Today’s bathrooms are artistically decorated and often reflect the owner’s personal taste. Lot of thought and efforts are put in the selection of the furnishings and accessories. The ultimate goal is to create a cozy room that will create a welcoming ambiance for you, when you retire for the day. Of all the bathroom furnishings, flooring is one that has a great impact upon the bathroom decor.
So if you are shifting to a new home or revamping your current house, take the options of styling your bathroom very seriously. Not only should it accentuate the beauty of your bathroom, but also provide a safe environment. In fact, safety is the most important factor to be considered while designing a bathroom.
Selecting Flooring for Bathroom
Before selecting any flooring option for your bathroom, you must consider all the factors related to it. For example, carpets are not the best idea for a bathroom when kids are involved. They are difficult to maintain and are prone to staining, which cannot be avoided if you have kids around. Also, polished and waxed tiles should be avoided for bathrooms used by the elderly, as any amount of water on the floor can make it slippery.
Secondly, if your house or apartment is near any water body, then hardwood is not the option for you as it cannot survive humidity. In such a case, opt for any stone or ceramic tile. But if you want a woody-textured look for your bathroom, you can select any kind of laminate, or engineered wood.
Glass tiles are the new trend in flooring. However, they require high maintenance and are susceptible to breakage in case heavy furniture is dragged, or installed on them.
Another important point to keep in mind is the area of your bathroom. Use of light colors in a smaller bathroom will give it some depth and make it look bigger. However, you can play with the contrast, and use dark-colored flooring for particular sections, like shower enclosures, or around the bathtub.
- Vinyl $$
- Eng. Wood $$$
- Marble $$$$
- Laminate $$
- Slate $$$
- Travertine $$$$
- Rugs $$
- Cork $$$
- Granite $$$$
- Clay $$
- Bamboo $$$
- Glass $$$$
$$ = Economical $$$ = Affordable $$$$ = High-end
Ceramic tiles are a popular choice when it comes to bathroom flooring. They are extremely easy to maintain and last for decades. Moreover, they are very cheap and come in several patterns and designs. You can go for anti-skid varieties that offer a great grip and prevent slip and fall accidents. Also, you can opt for textured ceramic tiles that do not become slippery when wet. Ceramic tile flooring is water-resistant and stain-resistant but the grout is prone to mildew infestation. Ceramic tiles include all kinds of stoneware, earthenware, and porcelain tiles.Before you choose these tiles, here are a few things you must know:
❐ You can install these tiles all by yourself, but then do buy extra tiles in case a few are damaged during installation. Laying the tiles in a diagonal rather than grid fashion will give the floor a very interesting visual appeal. If you want intricate patterns, hire a professional.
❐ Quarry tiles are made by a process called extrusion from either clay or shale. These tiles are generally available in earthy tones of red, brown, and gray. These are very porous and may get stained if not properly sealed. Quarry ceramic tiles are usually available in square, rectangular, and hexagonal shapes.
❐ Glazed ceramic, or porcelain tiles come with a slip-resistance finish. But these tiles are generally not recommended for bathroom flooring.
❐ Porcelain tiles are just a more stronger version of ceramic tiles and used in places of high traffic. These tiles are also used in bathroom flooring, but using ceramic tiles for household purposes is a better and cheaper option.
❐ Mosaic tiles are also a good flooring option for bathrooms. These tiles are ceramic tiles and are available in a variety of colors and also in smaller sizes.
❐ Ceramic tiles are available usually in 12-18 inch squares. Smaller mosaic tiles are 1 inch in size while bigger tiles come in 24-inch squares. The cost of each tile is, on an average, less than $1.
» Ceramic tiles are available in a huge range of colors. Some of them are:
Beige Black Brown Gray Olive Tan Blue Metallic Peach White
In the above image, use of different patterns of ceramic tiles can be seen to enhance the entire decor. The chess pattern created around the seat and the use of mosaic near the bathtub have certainly added some unique element to the whole area. As you can see, the decor is minimal and also simple but intricate, giving an edge to the bathroom.
Tips✻ There is a lot you can do to your bathroom by using ceramic tiles. For example, use 18-inch tiles for floor and mosaic of same color for the walls. If there are one or two steps in the bathroom, then use mosaic for the steps, while using 12-inch tiles for the rest of the floor.
✻ For an edgier look, use plain gray rectangular tiles all over the floor, and cover one-third of the wall with the same tiles, with an occasional black mosaic lining. Choose fixtures of a lighter shade of gray.
✻ White and brown look great together. So for white or cream ceramic tiles, opt for oak, or light mahogany cabinets, and vice versa.
Natural Stone Tiles
Nothing can be as mesmerizing as stone tiles. They are nature-driven designs and as every other of Mother Nature’s creation, even these tiles have a mystical aura. Choosing stone tiles for a bathroom may blow a hole in your pocket, but they can also completely turn it into your favorite getaway place.
Stone tiles seem to last forever and like wine, they age well. You may feel that these tiles are a little too cold for your feet and also slippery under your gait, but in-floor heating and proper finishing to minimize the slippery effect can be resorted to.
Stone tiles are cut from rocks into certain uniform sizes. Most stones are water-resistant, but some may require special attention. These tiles are stain, odor, fire, and bacteria resistant and also add resale value to the house.
There are again certain things you must consider before you choose stone tiles for your bathroom.
❐ All stone tiles require proper sealing as a protection against any foreign substance. Also, sealing must be done regularly to maintain and ensure longer life.
❐ You can select stone tiles from a variety of colors. But do remember to keep extra tiles for any further remodeling or use, as you may not find the exact pattern or color match later.
❐ Cleaning stone tiles is an easy job. Remember to use mild detergent, and clean tiles with a soft cloth, or sponge. Never use metallic fibers on stone tiles.
❐ Use professional help to lay out the tiles. Also, stone tiles require a smooth and rigid surface underneath, like concrete, or cement floor.
❐ The cost of stone tiles can vary according to the size, type, and color. Average cost of tiles per square foot can be between $2 to $15 without installation.
Absolutely exquisite and unique, marble tiles are cut out from natural stones. Their beautiful nebula-like whirls will give your bathroom a stellar look, of course with perfect lighting. These tiles have adorned the floors and walls of the Taj Mahal, which make it one of the seven wonders of the world. Marble, for centuries, has been a symbol of royalty and affluence.
Marble tiles are widely available in earthly tones, like beige, with veins of subtle colors. It comes with four types of finishes: brushed, chiseled, honed, and polished.
» You can choose from these colors:
Beige Black Brown Gray Green Amber Mauve Red Gold White
As you can see in the above sample picture, the white marble tile has rivulets of amber and gold. Proper lighting gives the marble floor a glazed look. Use of dark mahogany furniture in the bathroom is in perfect contrast to the light-colored tiles. Use of golden fixtures absolutely complement the complete ambiance.
Tips✻ White or any other pastel shade accessories on marble floors are a match made in heaven. The stone gives a luxurious effect to your bathroom, so try to keep the decor minimalistic and simple. Very ornate fixtures may spoil the aesthetics.
✻ Use a handwoven rug, coarser on the backside, near your tub or outside shower area, so that the cold stone does not spoil your hot, relaxing bath.
✻ The best color for decorating any bathroom with marble floor is the color and shades of the rivulets in the tile. For example, a dark green marble tile with pastel hues of yellow or green rivulets would look good in a room that is decorated with fixtures, wall cabinets, or shower cubicles of similar hues of yellow or green.Back to Top
Granite is an igneous rock formed under immense heat, which gives it a crystalline structure. Solid granite is very expensive while the tiles are quite affordable. If you have ever seen the Pyramids of Egypt, you will be well-aware of the strength and durability of granite. It is a very dense rock formed over decades in the intense pressure and heat in the Earth’s natural oven, which makes it strong and durable.
» You can opt for any of these colors:
Beige Black Brown Gray Charcoal Tan Pink Metallic Ivory White
In the above image, tan-colored granite tiles adorn the floor while similar-colored ceramic tiles around the jacuzzi give the bathroom a plain and sophisticated look. White and metallic fixtures sit well, and the whole decor is very soothing; exactly what you would want in a place to relax.
Tips✻ Different shades of the same color of the granite tile will give depth and make your bathroom look bigger.
✻ Use white fixtures and accessories for a very subtle effect. Wooden cabinets, or wooden-effect laminated cabinets will enhance the aesthetic value of your bathroom.
✻ Use tinted grout to fill gaps. Laying the tiles closely can also reduce grout staining. During maintenance, make sure that the tile is wet enough before applying grout.Back to Top
Slate is a metamorphic rock and very delicate when cut into smaller tiles. It can split along the planes, thus making them an expensive choice for bathroom flooring. Bigger slabs can be used instead of tiles to elongate their life. However, the rustic yet neat look that slate tiles can give your bathroom may be a compensation for all the expenses.
» You can choose from these colors:
Arctic Green Silver Blue Black Gray Charcoal Metallic
As seen in the picture above, the bathroom looks very simple and modern with pale white decor to balance out the heavy and absolute black slate floor.
Tips✻ As slate is dark in color and looks very heavy, the fixtures should be picked from a light color palette. However, certain accessories, like bath towels and shower curtains can be selected from primary colors.
✻ Slate tiles are suitable for bigger bathrooms. You can also use clay tiles and slate tiles for specific areas in the same bathroom to lighten up the ambiance. Also, the bathroom should be well-lit.
✻ Slate tiles must be set with mortar on a solid surface. This will ensure lesser damage and increase the durability of your tiles. Avoid dragging heavy things on the surface of the slate floor.Back to Top
Clay tiles are one of the best and most economical bathroom flooring options. They are fire-resistant, the colors do not fade, pests cannot dwell, and the tiles can survive for over a hundred years. Clay tiles are available in many mosaic patterns. You can get playful while designing your bathroom floors, and use different textures and patterns of these tiles. These tiles are available in every color and almost every shade, making it very versatile and the most used tile for bathroom floors.
In the sample picture, a mosaic clay pattern has been used along with engineered wood floor. Use of white fixtures and wooden cabinets accentuate certain areas of the bathroom. The bathroom is very contemporary in the look, while using economical material.
Tips✻ Many vibrant and soft colors are available in clay tiles. It complements any kind of accessory and decor.
✻ Clay tiles may seem to have a problem insulating your bathroom properly, which can be overcome by using carpets, or rugs on such flooring.Back to Top
Travertine is also known as travertine limestone or travertine marble. It is a cheaper substitute for marble. It has a unique matte finish, and your bathroom would seem to give you a warm welcome.
» Choose from any of these colors:
Beige Brown Black Gold Gray Peach Tan White
Travertine floor with wooden fixtures fit well together and are picturesque. They form a perfect symphony that tunes the bathroom to peaceful notations. It is an elegant and subtle look for any kind of bathroom.
Tips✻ Polished travertine may be very slippery, so it is better to be careful.
✻ Ensure that the gaps between the tiles are completely sealed to avoid reaction to acidic compounds. Never use acid-based detergent to clean such flooring.Back to Top
Use of wood as a flooring option is an age-old tradition. Wood flooring, if properly installed, is really smooth under the feet and very relaxing. No wonder many luxurious hotels and resorts have real wood flooring in the bathroom to enrich people’s experience.
Real hardwood floors require a lot of upkeep and maintenance. If you have a weekend or holiday home, then using wooden floor for the bathroom can still be a good option. You can install a dehumidifier to elongate the life of your precious floor, and enjoy them for a longer period.
There are many kinds of domestic and exotic species of wood to opt for. You can choose the vintage and classic oakwood or the very new and sophisticated cork or bamboo flooring. There are also varieties of manufactured wood and laminate, which will give the requisite look, but of course not the feel.
Installation of wooden floors requires expertise. So, it is advisable to hire professionals for the same.
If you are a “go green” fanatic, bamboo is the flooring option for you. It is light, eco-friendly, and very much “in” when it comes to home decor.
» You can choose from any of these colors:
Maple Lunaverde Fuchsia Cognac Pistachio Benchwood
Wooden decor naturally suits a bamboo flooring as seen in the sample image. Light-colored fixtures, like white, cream, peach, or ivory are best for such flooring.
Tips✻ Bold primary colors go well with bamboo flooring. Use of porcelain or any other ceramic fixture would accentuate the overall visual experience.
✻ Bamboo floors must never be waxed, but only dry-dusted if possible on a daily basis. Also, have a proper drainage system in the bathroom to avoid any water accumulating on the floor.Back to Top
Another greener option is cork. It is made from the bark of cork oak tree. It is biodegradable and can be recycled. It does not stain, is resistant to fire, and never develops mildew or molds. It has a very rural and polished look.
Cork generally comes in very earthy shades of brown and red with a tinge of black or dark brown in them. The floor looks beautiful in a room with similar tone colors on the wall. As most cork floors are of bright colors, any dark-colored furniture will give it a subtle contrast.
Tips✻ Wooden fixtures sit very well with a cork floor. Handwoven rugs and transparent and synthetic shower curtains also look good.
✻ Exposure to direct sunlight can result in fading of the color of the floor. Also, it is not dent-resistant and can get punctured easily.Back to Top
Exquisite Engineered Wood!
Engineered wood is manufactured by binding strands, veneers, and fibers of wood through adhesive. These are very economical flooring options, easy to maintain, and look like authentic wood.
Tips✻ It is cheaper and easier to install and is available in almost all types of wood including oak, birch, and hickory.
✻ It comes in various colors and also in patterns, like basket weave which give it a very geometrical design.Back to Top
Laminate floors are the best option to get a faux wood finish for your bathroom. They are easy to maintain and install. As they can resist moisture, laminate floors are one of the most sought after bathroom flooring options. Laminate resembles the hardwood flooring to a great extent. It is actually wood fiber bonded together and overlaid with an image of real hardwood. It has a top layer made up of protective layer which is stain-resistant and waterproof.
Laminate flooring is a great option if you are not willing to expose the real timber hardwood to moisture, or heat in the bathroom. There are several bathroom tile design ideas to choose in laminate bathroom flooring.
Tips✻ It may seem very hard under your feet, which can be overcome by using a nice and soft rug.
✻ Using laminate floor may reduce your house’s resale value.Back to Top
Vinyl flooring is another popular bathroom flooring option. Vinyl is durable, easy to maintain, and resistant to almost all varieties of fungus. It is also easy to clean and waterproof. You’ll get various textures of marbles or wood to choose from, in vinyl flooring. It comes in sheet and tile variations.
Tips✻ When vinyl flooring is newly installed, it heavily emits certain organic compounds, which may be harmful to kids, pets, and the elderly.
✻ Use of furniture pads will ensure long-term durability of the flooring. Back to Top
Rugs have been the best invention in the world of interior decoration. They can be used in any space, any room, and for any purpose. Rugs are available in different kinds of material and colors, giving you a lot of options to play around with. Simply changing the rugs or their position in a room gives a refreshing look to the room. Also, while redecorating, it is easier to change rugs than the whole flooring.
The best places to use a rug in the bathroom would be near the bathtub, or just outside the shower enclosure. It can be used to place your feet near the toilet seat and the sink. It is always a better option to color coordinate your rugs with other fixtures to give your bathroom an even look.Back to Top
Peppy Pebble Patterns!
Pebble patterns are just a playful version of mosaic. Glass tile, a comparatively newer concept in flooring designs, is gaining popularity in recent days. It is generally used as an accent piece. It is not a feasible option for bathrooms as the floor can be slippery. Also, installation is very expensive and must be done by experts.