Bathroom surfaces must be durable, hard wearing, and moisture resistant. On top of this, we expect modern day bathroom designs to be a stylish extension of our home’s décor, to be functional and yet not too clinical, and to be a relaxing retreat within the home. That’s a lot to ask of this one space in the home, and of the products we select to create a bathroom design.
When selecting the perfect shower enclosure, sink, faucet, vanity cabinet, and hardware, don’t forget to consider the surface that is subject to the most wear and tear. You walk on it, drip water and soap on it, spill make-up, drop towels, leave it in a humid atmosphere, and then expect it to be easy to clean and last for years. What is this surface that must live up to these high expectations? The bathroom floor, of course!
Thankfully, there are plenty of options for durable bathroom flooring materials that offer an array of style and color options, designed to elevate any bathroom design. First, consider your requirements for a bathroom floor, and then look at the materials that best fit your needs.
Durability and Maintenance:
You want your bathroom design to be stylish, but at the same time it must meet the requirements of a bathroom to be durable and easy to maintain. Any floor material you select must be able to withstand constant moisture, be mold and mildew resistant, and be able to handle daily foot traffic. It must also be relatively easy-to-clean as bathrooms require daily cleaning and maintenance. Keep in mind that you must not only clean the material itself, but also any grout lines, and that grout must be re-sealed over time. Make sure if you are going to put it on your floor, that you will be happy to maintain it. Larger format tiles with fewer grout lines, keeping a mosaic tile feature to one area, and selecting other materials like porcelain wood effect tiles or vinyl flooring can make clean up easier. Who wouldn’t love that?!
Texture and Safety:
Like any surface in your home, you want to consider the texture of the bathroom floor as well as the color and pattern. In addition to finding something that is aesthetically pleasing to your bare feet, you must also identify a material that offers some texture to make it more slip-resistant when wet. A tile or other surface that is too smooth can be hazardous in a wet bathroom.
Style and Color:
You may think the floor is not an important component of your bathroom design but remember that this is the one surface that covers the entire area of the bathroom and connects all other components of your design. The floor is typically a neutral tone, though this can be anything from white to beige to brown to gray. If you opt for a bold color, make sure it is one you are happy to embrace for a long time, as you will see it every day and changing it would require a major overhaul.
There are a variety of bathroom flooring materials available to meet these requirements. Check out the options and discuss the pros and cons of each with your bathroom remodeling specialist. Make sure to check the price for each option, as costs can vary widely and there may be different options that meet your requirements. Here are a few examples:
- Tile: this is the most common surface for a bathroom design, with porcelain and ceramic tiles offering a timeless appearance in a durable, waterproof, stain resistant surface. Available in a wide range of sizes, patterns, and colors, tiles can be found to suit any bathroom renovation. Tile can be very cold underfoot, so consider installing radiant underfloor heating if your budget allows.
- Vinyl: this budget-friendly, durable, waterproof surface has made a comeback in recent years, as the technology for producing vinyl has advanced and the surfaces are more stylish than ever. Available in sheets or tile, vinyl tile and in particular luxury vinyl tile is especially attractive as it offers a more natural, stylish alternative in a highly durable format.
- Hardwood: wood floors provide a warmth that is very attractive in a bathroom design, however they must be regularly re-sealed to avoid moisture damage. An alternative is to get the look of wood flooring with either laminate floor or porcelain wood effect tiles.
- Other materials: alternative options, such as cork, bamboo, and concrete are sustainable, eco-friendly options that are quite durable when properly sealed and maintained.