Take Cues From Japan to Get a Zen-Like Toilet

There’s more to a heavenly beverage in a piping-hot tub than turning on a faucet and easing in. The Japanese appear to have the blissful act down pat. For centuries they have honed the daily bath ritual to pure perfection. From aromatic cypress tubs to fresh mood-enhancing additions such as basil and blood sugars, these ideas will allow you to elicit the conventional Eastern aesthetic in your bathroom.

Abramson Teiger Architects

Bath time is sacred. And for the Japanese, a bathroom is comparable to a refuge. The space must comprise clean lines, sharp angles, natural light and little else. No mess or distractions. A minimalist decorative heightens the experience of soaking in the room’s most important feature — the bathtub.

An estimated 100 million Japanese and overseas travelers annually visit onsens (natural hot springs) at resorts or ryokan (traditional Japanese inns) near the country’s 20,000 thermal springs — frequently to escape the towns’ high population density and bustling urban lifestyle. Hot springs have been meccas for both mind and body, as well as the smallest Japanese apartments feature a deep, inviting bathtub for private, meditative soaking.

Right Arm Construction

Use natural light and materials to make a neutral colour palette, while it’s dark tiles to encourage introspection or light, caramel-colored cypress bathtubs which give off a fresh aroma and, unlike a cold porcelain tub, won’t send icy shivers down your spine when you break your mind on the rim.

The Sakura Group

It is Japanese custom to rinse off before a soak in a tub or hot spring, and baths usually feature the traditional stool and bucket back centuries. Actually, bathing isn’t traditionally practiced for cleaning; soap isn’t even brought into communal or private bathrooms. Bathers wash beforehand on a small wooden bucket whilst sitting on a stool, so baths feature an adjoining shower using a mix of the room’s natural materials, whether hardwood floors or river-rock-inspired tile. The action of cleansing beforehand allows you to focus on the meditative, not practical, goal of a nice, hot beverage.

Dark flooring and ceiling tiles offset the hardwood and encourage a feeling of introspection and meditation.

The steaming waters and dark hues here are meant to imitate a sensory deprivation tank, to alleviate daily stresses.

Garret Cord Werner Architects & Interior Designers

Interiors encourage meditation, but bathrooms can also invite the exterior into the ritual.

Tubs can include big windows overlooking either independently, personal gardens or even untouched wilderness.

Reflect the shifting seasons with rotating layout details. In certain areas in Japan, winter sugars are placed in guests’ baths to use as a pure addition to the relaxing, sexy waters. Employ the seasonal fruits, flowers or scents of your area, like aromatic lavender or basil in the springtime.

Saint Dizier Design

Natural materials can also extend inside, with components such as a cypress bathtub, matching wood shower pliers or rainwater showerheads that mimic a gentle waterfall. The decorative can be further enhanced by natural and hand-crafted materials, such as a hand-stitched bamboo soap holder or woven straw cabinets.

More: 10 Zen-Conjuring Bedrooms That Boost Calm

See related