What can I do to make my uncomfortable tub more conducive to a relaxing soak?

March 30 | Guest post by Hanna
Offbeat Home & Life runs these advice questions as an opportunity for our readers to share personal experiences and anecdotes. Readers are responsible for doing their own research before following any advice given here... or anywhere else on the web, for that matter.
relaxing bath
Spa Sister Relaxing Bath Pillow
I recently read the 9 glorious tubs post, and found myself drooling… but sad.

My apartment's bathtub is not conducive to a relaxing soak. The back wall of the tub goes straight up at a ninety-degree angle, with a little ledge before the wall. It's too steep an angle for me to relax against, and the ledge gets in the way of even sitting straight up comfortably!

I'm imagining there must be some kind of wedge shaped bathtub pillow to make the slope a little more gradual, and provide a headrest, but I haven't been able to find anything like this. Help, please? -Hanna

Oof, a straight-backed tub? Sounds so… not relaxing at all. I feel your pain.

Any Homies out there who have also faced this straight-up tub prob? Got any advice on how to ease the angles, and relax?

  1. I get it, totally, my parents bath is like that, it sucks. Have you tried going to a matress/ rubber shop? I don't mean a furniture store that sells beds and pillows and sheets and stuff but a speciality rubber store. We have one here in the town I live in, in Australia. I measured how deep the bath was and how far out I wanted the wedge to come in then went to the shop told them the size and we went through found the rubber/ foam/ pillow/ waterproofy stuff that was right and they cut it. All for about $20.

    If not you could try a small pool floaty maybe? A kids one that will fit under your back?

    9 agree
    • This sounds perfect. One question, does it float? I want to be submerged, not above the water.

  2. I wish I had some advice but I've just got my own uncomfortable tub. The back is fine, it's just that it's too small and shallow and so I can't stretch out or fully relax in it – either my shoulders and torso are out of the water, or my legs are.

    There's no fix for that unfortunately 🙁

    12 agree
    • Same here– our tub is as wide as my hips and only as long as my legs from butt to toes. It's awful and all but completely unusable. 🙁

      3 agree
  3. I would recommend a search for "bath pillow". It's a really broad term and they come in all shapes and sizes. Some are little wedges, others are full-on seats for the tub. Some even come with a massaging function.
    Other alternatives might include pool or beach chairs, or a bath towel rolled into a comfy shape.

    8 agree
  4. Ugh yea I feel this pain. The back is straight up with a useless ledge meant to solely annoy you. Mine is also too shallow and short to properly submerge in. To make matters worse it also has a glass door so I can't even drape my legs over the side if all I needed was a good torso soak. I suffer from major tub envy.

    2 agree
  5. I am not a fan of full-body baths, but I do love soaking my feet. So… if all else fails try to see if you can get the same relaxation with only a foot bath?

    3 agree
  6. I have the same setup. The tub is too short for me to consider adding a pillow under my back or I might as well just sit in there crosslegged. The best thing that I have found is to lay diagonally in the tub with a small towel resting under the base of my skull. Also, the overflow drain in my tub is incredibly low so I just taped over it and am careful about the water level.

    1 agrees
    • I to suffer several health issues (fibromyalgia, lupus and arthritis in my hips) my tub is also 90 angle But I am also short so I slide under water! I would love a 45 degrees angle pillow for my back.

    • Try a hammock style pool float. I put the head support lower by rolling it up a little. The other part of the float supports your legs. The only problems, I didn't totally submerge, it took 30 minutes to alternate running hot water and heating pans of water on the stove to have it full enough to relax.

  7. Ugh, I'm searching for the same solution. I'm leaning towards trying to find a custom option like L mentioned, but otherwise have found nothing that would work. Have you by chance come up with anything yet?

  8. A friend of mine ordered 6 different bath / spa pillows from amazon for me. One is as large as a mat, but it is a thin pillow. I can get so many in the tub that i am not sure i ever touch the tub. I am handicapped so getting in and out of tub is a challenge, i used to spend as little time in tub as possible because my legs would go numb. Now i am cradled in my pillows and soothed by the water. Win win.

    1 agrees
  9. I found a pretty good solution (I think) because I'm miserable in my new 1914 home! The internet comes up bare…unless you live in England and have a million dollars or something. A modified (by me) adjustable bath stool. It cost me $9, in the medical devices aisle. They seem to average $25 and go up to about $50. The stool seat is perfect as the backrest and you can modify the legs to fit in your tub to get the angle right. Some of them have suction feet and legs and all sorts of parts you can play with. They have to be assembled anyway, so you get to assemble how it works best for you. Available in plastic or teak. I hope it works for you.

    1 agrees
  10. I to suffer several health issues (fibromyalgia, lupus and arthritis in my hips) my tub is also 90 angle But I am also short so I slide under water! I would love a 45 degrees angle pillow for my back.

  11. My problem is 3 part. Uncomfortable angle, I'm short/very large tub so I slide. By the time I have enough water to submerge myself, the water is at best warm. I'm currently experimenting with pool floats. The first was a hammock style. It worked pretty well except I couldn't completely submerge myself. The next, I've received today and I'm about to try out. It's the Air Wedge. So, wedge pillow, but the bottom is designed as a mat to sun on the beach. Fingers crossed. I'll let you know what the verdict is. However, I suspect that there will still be one problem. It takes too much water to fill the tub. My bath will only be relaxing if it doesn't break the bank.

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