How to Choose the Best Flooring Material for Your Bathroom

Russ Tychsen
July 4, 2024

When planning a bathroom remodel, selecting the right flooring is one of the most important (and often difficult) decisions you’ll make. In our experience, it defines the space, playing an enormous role in the look, feel, and quality of the design. 

The best bathroom floor material combines durability, water resistance, and style. However, many materials can offer those things, from porcelain tile to engineered wood and beyond. 

Aesthetics and function aren’t the only things you need to consider. Bathroom flooring is also a big part of the final remodeling cost, clocking in at an average of $12.50 per square foot for both materials and labor (according to Angi).  

So, how do you choose the best bathroom floor materials for your space? 

Our bathroom remodeling company has worked with a wide range of materials, and we know what’s popular, functional, and recommended. 

Let’s explore some of the best options available to help you make an informed choice.

Popular Bathroom Floor Material Options

Porcelain or Ceramic Tile

Porcelain and ceramic tiles are among the most popular choices for bathroom flooring designs. They are incredibly water-resistant, making them ideal for wet environments. 

Additionally, these tiles are available in a vast array of styles, colors, and patterns, allowing homeowners to customize the look of their bathrooms to fit their tastes. The possibilities are endless, from sleek, modern designs to classic, timeless patterns.

Of course, there are a few drawbacks. Tiles can feel cold underfoot, which may be uncomfortable in cooler climates. They can also be slippery when wet, which isn’t always optimal in a house with children. 

Furthermore, tile is often considered a relatively expensive bathroom floor material, depending on the type and quality. Materials like ceramic and porcelain are generally more affordable, but options like beautiful mosaic tiles can be quite costly. 

Installation costs for tile can also be higher due to the labor-intensive process and the need for proper underlayment. Therefore, if you want to keep costs down, consider evaluating some of the other options on this list. 

Vinyl Flooring

Next up, vinyl flooring has become increasingly popular due to its water-resistant properties and affordability. It is an excellent choice for bathrooms because it can withstand high moisture levels without warping or staining. 

Available in both sheets and planks, vinyl mimics the appearance of more expensive materials like wood or stone, providing a stylish look without breaking the bank.

Vinyl is also softer and warmer underfoot compared to tiles, making it more comfortable to walk on, especially during colder months. This can be a huge plus in places like Salt Lake City, where our temps drop below freezing multiple times per year.

However, this material choice isn’t without its drawbacks, too. Vinyl is usually not as durable as tile and can be susceptible to scratches and dents over time. Therefore, if you have pets, small children, or a very busy household, this might not be the optimal material for your space. 

Natural Stone

If you’re looking for luxury and elegance, natural stone is probably the best way to go. Options such as marble, granite, and slate add a unique, high-end appearance to any bathroom (plus a little bit of a “wow” factor). 

Each stone has a distinct texture and color, ensuring a one-of-a-kind look. Your remodel will certainly differentiate your bathroom from those of your neighbors. 

While natural stone is incredibly durable, it does require regular maintenance. To prevent staining and moisture penetration, you’ll need to seal the stone periodically. Additionally, natural stone tends to be on the pricier side, so it may not be the best option for those on a tight budget. 

Engineered Wood

If you love the warmth and aesthetic appeal of hardwood but are concerned about moisture, engineered wood is a fantastic compromise. 

This flooring option consists of a hardwood veneer layered over plywood, making it more resistant to moisture than solid wood. It provides the classic look of hardwood with improved durability in damp environments.

Still, know that engineered wood is not completely waterproof. Spills will need to be cleaned up promptly to prevent damage. Additionally, this type of flooring may require resealing over time to maintain its appearance and protect against moisture.

Laminate Flooring

Lastly, laminate flooring is another cost-effective bathroom floor material option that offers the look of hardwood or stone without a high price tag. 

It’s relatively easy to install, making it a popular choice for DIY enthusiasts. Laminate is also available in various designs and colors, providing plenty of options to suit your bathroom’s style.

While laminate is budget-friendly, it is not as water-resistant as other materials. If water seeps between the seams, it can cause the planks to warp over time. Therefore, careful installation and maintenance are crucial to prevent moisture damage.

Other Factors to Consider

Before closing this blog out, we want to give you a little more food for thought. 

Moisture resistance is paramount, as bathrooms are prone to humidity and water spills. At the end of the day, you must prioritize materials that can withstand these conditions to ensure longevity. 

Style is another critical factor. The best material for bathroom floors should complement the overall design and color scheme of the room. From modern to traditional, there are bathroom floor materials available to suit every taste. 

Lastly, have you thought at all about environmental impact? If sustainability is something that matters to you, consider looking into a more unique option like bamboo flooring, which is quickly gaining traction in the market as an easy-to-maintain, environmentally friendly material. 

Note: we typically don’t recommend bamboo for our Salt Lake City customers as it’s pretty moisture-sensitive and can shrink under fluctuating humidity, such as during our dry winter months. 

The truth is, no one size fits all. It’s about finding what’s right for YOUR space, needs, and budget. 

Get in Touch With Our Bathroom Remodeling Specialists

With the right flooring choice, your bathroom will look stunning for years to come and meet your functional needs. That said, while we presented a thorough overview of various flooring options, we here at Lifespan Bath Remodel only install vinyl flooring. We have found it to be the best option and a favorite among Utahns who want a resilient flooring solution in water-prone areas like the bathroom. 

If you’re not sure what materials best suit your preferences and requirements, contact Lifespan Bath Remodel. Our bath remodeling contractors in Salt Lake City will help you evaluate the latest trends, then provide tailored recommendations. 

Schedule your consultation today to learn more about our bathroom remodeling services. We can’t wait to discuss your project! 

We beat any competitor by $100.

Get your free quote!

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Russ Tychsen