Bathroom faucets lead double lives. In one moment, they can be sparkling focal points, gleaming under bright bathroom lights. In the next, they are helping us clean up life’s messes. Selecting a faucet that performs as good as it looks means thinking about how the finished bathroom will look and be used. In short, the best faucet for a bathroom remodeling project will combine both form and function.
Quick tips to help you select the right faucets for your bathroom
If it has been a while since you looked at new bathroom faucets, the variety of styles, colors, finishes and features might be surprising. To narrow down bathroom faucet ideas and help you make the best choice, it can be helpful to keep these things in mind:
- Make the faucet part of your color scheme. Even though differences between faucet materials, colors and finishes can be subtle, they all bring something different to the overall look and feel of the completed bathroom.
- Pay attention to where and how the faucet will be mounted. If you have already selected a sink, the configuration of the pre-drilled holes indicates the type of faucet needed. If you are starting from scratch, it is important to know the different faucet style options. (More on this below.)
- The style of the faucet relates to everything from the shape of the spout to the faucet’s on/off and temperature controls. When selecting a faucet style, consider who will be using it, and ensure the style will be easy for them to use. Small children may have trouble reaching a lever placed on top of a tall spout, for example, making a shorter style with handles on either side a better choice.
This helpful guide provides some bathroom faucet ideas, top brands to consider, and other details to keep in mind when selecting faucets for your bathroom.
Bathroom faucet colors–from trendy to timeless
The first thing most people notice when looking at new faucets is the incredible variety of materials, colors and finishes available today. Gone are the days of just one or two choices: in addition to classics like brass and chrome, today you will find bathroom faucets made of nickel, stainless and bronze. More colors and finishes, including satiny brushed options on nearly every metal, are available too.
Popular bathroom faucet colors
What’s trending? There is no clear winner. Popular bathroom faucet colors and finishes span a variety of different tastes and styles. Top picks include:
Black faucets punctuate a bathroom’s look by providing a sharp contrast to lighter surfaces or creating a more sophisticated feel when paired with deeper colors. Glossy and matte finishes are available from many faucet makers. This crisp and contemporary bathroom is accented with a rich, matte black faucet and hardware from Moen.
If the bathroom of your dreams is a luxe retreat, gold faucets are an ideal choice. Burnished gold bathroom faucets are having a moment, gleaming softly and adding unmistakable luxury to bathroom design. Gorgeous in almost every color scheme, gold faucets can add richness and dimension to the color palette.
Bronze bathroom faucets are often finished with an antique, rubbed-bronze finish for a deep, lustrous color. Softer than black, bronze is a versatile color that works beautifully with a wide range of colors and materials. In this bathroom, oil-rubbed bronze faucets and other hardware from Voss bring freshness and contrast to traditional cabinetry and marble surround.
Brushed nickel, with its smooth satin finish and warm silvery hue, is one of the most popular bathroom faucet choices. Brushed metal surfaces hide fingerprints and nickel is a versatile material found in many different styles. In this rustic bathroom, brushed nickel complements other texture-forward materials.
Gleaming chrome is a classic choice for bathroom faucets that never goes out of style. Easy to clean and durable, a shiny chrome faucet always looks great, whether paired with white porcelain for a classic hotel look or enhancing a contemporary design. Confident chrome faucets brighten this beautiful, modern bathroom treatment that emphasizes natural elements and textures with a muted palette of soft greens.
Brass is another durable and timeless choice for bathroom faucets. Available in polished or brushed finishes, brass faucets add warmer tones to the color palette.
Types of faucets: centerset, widespread & more
Deciding upon the faucet color and finish is one piece of the puzzle. Ensuring the faucet works with the sink, tub or countertop of your choice is another. The pre-drilled holes in most sinks are configured to fit a specific type of faucet. (2)
Fixtures with one pre-drilled hole are designed for single-hole faucets. The controls are on the faucet itself, creating a sleek design that is easy to clean. A lever or knob that turns on the flow and adjusts temperature are the most common controls for these types of faucets. (1)
Three-hole faucets have handles or knobs for hot and cold water placed on either side of the spout. Two popular kinds of faucets that need a three-hole configuration are centerset and widespread. (1)
On centerset faucets, the handles and spout are joined together on a base measuring six inches wide. Also called “four-inch spread” faucets, centerset faucets are three-hole faucets that fit the traditional configuration of pre-drilled holes on either the sink or countertop measuring four inches apart.
A modern version of the three-hole faucet, widespread faucets have separate handles on each side of the spout. There is no base connecting the spout and handles, which instead integrate directly into the sink deck or countertop. Spacing between the handles and spout is more generous, with several inches between each.
Some sinks or countertops come pre-drilled with two holes. Two-hole faucets are less common, and are usually bridge faucets, which join hot and cold water from the hot and cold taps in a bridge above the sink upon which the spout is mounted. Not all two-hole configurations are designed for bridge faucets, however. In some instances, one hole is for the faucet, and the other for an accessory, such as a hand-held sprayer or soap dispenser.
Faucets can also be mounted directly on the wall. More common in half-baths, powder rooms and small bathrooms, wall-mounted faucets save space on the sink deck or counter and are often used with vessel sinks. (1)
New bathroom faucet features
New faucets do more than simply turn on and off. Faucet makers have developed many innovative new features that bring fresh new looks and remarkable functionality to the bathroom sink.
Waterfall faucets are a fresh style that is rapidly gaining popularity. Instead of pouring water from a spout, waterfall faucets have wider mouths that create the effect of a gentle waterfall. This style can be found in many different designs, ranging from stark modern faucets to rustic styles that recall old-fashioned pumps.
Touch-activated and touchless faucets
Touch-activated and touchless faucets are another new option. Touch-activated faucets turn on when any part of the faucet is touched. Touchless faucets use a sensor to turn on when someone places their hands under the faucet. In addition to their sleek looks, these types of faucets can also be great options for people with mobility challenges.
Other new features that may be worth exploring include faucets with built-in filters or those with the WaterSense label, which are designed to save water.
Top bathroom faucet brands to consider
Bathrooms are some of the toughest environments in our houses. They are high traffic, are damper and more humid than other rooms, and are subject to vigorous cleaning. Quality materials, fixtures and hardware when remodeling a bathroom are worth the price: they last longer, look better, and cost less to maintain.
Fortunately, there are many high-quality makers of bathroom faucets with stellar reputations and proven products to consider. Leading faucet brands include:
It is easy to overlook something used so often throughout the day. However, because bathroom faucets get a lot of use, they are an important part of any remodeling project. If you have ever used a poorly placed faucet that made face-washing or shaving difficult, or one that splashed water out of the basin when turned on, you know how important it is to find the right faucet and install it correctly.
When it comes to remodeling a bathroom, the details really matter. Interviewing contractors and consulting with bathroom designers will help you educate yourself about your project and find the right team to make it a reality.