A vanity, or a dressing table, is a low table at which a person sits while applying makeup. Vanities are considered unnecessary and antiquated to some, and lovely and vital to others. These dressing tables can be very personal items, embodying luxury and self-indulgence, ritualizing the process of getting ready.

Styles of Vanities

Vanities can look like simple desks, stands, pedestal tables or desks with attached mirrors and can range from basic, unadorned units to extravagant ones. Some feature drawers to house makeup and other beauty items. Most of the older varieties are constructed with various woods like cherry and mahogany. Many are painted and embellished with engravings, carvings, and floral designs. Newly designed vanities draw inspiration from vintage models.

Purpose of Vanities

Generally, vanities are simple dressing tables. In this case, they are places to apply makeup and style one's hair��with all the necessary items organized and often beautifully stowed away. Their desktops and drawers are often laden with hand mirrors, perfume bottles, decorative brushes and combs, a plethora of beauty items, and accessories.

Often, a small lamp rests on a vanity's desktop to provide additional lighting for makeup and grooming purposes. Many vanities also double as desks as they are often accompanied by a chair or stool and some legroom. Vanities designed for men are usually bigger, featuring tall chests that embody dresser functions and to hold things like underwear, handkerchiefs, cuff links, jewelry, and personal grooming items.

Vanities: Other Uses

These furniture items are rather versatile and can certainly be housed in more than just a bedroom. Vanities can function equally well in walk-in closets, transitional spaces between bedrooms and bathrooms, in specially designated dressing rooms, and bathrooms.

Bathroom Vanities

Vanities employed in bathrooms often take up residence with an attached sink. In bathrooms, vanities are popular ways to add storage to small spaces. They are much easier to install than units on a pedestal or those that need to be attached to a wall. This is because sinks that can sit on vanities do not require perfectly exact cuts and measurements.

With this option, even finishing the wall becomes relatively easy. As long as the vanity has a back panel, the wall around the plumbing does not need to be finished because the unit will hide everything behind it. You'll just have to install the plumbing and cabinet and hook up the sink top. For someone with basic plumbing and carpentry skills, this task should not require more than a day's work.