An Invisible Bathroom Before And After

June 10, 2021

White towel hanging off wooden vanity

As many of you may know, either because you're a longtime follower or because I say it a lot, I don't redecorate that often.

Many- if not most - of the rooms in my home look the same as they did almost twenty years ago.

Oh sure, there are the occasional big projects that go along with homeownership

And lots of tiny decor updates, like curtain or rug swaps, but overall, the view is all pretty boring around here. Which suits me just fine.

I love what I have and don't feel the need to make changes.

However. And this is a big however. 

When you don't update that often, things tend to get worn from longtime use.

And while consistency in my decor makes me smile, dingy decor does not.

So, we touch up chipped paint spots when necessary. I make new curtains when the old ones fade and I repair the sofa and chairs when they rip.

Sometimes, the DIYs require a little creativity to restore items to their former glory, but overall, the real trick to long lasting, fresh looking decor is good old fashion housekeeping.

Yup. Boring, tedious, daily washing and wiping. That's it, that's the secret.

Especially in the bathrooms. 

Master Bathroom

It's the foolproof secret to keeping a bathroom looking just renovated for years.

Now before you get all crazy, thinking that cleaning is all I do every day, I don't.

I'm talking about doing the basics. And it takes a total of about 5 minutes to get it all done.

I wipe the counters to clean off any toothpaste or water, so mold doesn't have a chance to pool or fester and darken the grout or caulk.

I wipe out the sink with a damp rag since it's porous and I wouldn't want it to stain. I shine up the fixtures and mirrors, too.

I pick up any wet towels or damp laundry piles and put them in the washroom. Lastly,  I wipe off the outside of the toilet and give the inside a little brush scrub. 

The basics.

The big cleaning, the shower, the floors, I do - or I have my kids do - once a week...or every other.

See not every day. There's no need for that.

Anyway, the point is the best way to keep your new renovation or your home in general, looking its best, for a really long time, is to keep it clean. Not just neat, but clean.

And it's way easier than it sounds.

Those teeny little moves make all the difference.

But here's another secret. You know what doesn't stay fresh looking no matter how well and how often you clean it?

The toilet seat.

Toilet In A White Bathroom

I know, not a conversation for polite company, but it's reality.

If it's clean, nobody notices. But if it's not...well...

And I learned long ago, that you can clean it all you want, but the best way to keep your entire bathroom looking fabulous and fresh is to just replace it.

As soon as it starts looking dingy.

They're super cheap and you can accomplish the task in about 10 minutes.

Plus, once the seat it off, you can clean the toilet really, really well.

Ok, so how do you do it?

How To Replace A Toilet Seat

Honestly, this job is so simple, anyone can do it. Pinky promise.

I normally do it myself, but this time I asked my handy mister to help me out so I could snap the photos. Ordinarily, it's a one person job.

First things first, you need to get a new seat.

Round Toilet Seats in Boxes

There are tons on the market, including very, very pricey ones. I steer clear of those. The ones I buy are anywhere from $5 - $10.

I haven't found that the expensive ones hold up any better than the cheap ones and unless it's padded...don't laugh, we had those in my house growing up...they all feel the same.

There are supposedly mold and mildew resistant ones, but again, I haven't seen a difference. And there are the easy close ones, but I've found the basics suit us fine. 

No, the difference you need to pay attention to, is the shape. They come in round or oval, based on your toilet shape. Ours are round.

You can measure your current seat to determine this.

Next up, you need to get the old one off the toilet. To do this, simply pop open the clips that hide the screws, grab a screwdriver and get moving.

Removing Screws From Toilet Seat

Now, the screws are anchored underneath the bowl with a plastic nut. So it's easiest to remove the screws, if you have one hand on that nut holding it.

Otherwise, you're just going to be spinning the screws without any progress. 

When the screws are out, there may or may not be stickly tabs on the base that need to be removed. Older toilet seats didn't have them. Today, they are pretty standard.

If they're really stuck or the tape residue remains you can use a razor in a safety case to scrape it off. Or peanut butter. Seriously

Once the seat is gone, it's cleaning time. 

Cleaning A Toilet Seat

The space is unencumbered so doing the job thoroughly is quick. I use a paper towel and vinegar.  

The new seat comes with everything you need.

Brand new toilet seat in plastic

Just unwrap it, grab that screwdriver again and get ready to reverse the process, starting with those sticky tabs.

Their purpose is to help set the toilet set in place and to keep it in place, so it doesn't move around in use.  

Simply remove one side of the backing and stick it to the backside of the mounting clip. 

Securing New Toilet Seat

Then remove the other side of the tape, so the tacky side is exposed, open the clip, place a screw in the hole.

Screwing In New Toilet Seat

Repeat this on the other side and then line up the screws with the holes on the back of the toilet base.

Lastly, place the nut on the screw, from underneath, hold it in place to stabilize it and tighten the plastic screw until it's secured in place.

Screwing plastic screws into toilet

And that's that!

Invisible to most, but an update that will give your entire bathroom a quick facelift.

Without renovating a single thing.

My favorite.

How To Refresh Your Bathroom

Do you ever replace your toilet seats?
  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. We do, and I am in love with the "soft close" kind!! They are the best!!!! Thanks for a :-)!! Blessings, J

  3. Great post! We haven’t replaced our seats for a very long time. We have a more expensive self closing one and it still looks good :).

  4. This is a good tip to replace the toilet seat. They are not expensive and can make everything clean and fresh looking. I heard there are seats that are stain and mildew, mold resistant that you only have to replace every so often. Great tips Kim. Happy Thursday. Have a good evening. xoxo Kris

  5. In every home we have ever moved into the first thing that gets replaced is the toilet see. This time we actually replaced both toilets because they were stained beyond cleaning. The previous owners of this condo were not very good at keeping things clean! We have soft close seats and lids on the new toilets and love them.

  6. You are right! A worn toilet seat can make the whole bathroom look dated. Thanks for the tutorial. My hubby always does it, but looks like I can too. And we have one that needs replacing. :)

  7. I hate to admit this, but I get kind of giddy when we replace a toilet seat. It makes such a huge difference in the appearance of a bathroom and it's an inexpensive and easy.

    1. I feel the exact same way, Paula! I guess it really is the little things. 😂

  8. Kim,
    I had to laugh when I read this post...If I could remember how many times we have changed the toilet seats in both our bathrooms over the last 43 years, I am sure it is definitely around 10 - 15 times...I have had padded ones, wood like ones, those that even closed by themselves!! LOL!!! You will laugh at this one..My oldest son who lives alone actually took his toilet seat off and put it in the dishwasher to clean!!!!! LMAO!!!!! At least he cleaned, I thought!!! Thanks so much for stopping by!! Stay safe, healthy and happy!!

    1. That's so funny, Debbie!! I remember when I had my first baby, the OB told my husband and I that he loved his hospital shoe covers because after he delivered a baby, he would pop them in the dishwasher and they were all clean. 😳

  9. We are about to refresh our master bathroom and this is definitely on the list and long overdue. I definitely want a soft close though because...ahem...I'm a bit of a slammer.

    1. You're funny, Marie! Love your new bathroom, so charming!

  10. Your hubby did a fine job helping you model this tutorial! Thanks for the tips, as well. Happy Friday, Kim!

    1. Thanks so much, Kim! It does look a lot fresher in there now!

  11. Our toilet seats that came with our toilets 7 years ago now are amazing. I love them because they are self close. One little tap and down they softly go. It may be because we bought comfort height toilets.

    Also I love them because when I clean the toilets I can easily remove them myself and clean under the yucky stuff.

    I just slide them back in and the cap snaps on. I have never had these kind of seats for the first 25 years of marriage.

    Great tips as always!

    1. Oh, well those sound very interesting! And easy to clean which is really the entire point behind my post. A clean seat makes for a new looking bathroom. Might have to check those out when we do swap them out again, because I'm up for anything that makes scrubbing an easier job!! Thanks!!

  12. What a great post, lots of little tips. Thank you!

    1. Thanks for popping by to check them out! Hope you'll come back again!

  13. A new seat makes all the difference, I agree, it's worth it to renew every now and again!

  14. This is a great tip and wonderful way to spruce up the bathroom, for sure. I remember those old padded seats, ugh! Thanks for the excellent tutorial! Have a wonderful weekend!

    1. Those old padded seats were hysterical! They were comfy, but our tore once and I remember the foam peeking out. That was not a great bathroom material!!

  15. Hi Kim, yes, we have replaced many toilet seats, you are so right, keeping things clean helps maintain them.

  16. We swapped out our white, dinky plastic covers a few years back for beautiful, sealed wooden ones and I couldn't believe what a difference a humble toilet seat made to the look of the bathroom. We need to replace one of the goodies that screws into the toilet though. It broke for some strange reason and if you don't sit straight you run the risk of falling off :D

    1. Haha! We've had that happy and it's not fun! A little wiggle isn't great, especially with little kids, thank goodness we're past that stage!

  17. Changing the seat is a great way to refresh the bathroom. The soft close feature is so nice.

    1. I haven't had those since I was living at home, but they sound quiet!


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