And you no longer have to worry about getting it wet, thanks to the latest water-resistant, user-friendly finishes.
Try a tropical vibe with a peppy palm print and team with white woodwork and neutral colours for balance. These walls are papered in Deco Palm, cole-and-son.com, which is wipeable and can be sealed for extra steam-resistance. Freestanding bath, cphart.co.uk
A bold feature wall can be cheaper than tiling an entire room, while also adding drama. Here, the glass-panelled cubicle sets you amid the trompe l’oeil landscape. Walls papered in L’Eden, degournay.com, which can be waterproofed on request. Shower and vanity unit, both drummonds-uk.com
Bold fish roll
Combining a strikingly patterned paper with panelling in a muted shade allows the walls to do the talking. The colour of this rolltop bath complements the fish motif, giving the space a cohesive feel. The walls are covered in the extra-washable Flow Black, grahambrown.com
If papering a whole space or feature wall feels too much, or if you have a small space, add impact by using a single panel of bold pattern surrounded by neutral metro tiles to create a focal point. For similar paper, try Banana Leaves from naken.co.uk
Love the look of wallpaper in the bathroom, but want to decorate within a shower area? You can still imitate the effect. These porcelain slabs are perfect for steamy areas; from devon-devon.com
This bathroom finds common ground through colour, with the green in the tropical backdrop echoed in the floor tiles. The walls are decorated with made-to-order D-Dream paper, iksel.com, which is polyester-backed to withstand temperature fluctuations.
Wallpaper made easy – for style that sticks
1. Check the labels: ‘scrubbable wallpapers’ that are vinyl-coated or made from heavyweight vinyl are the best options for the bathroom. Also look out for rolls labelled as ‘extra-washable’ or ‘wash-resistant’.
2. Any wallpaper can work in a well-ventilated area – near a window or extractor fan – especially if the paper is used in parts that don’t get particularly wet, such as behind the bath or sink.
3. If your bathroom has little or no ventilation, treat your chosen wallpaper with Polyvine Decorator’s Varnish, available from most DIY stores. Opt for the ‘dead flat’ version as it won’t alter the wallpaper colour – and do a test patch first.
4. Choose ‘paste the wall’ designs for ease – they use a special backing paper that doesn’t expand when it gets wet. Apply the paste directly to the wall and slash your decorating time in half. Visit grahambrown.com for a selection.
Report by Nicole Gray