2021 Bathroom Flooring Trends: 20+ Ideas for an Updated Style
Ask any real estate agent and they will tell you that the best way to increase the value of your home is to update either the bathroom or the kitchen. They’re the rooms in the home that see the most traffic, especially the bathroom. But how do you keep your bathroom current? By keeping up with 2021 bathroom flooring trends.
Of course, the design and overall tone of any room start with your floor. It’s one of the biggest purchases you will make in any home update. To find the best flooring for bathrooms, you’ll want to consider your style and which looks will stand the test of time should you decide to sell.
To get your luxurious bathroom off to the right start, you’ll want to see what’s trending with bathroom floors. Luckily, there’s a lot is happening in flooring in 2021. Let’s take a look.
“As with years past, bathroom floor tile trends lend themselves to style and function. The tile needs to be able to perform in these spaces as well as looking it’s best. Choosing a tile with texture is always on trend for any bathroom. By using a textured tile, it will perform as an anti-slip surface when wet as well as bring some interest to your space. If marble is what you are looking for, the porcelain options that look like marble are a great alternative to getting a timeless design that will perform with water and wear and need virtually no maintenance.” – Cynthia Flottmann, Roux Design Studio
2021 Trending Bathroom Flooring Types
Looking for the best flooring for bathrooms? The first thing you need to decide is what type of floor you’ll be using.
It used to be that tile and stone were virtually the only options designed to stand up to a full bathroom, but that is not the case anymore – not by a long shot.
Technological innovations have made it possible to choose just about any type of flooring for any application. Right now, there is a big surge in waterproof flooring, which you’ll see a lot of in this year’s trendiest bathroom floor ideas.
|Related Content >> Best Bathroom Flooring Options|
The stars of the waterproof flooring game: WPC and SPC vinyl bathroom flooring. This trend has been going for just about the last decade and only seems to be growing as we head into 2021.
WPC flooring has a core made of wood plastic composite that is 100% waterproof, a luxury vinyl print layer, and a thick, durable wear layer. WPC flooring is luxury vinyl amped up a few notches, dominating the world of waterproof flooring.
SPC, also known as rigid core vinyl, is the next level in waterproof vinyl flooring. SPC flooring has a core made from stone plastic composite, making for a tougher, sturdier core than WPC flooring.
Appearance-wise, there is no difference between rigid core vinyl and traditional WPC vinyl. Both options offer the trendiest, most realistic looks mimicking natural materials in the highest quality prints.
The big difference is construction. SPC rigid core flooring is traditionally thinner and even more durable. Additionally, rigid core planks are also better at hiding imperfect subfloors. If you are installing over tile or another unlevel surface, SPC is a great option that can save you some money in prep and installation without sacrificing style.
With waterproof vinyl, it’s the best of all worlds for your bathroom floor. Expect to see WPC and SPC bathroom flooring following all the hottest wood and stone trends, including marble, handscraped and distressed looks, large planks/tiles, and more.
Will the waterproof vinyl bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Absolutely! WPC and SPC vinyl floors are the fastest growing floors on market, particularly in bathrooms, kitchens, and other water-prone areas. The looks will only get more convincing.
|Related Content >> What is WPC Vinyl Flooring|
Tile is known for being durable, waterproof, and easy to clean – perfect for any room. Especially the bathroom. But with the surge in wood-look flooring options, is tile on its way out?
Not at all! Bathroom floor tile is still as trendy as it ever was. However, the trending bathroom floor tile looks have truly evolved over the last 5-10 years. You see, something technology has given us is the ability to achieve virtually any look with any type of flooring.
The wood-look tile bathroom flooring trend is super hot right now. Tile manufacturers are keeping up with the times and following the trends of contemporary wood and stone. This means you can have the sleek, current bathroom of your dreams with good ol’ dependable tile flooring.
Additionally, the classic marble look is still extremely popular, especially in high-end homes. However, homeowners are now achieving this look at half the price and with way less maintenance by using porcelain and ceramic tile that looks like traditional marble.
Will the bathroom tile trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Absolutely! I predict that bathroom floor tile ideas will never fully go out of style.
I just recommend following the current wood and stone flooring trends to get a tile look that will stay the current lifetime of your floor.
|Related Content >> How to Choose Tile: Style Tips from an Interior Designer|
While laminate is known as the original wood-look flooring, it wasn’t until recently that it started popping up in bathrooms. Previously, many people used it in other water-prone areas, like kitchens, but the bathroom? That was still off-limits.
That is until manufacturers developed a 100% waterproof laminate option. Yes, now, like vinyl, laminate has options that are fully waterproof and suitable for bathrooms, basements, kitchens, and more.
Available in looks and textures that effortlessly mimic gorgeous, trending hardwood looks, waterproof laminate can give your bathroom a trendy upgrade.
Will the laminate bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
It will look great and be a valid option, but I think vinyl has the edge on the waterproof market and I don’t see laminate stealing that edge anytime soon. But with how affordable waterproof laminate is, it’s also an excellent alternative.
A little different from vinyl planks, there’s sheet vinyl. It might sound a little out there, but with the latest advancements to sheet vinyl, it’s a viable option. Plus, because of its fun, unique patterns, and low price point, it’s a hit for new homeowners.
Sheet vinyl used to be down-and-out of the flooring game because of its lack of durability. It was once known for peeling and it wouldn’t stay put after installation.
But that’s all changed.
Now, sheet vinyl is resistant to water and slipping. Plus it comes in beautiful patterns to give your bathroom a unique look. So you can live your fresh flooring dreams in 2021.
Worried about a difficult installation? You’ll be glad to know that once you make the necessary cuts to your vinyl sheet, it’s as simple as rolling out the sheet and laying it flat. After that, the flooring will stay put under its own weight.
Will the sheet vinyl bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
This trend will certainly live on throughout 2021. As for the long haul, I’d give it the next 10-15 years to phase out.
|Related Content >> Laminate vs Vinyl Flooring|
Wait! I promise this will not be gross.
Remember the 1980s bathroom carpet? It was the worst. Soft and comforting, yes. But it would trap all the water from your showers and often develop a weird texture, or even worse, mold. Yuck!
But there was a reason people did that, right? The carpet is warm, soft, and comforting. It sure beats slipping on the wet tile when you get out of the shower.
Over the next few years, I expect to see this trend creep back in with the appearance of 100% waterproof carpet on the market. Yes – waterproof carpet!
Waterproof in general seems to be the trend over the last decade, which is great news for anyone looking to update their bathroom. Where homeowners were once limited by fear of water damage, they can now install just about any type of flooring in any room of the home.
Will the bathroom carpet trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I think this trend is regional. In states that see a lot of cold weather, waterproof carpet in your bathroom can be a nice luxury for those cold early mornings. So, the trend might last for the next 15 years. For the warmer states, not so much.
|Related Content >> What is Waterproof Carpet?|
2021 Trending Bathroom Flooring Looks
In the past, there haven’t been many new or unexpected bathroom flooring looks. The same ol’ stone and stone-look bathroom floor tiles appeared in practically every bathroom in every home.
But now? The time has come for something different!
Now that there are a plethora of gorgeous, stylish wood-look and designer bathroom floor tiles and planks to choose from. Let’s take a look.
While wood looks have been trending in other rooms of the home for decades, this is a relatively new thing for bathrooms. Just a few years ago, if you saw a bathroom that looked like it had wood flooring, it was quite surprising.
Solid hardwood flooring is expensive, finicky, and not ideal for areas where there will be a lot of moisture, like bathrooms, kitchens, and basements. While people would take the risk in an area like a kitchen, bathrooms just have too much water to make natural hardwood flooring a viable option.
Even laminate flooring hasn’t been an option for bathrooms until recently. While it offers a lower price point and, typically, lower maintenance than solid hardwood, it’s honestly no better of a bathroom flooring idea than hardwood.
Unless it’s waterproof! Waterproof laminate is new and awesome and trending!
Wood-look planks come in different types of flooring, such as laminate, WPC vinyl, and SPC vinyl. There are also wood-look ceramic and porcelain tiles. All of these flooring gems are perfect for the high demands of any bathroom.
With these new, durable, and waterproof wood looks, you can achieve any trending wood style in your bathroom, worry-free.
Will the wood-look bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
1,000 times, yes! Wood-look flooring is a trend across the entire home that isn’t going away anytime soon.
This trend will only increase, both in the bathroom and out, over the next decade and beyond.
Although marble has always been a staple piece of many bathrooms, marble or marble look flooring is a trend we can’t ignore. Many of the chicest and most stylish homes showcase this gorgeous, timeless look.
So why has marble stood the test of time? That’s simple: it’s expensive. At least, traditional marble is expensive, and people love the expensive look. That’s the beauty of tiles that mimic marble: you get the gorgeous look, for a fraction of the cost.
Of course, with the influx in wood-look bathroom flooring, there was always a chance that marble bathroom tiles would become less popular. But, I think this is one of those floors that truly stands the test of time.
Will the marble-look bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Yes, always and forever. This is one of the rare looks that never seems to go out of style, making it an excellent choice if you’re concerned about selling your home in the future.
|Related Content >> The Best Waterproof Flooring Options|
While natural looks like wood and stone are trending in a big way, young homeowners are steering towards more intricate designs and modern looks.
When I say designer, I mean any looks that don’t resemble natural materials – shapes, intricate patterns, metallic looks, and designs in general. They can be so detailed that they look like they’ve been stenciled onto the floor.
Stenciled tiles are sometimes ceramic encaustic tiles, which are known for their beautiful detailed designs. These designs look hand-crafted, which gives the bathroom floor a custom vibe, even when they’re not custom made, making the floor look expensive, as well as impressive.
Popular styles range from geometrics to florals, to old-world and Victorian. You can expect a bold, highly detailed style, with a lot of colors. Stenciled designer bathroom tiles are likely to be the talk of the house in 2021.
Will the designer bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Perhaps in 2021, but not for the long haul. These specialty, designer looks don’t tend to stick around for the long haul as the designs become outdated. They are trendy but not long-lasting.
2021 Trending Bathroom Flooring Colors
In bathrooms, cool, bright colors are trending in a big way. While in kitchens, bedrooms, and living rooms you’ll see some warm, blonde wood looks making a splash in 2021, bathrooms are all about cool, calming tones.
Most bathrooms don’t have a lot of open space and dark colors can make them look crowded, compact, or even cave-like. That’s why you’ll see lots of brights and plenty of white.
Additionally, the bathroom is supposed to be calm and relaxing, like your own personal sanctuary. It’s where you go to get away from it all. That’s why cool tones continue to reign this year’s bathroom flooring trends.
Bright. Clean. Classic.
While the white flooring trend tends to come and go in other rooms around the home, you can count on this bathroom flooring staple to always be in style.
White bathroom floor tiles make your space look bigger – something particularly important for most bathrooms. They can also match any backsplash, wall tiles, or other design elements you incorporate in your space.
Will the white bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
As whites gain popularity in every room of the home, their popularity in the bathroom will only increase.
|Related Content >> Waterproof Vinyl Flooring Buying Guide|
This vintage look is resurfacing! Over the last several years, we’ve seen it mostly in the kitchen, but in 2021, you will see black and white bathroom flooring ideas, as well.
In the kitchen, we typically see this in a retro checkerboard pattern, but in the bathroom, you’ll see much more fun, modern black and white tile patterns. Expect to see black and white subway tiles and floral designs in the bathrooms of many young homeowners over the next few years.
This is a nice, clean way to add design but still provide a neutral backdrop where you can use color in the rest of your decor.
Will the black and white bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I think this is one of those trends that may stick around for 5-10 years but not forever. It doesn’t have that timeless feel that ensures homeowners that people will want to purchase their home when it’s time to sell.
Gray flooring, particularly gray wood, has grown exponentially over the last decade. Although gray bathroom floor tiles, particularly in stone looks, are also quite popular.
Gray has quickly become the most popular trend, not just for flooring, but for home decor in general. Gray cabinets, gray doors, you name it. And every shade of gray is still hot and trendy in the bathroom. For your floors and decor.
In addition to looking chic and trendy, gray floors set the tone of a cool, contemporary bathroom. They, like white, give you a neutral backdrop for decorating in basically any color. Aquas, greens, bright bold colors, or even black and white classic tones – they will all go with your sleek gray flooring.
Will the gray bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Without a doubt. Get on the gray flooring bandwagon – it’s not going anywhere!
This is about as “extreme” as we get with this year’s bathroom flooring color trends. Most of these trends are neutral and understated, but a cool blue or gray-blue can add a nice color pop without going over the edge.
The gray-blue bathroom flooring trend is one of the more popular shades of blue as it’s more subdued and easier to complement the decor. More than likely the gray-blue color trend will last longer than brighter blues.
I mentioned that you want your bathroom to feel like your own personal spa. Something about the right shade of blue can make you feel almost like you’re at the ocean, offering a sense of calming and peace.
Will the cool blue bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I foresee homeowners sticking to the more neutral grays and whites, so unless you stick with a gray-blue, I don’t think the bright blue bathroom floors will be a long-lived trend. But they may still pop up now and then adding a nice little splash of color to an otherwise neutral space.
As more homeowners embrace the light, airy feel in their home, you will see a huge resurgence in blonde wood bathroom floor tiles and planks. This light, breezy wood look can give your bathroom a look that somehow feels both classic and contemporary.
While most of this year’s trending colors are on the cooler end of the spectrum, blonde wood brings in a little warmth while maintaining a cool, relaxed feel.
The open, light, airy look is especially popular in modern bathrooms. Homeowners are now steering away from sharper, modern, industrial looks and trending towards an updated farmhouse style. Light floors are perfect for this!
Blonde floors make your bathroom feel larger and more open, especially if you use large planks. But we’ll get to that later on.
Will the blonde wood bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Absolutely! Wood looks are a relatively new bathroom style trend, but as that trend grows, beachy blondes will lead the way sticking with always-classic bathroom brights.
|Related Content >> Vinyl Tile Flooring Buying Guide|
2021 Bathroom Flooring Trends: Layout and Pattern
Patterned bathroom tile isn’t exactly a new concept. The bathroom is probably the one room in the home where the trend of patterns, funky layouts, and cool styles has remained constant. However, now this trend is moving to other rooms in the house and has become even more popular in the bathroom, and it’s still important to choose the right patterns.
The big layout and pattern trends this year throughout the home are chevron, herringbone, and mixed-width planks. But in the bathroom, you can get a little more creative. Let’s check it out.
First, let me clear up a little misconception. Chevron and herringbone mosaics are very similar, but each has its distinction. Chevron and Herringbone Bathroom Flooring
Chevron floors require flooring to be angled and come together to a point. Although, some ceramic tiles and vinyl tiles are even producing products with the chevron pattern in the tile itself.
Herringbone achieves a similar look by connecting two planks at a 90-degree angle as seen above. This layout makes a more narrow-angle, which makes a space look and feel larger.
For wood-look flooring planks, herringbone is much more accessible than chevron. As for bathroom tile, both patterns come as pre-assembled mosaics. So you can save time and money on bathroom flooring materials and installation.
Will the chevron and herringbone bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I expect you’ll see herringbone and chevron bathroom floor tiles for at least the next decade and, perhaps, even longer.
Not just for backsplash anymore!
Previously, small, busy subway tiles were only used as wall tiles. However, over the last couple of years, we’ve seen a surge in subway tile bathroom floors.
When you imagine subway tiles, there are a few things that come to mind. You may imagine small, brick-like tiles or hundreds of penny rounds or even mini hexagons like pictured above. The subway tile look isn’t really about shape, but more about the size and aesthetic.
The small tiles create a fun vintage look in the bathroom that, with the right decor, can look incredibly charming.
Additionally, many small tiles will make your bathroom look smaller and feel busier. But if there’s anywhere they can work, it’s the bathroom, particularly as shower tile as they are slip-resistant.
Will the subway tile bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I think they’ll stay young-homeowner-trendy over the next decade or so, but I definitely wouldn’t recommend them if you’re looking to make your home more sellable in the future.
Hexagon tiles first gained popularity in the early 20th century, typically accompanied by subway wall tiles. They can provide a similar classic, vintage look to subway tile floors.
Small, mosaic hexagonal tiles make for a classic, yet fun bathroom floor. Large format hexagonal tiles, however, create a chic modern bathroom floor, especially if you add the right grout color with the tiles.
You’ll also see ultra-modern, almost futuristic looks over the next several years. Imagine super clean sharp lines, whites, blacks and grays, and very minimalist decor. That’s this new futuristic wave of hexagon bathroom floor tiles.
Will the hexagon bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Sparingly. I do believe you’ll continue to see hexagon tile bathroom floors over the next decade. But, the bigger trend will continue to be larger tiles and planks. This is more of a niche market.
This is one trend you can expect to see every year in every style for the foreseeable future. Longer, wider planks make your bathroom look larger, more open, and less busy. Bathrooms tend to be smaller and more crowded and this is the best way to combat that.
The days of shorter, traditionally sized planks are over. Wide planks are becoming the new normal as they streamline the floor in every room.
Will the wide plank bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Manufacturers are only trending towards even wider and longer planks. This trend will soon become a classic staple and will likely last the test of time.
|Related Content >> SPC Rigid Core Luxury Vinyl Buying Guide|
Contrasting the tiny little subway tiles, you will see plenty of the extreme opposite: extra-large tiles. This trend has been trending for quite some time with manufacturers continuing to create larger and larger individual tiles.
Wonder why they’re so popular? Large-format tiles, like long, wide planks, make your bathroom look bigger, especially if you choose a light color. Additionally, larger tiles = fewer grout lines. Win, win.
While square tiles are on their way out in other rooms of the home, this classic style will always stay relevant in the bathroom, and you’ll continue to see plenty of big, beautiful, marble bathroom floor tiles over the next several years.
Will the large format bathroom tile flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Yes! This trend isn’t going anywhere because it makes small spaces feel big. Which is perfect for smaller bathrooms, am I right?
“Geometric flooring” is a fairly open-ended term. It just means using different shapes to create eye-catching patterns. Luckily, 2021 is full of fun-shaped flooring to create a statement-making bathroom floor.
Common geometric shapes include:
- Hexagon: Created in both large and mosaic formats, hexagonal flooring is seen as modern and minimalistic with its clean, sharp lines.
- Fan: Fan tiles can look modern, retro, whimsical, or contemporary and create a dynamic statement as bathroom flooring.
- Round: Circular floor tiles are bringing some modern whimsy to your floors. Also known as penny rounds, these mosaic tiles are patterned with small coin-sized circles.
- Arabesque: For curly, intricate-shaped flooring, arabesque is the way to go. These tiles will make your bathroom the hit of the house with its dainty, unique shape.
The bathroom is the room in the house where you can get a little wild and creative without it interrupting the flow of your home. While some homeowners opt to carry their more traditional flooring into their bathroom for a cohesive look, many prefer to make a bold statement.
A major trend with any geometric tile flooring is pairing it with a cool grout color, accentuating the shape of the tile, and creating an eye-catching design. If you feel like getting crazy, this is the time and the place to do it.
Will the geometric bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I think you’ll see young homeowners jumping on board with this trend over the next several years. While it’s uncertain if this trend will last throughout the rest of the home, I have a feeling it will become a bathroom flooring staple.
|Related Content >> Tile Flooring Trends: 25+ Contemporary Tile Ideas|
2021 Bathroom Flooring Trends: Texture and Finish
The bathroom is one of the only rooms in the home where (almost) anything goes as far as flooring texture. Scrapes, knots, real stone texture, smooth – you name it!
In terms of finish, there’s still a lot of variety, but people are starting to prefer less gloss and more authenticity and functionality.
Here’s a look at what we recommend.
Matte and Honed Bathroom Flooring Finishes
The days of glossy floor tile are coming to an end, at least for a while. Flatter, less reflective finishes are now the top pick for most people, and the reasons go beyond looks alone.
When the surface of a tile is ground and down to a honed finish, it becomes less slippery. That’s a huge plus for a bathroom, where the risk of slipping is already a bit higher than the rest of the home. Additionally, matte finishes are easier to maintain. Scuffs and scrapes are less noticeable when the surface isn’t shiny.
Even though the finish might be “dull,” matte finish bathroom floor tiles are anything but boring. Manufacturers are coming up with tons of creative matte styles, from stone-look and wood-look to tiles that look like fabric.
Will the matte and honed bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Without a doubt, you’re going to see matte finishes on bathroom flooring for many years to come. The trend of natural textures practically requires a matte finish, not to mention how practical a flat finish can be. If you’re looking for more gloss in your life, I recommend you stick to wall tiles.
Smooth Bathroom Flooring
Smooth-textured bathroom floor tiles in white limestone always look in beautiful contemporary bathrooms. In 2021, you’ll read a lot about texture. Knots, scrapes, brushes – everyone is talking about textured flooring. So where does that leave smooth bathroom floors? Still quite popular!
The texture trend is most popular in wood and wood-look flooring. While these looks are trending in the bathroom, the smooth stone look is still going strong.
While a smooth floor may look flat and dated in other rooms, in the bathroom it looks classic and expensive. This look tends to be one of the most timeless trends in bathroom flooring.
Will the smooth bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
Always and forever. Smooth floors are classic options for bathrooms, and that won’t be changing anytime soon.
Handscraped looks instantly make your bathroom look timeless and expensive as it features long, ingrained scrapes with high variation between planks, making each plank appear handcrafted, unique, and rare. These are perfect for a rustic, farmhouse-style bathroom with plenty of character.
Because handscraped floors look truly finished, they are trendy not just with younger homeowners but also with more established homeowners as well. Handscraped floors are almost guaranteed to amp up your home value.
You’ll see trendy handscraped wood looks in just about every waterproof flooring option – vinyl, tile, laminate, etc. Each floor has different advantages, so it’s really up to you to determine what meets your needs.
Will the handscraped bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
This unique, individual, handcrafted look will stand the test of time. It looks expensive, and people love expensive.
Homeowners are loving weathered wirebrushed looks. Wirebrushed looks show subtle, intentional wire scratches leaving the appearance of exposed wood on the surface. These imperfections are smoother and more consistent than handscraped or distressed looks.
This trendy look adds character to your floor without looking unfinished.
In the last few years, wirebrushed floors were the leading trend in textured flooring. However, moving forward, I anticipate that handscraped and distressed looks will knock them out of the running pretty quickly.
Will the wirebrushed bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
This trend will likely take a backseat as more distressing and imperfections become the norm, but I don’t think wirebrushed floors will ever really go away for good.
Distressed looks are often mistaken for handscraped. Distressed looks, however, look as though they’ve been through a lot of wear and tear. You can expect to see the appearance of scrapes, burns, knots, wormholes, and more, giving these floors an aged, antique look.
Setting the tone with a floor that looks almost historic instantly gives you an envy-inducing bathroom. Distressed floors make a great pairing with a classic clawfoot tub, stacked stone wall tiles, and any rustic decor.
Will the distressed bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
I do believe the distressed look will continue to be popular, particularly with younger generations. However, I don’t anticipate it will spread quite in the same way as handscraped and wirebrushed looks.
If you’re looking at long-term resale value, I would choose handscraped looks.
|Related Content >> Vinyl Plank Flooring Buying Guide|
General Textured and Non-Slip Bathroom Flooring
Not all textures are for the intention of the design. One popular choice in bathroom flooring is to add just a bit of texture to help avoid slipping and safety hazards.
This trend is more popular in homes where a simple slip can be a big deal. No one wants to be nervous to take a shower. Textured, non-slip bathroom tiles are great for the safety and resale of your home, and this extra precaution isn’t likely to change with the trends.
Will the textured and non-slip bathroom flooring trend last in 2021 and beyond?
It will always be necessary. Not super exciting, but it’s not changing anytime soon.
As you can see, a lot is going on in bathroom flooring right now. There are plenty of different, unique options trending that will likely stick around for years to come, which means your possibilities are endless.
If you’re looking to get started with new trendy bathroom flooring ideas, you can start here.