Choosing A Shower Drain Style For A Master Bath Shower

Style and Types of Shower Drains

From The Standard Grate Drain To LED Backlit Linear Shower Drains  

Designing a new bathroom is one of the most exciting home renovation projects you can undertake. It's also one of the most difficult. There are so many different features, options, and solutions that it can be challenging. One important element that is more important than you might think is choosing the best possible shower drain. In fact, some may argue that it's the functional design element that can make or break your entire bathroom.

The fact is that your shower drain isn't just about aesthetics and merely a visual aspect of your bathroom remodel. Your shower drain impacts the sanitary condition of your bathroom. A proper shower drain also makes your bathroom easier to maintain, and that's a big plus.

So, how do you choose the perfect style shower drain for your master bath shower? Let's look at some of the choices available to you. Today, the shower drain is more than just utilitarian; it encompasses both form and function. Here are some popular styles to consider.

Popular Shower Drain Styles

Ultimately, the best choice for your shower drain is the one that you love stylistically and meets the requirements for the job. Most states will have specific building codes that will need to be met, but beyond that, whatever is aesthetically pleasing to you, and works with your design is a perfect choice.

Here are the basic drain types.


The traditional drain, also known as a standard drain or grate drain is the most popular choice among homeowners. Generally, either round or square there's nothing too complicated here, it is what it is. It is functional and doesn't offer much in the way of aesthetic design. The choice of tiling and finish is what determines the final look.

While the standard drain typically consists of mainly a pretty boring grate, today there are plenty of more stylish choices available, so look around before you buy. You can find one that can enhance the design of your master bath if you take the time.

Linear Drain

Linear Shower Drain

The linear drain in this curbless shower was installed as part of an ADA accessible universal design remodel.

While it's not extremely popular, the use of linear drains has become more widespread as homeowners learn more. The linear drain is actually an excellent choice for a number of reasons. First, they are glamorous and can fit into any bathroom design. Linear drains are also incredibly practical and easy to clean. Finally, they can be either visible as a prominent part of the design, or unnoticeable depending on how it is installed and the look you are trying to achieve.

It is the perfect drain choice if you are creating a modern minimalist design. One thing to remember, a linear drain is very dependent upon the tiles you choose in order to stand out. Make sure you carefully select your tiles bearing this in mind. In fact, wait until you have chosen your tile and planned your build out before installing the drain.

Tile Top Linear Drain

For a truly luxurious, modern look, linear drains are available with a tile top option. This means that you can match your bathroom tile on the drain, creating a slim, invisible drain near the wall that can give your bath an elegant finished look while keeping it completely functional.

A tile top linear drain is a great look if the rest of your shower enclosure is seamless. It can give your master bath a spa-like look

Ready Shower Bases

Shower Base

The prefabricated acrylic shower base used in this custom shower looks anything but cheap. Tile design is key, and the penny white tiles and white grout create a classy and integrated look and feel for this budget-friendly shower .

While not as impressive and offering fewer design options that the above choices, a ready-made shower drain is a relatively inexpensive and convenient choice for some homeowners. If you don't feel comfortable making a design choice or are just looking for an easy, functional solution, there are plenty of ready-made shower bases out there. Typically made from fiberglass or cultured marble, a ready-made base will not make a great focal point in your design, but they do offer some advantages. For example, convenience and price. They can also save a lot of time in the install, and they can look clean and stylish.

Ready-made bases can vary widely in quality. Make sure to check the stability of any unit you choose. This is important! A base that is not well made, or too flexible can lead to potential leaks at the drain and water line.

While it's not a major element of your bathroom, choosing the right shower drain is an important part of your bathroom renovation. Your final choice should center around your aesthetic needs, and of course your budget. With a little research, you can find the perfect drain to meet your needs. Speak with your contractor or design-build firm to learn about all of your options. Today, your shower drain doesn't have to just be a functional element in your bathroom. It can also serve as an integral element in your bathroom design.

Learn more: read about Tub-To-Shower Conversions.

About Degnan Design Build Remodel
Since 1981 Degnan Design Build Remodel has provided home improvement and construction services to customers throughout Greater Madison, Wisconsin. Our goal is to WOW you with a "Designed For Your Life" solution using a process that will transform your home into a beautiful living space, delivered on time, and on budget. We are known for our communication, respectfulness, and a commitment to our customers and our community. Contact us to speak with one of our designers about your home improvement project.