How much you invest in a shower will largely depend on how you intend to use it. If you're only need a basic, no-frills place to get cleaned up, a shower head over the bath is a quick and easy solution, but if you’re looking for something a little more luxurious, then the possibilities are only limited by the space you have, the style you like and the amount of money you can afford to spend.
Location, location, location
When planning the location of a shower, you need to think about plumbing and drainage. To cut down on costs, try to keep all your plumbing in a central area near other water outlets (like your wash basin). This will mean that hot water also has to travel less distance, so it will lose less heat and be more energy efficient.
Another important aspect of choosing the right position for your shower is access. What looks good on paper may not work so well when you actually install it. You need to be able to enter and exit the shower easily and safely, so it's important to ensure that the shower door doesn't interfere with the bathroom door. If you really need to install a shower near a bathroom door, consider a shower curtain or sliding shower door.
Shower screen styles
The next step is to decide what styles of shower stall or shower screen appeals to you. Framed, frameless and semi-frameless are all possibilities, and each has its own unique look which can enhance the visual appeal of your bathroom. When choosing a shower screen, budget and aesthetics are important, but they're not the only thing you should consider. Spare a thought for maintenance; what will happen if a panel gets chipped or cracked? Is the manufacturer able to replace a single panel with relatively little hassle? Is there anything that will make cleaning difficult? Thinking about these things can save you time and money in the future. You may of course, opt to have no screen at all (as is the case with a wet room). This requires additional planning though, to ensure that there is no possibility of water getting into any electrics.
The inner walls of your shower will need to be waterproofed and this can be accomplished in a number of ways. Tiling is by far the most common surface option and can allow for any amount of personal expression and flair. Another creative option is to use a glass splashback affixed to the wall - literally as a window from your shower stall straight into your garden. This can work extremely well with a feature wall but can also be utilised to let in natural light and act as a sort of window. Just make sure you have plenty of privacy if you're considering this option!
Consider the type of shower head you want too; this is the business end of the shower after all. Shower heads range quite widely in terms of function, design and energy efficiency, so you will need to weigh up what your priorities are. A six-head pulsing massage shower setup may redefine your showering experience forever, but it is completely inefficient and (some might say) a little excessive. At the same time, standing underneath a weak trickle while the shampoo runs into your eyes is no picnic either. Where possible, read some reviews or ask your retailer for advice on specific shower heads.
The right choice of shower setup can mean a lifetime of rewarding experiences, so think about it carefully!