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What Sort of Flooring is Best for the Bathroom?

by Ryan Lees

Making a decision on which type of flooring is best for each room usually depends on the style and decor of the area. However, when choosing flooring for your bathroom it’s a whole different decision.

One of the main factors in your decision is how will your new flooring deal with water. Choosing the wrong type of flooring can have disastrous consequences as moisture can ruin the core of your floor, meaning that it will need replacing sooner rather than later. Moisture is not the only factor you need to consider, size or format of the floor in smaller spaces, slip resistance, sound absorbance and transitional sound for apartments need to be factored into the decision.

Vinyl Flooring

Vinyl flooring has been a popular choice for bathrooms for decades due to its water resistance. There are two options of Vinyl Flooring available; Vinyl sheet flooring is the product that we all have known as vinyl for years and years that comes in a rolled format. This option is still very popular but is deemed to be looked upon as more of a special installation process due to subfloor preparations.

The second option available is Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring. This is supplied in a box in a more retail environment. This style of the floor is ever increasing with new technologies from “Flex LVT” to now a more “Rigid core” that can be installed over either existing tiles or a slightly uneven subfloor without showing minor imperfections through the floor material, which a roll vinyl or flex vinyl could do without the proper subfloor preparations.

LVT is now the fastest growing flooring product with it being an affordable and luxurious product and with new technologies in surface texture and rigid cores, we predict it will continue to grow.

Engineered Wood

Moisture kills hardwood, and a bathroom is probably the most humid area of the entire home. Of all the hardwood flooring options, engineered is a better choice for a bathroom than solid, as plywood layers hold up against moisture relatively well and are more dimensionally stable. Wood is a fully sustainable product as it has no end life, which makes it more environmentally-friendly choice. If you do choose to use wood products in your bathroom, choose your products with caution.

Laminate Flooring

Laminate Flooring is a popular type of flooring used in bathrooms as there is now a huge amount of choice in brands that offer water-resistant surfaces and core. Be aware though that the water-resistance layer on these floors is subjected to a maximum time limit for surface water from 24, 48 & 72 hours.

The technologies are endless when it comes to water-resistant laminate flooring including Hydro, Aquastep and Aqua pearl to name a few.

Laminate Flooring also offers a wide choice of designs such as the decorative tile effect ‘Faus’ to strong wood grain texture in Swiss Krono and Quickstep.

Natural Stone

Natural stone is an excellent choice for your bathroom, however, it is expensive. When considering natural stone, you need to take into consideration the cost of the product and the cost of installation as it is considerably hard to install it yourself. Although it is considered an expensive product, natural stone has an excellent resale value and is incredibly durable.

Ceramic Tiles

Ceramic flooring comes in a variety of styles which can help you generate the look you want for your new floor. Ceramic is also considered waterproof making it ideal for the bathroom. As well as being waterproof, ceramic tiles have an excellent resale value making them an excellent investment. However, due to the materials that they are made of, they can be cold and hard underfoot so you might want to consider a bath mat or similar to avoid the shock of the cold, hard floor.

Because ceramic tiles are smooth they can also be slippery underfoot, so it’s advised that you have a bath mat to avoid the chance of slipping on the flooring and causing damage to both you and your new floor.

Flooring to avoid in the bathroom


It is common knowledge that carpet and bathrooms don’t mix very well. This is due to how carpet mixes with water. Carpet is known to retain moisture for a long time and it tends to dry out slowly, especially within a confined space of the bathroom.

A better alternative would be a bathmat on a smoother, less resistant floor.

Solid Hardwood

Solid hardwood floors have zero resistance to moisture and even the smallest amount will start to rot the wood.


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