If you’re thinking of updating your bathroom, renovations are probably at the top of your list. There’s a lot to be said for switching out certain appliances for ones that work better and look chic. However, you can also give your space a fresh new look by applying different wallpaper, paint, or even tiles. More specifically, wood effect bathroom tiles can revitalise your bathroom for a trendier look.
How can they do this? By updating plain old tiles into a more modern, stylish aesthetic. Wood effect tiles are more popular than ever, with more homeowners turning to rustic themes and warm wood tones for their bathrooms.
The following article outlines the draw of wood effect tiles and seven individual tile samples so you can decide if this new trend is right for you!
What are Wood Effect Bathroom Tiles?
Everyone loves the look of warm wood panelling. In recent years, wood panels and rustic decor have become more popular for homeowners everywhere. But if you want the same effect in your bathroom, wooden panels just can’t offer the same benefits as ceramic tiles.
Ceramic bathroom tiles help prevent moisture from collecting in your bathroom floors and walls. This moisture can cultivate mould and other growths that thrive in warm, damp spaces. Your bathroom tiles help keep your bathroom clean and mould-free.
Previously, the need for ceramic bathroom tiles meant you couldn’t use another material, such as wood panelling. Wood panels can absorb moisture, causing the material to warp or rot if exposed to dampness for long periods. Essentially, using wood in your bathroom was an obvious no-no.
However, since then, wood effect bathroom tiles have evolved into a fit option. These tiles are ceramic or porcelain, but they have a wood grain print to make them look like actual hardwood panels. The material has the same properties as any other ceramic tile, making them perfect for waterproofing your bathroom walls or floor.
Simply from their appearance, it’s easy to confuse them for the real deal. A visitor to your bathroom might believe you used real wood panelling.
Why Use Wood Effect?
There are lots of advantages to using wood effect bathroom tiles, especially if you love the way they look. First, as mentioned above, it’s just about impossible to tell by looking at it that it isn’t wood.
You can also use these kinds of tiles anywhere in your bathroom, places real wooden panels can’t go. For example, you can line the walls of your shower with wood effect tiles, or cover your shower floor.
Ceramic tiles conduct heat, making them the perfect covering for underfloor heating. Wooden panels are often warmer to the touch than cold ceramic, but with underfloor heating, you can step out onto a pleasantly warm floor after a shower or bath.
So, when using wood effect tiles, you can get the best of both worlds: the look and warmth of wood plus the practicality of ceramic tile.
Because these tiles are both water-resistant and scratch-resistant, they’re more durable and long-lasting than wooden panels. For instance, it takes a lot to stain wood effect tiles, and you can easily mop up any spills or messes without stressing the tiles.
Even with all the expected wear and tear, wood effect tiles don’t need much maintenance. For instance, unlike wooden panels, they don’t need refinishing every few years. You can treat them exactly like any other ceramic tile, meaning you can easily keep them clean and working properly with little effort.
There are also plenty of choices when you want a specific wood effect design. You can choose up to 30 variations of wood effect tile that simulate real wood patterns. That way you can design your bathroom to a specific colour scheme, or match your wood effect tiles to wooden panelling you might already have in your house.
Though wood effect tiles aren’t true wood and don’t have the same properties, such as retaining warm temperatures, they do provide countless benefits when used as bathroom tiling.
Sealing vs Grouting
With real wooden floors or walls, you need to seal them with wax to help protect the surface. However, even with wax, they can absorb water molecules and become deformed or mouldy. This is because the wax is still porous, especially if heated with hot water while cleaning.
Sealing takes a lot of time and resources, and often your wooden surfaces will need resealing if they have a lot of foot traffic.
However, you don’t need to seal wood effect tiles. Not only does this save you time and money, but it also keeps your floors or walls at lower maintenance.
Because wood effect tiles are ceramic or porcelain, you still need to grout the tiles. Grouting will fill in the spaces left between each tile, preventing moisture from seeping through. With wooden floors, sealing wax offers this moisture protection. Unlike sealing wax, using grout takes less time, and you don’t need to redo the process every few years.
Top 7 Best Wood Effect Bathroom Tiles
Without further ado, here are our recommendations to decor your bathroom with wood effect tiles.
These reclaimed wood effect tiles will give your bathroom the look of stressed wooden panels. These tiles are the ultimate choice for anyone who prefers a rustic look, as each tile pattern emulates a different wood grain and colour. Though they don’t match, the tiles do complement each other for a more cohesive look.
The appearance of weathered and aged wood will give your bathroom a cosy farmhouse feel, reminiscent of barns and fences. The manufacturer uses eight different designs for their tiles, each released randomly for a less uniform wall or floor.
These tiles are preferable for shower walls over shower floors, as they do not have anti-slip surfaces. However, if you wish to use them for your bathroom floor, you may do so. They allow for underfloor heating, suitable for keeping your feet warm when you get out of the bath.
Remember to take care stepping out of the shower, and be aware that any puddles on the floor will create a hazard.
If you want a uniform oak aesthetic, try these Samanea Oak Suar wood effect tiles. With their realistic wood prints, each tile has natural-looking grains, knots, and colouring for a soothing hardwood appearance.
These tiles are especially long and wide to make your space seem larger and more open. The length is similar to real wooden panels, so you can get the same effect in both print and size.
Though you can use these tiles for wall panelling, they look best used for a floor. Like the Rustic Blue Reclaimed wood effect tiles above, these Samanae Oak Suar effect pieces aren’t anti-slip. You may use them for your bathroom floor, but it’s important to keep cautious and prevent puddles.
The ceramic material of these tiles will prevent the pattern from becoming worn or faded. They are easy to mop and will not receive water damage from frequent cleaning. Due to these attributes, these tiles will give you the perfect wood effect bathroom floor that’ll look amazing years down the road.
Using these tiles with an underfloor heating system will give you the same kind of warmth you’ll get with true wood, without the high maintenance.
These soft grey tiles are great for either floor or wall coverings. With a uniform design and a gentle pattern of grains and knots, they provide a less obvious backdrop to any bathroom, allowing your fixtures to become the featured additions.
As one of the more inexpensive options, the Abrade Argent Sanded wood effect tiles gives you more bang for your buck. As a bathroom floor, they provide the same aesthetic as carefully sanded hardwood floors. As either a covering for bathroom or shower walls, these tiles help brighten up your bathroom by gently reflecting light into all available corners.
For a more comfortable floor, these Tiveden Grey wood effect tiles provide a silkier surface on your bare feet. With a more traditional shape, these tiles emulate the exact feel of a real hardwood floor. The grey patterns are authentic and soothing to the eye, making the perfect background for your bathroom oasis.
These tiles have a natural matt finish, which makes the grains and knots look even closer to real wood instead of a ceramic copy. Whether you choose to use these tiles on your floor or walls, the only telltale sign of their true nature will be the lack of water damage and residue.
Unlike other products on this list, the Tiveden Grey wood effect tiles have rectified edges, resulting in each tile having a uniform shape. These edges make it easier to fit the tiles together, making your floor or wall nearly seamless. You’ll end up with a smoother surface that needs less grout.
Less grout means less chance of leaks or water damage, so these tiles will do more to protect your bathroom walls and floor.
These tiles will not only give you the beautiful effect of natural oak, but they will also provide you with a versatile ceramic material. As both an indoor and outdoor certified tile, you can use the Muniellos Natural Oak wood effect for whatever you wish.
With an anti-slip surface rating of R9, these tiles are suitable for bathroom walls and floors, or shower walls and floors. You can also choose to use them to cover the interior of an outdoor or indoor wetroom.
Like the Tiveden tiles above, the Muniellos tiles have rectified edges for a tighter, smoother finish. The limited grout will give the impression that your bathroom walls or floor are true hardwood.
In terms of the patterns, the tiles use up to 30 designs for a more natural oak wood aesthetic. The matt finish makes the surface more natural-looking, preventing a synthetic or plastic appearance.
These Rustic Oak wood effect tiles are large and welcoming, with warm colour and natural patterns. The texture is also reminiscent of real hardwood, with raised knots and grooves just like a real oak wood surface. The luxurious colour and matt finish will keep your floor or wall shining with the soft glow of oak wood, no matter what accidents or spills may occur.
With a non-slip surface, these tiles are perfect for your bathroom walls or floors. They provide an inviting ambience to your space, so you can feel like you’re in the middle of a cosy rustic cottage.
Compatible with underfloor heating, these tiles will make you feel like you’re standing on real wood. They’ll keep your toes warm out of the shower yet won’t split or splinter under any temperature changes.
A Rustic Oak wood effect tile is a surprising 615mm by 205 mm, making it one of the largest bathroom tiles on this list. The size gives more surface area to each tile, reducing the amount of grout and providing more non-slip protection.
These beige and ivory Blengdale Haya wood effect tiles offer a light and refreshing appearance to your bathroom. The porcelain tiles show off the natural-looking wood grains and knots of each print. Unlike darker wood effect tiles, each pattern is easy to see, making the natural wood appearance of your floor or wall stand out amongst appliances.
With an anti-slip grade rating of R9, these tiles are great for bathroom or shower floors. You can also use them to brighten up your bathroom or shower walls. If you’re choosing to go with a lighter rustic theme, these tiles will give you the ultimate backdrop on which to base specific bathroom features, like a rustic claw-foot tub.
The rectified edges will give the tiles a closer fit for a nearly undetectable seam. You can use less grout and get the next best thing to a hardwood appearance.
Is Wood Look Tile Good for a Bathroom?
You can use wood effect tiles in any area of your house, including your bathroom. Because they’re made of ceramic or porcelain, they won’t become damaged by excessive moisture. This makes them safe to use as bathroom floors or even shower walls.
Can You Get Tiles That Look Like Wood?
Wood effect tiles look so much like wood that it’s often hard to tell them apart just from a glance. Though they might feel different, the pattern of wood grains and knots on the wood effect tiles look so natural that they could be the real thing.
What is Porcelain Wood Flooring?
Porcelain wood flooring is porcelain tiles with a printed wood effect to make them look like real wooden floors. Each tile is longer and narrower than a traditional tile, resembling a wooden slat.
Do You Need Grout for Wood Look Tiles?
Yes. Just like regular ceramic or porcelain tiles, wood effect tiles require grout to help waterproof any gaps and to keep the tiles together. However, unlike other bathroom tiles, the spaces between wood effect tiles are generally much smaller, making them look closer to actual wooden slats.
This is especially true if the wood effect tiles have rectified edges, allowing them to sit closer together and creating a nearly-invisible grout seam.
Is Wood Look Tile Cheesy?
Most wood effect tiles look exactly like real wood, so the effect isn’t cheesy at all. Some tiles even have a texture where you can feel the grains like you would with real wood. It is often too difficult to tell if a wood effect tile is real wood or not unless you touch it.
Does Wood Look Tile Add Value?
Because wood effect tile is ceramic or porcelain tile, it will not generally add any value to your home. Some homeowners might think that because the tiles give the appearance of wood floors or walls that it will increase home value. But because the tiles still have grout grooves and are maintained as tiles, they do not provide the same home value that a hardwood floor would.
What Size Wood Look Tile Should I Use?
For the best wood effect look, choose a tile that is longer. Tiles that resemble real wooden planks are usually about 1000mm long, much longer than your typical bathroom tile.
Be sure to measure the space you want to cover with wood effect tiles to deduce which lengths would best fit inside that space.
How Do I Choose Wood Tiles?
Choosing wood tile will depend on what you want to do with it.
If you want to use it as flooring for your bathroom or shower, look at anti-slip options that also allow for underfloor heating. If you want to use it to cover your shower walls, you might want rectified edges to get the smallest gap between the tiles as possible.
Measuring your available space will help you decide what size of tile you need. You can also get wood effect tiles with different textures, so you can use smoother or rougher surfaces as you wish.
Be sure to choose a colour that you enjoy and also complements your bathroom, so you can get the most out of your tile!