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The Ultimate Bathtub Buying Guide

A freestanding bathtub.

A bathtub makes for an excellent addition in your dream bathroom. Luxurious, practical and relaxing, a bathtub can serve as a feature fixture in your bathroom and elevate your space. Nevertheless, finding the best type of bathtub for your space can be a challenge. So, we’ve compiled the ultimate bathtub buying guide to give you a helping hand! Let’s jump right in.

The Ultimate Bathtub Buying Guide

Consider Size & Shape

It goes without saying that you need to consider the size and shape of your new bathtub carefully. If it’s too small, it will look out of place, and if it’s too big, it will prove impractical.

Fitted baths don’t take up a lot of room, so they’re ideal for smaller bathrooms. And, for even more space-saving, you can opt for a shower bathtub. This is a practical and functional choice that will still achieve a stylish finish with the right design elements.

Aquadart curved glass bath screen.

Top Tip: When it comes to shower baths, we recommend installing a clear glass screen as opposed to a shower curtain. They are modern, sophisticated, easier to keep clean and make your bathroom look bigger. Aquadart is one of our top recommendations; they’re trusted for their top-quality, 6mm toughened glass panels with Clean and Clear technology and a Lifetime Guarantee.

If you have a bigger bathroom, you have the flexibility to experiment more with different bathtub sizes and shapes. At Inter Ceramica, we offer bathtubs in a wide range of dimensions, and our bespoke bathroom design experts will help you find your ideal fit. A larger bathtub adds an extra touch of luxury and makes for an extremely relaxing bath-time experience.

Decide on Type

There are so many types of bath available, but it’s important to find the best type of bathtub for you. Here are a few of the most popular types of bathtub:

Fitted Bathtub: A fitted bathtub is a standard choice for a bathroom because it’s space-saving, practical and sleek. This type of bathtub is fitted and surrounded by three walls.

A fitted bathtub is the best type of bathtub for you if:  you have a standard bathroom configuration or you’re considering a shower bathtub.

Free-standing Bathtub: A free-standing bathtub stands alone in the bathroom, not adjoined to any walls. They make a real statement in a bathroom and serve as a focal point in your space. Perfect for an extra dose of luxury, especially in larger bathrooms, and fitting with both modern and traditional interior styles.

A free-standing bathtub is the best type of bathtub for you if:  you have a larger space or you want your bathtub to be the focal point.

London freestanding bathtub from Burlington.

Corner Bathtub: Corner bathtubs are, as the name suggests, fitted into the corner of your bathroom. This type of bathtub can come in a variety of shapes. However, they typically have three sides, with two anchored by walls, and the third side is usually curved. Corner bathtubs look spa-like and can be a real feature in your bathroom. Ideal for large bathrooms, small bathrooms, and bathrooms with awkward configurations!

A corner bathtub is the best type of bathtub for you if:  you want a spa-like bathtub or you have an unusual bathroom configuration.

Shower Bathtub: Showers are considered a staple for modern living; they’re practical and efficient. However, bathtubs are still lusted after when some relaxation and chill out time is needed. Bathtubs are also practical for households with kids. For a smaller space and smaller budget, shower bathtubs are a fantastic solution that gives you the best of both worlds. You can even get an L-shaped bathtub for slightly more space and a modern look.

A shower bathtub is the best type of bathtub for you if:  you want the best of both worlds and need a space-saving, budget-saving solution.

For more insight into choosing the right shower for your bathroom, our dedicated guide is a helpful resource.

D-Shape Bathtub: A D-shaped bathtub has one, straight edge with the rest of the bathtub curving outwards to create a D-shape. The straight edge is typically fitted to a wall. D-shaped bathtubs look incredibly modern and create a focal point in your bathroom. Tissino is one of the most reputable brands in the industry, and their D-shaped bathtubs make for a stunning and practical bathroom feature.

A D-shape bathtub is the best type of bathtub for you if:  you want a modern and unique bathtub to feature in your space.

Angelo D Shape bathtub from Tissino.

Pick Your Material

Bathtub material is a design element that is often overlooked, despite its importance in terms of bathtub durability and functionality. Let’s find out which is the best type of bathtub material for you.

Acrylic: Acrylic tubs are one of the most popular bathtub materials on the market, and they are made using vacuum-formed sheets of acrylic. Because acrylic is easy to shape, it can be used to create bathtubs of a range of sizes and shapes. There are some great benefits of acrylic tubs; they retain heat well, are lightweight and durable, and require minimal maintenance. It’s the best type of bathtub material for busy households.

Top Tip: Acrylic bathtubs vary in thickness and therefore quality, so make sure you research your bathtub carefully before diving straight in. Inter Ceramica offers bathtubs from the most well-regarded names in the business. For example, Burlington acrylic bathtubs are all made with double-sided, 10mm thick acrylic. Likewise, Tissino bathtubs are made with 5mm thick acrylic and coated with a touch fibreglass resin. Tissino bathtubs also feature innovative ‘Perma Bianco’ bath panels, made of a pliant acrylic, which have been specially designed to prevent discolouration.

Angelo Rounded bathtub from Tissino.

Cast-Iron: The best type of bathtub material for creating a real statement, cast-iron bathtubs make for a stunning bathroom fitting. They are extremely traditional, dating back to the 19th-century, and create an aesthetic that is both luxurious and classic. You can be confident that cast-iron tubs stand the test of time with their durable properties. They are also resistant to chipping or staining and retain heat excellently. However, cast-iron tubs are by-far the heaviest option when it comes to bathtub materials, which can cause issues. They are also an expensive choice, so aren’t ideal if you’re working with a smaller budget.

Enamelled Steel: Also known as porcelain on steel, enamelled steel bathtubs are another popular choice. A thin sheet of steel is used to form the bathtub, which is then covered with a layer of porcelain enamel. Although enamelled steel tubs are durable and easy to maintain, they are typically heavier than acrylic tubs and cannot be moulded into as many shapes and sizes.

Find Your Design Style

Your personal style, and the interior aesthetic you want to achieve in your bathroom, are incredibly important indicators to consider when finding the best type of bathtub for you. Without a doubt, the two most common bathroom styles we see are modern and traditional, and your bathtub can easily be selected to align with either of these aesthetics.

A modern look is easy to achieve with the right bathtub design; here are some tips for doing it right:

  • Doubled-ended bath: With a double-ended bath, the taps sit at the centre of the tub (or are fitted to the wall) rather than at one of the ends. This simple design feature looks extra modern and luxurious.
  • Glass screen: A shower bath with a glass screen makes your bathroom look bigger, more modern and super sleek.
  • Minimalist bath: Minimalism is a huge trend when it comes to modern bathrooms. For a minimalist tub, try an all-white, curved, free-standing bathtub. The smooth, geometrical shape and monochrome design make for a fuss-free and sleek aesthetic.

Top Tip: Incorporate a built-in wall storage alcove by your bathtub for a super modern touch that also serves as an added area of storage.

Fitted bathtub from Tissino.

There are numerous ways you can achieve a traditional look with your bathtub choice. Here are some of our favourite ideas:

  • Roll-top baths: Curved edges around the top of the bath, i.e. a roll-top, give a classic look of elegance and luxury. The smooth finish is extra comfortable, too.
  • Bathtub feet: Adding feet to your bathtub is an instant way to elevate it, both in height and style. Bathtub feet look timeless, and Burlington has a stunning collection in a range of designs and colours, including chrome, black and white.
  • Wooden panels: Wooden panels add a classic finishing touch to your bathtub, especially in a sophisticated colour such as grey or deep blue.

Traditional style bathroom suite from Burlington.

We hope this bathtub buying guide proves helpful when you’re searching for the best type of bathtub for you. For more expert advice, our bespoke bathroom design team are here to help. With a luxury, tailor-made bathroom, we’ll work with you to design your dream bathtub and ensure it fits seamlessly into your dream bathroom.

To make an enquiry, please get in touch with the team, or come down to one of our three showrooms.