Ceramic Bathroom Sinks
One of the most common materials on the market from which bathroom sinks are made today is ceramic. While the basic function of the bathroom sink has remained consistent, the styles have changed dramatically in recent years. Even though many new materials are being used for sink production, ceramic bathroom sinks have remained intensely popular. Because of its versatile nature, regardless of what style or design of sink you are in the market for, there is a good chance you will be able to find a sink utilizing ceramic as its core material. Also called fireclay, ceramic is the product of choice for a number of reasons.
What Exactly Is Ceramic?
Ceramic is essentially various types of clay that have been molded and then heated. The heating process changes the chemical makeup of the clay, making it much more durable and much less porous. Once cooled, the clay is then glazed and then baked again. This creates the glossy finish that most people associate with ceramic items, particularly in bathroom design. Because of its strength and surface quality, ceramic has become the material of choice for a number of bathroom applications. It can often be found in bathroom tile, both on the floor and on the walls, bathtubs, toilets, wall fixtures, such as towel holders, and especially in bathroom sinks.
What Are The Benefits Of Ceramic?
The bathroom is not only one of the most vital rooms in a home, but it can also be one of the hardest to clean. Because of this, any material used in bathroom construction must be as easy to take care of as possible. The frequency of use of the room also demands that any material contained within it be able to withstand a high level of wear and tear.
Ceramic objects, particularly sinks, are extremely tolerant of frequent use. The heating process makes the material itself able to withstand high pressure and large amounts of friction. Care must still be taken to avoid any heavy impact on the items, as chipping or scratching can occur, but this is only a risk for extreme circumstances typically not present in the bathroom environment.
The glazing process creates a seal on top of the surface, allowing the fixture to remain impervious to stains and highly resistant to scorching. Cleaning ceramic items typically requires little more than wiping with a damp cloth. Even heavy-duty cleaning of ceramics rarely requires anything more than light household chemical use, and only needs to be done on an infrequent basis.
Glass Bathroom Sinks
One of the hottest new trends in bathroom sinks is the manufacturer’s attempts to see just how many unusual materials they can be made from. From their early days, rocks and stones that had been eroded by weather into concave shapes were further carved and used for storing water and also used as a primitive form of the sink.
In later years, metals such as copper or tin were commonly used to form basins or bowls that were used in a similar fashion to which we use the modern bathroom sink today. In the 19th century, ceramic became the material of choice, being affordable as well as extremely durable.
Today, materials such as granite and marble, along with various composite materials, are used to create modern designs prevalent in the home improvement and bathroom design marketplaces. One of the most striking new materials to hit the market in recent years, however, is glass. Glass bathroom sinks are not only striking in a visual sense, but they are also affordable and much more durable than one would initially expect them to be.
When many people think of glass, they immediately think of fragility. In most cases, glass is an extremely fragile material. While it can be reinforced for use in windows, for both home and auto use, it is frequently found in dinnerware, food packaging, and decorative artworks. Bathroom design is a fairly new media for glass, as it is quickly gaining in popularity for use in both bathroom sink design as well as shower construction.
The glass used for these purposes is, in fact, tempered safety glass. Much thicker than the glass we are accustomed to seeing in everyday use, tempered safety glass is also subjected to high levels of heat which, essentially, work to change its chemical composition. This composition change, in turn, affects the strength of the glass as well as the manner in which it breaks should a substantial impact occur.
While it does take a significantly stronger amount of force to break tempered safety glass than it would ordinary household glass, the results are far less expected. While typical glass is known for shattering and splintering into shards and other sharp fragments, tempered safety glass breaks into a pebble-like matter, completely smooth and much less likely to cause injury of any kind.
One of the most popular styles for glass sinks lies within the vessel sink family. While glass can be used to create nearly any style of sink, the vessel sink’s nature of being set on top of a bathroom counter allows the design to better display the glass composition. These glass sinks can be created in any shape, whether it be a modern angular design or a more traditional curved structure.
The glass can be tinted to a variety of colors to further increase the visual appeal, and can also be pre-cracked. In essence, this gives the glass the appearance of being fractured and then reformed into a whole piece. The process involves slightly fracturing the interior portion of the sink and does not affect the overall load-bearing capacity of the piece itself, providing a stunning visual impact in the process.
Marble Bathroom Sinks
One of the most elegant and beautiful natural stone surfaces is marble. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the home where marble is used extensively in both kitchen and bathroom design. Bathroom sinks, in particular, are extremely popular when fashioned from marble. The overall beauty of marble bathroom sinks lies in the fact that they are not only visually appealing but the quality and durability they possess are second to none.
What Are The Visual Benefits of Marble Bathroom Sinks?
One of the most important benefits of a marble bathroom sink is its striking visual appeal. Marble has become so appealing with regard to home design over the years primarily because of the range of colors it can display. In essence, no two slabs of marble are identical in appearance. In fact, no two pieces of marble even cut from the same slab will be similar.
Marble almost always has at least two or more colors contained within it, often seen as veins in the stone. The marble will always have a primary color, such as black or green, but the vein highlights can range anywhere from white to orange. These unique color combinations further add to the unique properties of marble.
These color combinations also make it much simpler to coordinate a bathroom’s décor to match the marble sink. Since marble sinks are somewhat on the costlier side of the bathroom sink price range, their ability to complement multiple color schemes plays a significant role.
How Durable Are Marble Bathroom Sinks?
As far as function goes, marble is not only extremely durable, but it is also easy to maintain and care for. Because of its makeup, a marble bathroom sink is extremely stain resistant. They can also withstand extremely high temperatures without the risk of scorching the surface. For the most part, routine cleaning can be accomplished with warm, soapy water.
There is typically no need for typical bathroom cleaners that can not only potentially harm the environment, but also create unpleasant fumes. The cost associated with expensive cleaners is also eliminated. Occasional treatment with a specialized marble formula may be required, but it is typically only a few times a year. Just as the color patterns in marble help to justify their somewhat elevated costs, the ease of cleaning and durability help to further justify the expense.
Overall, marble bathroom sinks offer a touch of elegance and luxury while also providing a high-quality and long-lasting bathroom fixture.
Stainless Steel Bathroom Sinks
When it comes to kitchen sinks, the material of choice has long been stainless steel. While other materials are slowly gaining in popularity on the market, stainless remains the most popular choice. Likewise, with regard to bathroom sinks, the most common choice has long been porcelain.
The ideal material for sinks, as well as bathtubs, toilets, and bathroom tile, porcelain has been a standing favorite in bathroom design for some time. Also like kitchen trends, however, new materials are making their way into bathrooms as well, in particular, stainless steel. As stainless continues its move from the kitchen to the bathroom, stainless steel bathroom sinks are quickly becoming a hot commodity for several reasons.
What Is Stainless Steel?
In its most simple form, stainless steel is basically steel that has been combined with chromium. It is the chromium additive, in fact, that gives the steel its true stainless nature. Stainless steel is generally very lightweight, making it ideal for a range of household uses. For heavier use, however, the thickness of the stainless steel can be increased, adding to its durability as well as its weight.
The metal itself is highly malleable, making it easy to mold into nearly any shape needed for the basic design of the sink. This allows the creation of a vast array of stainless steel sinks in vintage-inspired, traditional, and modern designs.
What Are The Benefits Of Stainless Steel Bathroom Sinks?
The primary advantage of stainless steel for use in bathroom sinks is, as the name implies, the material’s resistance to staining. This is also the primary reason it has become such a staple in the kitchen environment as well. Stainless steel is also highly resistant to scratching and nearly impervious to chipping.
Even if scratching does occur, it can usually be buffed out quite easily. Stainless steel bathroom sinks are a breeze to maintain, requiring only mild soap and water on most days for general cleaning. Occasional polishing with a specially formulated paste designed to help the surface keeps its luster is required as well, but only needed every month or so.
The rich silver luster of stainless steel also makes it perfect for modern bathroom designs, as the color itself has long been associated with items bearing a more modern edge. Its neutrality, however, allows it to complement nearly any décor or color scheme, adding a new level of versatility.