Choosing Your Tile: Glass vs. Ceramic

Posted on Aug 20, 2021
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Smooth Tin Ceramic Shower Wall Tile from Arizona Tile
Featured Image: Smooth Tin Ceramic Shower Wall Tile from Arizona Tile

Picking out the perfect tile can make or break your home renovation. Every remodel, especially kitchens and bathrooms, needs an accent tile to round out the design and tie together the different layers within the space. Choosing the right tile is very important and two classic material choices, ceramic and glass tile, both make great options for feature pieces. Both have benefits but comparing the two and finding which is best for your home is key to a successful renovation.

Ceramic Tile

Ceramic tile is a classic choice for all remodels. This material is hardy, affordable, and has been a design staple for decades. For your tile needs, ceramic is a wonderful option, and has many different applications.

Paloma Cotton Glossy Long Hex Ceramic Tile Kitchen Backsplash from Arizona Tile
Image: Paloma Cotton Glossy Long Hex Ceramic Tile Kitchen Backsplash from Arizona Tile

Ceramic Tile Backsplashes

A backsplash adds to any room, and ceramic has been a traditional choice for many years — with good reason. With glossy and matte finishes available, ceramic can be tied in with subtlety to complement a room or become a vibrant accent to add bold interest. The classic subway tile, laid in an offset, can create an understated splash of style to a room, without dominating the design. There are many other geometric shapes also available in ceramic, like Paloma Cotton Hex, that serve to add even more motion and intrigue. Even better, the smooth finish of ceramic makes it easy to maintain. 

Brillo Perla Glazed Ceramic Shower Wall Tile from Arizona Tile
Image: Brillo Perla Glazed Ceramic Shower Wall Tile from Arizona Tile

Ceramic Shower Tile

The easy-to-clean surface of ceramic makes it an attractive option for shower interiors. It’s also durable enough to stand up to the stress of daily use. With very minimal maintenance, ceramic tile like  Brillo Perla will look beautiful for years to come. Versatility is important when incorporating a new element into your bathroom, and ceramic has that. The wide variety of colors, cuts, and finishes available in ceramic means there is always something to match your vision.

Ceramic Tile Feature Wall

For large-scale tile projects like feature walls, ceramic’s affordable and adaptable nature makes it a great choice. Any designer or renovator can find a ceramic tile option that embodies their desired room feel. The many different geometric cuts available can all be laid in many ways, meaning there are endless choices for the exact laying pattern.

Glossy tile will bring modernity and fun to a feature wall, while a matte finish adds a timeless beauty.  Or choose a mix of both for an interesting design that offers texture and style.

Like any design material, ceramic does have some drawbacks.   While perfectly safe for a shower or backsplash installation, ceramic tile is more porous than glass so it has a higher likelihood of absorbing water. Therefore, it is not recommended if it going to going to be submerged in water or used in a steam shower. Considering the many aspects of ceramic will help determine what is best for you.

Glass Tile

Glass tile is rapidly growing in popularity among contemporary designers and remodelers. This intricate, elegant material can easily add interest to a room. When installing tile into a new space, glass is a great option for both style and substance. 

Islandia Aruba Chevron Glass Tile Backsplash from Arizona Tile
Image: Islandia Aruba Chevron Glass Tile Backsplash from Arizona Tile

Glass Tile Backsplashes

While not glossy in the traditional sense, glass tile has a gorgeous shimmer that enhances any room. With many different intricate cuts and designs to choose from, glass can incorporate a vibrant and spirited vibe into the space. As a backsplash, the Islandia Aruba glass tile adds both style and class while making an impact on the design.  Also, since it’s easy to clean and maintain, a glass tile backsplash is a fantastic way to add excitement to your kitchen or bathroom.

Islandia Tinos Matte 4” x 12” Glass Tile Shower Wall from Arizona Tile
Image: Islandia Tinos Matte 4” x 12” Glass Tile Shower Wall from Arizona Tile

Glass Shower Tile

Glass shower interiors are on the cutting edge of modern design. Glass tile, like Islandia Tinos Matte, is bold and beautiful. The exciting patterns available in glass will add motion and energy to a design. Inside showers, glass tile adds a roomy feel by reflecting the natural light of the space.   Also, because glass is nonporous, it can be cleaned with any household cleaning products.

Glass Tile Feature Wall

As a feature wall accent piece, glass tile thrives. The natural refinement of the gleaming surface immediately draws the eye in. There are many different color options available; Glass tile can be laid in many different dynamic patterns, creating a stunning effect in the large scale. Overall, the excitement and sophistication of glass makes it a great option for a feature wall piece.

Of course, glass tile also has some considerations to make. Glass has a higher price tag, so that must be considered when choosing this in your design. The installation process is a bit lengthier and intensive, as well, especially compared to ceramic. Glass tile is gorgeous, but not ideal for every project.

If you have any more questions about the glass vs. ceramic tile debate for your design, feel free to contact Arizona Tile and our expert staff will be happy to help. Stop in to one of our locations today or you can see what your space would look like adorned in ceramic or glass tile with our virtual design tool

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