Thinking of updating a kitchen backsplash tile? Re-flooring your shower with stunning mosaics? Tile, as well as providing functional walls and floors, is great for an instant and impactful makeover.
Ceramic and porcelain tiles continue to gain traction with design-centric homeowners. They are durable, easy to maintain, and offer unlimited design versatility. These qualities make both tiles ideal for any space in need of functional beauty. So how do you use space-appropriate porcelain and ceramic tile in your home?
There are a few practicalities to keep top of mind. Does your space require low care and water-resistant tile? What look are you going for? How do you unlock the secret to choosing tile perfect for high footfall? To help you navigate these questions, we share key points on how best to use tiles in your home.
- Aesthetic appeal
Before going in on choosing tiles, it’s crucial to access your space. The room’s aesthetic plays a role in picking the perfect space-appropriate tile. Ideally, tiles should harmonize with, and not detract from your existing design.
Porcelain and ceramic tiles offer an infinite variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. Finding tiles to complement the room’s essence and enhance its personality becomes a lot easier.
Different spaces may benefit from different tile styles. For instance, large wood-look floor tiles can create a cozy ambiance in the living room. Light-colored, textured tiles can work best in a small bathroom. Vibrant yellow and pink backsplash tiles can add a punch to a pared-down kitchen scheme.
- Durability and longevity
The home’s busiest and most demanding floor surfaces benefit from durable tiles. Porcelain’s exceptional vigor stands strong against daily wear and impact. All while adding visual interest and dimension.
It’s a great fit for spaces that see high foot traffic (cue dirty paws and wet feet): entryways, kitchens, and hallways. With a good rating and proper care, your porcelain floor tiles can bear the brunt of daily wear and tear for 50 years or more.
- Hygiene and upkeep
Along with durability, hygiene and upkeep are also a crucial aspect. Tiles are resistant to stains and inhospitable to microbes. This means mold and mildew cannot settle and grow on the surface.
Keeping porcelain and ceramic tiles immaculate is a breeze—no sealing, waxing, or polishing necessary. They’re a great suit for moisture-prone spaces like bathrooms and kitchens. Surface spills, messes, and dirt can be cleaned with little effort. Hello, sparkling walls, backsplashes, and floors!
- Moisture resistance
Porcelain tiles emerge from refined clay, molded to form then fired at higher temperatures. The result is a denser tile that’s far less porous. With a moisture absorption rate of less than 0.5%, porcelain’s ability to thrive in wet spaces, swimming pools, and outdoors is unmatched.
This, however, shouldn’t deem ceramic tile’s resilience. It too, can be used on shower walls and bathtub surrounds, or as a kitchen backsplash tile without the need for sealing.
- Slip resistance
Before falling head over heels for a particular tile, check its slip resistance rating. This is especially crucial for bathrooms, kitchens, pool surrounds, and any space where slippery surfaces can lead to accidents. Textured or matte finish tiles offer extra traction underfoot.
- Room size and lighting
Lighting plays a crucial role in the way we perceive space. This, along with room size, can influence your tile selection. In a room with ample natural light, colors appear vibrant and true to their actual hue.
In addition, light-colored tiles with a glossy finish tend to reflect light. Giving a confined space a brighter and more spacious feel. This quality best suits small powder rooms, showers, and kitchens. For your large spaces, darker tiles can pull the room in and create a cozy ambiance.
- Budget consideration
Ceramic tiles are affordable and allow you to create a luxe look for less. But while the initial cost for porcelain tiles may be higher, there is no factor for doubt that its superior performance outweighs the expense. If your budget is limited, prioritize porcelain floor tiles for high-impact areas. Then lean to pocket-friendly ceramic options for less demanding spaces.