Choosing the Perfect Finish For Your Bathroom Water Faucet

Image Courtsey of Delta Faucet

Image Courtsey of Delta Faucet

New Bath Fixtures and Water Faucet Finishes, How Do You Choose?

Selecting bathroom faucets and fixtures doesn't typically top the list of items homeowners are excited about when it comes to a bathroom renovation, but knowing what materials are available will help them achieve the look they are looking for.

Water Faucet Finish Options

This master bathroom uses a mix-and-match approach to its finishes: Nickel/stainless finishes on the light fixture and cabinet hardware, copper for the sink, and oil-rubbed bronze for the faucet and accessories.

Whether the bathroom is traditional or modern, there is a range of water faucet finishes to choose from.

Nickel Finishes – Brushed or polished, nickel goes well with most bathroom styles. Polished nickel water faucets are easy to clean and maintain, but tend to be a little more expensive than brushed nickel. Brushed nickel water faucets go well with almost any style or decor unless there is a large amount of stainless steel planned for the bathroom. Keep in mind, matching different finishes in nickel precisely can be difficult. Purchasing water faucets and finishes from the same manufacturer can help.

Brass Finishes -- Polished brass gives a bathroom a vintage look and is easy to match regardless of the manufacturer. It is durable, although expensive. Satin brass is more difficult to find and more expensive, however, it gives a more modern look to a bathroom. While polished brass has some maintenance to keep it shiny and fingerprint free, polished brass is far less work.

Chrome – This is the most common choice for water faucet finishes, likely because it is inexpensive and easy to maintain. It does show water spots and fingerprints, but these can quickly be wiped away with a microfiber cloth.

Oil Rubbed Bronze – Oil Rubbed Bronze is often found in traditional homes and has been a popular choice since the 1990s because it is easy to match and will not show water spotting. 

Copper – Copper water faucets give a bathroom a rustic feel, and while this finish is beautiful, it can be high-maintenance.

Satin Bronze – Sometimes found in traditional or Mediterranean style bathroom, this is a pricey but durable choice.

Keeping an old water faucet

If you are incorporating vintage elements into the bathroom renovation, keeping an old faucet that's in top working condition is a good option. Most water faucets have a lifetime warranty on their finish, so if the only issue is a worn finish, contact the manufacturer. If you want to match the finish to other fixtures, talk to the manufacturer about what products will match best.

Other Deciding Factors

For those who are thinking more about maintenance, brushed metals hide fingerprints and water spots, good for those who want to keep the bathroom looking tidy without constant upkeep. 

When going for a vintage or traditional look, the finish can sometimes be more important than shape. An angular design with a bronze or copper finish could keep with the style without straying too far from the other elements. If you are concerned about choosing water faucets and fixtures that are too bold, remember chrome and nickel look good with every style. Whether brushed or polished, these classic looks will meld seamlessly with whatever other elements you choose. 

While some homeowners tend to shy away from brass and copper because of their traditional look, modern designs and finishes have given a contemporary feel to this option. Look for names like champagne bronze or brushed brass when shopping for gold-toned finishes and consider adding a gold toned water faucet to a modern bathroom for a unique look.

Is It OK to be Trendy?

Powder rooms can be the perfect place to be trendy. Because they stand alone, you have less invested, and the ability to change your mind without large expense. Consider a full bathroom: You want the faucet, tub & shower, and multiple towel bars to all match together. Making a change can be expensive. In a powder room, you probably only have a single faucet, towel hook, and TP holder to replace if you don't like the finish.

This article was updated by Abe Degnan on 2/14/2018.

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.