Standard shower curtain size: helpful tips for choosing the proper dimensions

Decorating a bathroom requires just as much attention to detail as decorating any other room in a house or apartment. So, when the tiles, porcelain stoneware, and shiplap (if you really want it) are placed, all the plumbing is installed, and even the mirror is precisely where you want – isn’t it time to relax? According to the designers, it is still too early to rest at this stage, since now it is the turn of the curtains.

We have previously written about how to choose bathroom window curtains. We hope you have found these tips very useful. However, it is still worth talking in more detail about shower curtains since it is simply impossible to do without them – and therefore, we need to reveal the basic rules for selecting a curtain for a bathtub or shower. And this time, we will not analyze the color, pattern, and materials in more detail since this is a topic for a separate article. Now we want to draw your attention to a much more significant moment – namely, selecting the shower curtain size and the standard options.

If you do not want to wipe puddles on the floor constantly, deal with dampness and (oh, horror) even fungus and mold, which are at risk of appearing from high humidity, your task is to choose the right size of curtains for the bath or shower stall or zone. And we will definitely tell you how to do it so that the bathing was as comfortable as possible for you.

Shower curtains: standard parameters

The first thing designers start from when choosing the size of curtains in the bathroom is the type of equipment for which, in fact, this accessory is required. Based on how the room is organized, designers and manufacturers determine the width and length of the product.

Conventional wall-mounted bathtub

It is for this type that most of the curtains on sale made of various materials are intended. They generally come in four standard sizes:

  • 70×70 inches (178×178 cm);
  • 70×72 inches (178×183 cm);
  • 72×72 inches (183×183 cm);
  • 72×79 inches (183×200 cm).

The size of such curtains is more than enough for both a standard bathtub with a length of 5’6 ft (1.7 m) and a shorter one of 4’9 ft (1.5 m). Also, pay attention to your attitude towards draperies: if you would like to form beautiful folds, choose a longer curtain…

Freestanding bathtub

Such tubs usually look very impressive, not only due to the design, which is often very, very exclusive – but also due to the very catchy location in the center of the bathroom or slightly to the side. However, such beauty and aesthetics have a downside – namely, the need to create a reliable barrier to water along the entire perimeter. And to think over the length and location of the curtain, in this case, is very important. The fact is that the standard size of curtains for free-standing bathtubs simply does not exist – and you will have to determine the parameters you need yourself.

So, above the bathtub, it can be mounted both on a special ceiling curtain rod and on a wall structure. Based on the height of the attachment, the length of the curtain is determined since you need to take measurements from it. As for the width of the curtain, here, in no case should you forget that it has to cover the entire perimeter. However, be prepared because the panels should not be narrower than 13 ft (4 m). Otherwise, it will not be enough for the complete closure of the bathtub.

Shower areas and cabins

Such structures remain very popular in modern interiors, and therefore you will also have to consider the parameters of the curtain, focusing on the area of the shower. However, in this case, certain standards still exist:

  • 72×72 inches (183 x 183 cm) – for typical shower;
  • 70×84 or 72×84 inches (178×213 cm or 183×213 cm) – for high shower areas;
  • 144×72 inches (365×183 cm) – for large shower areas;
  • 54×78 inches (137×198 cm) – for shower cabins.

Typically, a shower curtain is placed on an angled or rounded curtain rod. This turn should also be taken into account when choosing the width of the curtain since it will require much more material.

What determines the selection of shower curtains in size: valuable tips

Choosing curtains in width and length, you may well realize that it is much easier to determine the optimal size of the shower curtain horizontally than vertically. And first of all, this is due to the minimum possibilities for maneuvering in width. In the end, sooner or later, you will still hit the walls, and you can only experiment with filling the material into folds.

With vertical measurements, everything can be somewhat more complicated since it is not always easy to understand precisely which length of panels you need. However, several factors will surely help you make the right decision and determine which curtain with what dimensions will look the most harmonious and provide the best functionality in your bathroom.

  • Type of plumbing. Designers provide various options for the length of the curtains, depending on your shower or bathtub characteristics. So, it is pretty logical that only the option to the floor is permissible for shower zones. A curtain for a shower stall with high sides should confidently go into the edge of the side, and for the option with low sides, it should be at least a couple of inches from the tray to avoid dangerous situations and the rapid loss of the curtain’s attractive appearance. The curtain for a regular bathtub should hang below the side by at least 8-12 inches (20-30 cm). For a free-standing bathtub, close it completely. However, no one can prevent you from being guided by your personal wishes: if you decide to make a curtain for an ordinary bath almost to the floor, then do it.
  • Curtain fabric. The heavier and more textured the shower curtain material, the more accurately you can follow the measurements you get. So, curtains made of mixed fabrics, as well as high-quality polyester with a textile texture, hang very evenly and beautifully and dense enough so as not to get lost in horizontal chaotic folds. This way, you can buy a panel in size. However, vinyl and thinner and “plastic” materials like PEVA are just too tough to be capable of this – which is why it is worth taking the panels with a slight overlap: this will make the curtain look neater, even if it breaks.
  • Method of fixing curtains. If you prefer shower curtains with eyelets or special holders directly on the panel, you can choose an accessory of the length you measured. However, in the case of products on rings, you will have to subtract about 4 inches (10 cm) from the resulting size – this is precisely the distance between the rod and the top edge of the curtain when it is attached to the rings.
  • Possibility of customization. If your bathtub is of non-standard size and you can afford individual tailoring, feel free to use this option because you can achieve complete functionality and visual harmony.

Rules for measuring shower curtains

As you probably already understood, in some cases, shower curtains are custom rather than standard sizes. In any case, you can hardly determine the dimensions of the curtain you need without careful measurements, which are carried out in two stages.

Width measurements

Depending on what exactly you have for bathing – a regular or free-standing bath, shower, or shower enclosure – you must measure the space for the future curtain in the horizontal plane. If the tub is straight as standard, you simply measure the distance from the wall to wall, but in the case of freestanding models and showers, things are a little more complicated.

The fact is that an angular arrangement of the curtains usually characterizes them – and for a free-standing bathtub, there is a curtain around the perimeter. However, you will definitely succeed in making measurements for sure: just measure the length of the curtain rod – the designers recommend purchasing it in advance.

In addition, do not forget that in no case should the curtain be pulled tight when it is closed: firstly, it is not very aesthetically pleasing, and, secondly, in this case, there is always a risk that the curtain will slide to the side when you are taking a shower or bath. That is why, when measuring, take into account a slight overlap of the material – according to the designers, 12 inches (30 cm) will be quite enough for both comfortable use and beautiful draping of the fabric.

Height measurements

It is necessary to measure the length of the shower curtain in the vertical plane from the curtain rod if it is already fixed above the tub or in the shower; or from the point of its attachment in the future, which you must determine in advance. Also, do not forget about the chosen method of fixing the curtain to the curtain rod, as well as the point in the area of the bathtub or shower where, in your opinion, it should end – you should also decide on this issue in advance. If you’re one or two inches wrong, it’s okay: you can always adjust the position of the curtain by raising or lowering the curtain rod. However, we do not advise you to miss a more significant number. Otherwise, you will not be able to correct anything by maneuvers with the curtain rod, and you will have to order a new shower curtain.

Shower curtain sizes: Conclusions

Standard-sized shower curtains can make your life a lot easier if you don’t have the time or opportunity to find custom solutions. However, be careful: the better the dimensions of the protective panel are combined with the size of the bathtub or shower area, the more confident and safe you will feel – and the more comfortable the shower will seem to you.

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