that it does quite well when placed next to almond bathroom fixtures.


Tub Surround

If you have an almond tub with a tile surround and are wanting to retile, firstly, I will say that if you are going to the effort of re-tiling (which almost always involves re-drywalling) then you should spend the extra moula and get a white tub.  Home Depot has a great in-stock tub called Mirolin/Sydney  – $269 and it is designed to fit in where your old 5′ tub was (common from the 1960′s-1990′s).  It is way deeper than the old standards and has nice sloping on the inside for your arms to rest.  It costs $269 and then you just need to factor in the cost of removing your old tub/installing the new one.  The only thing it lacks is a drink holder for your glass of Baileys – quite unfortunate.

cream bathtub surround and purpleish accent tile to help camouflage the almond tub

Cost effective porcelain tiles with glass tile accents

So, back to my point about the tub surround…If you decide not to get a new tub then you should choose a tile surround that has cream in it that coordinates with your flooring and your countertop.  Again, the cream is what will help your almond tub blend in to the overall colour scheme.  DO NOT choose a tile that is predominantly white.

Travertine tile is a great solution for tub surrounds.   Just keep in mind that it’s usually more expensive to purchase (approx. $5 sq ft) and also needs to be maintained with sealant.


Shower Curtain.

a cream and white shower curtain will help to blend almond fixtures in a bathroom

shower curtain in almond bathroom

Do not use a white shower curtain or liner.  Choose one that is cream or has a pattern on it that suits the rest of your space – it’s that easy!


Paint Colours

the best paint colours for an almond bathroom with almond tub and blue sink

Paint colours is so in-depth that I made it an article all on it’s own!  To check it out, just click here…The Best Paint Colours for an Almond Bathroom


You might also enjoy reading this post….

3 budget friendly decorating solutions and fixes

3 Budget Friendly Decorating Solutions


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Happy Decorating! 




  1. I loved this article (and the paint color article as well)!! We just bought a house with almond fixtures and I’m trying to figure out what to do with it. We are going to refinish the tub because it is peeling and I’m debating on if I should go with almond or white.

    It really isn’t a terrible almond, it is very light (bone maybe?). We won’t have the budget to replace the sinks, toilet, and tile floor for about 5ish years. I’m trying to decide if it would look terrible to have a white tub and surround with other almond fixtures? What are your thoughts on this?

    • Hi April! Hmmmmmmm, that’s a tough one….My worry is that if you do the tub white you will REALLY hate the toilet/sink/etc… as it could really make them show more than before.

      However, the problem is that in 5 years it is going to be a lot harder to get almond toilets/sinks – other than special order (Which is usually more expensive). Any really at that point I can’t see you really ‘wanting’ to buy another almond toilet!!!

      So, if it were me….I think I’d do a white tub. I would buy a shower curtain that had some ‘almond/cream’ in it as well as white to kind of ‘blend the 2 worlds’ – and then I’d just watch for a sale on toilets/sink ;)

      Does that help at all???????


  2. I was so happy to find your site- I have a long, narrow kids bathroom with no window- I am putting frameless mirrored medicine cabinets above existing double sink plain cream corian vanity top with maple color wood base cabinet. and yes standard almond floor tile, one piece tub and toilet ugh. I thought the same thing to treat the almond as a color in the scheme- I was thinking to paint the bathroom cream so I could keep it open and bright (no windows) then add color with accents/décor – but I want alittle color ( not dark ) – I thought about a pale blue/ neutral color?

    • Hi Jen, I think it’s a GREAT idea to look towards a pale blue colour (and I was thinking of doing that myself with my good ole Almond fixtures (argh…). Anyways…these are the ones I’d look at as there actually aren’t many that are ‘just right’…I also tweaked you to ones that have a spot of green in them as if they are ‘too blue’ it can look off in an almond bathroom with no natural light.

      1. Palladian Blue – but have it lightened by 1/2 as it’s a wee bit intense – totally the right ‘colour’ though. Ben Moore might not be able to lighten it for you, but if you take the colour chip to H.Depot you can get it done into a tester pot (CIL or Behr) to see what it looks like!

      2. Green Tint – Very lovely and a nice ‘tone’ too.

      3. Gray Wisp – definitely the ‘bluest’ of the bunch. Just a tiny smidge of green in it. This is another one that you might want to have lightned so that you get the ‘colour’ without the depth.

      Okay, I want you to look at those and tell me what you think. I know it’s only 3, but I’d rather give you 3 good ones than 4 terrible ones!

      Oh, of course your other choice is to go with something like ‘Cloud White’ and then accessorize with the blue/green colour with towels, detail on your shower curtain, artwork, vases, etc…


  3. What a great help you are! I have an almond countertop, and an ivory shower curtain that I like a lot. The floor, newish, is oversized tile that has a lot of “movement”–it’s brown, gray and cream, set on the diagonal, we like it a lot. I have my heart set on a gray paint but don’t know what color. The bath has no windows. Nickel fixtures. We can change the countertop but what color? And we’ve tried several samples of beige paint which is why I’m going the gray route–all the beige paint samples are too dark or too light. The gray mist looks a little too light, although I haven’t tried a sample yet. And if I did go with gray paint, what about accessories? Thanks a whole bunch!

    • Oh Toni, I’m sorry to leave you waiting! My Decorating Business has been booming lately as has my Online Consulting, so between those 2 my time has been limited! I have your question in my roster, but can’t guarantee when I’ll be able to get to it. If you’d like answers sooner (like within 3 days) you’re welcome to check out my Online Consulting (your question would just be a 1 hr consult at $30). However, if you’re happy to wait I promise I will get to you eventually!!!!

      I’m sorry I can’t get to it right now!!!


  4. Kylie,
    My master bathroom has a black marble floor, and the shower, sink, cabinet, counter and jacuzzi are all almond…ugh! And although I’m more comfortable with neutrals, I’m thinking I need another color to draw attention away from this almond colored nightmare.

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!


    • Hi Karen! Quite often a nice deep red is a great accent colour for black and almond. Charcoal gray is also dynamic. Depending on the size of the space you could do 70% of your accent in Charcoal and then 30% in Red. If your homes more earth toned, you’ll want to tweak the red to be a deep rustish colour.
      I hope that helps, thank you for asking!

  5. Am so glad I found your info about almond (bone?) tubs and toilets! We are updating our small hall bathroom and I was considering a white vanity, because I want a casual look. How can I get a casual feel to this small bathroom with no windows and still use a darker-stained cherry or maple vanity? Thanks!

    • Hi Karen, yes it is harder to get a casual look with a darker vanity in a bathroom like yours. You’d really need to make it a tone-on-tone palette and add some nice texture through baskets, shower curtain and a vase with some twigs in it perhaps. But really, a better bet is going with a white vanity OR….paint a vanity! You can choose any colour that you like this way (and it’s really not that difficult or expensive!).

      Hope that helps!


  6. I want to renovate the fixtures (tub, toilet, countertop and sink) in my main bathroom that are all almond (or bone depending on your point of view) and are all 80ish, but like a lot of people I don’t have a spare $5000-$6000. I have resigned myself to only the toilet, countertop and sink, as honestly there is nothing wrong with the tub. I am willing to keep the almond theme (especially since the tub isn’t going anywhere and is right next to the toilet), and I’m definitely not afraid of painting, plumbing (okay, so my husband isn’t afraid of the plumbing) or the shopping (I’m kinda looking forward to that part). Can you suggest some paint/decorating ideas for the vanity (wood and definitely 80s) and walls? The bathroom is small and money is DEFINITELY an issue, so reno’ing on the cheap is definitely in my budget (preferably $1000 or less).

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