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Tile border made up of small square tiles in glass, metal and stone are being adhered to the wall of a shower

4 Best Tiles for Shower Walls

4 Best Tiles for Shower Walls

Tile border made up of small square tiles in glass, metal and stone are being adhered to the wall of a shower

When it comes to choosing the right material for the shower walls, homeowners easily get overwhelmed with the many options to choose from. But aesthetics aside, it’s important to consider that the material should be durable enough to withstand the moisture in the bathroom. This makes tiles the best pick but even then, there are still a few types of tiles to pick from.

So what’s the best type of tiles to install in the shower walls? The most popular choices for shower walls are glazed ceramic, glazed porcelain, natural stone, and glass. Homeowners should consider the bathroom’s style, cleaning and maintenance, durability, grout, and tile size when finalizing the material for their shower walls.

4 Best Options for Your Shower Walls at Home

Regardless of the area in the house, tiles almost always make for a great flooring option. They’re durable and low-cost, which makes them attractive for many homeowners who build or remodel their dream homes. Tiles are such a popular option that their market size in 2019 was valued at $346.4 billion.

What makes tiles a great pick for bathrooms and other parts of the house is their durable and rigid characteristics. They’re better than wood products, such as laminate or hardwood because of their moisture resistance. They’re also usually made with environment-friendly materials while still meeting the high manufacturing standards.

Tiles are just as excellent walling materials as they are as flooring. If you’re undecided about which kind of tiles to pick for the bathroom, here are some of the best options to choose from:

1. Glazed Ceramic

Glazed ceramic tiles are typically used for bathroom flooring, which makes them an excellent choice for the shower walls too. It’s a safe choice when you’re looking for resilient yet economical materials for the bathroom.

Appearance

Ceramic tiles come in an array of different colors and designs that easily match the style of the bathroom. Simple designs are a lot more affordable, but ceramic tiles also come in elaborate styles for the right price.

The glaze on the surface of the ceramic tiles serves two purposes. First, it keeps the moisture out, which is exactly what’s needed in a walling material for the shower. The second one is that the glaze makes the ceramic tile extremely low maintenance. It reduces the number of scratches visible on the surface. It also seals the porous parts of the tile that might become home to mold and mildew.

Cost

The average price range for ceramic tiles is $2.50 to $3.50 per square foot, but it’s possible to find one that costs around $0.45. Just make sure to get the materials from a trusted source to ensure that you’re getting what you paid for.

The installation costs for ceramic tiles and other materials involved in the process are computed exclusively.

2. Glazed Porcelain

Ceramic and porcelain tiles are often confused with each other. They’re both made of clay, but porcelain tiles are fired at higher temperatures. This makes the material better than ceramic in a lot of ways – from durability and water absorption rate to color change and chipping resistance.

Another advantage that glazed porcelain tiles have over ceramic tiles is their density. This allows the material to retain more heat, making it perfect for steam showers.

Appearance

Like glazed ceramic tiles, porcelain tiles also come in a variety of colors, patterns, shapes, and sizes. They also don’t chip as easily as glazed ceramic tiles. The glaze on both materials serves the same two purposes too.

Cost

Since glazed porcelain tiles are a lot better than glazed ceramic in several ways, they tend to be more expensive too. The price of glazed porcelain tiles is around $3 to $35 per square foot, excluding the labor costs for the contractor or the additional costs for other materials if you choose to install them by yourself.

3. Natural Stone

Natural stone is another popular option for bathroom tiles because it looks great on shower spaces. While they’re almost as hard and durable as porcelain or ceramic, natural rocks are much more porous than the other options. This means that natural rock walls in the shower need extensive care and maintenance.

Appearance

Natural stone has a unique beauty that attracts many homeowners. It’s a high-end tile choice that people would love to have in their bathrooms. There are several stone styles commonly installed in bathrooms, such as limestone, granite, slate, marble, and travertine.

Rocks don’t offer the same range of styles, colors, and designs as glazed ceramic or porcelain tiles, but the patterns and textures are enough to make up for it.

Cost

Aside from the material and installation costs, homeowners also need to worry about buying the right sealant for the natural stone’s porous surface. This prevents them from incurring more costs when trying to repair the damages or replacing the material in the future.

4. Glass

Glass tiles are also another option to consider when revamping the bathroom. It has almost the same level of durability and water resistance as other options in this list, but what makes it stand out is its unique transparent look. Glass tiles are also easy to maintain – just grab a window cleaner to make the material sparkle again.

Appearance

Glass provides a modern look to any bathroom wall it’s installed in. There isn’t much choice when it comes to the appearance because glass walls are almost always transparent, save for a few translucent ones or those with little designs. Glass tiles also provide the illusion that the shower space is bigger than it actually is.

Cost

Glass tiles usually cost around $9 to $18 per square foot to install in a bathroom wall.

5 Things to Consider Before Choosing the Shower Walls

Shower and floors done in Tile at local senior home

Aside from choosing the material for the shower walls, it’s also crucial to consider other factors in a bathroom remodeling project. Here are some other factors to take into account when picking the material for the bathroom walls:

1. Style of the Bathroom

Browsing through hundreds of tile options might seem interesting and exciting, but it might be a huge waste of time if the tiles don’t look good in the bathroom. It’s easy to replace a rug that doesn’t match the bathroom’s aesthetic, but the shower walls are a completely different issue.

It’s important to always think ahead and consider any renovation plans before installing traditional tiles. Removing vinyl and linoleum from the bathroom walls is a lot cheaper and easier than hiring a team to crack the tiles when revamping the bathroom.

2. Cleaning and Maintenance

People love taking hot showers, but not all bathrooms are built for them. Without proper ventilation, the steam causes different sorts of problems for the bathroom, such as mold or mildew.

When choosing a material for the bathroom walls, think about how much time you’re willing to give up for cleaning and maintaining them. Ceramic and porcelain tiles are easily cleaned with a clean rug, but they need replacement or sealant when they’re cracked to avoid further damage.

3. Durability

Like many other materials installed in a house, homeowners must also consider the durability of the tiles in their bathroom. Some materials like glazed porcelain might be expensive at first, but they’re guaranteed to last longer than other cheaper alternatives in the market.

It’s crucial to find the right flooring option that’s easy to install but isn’t brittle enough to only last for a couple of years. Unless you plan to remodel the bathroom in a few years, it’s better to invest in slightly expensive materials that last for decades.

4. Grout

Grout isn’t the first thing that comes to anyone’s mind when choosing a tile option for their bathroom walls. However, it’s important to consider the tile grout because it’s crucial for maintenance. Grout lines are essential to tile installation but they’re also home to grime, mold, soap scum, and mildew.

There is no universal standard for the right grout line size. Just remember that wider ones make the installation job look good, but they also require regular cleaning and maintenance.

5. Tile Size

The tile size depends on the size of the bathroom itself. The homeowner’s style preference and budget also contribute to the final decision. If you’re undecided about the right tile size, it always helps to check out the latest trends in home projects.

Large tiles make the room feel bigger, but they’re difficult to install especially on walls. Smaller tiles give a streamlined appearance for the bathroom, but they need more grouting and cutting.

Should You Hire a Professional for Installing Shower Walls?

Installing shower walls by yourself might help cut down costs at first, but not everyone has the time, patience, or skill to execute the project perfectly. There’s a myriad of problems that a person might run into once they start removing the old walls of their bathroom.

Unlike living rooms or bedrooms, bathrooms don’t give people enough space to work with. Installing the tiles on the shower walls might take weeks for an inexperienced homeowner, but professional contractors handle the job properly in just a few days.

Homeowners also don’t need to worry about finding the right tools and materials needed to install the tiles because professionals already have complete equipment. With a flooring contractor, you’re guaranteed to have a gorgeous-looking bathroom within a couple of days.

Remodel Your Shower Using the Right Materials with Zothex Flooring

Zothex Flooring is a trusted source of different kinds of tiles for bathroom walls. Our installation services are performed by our experienced team using high-quality tools and materials. At Zothex Flooring, our clients trust us to guide them through the entire process of remodeling their homes. Call us at (916) 925 – 1958 now to schedule an appointment

Learn more: Why Do Tiles Crack in the Bathroom?