Biophilic design: from the jungle to the bathroom

Discover how to turn your bathroom into an elegant jungle through biophilic design and the most succulent vertical gardens.

A key piece in the development of sustainable societies, biophilic design responds to our human need to connect with nature. Architecture and interior design seek to connect with life and develop healthy and productive environments.  

Proof of this is to bring plants together in urban and domestic spaces, the creation of green walls and other principles of biophilic design, a trend currently on the rise. Making the most of every inch of space and adding foliage helps to purify the air, as well as improving people’s emotional well-being.

Vertical garden in Noken's showroom, in the Showerheads area

Biophilic architecture in the bathroom

Human beings are related to the environment in a sensory way, absorbing information which is interpreted by our brain and generating behavioural and emotional responses.

Tono collection bathroom with bath

What's more, it understands nature as the home and origin. Biophilic architecture and design, coined by Edward O. Wilson in the eighties, means 'a love of life' and proposes connecting with nature again, based on the need of the human being to be in touch with their origin and the wellness that this provides. 


A built environment in which we include nature elements, whether through a visual, auditory, tactile or olfactory, which will help improve the health of the user. All these elements transmit harmony, positivity, calmness and energy. Beyond including plants or creating vertical gardens, the biophilic design goes further and it interferes with other decisions such as designing the way of seeing a garden through the windows, improving the air flow, the ideal lighting which simulates natural light and shadows, or the use of natural and biodegradable materials. 

The trend towards biophilic architecture, with designs that bring nature closer, is growing.

Types of biophilic styles 

There are different types of biophilic styles, each with its own particular approach in incorporating nature into the built environment. Here are some interesting examples to inspire you:

  • Natural style: this type of biophilic design focuses on incorporating natural elements such as plants, stones, wood and water to create an environment that feels like a natural oasis.
  • Biomedicine style: it includes organic and curved shapes to create an environment that reminds of nature, such as the shape of leaves, branches or animals.
  • Ecotone style: it incorporates transitional elements, such as an interior garden that blends with an interior space to create a smooth transition between both spaces.
  • Natural pattern style: this style uses patterns found in nature, such as patterns related to water ripples or plant leaves, in the decoration and design.
  • Natural light style: it focuses on maximising the amount of natural light in a space, which can improve mood and productivity.
  • Natural colour style: this style employs a palette of colours that recalls nature, such as green and blue tones, to create a calm and comforting atmosphere.

Patterns for achieving a biophilic style

The biophilic style focuses on incorporating natural elements into the design and decoration of interior spaces, with the aim of creating a healthy and relaxing atmosphere. To create a welcoming space connected to nature, you can follow a series of patterns:

Use natural materials

Include natural materials such as wood, stone, marble, wicker and straw to bring texture and warmth to a space.

Incorporate natural light

Allow natural light to enter the space through windows and skylights. You can also use curtains and blinds to control the amount of light entering the room.

Integrate plants

Use plants to provide a touch of freshness and vitality to the environment. You can hang them from the ceiling, place them on shelves or pots and arrange them to divide spaces.

Include water

Add fountains, waterfalls or small ponds to create an oasis in the bathroom.

Use organic shapes

Incorporate organic shapes, such as curves and smooth shapes, to imitate nature.

Create views towards nature

If possible, place windows in strategic places to integrate the landscape into the bathroom, providing a perfect touch of biophilic design.

Use natural colours

Use smooth earth, green and blue tones to give the space a sense of calmness and tranquillity.

These biophilic style patterns can be used individually or in combination to create a natural and harmonious environment in any interior space.

A green sanctuary in the bathroom: what biophilia brings to the body and mind

Nature has therapeutic benefits, and the biophilia trend is becoming increasingly popular in our domestic spaces. 

In fact, many of the pathologies associated with modernity are attributed to the so-called 'nature deficit'. Richard Louv develops this concept in his book 'The Last Child in the Wood', describing a disorder which can create fatigue, anxiety and stress; also, therefore, affecting mood.

The study of biophilia as a way of reconnecting with nature has popularised practices such as 'shinrin yoku': a Japanese term that literally means 'forest bathing', and involves walking in nature and taking it in with all five senses, with a meditative and relaxed mindset. 

Shifting the practice to the bathroom, you can create a green sanctuary where you can breathe deeply, creating a space of calm in which the outside world is unimportant.


Essence C bathroom furnishings and Round taps in matt black

In the bathroom, you can connect with nature at the same time as connecting with your inner self, engaging in positive and nourishing rituals to benefit your wellbeing and mental health. Revel in a space dedicated to self-care, relaxation, learning and self-expression.

Applying biophilic design to the home results in healthier and more sustainable, calm interiors, creating a more authentic connection with nature. Green foliage and flowering plants can be strategically placed around the room, along with natural materials and products.


Bathrooms in public spaces with touchless products: 

Acro Compact urinal and Round taps in brushed copper

All of this aims to generate a continuous interaction with nature in the bathroom, at the same time as fostering an emotional connection with the space and boosting anxiety and stress-reducing endorphins. 

Because nature is not a trend. It's a vital need we have as human beings, which is why incorporating it into interior design brings nothing but benefits.

Bathroom decoration with plants


Bathrooms are usually rooms with either little or no natural light at all. But contrary to common belief, the bathroom is an ideal setting for decorative plants and vertical gardens. Because of the humid condition of the space and the ability of the plants to purify the air, if the right plant type is chosen, we will achieve a healthy space which follows the principles Feng Shui philosophy applied to bathroom interior design.

→ In this article we tell you how to achieve a Feng Shui style bathroom

To ensure plants are properly maintained in the bathroom, we must choose plant types which grow practically without sunlight and in very humid atmospheres.  

  • Orchids: a symbol of fertility and beauty. They come from jungle-like atmospheres, which are also: humid, hot and with low-light.
  • Sansevieria: it eliminates toxins and withstands humidity and low-light conditions in a bathroom very well indeed. It also has air purifying properties and it is one of the recommended plants to have in the bedroom as well.
  • Espatifilo: it absorbs toxins and purifies the air in the bathroom. It can live in temperatures above 18º and is long-lasting.
  • Bamboo: it grows properly in humid conditions and in low light, and it is considered as being a plant which is energetically positive.  
  • Philodendron: it requires little maintenance and grows in humid atmospheres.  
  • Potus: in addition to resisting indoor lighting, it can grow without soil as a hydroponic crop.  
  • Ferns or ivy: they grow vertically in a natural way, turning an aseptic atmosphere into a living one.   
  • Aloe Vera: as well as being an easy plant to take care of, Aloe Vera has curative properties and is useful for treating burns and insect stings. It also helps purify the air in the bathroom.
  • Peace lily: peace lilies are closet plants that thrive in humid and shaded environments. They are also excellent air purifiers and can help eliminate toxins such as formaldehyde and benzene.

Why hang just one plant, when you can fill your bathroom with greenery?

Benefits of decorating your bathroom with plants

When we add plants to our home's rooms (in this case, the bathroom), they not only provide decorative value, but also benefits to us. 

Incorporating plants into our bathroom offers various health and well-being benefits and improves the aesthetics and air quality.

Air purification

Plants can help purify air by removing toxins and harmful substances from the environment, which can be particularly beneficial in spaces like the bathroom, where we use cleaning products and disinfectants.

Reduction of humidity

Many plants can absorb the air's humidity, which helps reduce humidity in the bathroom and prevent mould and fungi growth.

Improvement of dry skin or respiratory problems

Some plants increase the room's humidity, which people with dry skin or respiratory problems will appreciate, as these reduce skin dryness and irritation in the airways. 

Better air quality

In addition to purifying the air, some plants also release oxygen and improve the quality of air in the bathroom.


Plants can add a touch of beauty and serenity to the bathroom, which can help reduce stress and anxiety.

Noise reduction

Some plants can act as acoustic insulation and help reduce noise in the bathroom.

Natural aromatherapy

Some plants, such as lavender or eucalyptus, have aromatic properties and can be used to provide a natural and relaxing fragrance in the bathroom.

Vertical gardens in your bathroom. A new trend

Vertical garden by Noken in the Hotel area 

Vertical gardens are panels of plants that grow vertically, independently or joined to the walls by means of hydroponics, an agricultural method for growing plants that uses mineral solutions instead of agricultural soil as a type of support.

How to create your own vertical garden


Vertical garden in Noken's showroom, in the Water Forest and Showerheads area

The first step is that all-important sought-after place in which to install it, always bearing in mind the visual impact that this wall will create, as well as the needs of the irrigation system. After this first decision is taken, the structure and support are opted for, which are usually made of wood or metal.  

  1. Opt for the right place.
  2. Choose the planting system and its support element
  3. Prepare the wall, making sure it is clean and dry
  4. Choose the plants based on the sough-after visual effect and the environmental conditions.  
  5. Make the most of the light.
  6. Take the frequency and irrigation system into account. Some recommendations are for preventing standing water. If a plant dries, it should be replaced.

With a little planning and care, you can enjoy a beautiful vertical garden in your bathroom that adds a touch of freshness and calmness to your home.

What do you need to create your own vertical garden in your bathroom?


  • Plastic mesh
  • Wood or acrylic sheet
  • Bracket, scissors and drill
  • Tape measure
  • Wall fixing hardware

Types of structures

  • Living wall planters: the best solutions for creating vertical gardens, generally attached to the partition wall itself: plant it from floor level right to the top, taking up the whole wall or framing one specific area to create a form of living artwork.
  • 'Floating' system for vertical gardens: a simple modular system which is easy to install and add to, depending on your tastes or needs. It's essentially a set of mesh pockets on top of aerated fabric (specially-designed for this purpose), and you place your choice of plants into the pockets to create your vertical garden.
  • Modular system with boxes inserted into a metal structure: this is similar to the previous type but with different materials, with wood finishes generally playing a key role.
  • 'Geotextile' vertical garden system: this living wall planter consists of various layers, including aluminium, a layer of bonded moisture-absorbent foam, mesh, filters and pockets, resulting in a system that automatically waters the plants. Innovation and aesthetics combined.
  • Shelves: shelves are structures that can be installed on the bathroom's wall or floor to place pots. You can choose shelves made from different materials, such as wood, metal or glass. 
  • Wire structures: wire structures are a unique option for a vertical garden in the bathroom. You can create different shapes and designs with wire to hold pots at different angles and heights. Wire is also resistant to humidity, making it a perfect material for bathrooms.

Remember that before installing any type of vertical garden in the bathroom, you must make sure that there is enough ventilation and that humidity is monitored, so your plants can grow in a healthy way.

Benefits of vertical gardens in bathroom design

Living walls are another biophilic design-inspired option, which generate oxygen while offering a visual focal point for interiors. Its maintenance cost is offset by the benefits it provides: texture, energy and life. A living system that works for well-being:

  • Physical and mental health are enhanced.
  • It provides natural beauty.
  • It improves air quality and increases oxygen.
  • It generates natural humidity, which cools the atmosphere in summer and heats it up in winter. 

Did you find these ideas useful? We hope we have inspired you a little more in the world of biophilic design. If you want to keep up to date with more news, we encourage you to visit our blog.

And if you want to contribute to making this world a little better with us, collaborate in our sustainable WaterForest action.

"Make your wish here, and we'll turn it into a tree."

Vertical garden in Noken's showroom, in the Water area 

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