Choosing Tile for Your Bathroom

Available in a wide variety of materials, sizes, colors and styles, tile is durable and waterproof, so it’s the perfect choice to protect your bathroom walls and floor.

Table of Contents

First decision is where do you want it?

Shower Floor: The best tiles for shower floors are porcelain and natural stone because they’ll give your floors the most traction.

Shower Wall/Shower Ceiling/Vanity Backsplash: Go wild! Walls don’t need to be safe from slipping. Polished or glass, ceramic or porcelain, anything goes!

If you’re retiling a shower though, be sure your tile reaches all the way to the ceiling. This creates a cleaner, more finished look and make your bathroom seem larger.

Bathroom Floor: Traction is an issue here. Porcelain and natural stone are great options, just like they are for your shower.

Ceramic: Easy to install and affordable, ceramic tile is available in a whole host of colors and finishes, from white and glossy to colorful and patterned designs.

Porcelain: Porcelain tile is denser and more durable than ceramic tile. Porcelain is also available in a wide variety of bright colors. Harder than clay-based tiles, porcelain may have through-body color, an advantage if chipping occurs.

Glass: Glass tile is lightweight and easy to install, though a bit more costly than ceramic.

Natural Stone: The most nonslip solution, stone tile can be made of many different materials including marble, travertine, limestone, slate, and granite.

Available textures are numerous and include cleft, tumbled, sandblasted, etched and flamed variations. Stone requires more maintenance than ceramic tile; regular cleaning and sealing are recommended. Stone will give your bathroom an organic and textured look.

Linoleum: Made of linseed oil, cork powder, wood flour, ground limestone, and pigments, linoleum naturally inhibits the growth of microorganisms and repels dust and dirt, all while retaining its color.

Cork: Warm to the touch and very easy on the feet, cork tiles come tinted in a variety of colors. Glue-down installation is not difficult, but you’ll need multiple coats of polyurethane to seal the flooring and prevent moisture from reaching the subfloor.

12x24s have become the new standard: the bigger the tile, the bigger the space seems.

It’s a good idea to use medium-size tiles on the floor if you have a small bathroom – smaller tiles mean more grout lines, which can make a small bathroom look smaller. Extra-large tiles will also make a small bathroom look smaller. Natural-stone materials like marble or granite will give your bathroom a luxurious feel.

Choose smaller tiles for decorative surfaces like shower walls, shower ceilings, and vanity backsplashes. If tiles get cracked, smaller tiles tend to be much easier to replace than larger tiles.

Subway tiles are a popular neutral choice for a clean, polished, and versatile look.

For small bathrooms, consider lighter colors for a subtle, airy look that help make your bathroom look larger and brighter.

For large bathrooms, you can get away with darker, more saturated hues, like navy and deep browns.

Accent smaller surfaces with surprise pops of color. Shower ceilings and vanity backsplashes can be brought to life with vibrant, detailed mosaic patterns or saturated hues and are small enough not to overwhelm the rest of the space.

Dark floor tile paired with light wall tile are a great choice for a modern bathroom.

Your bathroom is a great place to create an area where you can relax and rejuvenate. Selecting the right tile can make all the difference!

Visit one of our showrooms for inspiration.


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