How do you Choose Tiles for a Bathroom? | Tile Warehouse
How do you Choose Tiles for a Bathroom?

When it comes to renovating a bathroom, nothing makes a bigger impression than tile – whether it’s on the floor, in the shower, or used for a decorative backsplash behind the sink. 

Tiles come in a variety of finishes. Matt, satin, semi-gloss, gloss, and high gloss. Which type of texture you choose depends on your individual taste and where the tile is to be used.

Gloss and high gloss tiles are easy to clean and reflect a great amount of light, making a room appear brighter and larger. These are a popular choice for bathroom walls. Gloss tiles' reflective nature means that watermarks, fingerprints, dust, dirt, etc are easily visible on the surface and will require a little more regular cleaning than satin and matt tiles. It is not advisable to use gloss glazed tiles on floors in wet areas due to the slippery nature of the glaze when wet.

Satin tiles are low sheen tiles that have a slightly glossier glaze than a matt tile and are easy to clean but do not show dirt on the surface as visibly as gloss and high gloss tiles. They reflect light making them perfect in darker type areas and can be used in wet areas.

Matt tiles are the most common form of floor tile in wet areas due to their slip resistance and ability to hide water spots, dust, and dirt well. They combine well as a floor tile with gloss wall tiles, although they are often used in larger sized bathrooms on both walls and floors to create a more natural or rustic look. They are incredibly easy to clean without the worry of leaving noticeable streak marks.

Floor tiles should compliment your wall tile. It can be the same colour as the primary wall tile with a different texture or it may be a contrast colour tile. If the floor tile is a different colour to the wall tile, limit your wall tiles to two colour types, primary and feature. Remember, that the same rule applies here for smaller sized bathrooms, the darker the floor area, the smaller the bathroom will appear.

Wall tiles are usually the primary colour tile however, this primary colour tile can also be used on the floor. If your bathroom is a smaller area, it is best if your primary tile colour be a lighter colour. Whites and light coloured neutrals are perfect to use in smaller sized bathrooms as they are timeless, will not date, and will give the bathroom the appearance of being larger.

Feature tiles are used to give your bathroom its “wow factor”. It may very well have been the first tile that caught your eye when you walked into a showroom. Mosaics make beautiful feature tiles as do natural and faux stone tiles, but your feature tile can be any type of tile that appeals to you. The feature tile can be used on an entire wall or part thereof. Most commonly the feature tile is used on the wall where the vanity or bath is to be installed to enhance the item. A feature wall in the shower recess is also an effective feature. Feature tiles look amazing inside niches above baths and in shower recesses. Perhaps a feature floor would better suit your bathroom design.  Homeowners of smaller sized bathrooms often prefer to leave their walls white, enhancing the sense of space, and choose to create a feature floor either with a patterned, timber, or stone tile.  The options for feature tiles are quite endless. Be sure to speak with your bathroom renovator about your ideas and options for placement of your feature tile as they will be able to offer you many ideas. Once you have decided on the area for your feature tile, you will then know exactly the quantity to order.

For particularly small bathroom areas, tiling the wall and floor with the same light coloured neutral with a small feature area on a wall is a fantastic way to create a more spacious feel. Small features such as a niche tiled in a feature tile above a bath or in the shower is incredibly effective or a simple vertical feature on a single wall. Creating a feature in your bathroom is not limited to tiles alone. This is especially true for smaller sized bathrooms. You may decide to make the vanity your feature by choosing for example one with dark cabinets and matt black tapware.

Tiles come in an array of sizes and shapes. The size, shape, and layout of your bathroom will influence the size and shape of your tile. Generally speaking, the larger the room, the larger the tile. That said, larger tiles have the ability to make a small room appear larger as they reduce the number of grout lines. Although when choosing larger tiles for a smaller bathroom, be sure that the majority of tiles can be applied without cuts. Be sure to speak with your bathroom renovator about what tile size would best suit your bathroom. 

If you’re tiling a shower, be sure your new tile reaches all the way to the ceiling. This will create a much cleaner and more finished look and will ensure that drywall doesn’t get exposed to dirt or water. Tiling a shower all the way to the ceiling also makes your bathroom look taller/larger.

Do things the professional way - many Interior Designers will take clients around our Tile Warehouse showrooms to finalise their look. We take great care to merchandise tiles in helpful groupings for customers. For example, the Carrara and Calacatta Porcelain tile group create a classic and traditional feel. Metals, stainless steels, and on-trend patterned tile work best in modern spaces. For a rustic approach, we would suggest a timber-look tile as a flooring base of which we have a huge selection to choose from.


If you would like to discuss your project further, we can assist.

Contact one of our 32 Stores or discuss with one of our Commercial Representatives.

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