Bathroom remodels have consistently high returns on investment year after year. Whether you're setting your home up for a higher resale value or you simply want to make your mornings brighter, these remodeling ideas will enhance both.

Vanities: From central to focal

The vanity can anchor your bathroom's design because it is central to your routine and the physical space. Updating this feature can be as simple as refacing the cabinets, and as complex as ripping out the old for something new.

Floating vanity: These features are popular because they add modern flair and create clean lines. What's more, they can be floated at any height and leave floor space for radiant heating or storage.

Comfort height: If you find yourself stooping and overreaching to use your vanity and sink, it's no rare inconvenience. A little more than a decade ago, designers realized the standard-height vanity at 32 inches wasn't cutting it. The new "comfort-height" standard is 36 inches.

A second sink: Many homeowners have been dreaming of a second sink since their childhood battles in the family bathroom. If you have the opportunity and the space, adapt your vanity or install a new one that will accommodate a second sink.

Showers, tubs: From necessity to luxury

Standard showers and tubs are built for function rather than inspiration and relaxation. Updating these features can transform your bathroom from a basic, functional room into an enjoyable retreat.

Free-standing tub: These tubs are popular, and can give your bathroom a quick visual turnaround. In fact, they can stand as a design statement rather than a sunken necessity. Plus, they're available in ­magazine-worthy finishes such as wood and copper.

Multiple shower heads: Additional shower heads aren't just a luxury option. They add convenience, especially if you're installing a handheld style to go with a stationary rainfall showerhead.

Curbless walk-in: Make your bathroom more accessible and more appealing for resale. Accessible features move higher up on home buyers' priority lists every year. Kicking the curb on your shower makes it safer for older adults and those with disabilities — and even for yourself in case of a clumsy moment.

Floors, walls: From outdated to upgraded

If you're living with ratty old wallpaper and last century's flooring, give yourself a fresh start with new flooring and wall materials.

Tile: There are now hundreds of new, affordable tile options for bathrooms. Wood-grain tile is extremely popular. Other options include matte black tile, arabesques and octagons, and patterned tile that you can use as a sink backsplash and art feature.

Paint: A simple way to upgrade your bathroom is to freshen up the paint. Choose colors that promote cleanliness, warmth and positivity, such as light blues and greens or creams and blushes.

Extras: From Stone Age to New Age

There are other ways that bathrooms can evolve beyond the standard that are nearly invisible to the eye.

Tech: Smart bathroom technology can make your daily rituals easier and more enjoyable. Consider integrated speakers, voice-activated lighting, smart mirrors and digital showers.

Efficiency: Older standard toilets waste a lot of water unnecessarily; newer standard models use more than 50 percent less. It will pay to upgrade to a low-flow, high-efficiency or even ultra-high-efficiency toilet.

Radiant heat flooring: These heating systems are compatible with most bathroom flooring materials. They warm your feet, and also heat your bathroom on cold days, reducing strain on your home heating system.

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