Last updated: August 4, 2021

Our method

4Products analysed

45Hours spent

13Evaluated articles

215User reviews

Vanity units offer a practical solution to the space problem in many bathrooms. Unlike alternative bathroom cabinets, a washbasin cabinet makes use of the unused space under the washbasin.

It not only provides important storage space, but also enhances the bathroom at the same time. Thanks to the wide range of models and designs, you can design your bathroom individually and give it a very special flair.

With our vanity unit test 2021, we want to help you find the right vanity unit for you. In the following, we have compared standing and hanging vanity units and listed their respective advantages and disadvantages. These points should help you with your purchase decision.




Summary

  • A vanity unit is a must-have in every bathroom. It takes up unused space and can be used in different ways depending on the model. Cosmetics, cleaning products and everyday products find their place here and are not scattered around the house.
  • Basically, a distinction is made between a hanging and a standing washbasin cabinet. Both fulfil their task of creating space equally well. They differ mainly in the way they are mounted.
  • An upright washbasin cabinet is ideal if you are not very handy and takes little time to assemble. A hanging vanity unit is usually offered in a set with a washbasin. It often has to be installed by a professional and is priced considerably higher than a standing model.

The Best Vanity Unit: Our Choices

Vanity unit: Buying and evaluation criteria

In the following, we show you what you should look for when buying a vanity unit. The criteria that can influence your decision are:

In the next sections, we will explain what the individual criteria are all about.

Dimensions

To ensure that your chosen vanity unit fits in your bathroom, it is essential that you have determined the dimensions correctly before you start your search.

The vanity unit can be flush with the washbasin or wider. Depending on this, you can use the size for you.

This is not only important for the right size, but also for the overall appearance. You should decide in advance how best to surround your washbasin.

  1. Thewidth and depth of the washbasin: Most medium-sized vanity units measure 60 to 80 cm wide. The depth is usually 30 to 40 cm. There are no upper or lower limits.
  2. Theheight of the washbasin: The height is an important factor for the fit of your washbasin vanity unit. The standard height is between 85 and 95 cm. You should make sure that the siphon is completely concealed.
  3. The siphon cut-out: Most vanity units have a standard siphon cut-out. These are usually designed for tubular siphons. If you have a different type of siphon, you can enlarge the cut-out yourself with a saw. You should then coat the edges with a special varnish to prevent water from penetrating the wood.

Variants

There is a wide range of washbasin cabinets and fittings. These vary according to style and function. The different models include washbasin vanity units:

  • With doors: Most have 2 doors. However, this can be changed according to size and preference. They are ideal for storing cleaning and household supplies.
  • With drawers: These are easier to use as you can reach in from the top. They are practical for organising small items such as cosmetics through inserts, for example.
  • On castors: Vanity units on castors are very practical, offering storage space and convenient handling. The castors make it easier to move them quickly for cleaning the bathroom.
  • With feet: These models enhance the look and give a classic style. Height-adjustable feet are ideal, as the height should be changed depending on the washbasin.
  • With an open shelf: They can be used for everyday items such as towels and make it easier to find the right product. It can be optimally used in combination with other fittings.
  • With adjustable shelves: Such washbasin vanity units are ideal for adapting to your own use.

Style

To ensure that your vanity unit matches the rest of the furniture, you should be aware of your style.

Your bathroom can show a clear direction. It can create a harmonious overall picture with the new vanity unit or stand out from the rest of the bathroom as an eye-catcher.

The modern style is characterised by a consistent colour palette, such as grey or beige tones in high-gloss or matt. The design is simple and minimalist. It is limited to the necessary functions alone. In the country house and Mediterranean style, warm colours and playful ornaments form a counter image.

Friendly and flowing shapes are suitable here. To support the natural design, special attention should be paid to types of wood and rough surfaces. Of course, these are only examples to serve as inspiration. There are no limits to your creativity when designing your bathroom.

Material

The material again supports the style of your bathroom and is an important criterion with regard to durability. Most vanity units are made of wood. Washbasin vanity units made of pressboard have the advantage that they are inexpensive to find and have a wide range of colours and patterns thanks to their special coating.

If you are looking for a more natural design, you can opt for solid wood.The pine or beech look is very popular here. In addition to wood, there are also material combinations of wood with glass or plastic.

This gives the vanity unit a more refined and individual look. Especially if you don't like the "one-piece" design of modern vanity units, you can make good use of playful materials on the doors or handles.

Stability

The stability of your piece of furniture depends on the way it is mounted. If you have a hanging vanity unit, make sure it is mounted on the wall.

Secure mounting can be complicated in old flats with crumbling walls. It's best to get a professional to help you here so that you don't incur additional costs for repairs later.

With a standing or rolling unit, quality is crucial. Make sure it is stable and look at several display units in furniture stores. If you are going to move your vanity unit frequently and want to clean it regularly, a high-quality finish is important. Washbasin cabinets with feet should be particularly checked.

Here, cheap workmanship and poor material can have a strong influence on stability. The diameter of the feet should be adjusted according to the size of the vanity unit. Too few, unevenly distributed or too thin feet can quickly become a wobbly affair.

Durability

To ensure that the newly purchased vanity unit stays in your possession for a long time, you should pay attention to a few things before buying it. Since your vanity unit is in direct contact with the washbasin and has to withstand water leaks, you should make sure that it is protected against moisture.

The melamine coating is important to protect against moisture. This should be present if no other protective layer is specified.

Washbasin vanity units made of natural wood have a special lacquer coating to prevent them from swelling. Soft types of wood in particular cannot withstand high humidity in the long term. Therefore, more robust types of wood that can also be used outdoors should be used.

Solid wood not only scores points for its appearance, but is also a top performer in terms of durability. It withstands moisture well and can be restored even if it is defective by simply sanding it down.

Vanity unit: frequently asked questions and answers

In the following, we answer all the important questions on the subject of vanity units. The questions have been selected by us and answered compactly. In the end, you will have an overview of all the essential aspects of vanity units.

Who is a vanity unit suitable for?

A vanity unit is basically suitable for everyone. Important storage space is often lacking in the bathroom. Therefore, washbasin base cabinets offer an ideal place to store all everyday products while taking up little space.

For flats with small bathrooms, the right vanity unit is essential. The small space should be used in the best possible way. A vanity unit offers countless advantages.

Waschbeckenunterschrank-01

Even small bathrooms can be upgraded with a vanity unit. Without it, the bathroom looks untidy and old-fashioned.
(Image source:Filios Sazeides / unsplash)

In addition to their practical use, vanity units give a uniform look to the bathroom. The usually unsightly space under the sink can be hidden and the bathroom takes on a lively and friendly charm. With a variety of models, it can transform your bathroom into a stylish and modern space or give it that old, rustic flair.

What types of vanity units are there?

With a vanity unit, you can choose between a hanging and a standing model. Below, we show you the most important advantages and disadvantages of each model.

Type Advantages Disadvantages
Standing washbasin cabinet classic variant, cost-saving, easy to assemble, many different variants difficult to clean underneath the cabinet (without castors), stifling effect on the room
Hanging washbasin cabinet modern look, uniform image with washbasin, room appears larger, easier cleaning difficult to assemble, subsequent changes are costly and time-consuming

A standing vanity unit has the great advantage that it can be installed quickly and easily. Even without manual skills, this usually works smoothly. This classic variant saves time and money. Thanks to the many different versions, you can choose the model that suits you best.

Furthermore, this vanity unit can also be fitted after the washbasin has been installed. The big disadvantage is that it can be overwhelming, especially in small bathrooms. Cleaning underneath the vanity unit (without castors) is more time-consuming because of the constant moving.

Waschbeckenunterschrank02

A hanging washbasin cabinet with a wooden look is an eye-catcher in any bathroom. The modern style is not only aesthetic, but also practical.
(Image source:Sanibell BV / unsplash)

A hanging washbasin cabinet, in contrast to a standing one, looks more modern and forms a unified image with the washbasin. The floating look makes the room look more open and makes cleaning easier.

The big disadvantage is the difficult assembly, which can usually only be done by a specialist. If the vanity unit does not have the desired height or shape, replacing it later is costly and time-consuming.

What does a vanity unit cost?

The cost of a vanity unit can vary greatly. Depending on the variant and material, different prices can be expected. The price range is between about 15 and 1000 €. So there is something for every budget. Standing vanity units can be found for as little as €17.

These are then usually very simply constructed and show a clear loss of quality. The price of wall-mounted vanity units rises due to the more complicated assembly and the more elaborate workmanship. Here, you can expect a starting price of around 70 €.

Type price range
Standing vanity unit approx. €17 to €400
Hanging vanity unit approx. €150 to €1200

However, if you have more individual wishes, you will have to reckon with a higher purchase price. On the other hand, you can choose from a wide range of fittings, colours and materials. Hanging vanity units are often supplied with integrated washbasins and can therefore quickly cost several thousand euros.

What alternatives are there to a vanity unit?

Besides vanity units, there are many other ways to use storage space under your sink or in the bathroom. In the following, we will show you the best variants and describe them briefly.

Type Description
Washbasin base cabinet A washbasin base cabinet has an open storage area at the top. The Waschchtich is permanently mounted with the washbasin and can only be bought in bundles. These are only available as standing or hanging.
Bathroom tall cabinet Instead of buying a special piece of furniture for under the washbasin, it may be worthwhile to buy a classic tall shelf. This can be ideally placed in small spaces due to its slim and high shape.
Storage boxes Storage boxes are boxes of different sizes that can be, for example, with lids, round, square or even made of wood. They are suitable for a very small budget and can be used in many ways.
Roll container A roll container is a closed side cabinet equipped with drawers. It is small and fits ideally in a small bathroom. Since it is not a specific piece of bathroom furniture, make sure it does not come into contact with water.
Bathroom wall cabinet A bathroom wall cabinet is mounted above the washbasin and is usually used for cosmetics and care products. It is also usually equipped with a mirror. A bathroom wall cabinet is ideal for using even more storage space.

All these criteria fulfil the purpose of creating storage space more or less well. However, most of them do not use the space to its full capacity. The vanity unit is a good combination of the advantages of the alternative options.

How do I determine the dimensions for my vanity unit?

The general rules you should follow before assembly are:
You can get the correct measurements by measuring the distance from the floor to the top of your washbasin.
  • There should be 20 cm free space to the left and right of the vanity unit.
  • There should be about 70 cm of free space in front of the vanity unit.
  • Pay attention to the placement of sockets and switches.

In the end, it's not just the fit that's important, but also the overall look of your bathroom. Have a clear concept of how much of the space you want your vanity unit to take up and how you want it to integrate. If the cabinet is too big, it will overwhelm the room; if it is too small, it will disappear.

How do I care for a vanity unit?

The care of your new vanity unit depends very much on the design and material. If the coating and quality of the material are good, the care is quite easy. The most important thing is to clean it gently to protect the material as much as possible.

Vanity units have to withstand a lot of wear and tear. Therefore, it is important to know which interventions you should make to preserve your cabinet in the long term. The factors that affect a vanity unit include:

  • High humidity
  • Standing water / large puddles of water
  • High wear and tear on doors

Waschbeckenunterschrank-03

Most vanity units are easy to clean. A damp cloth with washing-up liquid is sufficient for cleaning.
(Image source: Anton / unsplash)

Therefore, in the following we will show you how to best treat and prevent these problems.

  1. Ventilate regularly: After any prolonged use of hot water, the bathroom should be adequately aired out. If the humidity is too high, the wood of the vanity unit can swell and quickly lose its quality. In addition, high humidity increases the risk of mould growth.
  2. Wiping up standing water: If there is standing water, you should act as quickly as possible. If your vanity unit stands on wet ground for too long, the wood can become saturated with water and swell. In the long term, this is an ideal breeding ground for mould. This is usually manifested by a smelly odour.
  3. Dirt and dust cleaning: To remove coarse, superficial dirt and dust, a damp flannel is usually sufficient. Alternatively, you can use a dust mop for the drawers and shelves. Grease marks will appear on the doors and handles due to frequent use with hands. You can use a glass cleaner here. Then treat the affected area with a little baby oil to prevent the wood from drying out.
  4. Cleaning and polishing real wood: After cleaning, you should polish the wood. You can use a wood cleaner or a polish. If your wood cleaner is not suitable for all types of wood, you should buy a wood cleaner for light or dark wood. For lacquered vanity units, the wood polish should not be based on mineral oil, as this can damage the coating. It is best to clean with a damp cloth and a little washing-up liquid.

Conclusion

A vanity unit helps you keep order and structure in your bathroom. Unlike a washbasin table, it is easier to assemble and you can choose from many different models. When buying a vanity unit, you can choose between a standing and a hanging model. Washbasin cabinets on castors are versatile and make cleaning in the bathroom easier. A model with adjustable feet can adapt perfectly to your washbasin height.

Before you buy, it is important to take the correct measurements. To ensure that your vanity unit lasts a long time, make sure it has a lacquered or melamine finish. Cleaning with a damp cloth is sufficient for most models. With real wood, you should polish the vanity unit after cleaning.

Photo source: Zveiger / 123rf

Why you can trust me?

Reviews