Which Shape Tile to Choose for Your Bathroom

shape tile to choose for bathroom

Introduction: Understanding the Importance of Tile Shape

When it comes to designing your bathroom, choosing the right tiles is crucial. Tiles not only contribute to the overall aesthetics of your bathroom but also play a vital role in functionality and durability. One aspect to consider when selecting bathroom tiles is the shape. The shape of the tiles can significantly impact the visual appeal and ambiance of the space. In this article, we will explore various tile shapes and help you determine which one is best suited for your bathroom.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Bathroom Tiles

Before delving into the specific tile shapes, it’s essential to consider a few factors that can influence your decision:

  • Style: Determine the style or theme you want to achieve in your bathroom. Whether it’s modern, traditional, minimalist, or eclectic, selecting the right tile shape can enhance the desired aesthetic.
  • Size of the Bathroom: Take into account the size of your bathroom. Larger tiles can make a small bathroom appear more spacious, while smaller tiles can add texture and detail in a larger bathroom.
  • Lighting: Consider the natural and artificial lighting in your bathroom. Light can affect how tile shapes are perceived, so choose a shape that complements the lighting conditions to create the desired effect.
  • Maintenance: Think about the amount of time and effort you are willing to invest in tile maintenance. Some tile shapes may require more cleaning and upkeep than others, so choose a shape that fits your lifestyle.

Popular Tile Shapes for Bathrooms

  • Hexagonal Tiles
    Hexagonal tiles have gained popularity in recent years for their unique geometric design. These tiles create an eye-catching pattern and can add a modern touch to your bathroom. Hexagonal tiles are available in various sizes and can be arranged in different configurations, such as honeycomb or staggered patterns.
  • Subway Tiles
    Subway tiles are a timeless choice for bathrooms. These rectangular tiles with a 1:2 aspect ratio offer a classic and clean look. They are versatile and can be used in both traditional and contemporary designs. Subway tiles are often installed in a brick pattern, but herringbone or vertical arrangements can also create interesting visual effects.
  • Square Tiles
    Square tiles are a popular choice due to their simplicity and versatility. They come in various sizes, from small mosaics to large-format tiles. Square tiles can be arranged in different patterns, such as grid or diagonal layouts, allowing you to create various design styles.
  • Rectangle Tiles
    Rectangle tiles offer a similar versatility to square tiles but with a different aesthetic. They can elongate a space when laid horizontally or vertically, making them suitable for both small and large bathrooms. Whether you prefer a traditional or contemporary look, rectangle tiles and arrow tiles can accommodate various design preferences.
  • Mosaic Tiles
    Mosaic tiles are small, intricate tiles that can add a touch of elegance to your bathroom. They come in various shapes, such as squares, rectangles, or even irregular pieces. Mosaic tiles allow for intricate patterns and can be used as an accent or to create a focal point in your bathroom.
  • Diamond Tiles
    Diamond tiles offer a unique and visually striking option. These rhombus-shaped tiles can be arranged in different orientations, such as a classic diamond pattern or a diagonal layout. Diamond tiles can add a sense of movement and dimension to your bathroom design.
  • Penny Round Tiles
    Penny round tiles are small circular tiles that can create a vintage or retro look in your bathroom. These tiles are often used as a flooring option but can also be used as a decorative element on walls or shower surrounds. Penny round tiles are available in various colors and can be arranged in different patterns.
  • Fish Scale Tiles
    Fish scale tiles, also known as mermaid tiles or scallop tiles, offer a unique and whimsical appearance. These interlocking tiles resemble fish scales and can create a visually stunning effect when applied to walls or as a backsplash. Fish scale tiles are available in a range of colors and sizes, allowing for creative and playful bathroom designs.

Pros and Cons of Different Tile Shapes

Each tile shape has its own set of advantages and considerations. Here is a summary of the pros and cons for the popular tile shapes discussed:

  • Hexagonal Tiles
    • Pros: Modern and unique design, visually striking patterns, versatile configuration options.
    • Cons: Difficult to install compared to other shapes, requires more precise cutting.
  • Subway Tiles
    • Pros: Classic and timeless design, versatile for various design styles, easy to clean.
    • Cons: Can appear repetitive if not paired with complementary elements.
  • Square Tiles
    • Pros: Simple and versatile, available in various sizes, easy installation.
    • Cons: Grout lines may be more visible compared to other shapes.
  • Rectangle Tiles
    • Pros: Elongates the space, suitable for both small and large bathrooms, flexible layout options.
    • Cons: Requires careful planning to avoid visually overpowering the space.
  • Mosaic Tiles
    • Pros: Intricate and decorative, allows for creative patterns and accents, hides imperfections.
    • Cons: Time-consuming installation due to the small size of the tiles.
  • Diamond Tiles
    • Pros: Adds movement and dimension, unique visual effect, creates a focal point.
    • Cons: Limited availability in certain sizes and materials.
  • Penny Round Tiles
    • Pros: Vintage and playful look, suitable for curved surfaces, easy to clean.
    • Cons: Grout lines may require extra cleaning to maintain appearance.
  • Fish Scale Tiles
    • Pros: Whimsical and visually stunning, creates a focal point, available in various colors.
    • Cons: Requires precise installation to maintain the desired effect.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • Q: Are larger tiles better for small bathrooms?
    • A: Larger tiles can visually expand a small bathroom, making it appear more spacious. However, it’s important to consider the overall design and balance with other elements in the space.
  • Q: Can I mix different tile shapes in my bathroom?
    • A: Yes, combining different tile shapes can add visual interest and create unique patterns. Just ensure that the shapes complement each other and align with your desired design aesthetic.
  • Q: Are mosaic tiles difficult to clean?
    • A: Mosaic tiles can have more grout lines compared to larger tiles, which may require extra attention during cleaning. Using appropriate cleaning products and techniques can help maintain their appearance.
  • Q: How do I choose the right tile shape for a modern bathroom?
    • A: For a modern bathroom, consider using hexagonal tiles, subway tiles, or square tiles. These shapes offer clean lines and contemporary aesthetics that align well with modern design principles.
  • Q: Can fish scale tiles be used on shower walls?
    • A: Yes, fish scale tiles can be used on shower walls to create a unique and eye-catching feature. Ensure proper installation and consider using appropriate waterproofing measures.


Selecting the right tile shape for your bathroom is essential to achieve the desired aesthetic and functionality. Whether you opt for hexagonal tiles, subway tiles, or any other shape discussed in this article, consider factors such as style, bathroom size, lighting, and maintenance requirements. Each tile shape has its own unique characteristics, pros, and cons, so choose the one that best aligns with your personal preferences and overall bathroom design. By making an informed decision, you can create a stunning and inviting bathroom space that reflects your individual style and taste.