Question: Bathroom Counters Should Use What Kinds of Materials, Styles?
Bathroom counters don't necessarily have to be boring. So much emphasis is placed on kitchen counters--their materials, styles, edge design, and so forth--that bathroom counters often take a back seat. Let's look more closely at the basics of bathroom counters.
Tile as a Bathroom Counter Option
Designers are divided on the issue of installing ceramic or granite tile in bathrooms. One advantage of ceramic or even granite tile in the bathroom is cost. While ceramic tile is vastly cheaper than granite, even granite tile can be an affordable bathroom countertop option. Not only that, but any kind of tile can be a do-it-yourself project. Tile is easy to lay out, mortar, and grout, though cutting tile may be difficult.
One difference between using tile for kitchen vs. bathroom counters is that in kitchens it is desirable to reduce the number and length of seams. That means that slab granite, solid-surface materials, and even concrete are best in kitchen, because they have the fewest seams. Yet in bathrooms, seams are not as much of a consideration.
Solid Surface for Bathroom Counters?
An increasingly popular choice for bathroom counters is solid-surface material. Solid-surface is the industry term for manmade, polymer-based counter materials like Corian or Silestone. It should be noted that these polymer counters can scorch on contact with hot bathroom implements such as curling irons.
Going Higher-End with Quartz Bathroom Countertops
Zodiaq and Cambria are two well-known brands of quartz counter material. Quartz counters are over 90% organic quartz composition, with the rest made up of pigments and binders. Quartz looks remarkably like granite. In some cases--and in the opinion of some owners--quartz looks even better
Granite: Slab or Modular Counters?
Even though slab granite is a popular bathroom counter choice, it's worth considering something called modular granite. Modular granite comes in sheets that are smaller than slab granite, yet larger than traditional granite tile. Because of this, you can lay down bathroom counters by yourself, and still keep the seams to a bare minimum. And because bathroom counters tend to be smaller than kitchen counters, you're looking at perhaps no more than two or three fairly unobtrusive seams.