Should You Ditch Your Shower Curtain?

Yes, you could renovate your entire bathroom, but there are other ways to achieve the sophistication of a doorless shower.

In the past couple of years, home renovation experts and designers embraced bathroom layouts with curtain-less showers. In the summer of 2023 alone, design experts at HouzzSoul & LaneMarble Systems and Design Ideas Guide all rounded up their favorite curtain-less shower designs, touting their modern elegance and easy cleaning.

However, curtain-less showers may not be the right design choice for everyone. If installed without careful consideration, they can pose unforeseen cleaning difficulties, as well as massive renovation costs.

So before you call your contractor, let’s discuss the pros and cons of curtain-less showers, as well as how to choose which type may be right for you.

What Is a Curtain-less Shower, Anyway?

Modern bathroom interior with decorative ladder and shower stallLiudmila Chernetska/Getty Images

A curtain-less shower is exactly what it sounds like: a shower without a curtain. However, they come in many forms.

It could be a shower or bath with a sliding glass door. It could also refer to a doorless or “walk-in” shower. As of this writing, doorless, walk-in showers are the trendiest form, with the search phrase “doorless walk in showers” drawing more than 30.5 million views on TikTok.

Devotees of doorless walk-in showers claim they’re more aesthetically pleasing due to their minimalist design, and also easier to clean than shower liners or glass doors.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Curtained Showers

Showers with curtains have been the traditional choice for many homes.

Besides being aesthetically interesting, shower curtains provide a great degree of privacy. They’re also relatively affordable and come in thousands of different patterns and colors. Anyone can find a shower curtain that matches their style and budget, making for an easy bathroom upgrade.

However, they also have their shortcomings.

Shower curtain liners need to be washed every three months and can easily grow moldy. Plus, shower curtains can instantly make a bathroom appear smaller and may even date the space. After all, when you imagine a luxury hotel or home spa, do you ever picture grubby shower curtains? Typically not.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Showers Without Curtains

Walk-in and glass door showers offer many aesthetic and practical benefits. According to the bathroom renovation company the Bath Shop, “Not only does a doorless shower decrease upkeep, but they also give your bathroom the look and feel of a minimalist’s haven or a designer spa.”

Forgoing a shower curtain lets you showcase beautiful shower tiles and may make the space look larger. Plus, no shower curtain means no curtain liner to wash.

However, they also pose challenges. A glass door still needs cleaning, while doorless varieties require a special base to ensure proper drainage. And any requisite bases need to be installed professionally, which can be expensive. Even installing a single pane of glass to control excess water spray can rack up costs quickly.

How to Decide If You Should Remove Your Shower Curtain

Close-up of an incomplete hanging a gray curtain in the bathroom showerOlga Ihnatsyeva/Getty Images

If you’re tempted to try a curtain-less, glass door or walk-in shower, consider these factors, broken down down by shower type.

Curtain-less Shower or Bath

The easiest way to get the no-curtain look is simply removing your shower curtain, including the liner and rod. Doing do will open up your space, but you will need to consider your splash zone. Try taking a bath or shower without the curtain. Does water spray everywhere? If so, you may need to keep the curtain.

Glass Door Shower

You could replace your shower curtain and rod with a sliding glass door. Consider your renovation budget, and know you’ll still need to clean the door regularly. Cleaning shower door tracks can be particularly difficult, so be sure you’re up for this before contacting your contractor.

Walk-In Shower

You could also go all in by removing your entire current set up and replacing it with an open, doorless shower. While an excellent choice for those with mobility concerns — you won’t have to step into a basin — it’s the most complicated option.

It takes a lot of floor space to create a doorless shower. It needs to be set deep into an alcove, like these showers featured on Decor Snob, to provide some privacy and shield the floor from water spray. The work won’t be fast, or cheap. But in the end, you’ll be rewarded with the sleek, clean elegant bathroom of your dreams.