Porcelain or ceramic tile is a favorite for bathroom flooring and for good reason. It’s relatively affordable, durable and easy to maintain. It also comes in a wide variety of shapes, styles and colors.
But, while this type of tile is hugely popular, it certainly isn’t your only option for having a beautiful, durable bathroom floor.
If you’re building a new home, or remodeling an existing bathroom, you may also want to consider these four alternatives to traditional tile before making your final flooring decision:
Vinyl flooring in one piece can be ideal for bathrooms where water on the floor is a concern. For example, a kid’s bathroom where tsunami waves splash outside the bathtub on a daily basis! However, luxury vinyl plank flooring is also growing in popularity for other good reasons.
Both regular and luxury vinyl offer a number of advantages, not the least of which being that it’s available in a wide range of styles, designs, and colors. It can imitate the look of natural wood or tile, while still providing the warmth and water-resistant properties of vinyl. You can DIY your vinyl floor, but for the best and most water-proof results, a professional installation is recommended.
2. Engineered Wood
If you can’t resist the natural look found in authentic, real wood, you can opt for engineered wood instead.
Because the bathroom is a wet, humid space, it makes natural hardwood vulnerable to rot. Engineered wood, on the other hand, is specifically designed to resist rot and decay under harsh conditions. Despite these advantages, it’s still important to protect and properly care for engineered wood to achieve the best, long-lasting outcomes. Make sure that an excellent sealant or varnish is applied before making use of your new floor.
With proper maintenance, you’ll get to enjoy that gorgeous, natural wood top that you’re seeking for many years of daily use.
3. Natural Stone
If you have a bigger budget and want your bathroom to feature ultimate class, consider installing a natural stone floor.
Marble, granite, and slate are favorite materials for stone bathroom floors and there’s virtually nothing else that can match the aesthetics that a natural stone floor can achieve.
However, make sure to consider giving your stone a slip resistant finish, since water can sometimes make it slippery. You might also consider installing radiant heating so that your floor is a comfortable temperature when you’re barefoot.
Another alternative to hardwood is laminate flooring. Laminate can imitate any wood of your choice. From cherry to oak or pine, you can get the look without the high price tag or higher maintenance requirements. Laminate also comes in designs that imitate natural stone quite beautifully. So, if you have your heart set on natural stone but the price is too high, consider laminate or vinyl imitation.
Do keep in mind that laminate flooring does still use a wood base. Even though it’s water resistant, it’s not a completely waterproof option like vinyl, tile, or stone. While laminate does a reasonable job for light bathroom use, choose a more robust option for heavily used family or children’s bathrooms.
So, take the opportunity to think beyond common tile to achieve the look and feel of the bathroom of your dreams. Whether you choose a natural wood look, vinyl imitation, or another flooring style, you’re sure to find a bathroom floor that’s not only beautiful, but functional and just right for your needs.