5 Benefits of a Shower Niche

By Sherry Holmes

Mike’s Advice / On The Job

I know that in my bathroom, space is an issue. Even though I only share the space with my fiancé, we both need our designated areas for our everyday shower essentials: shampoo, conditioner, soap, and other must-haves. But making or finding space in a bathroom isn’t always easy, especially when it comes to the shower and tub area. Where can you keep your shower essentials within close reach without creating a mess? Buying a bulky shower organizer is one option – but it takes up valuable shower space. One way to reclaim your shower zone is to install a shower niche.

What’s a Shower Niche?

A shower niche is an open storage space, like a cubbyhole, that is installed within the wall of your shower or tub area and is used to keep all your bathroom items nicely organized. Niches aren’t just for showers – they can also be installed in bathtub surrounds. They provide a convenient and clutter-free way to store your regularly used bathing items.

Types of Niches

There are two commonly used shower niches – custom and pre-fabricated.

A custom niche is built from scratch by constructing a framed box within the wall. Wallboard is then installed on all surfaces of the framed box and covered with a waterproofing membrane.

A pre-fabricated niche is pre-made and does not require any materials for building a custom niche. It must be fastened to the studs and properly secured to the board, minor back framing or blocking.

Why Choose a Shower Niche?

If you share a bathroom with others then you will relate to my struggle of trying to maintain enough space for everyone’s bathroom essentials, without making a huge mess. Perhaps you have made use of a shower caddy or shelf to provide extra space within your shower or tub area. However, shower caddies and shelves can be a pain to clean, are bulky, and can make your shower look messy. With all the water and moisture in your bathroom, the metal ones also tend to rust over time.

A shower niche is a much better solution, for relatively little expense. It's an extremely useful feature that provides you with a proper place to keep your shower accessories, without adding bulky organizers that take up much-needed space. Everyday shower items can be kept out of the way within the wall of your shower.

Benefits of a Pre-fabricated Niche

I’ve renovated my fair share of bathrooms, so when it comes time to include a niche for a bathtub surround or shower I prefer to use a pre-fabricated niche like Schluter®-KERDI-BOARD-SN, which comes in four different sizes to suit every need. It can be installed in both KERDI and KERDI-BOARD wall assemblies. Unlike traditional shower niches, these pre-fabricated niches are fully sealed, waterproof, and vapour-tight, so there won’t be any leaks. And they’re easy to install, which helps keep a steady workflow for any installer.

There are many benefits to installing a pre-fabricated niche:

  1. Gaining additional space to hold your everyday shower essentials inside your shower or tub area.
  2. It keeps your shower and tub space clutter-free.
  3. You can add your own design by making the niche a focal point of your bathroom. When it comes to the back of the niche, you can add a splash of colour; install a textured, uniquely shaped or patterned tile to make the niche pop. I recently worked on a bathroom where we tiled the back of a niche with a bold blue tile that really makes the shower stand out.
  4. Shelves can be installed in the larger Schluter® pre-fabricated niches. This is great if you want to designate space for a guest or others that you share your bathroom with.
  5. A niche can be installed at any height level. Something I’d recommend for us ladies out there is to install one for your essentials at eye level and one at a lower level to be used as a footrest when shaving legs!

If you need to reclaim some space in your bathroom and you’re doing a renovation, a niche will keep the clutter out. Whether you go with a pre-fabricated niche or a custom niche – well, to niche their own.