Wood-look porcelain, encaustic cement and hexagon tiles are making a splash in recent projects by these design pros

These days, it seems as though there are more options for bathroom tile than there are drops of water in a full bathtub. To help narrow things down, we asked design professionals across the country to tell us which type of floor tiles they’re using most and why. Read on to discover their choices, why they think they’re popular now and how long they think they’ll stay that way.
1. Graphic-Patterned Encaustic Cement Tiles and Cement-Look Tiles 

Designer Robert Frank of Robert Frank Interiors feels that graphic-patterned encaustic cement tiles are having a moment — again. “As with all trends, the use of these tiles has come and gone,” he says. “And right now I think the style is back in favor. The colorful matte patterns happen to look great with contrasting glossy white ceramics. And it gives the homeowner the opportunity to bring color and pattern into the bath.” 

Frank also recommends using porcelain cement-look tiles as a more user-friendly option. “To achieve the same look, we often specify porcelain versions of these tiles,” he says. “They have a good look, are a bit more durable and require less care than cement tiles.”
Transitional Bathroom by Deirdre Doherty Interiors
Deirdre Doherty Interiors
Designer Deirdre Doherty of Deirdre Doherty recently used black-and-white encaustic cement tiles for the floor in this glamorous master bathroom in Hollywood, California. “Classic European design has used this material for ages — the look is timeless,” she says. “I think the benefit of a timeless material outweighs the initial expense.”
Modern Bathroom by Sabrina Alfin Interiors
Sabrina Alfin Interiors
2. Geometric Tiles

Bathroom floor tiles that feature a geometric pattern are on the upswing, says designer Sabrina Alfin of Sabrina Alfin Interiors “Geometric tile works very well for more minimalist styles,” she says. “And more and more aging midcentury modern homes are due for remodeling.” 

Alfin used large-format hexagon tiles in charcoal gray to cover the floor of the master bathroom in this recently renovatedmidcentury home in San Francisco.
Transitional Bathroom by Studio Steidley
Studio Steidley
Designer Staci Steidley of Studio Steidley agrees that geometric tiles are a look to adore. “I am loving the creativity behind the geometric-inspired tiles, such as the hexagon, the elongated hex and even the new trapezoid shapes,” she says. 

The floor in this Dallas master bathroom designed by Steidley features geometric-shaped natural stone tiles in varying colors to create a 3D cube effect. 

Transitional Bathroom by Delphinium Design
Delphinium Design
3. Porcelain Tile That Mimics the Look of Natural Stone or Wood

Porcelain bathroom floor tiles that mimic the look of natural stone or wood are a favorite of designer Jena Bula of Delphinium Design. “Porcelain is a durable material that allows you to have the look of natural stone without the maintenance or the high price tag,” she says. 

Bula used marble-look porcelain tiles to cover the master bathroom floor in this recently renovated Charlotte, North Carolina, home.
Transitional Bathroom by Plain and Posh
Plain and Posh
Porcelain tile can also replicate the look of wood, an option that designer Stephanie Frees of Plain and Posh feels is on the rise. “I see a surge in materials that mimic nature or more natural elements,” she says. “Tile that looks like hardwood flooring is especially popular in bathrooms.”

Frees recently covered the floor of this Chicago master bathroom with a wood-look porcelain tile to great effect. 

Contemporary Bathroom by Joni Spear Interior Design
Joni Spear Interior Design

4. Marble Tile Laid in a Herringbone or Chevron Pattern 

Designer Liza Nicole of Liza Nicole Interiors says marble tile is still a popular way to go when it comes to bathroom floors, especially when it’s laid in a herringbone or chevron pattern. “It’s really about finding ways to set the classic flooring that brings a unique spin to the material and adds personality for my clients,” she says. 

This St. Louis master bathroom showcases contrasting marble floor tiles laid in a herringbone pattern.

Bryan Anthony September 3, 2019
Houzz Editorial Staff; writer, design enthusiast, reader, avid traveler.

This content is not the product of the National Association of REALTORS®, and may not reflect NAR's viewpoint or position on these topics and NAR does not verify the accuracy of the content.