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The Ultimate Guide to Kitchen Backsplash Materials

Jul 18, 2017 | by Carrie

Nothing says function, aesthetics, and even a bit of fun like a kitchen backsplash. From daring to subtle, the backsplash serves a vital role. Whether you favor a subtle, minimal effect, or are ready to dash it up a notch, knowing the specific options in the sea of backsplash materials, will certainly help simplify the selection process.

Ceramic tile versus glass? Or, a mosaic blend versus subway tile? A Kitchen Magic design consultant will lead you through every step of the process; however, a bit of homework will ready you for an A+ experience.  

Here, our guide to the most popular backsplash materials and some pros and cons. 

Ceramic Tile

Highly durable and versatile, innovations in ceramic science and design have given way to endless creative spins in ceramic backsplash collections. From the current rage for contemporary mosaic patterns to nuances that draw on antiquity and even nature. Additionally, ceramic tile can offer endless textural and tile size options. All of which translates to stretching your remodeling budget. Ceramic tile boasts lower price points as compared to marble, granite, or Corian backsplash options. 

Pros: 

  • Affordable, lightweight, and easy to install, ceramic tiles are specially formulated and baked in high fired kilns to meet the highest standards.
  • Choosing a ceramic tile backsplash translates to consider stretching your remodeling budget.  
  • Create a ceramic subway or mosaic patterned backsplash that compliments your granite or quartz countertop.
  • Ceramic tiles come in virtually every size imaginable, from tiny mosaics to large 16 x 16 versions

Cons: 

      • Regular grout maintenance may need to be scheduled. 

Subway Tile

Trending, trending, trending. Did we say trending? Subway tiles are featured in a plethora of editorial shoots and kitchen design features. Although it’s a modern look, the use of subway tile hails back to the turn of the century and popular in kitchens from the 1900s. Think Downtown Abby, But also, subway tile is seen in today’s most-watched HGTV programs.

Pros: 

  • Most subway tiles use high fired ceramic, this subway tile is a surprisingly durable and affordable look. 
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Cons: 

  • Lesser quality tiles may conjure a look not worthy of pairing with a luxury countertop
  • Ceramic tile backsplash may not evoke the far more streamlined look a granite, quartz or Corian splash may offer. 
  • Consider maintenance and overall appeal when determining the best tile size for any option - smaller tiles translate to more grout to clean.
  • Ceramic tiles are easy to clean. However, grout will need regular sealers and maintenance. 

Glass Tile

A glass backsplash is a favorite look among kitchen designers. Glass tiles add a hint of color and depth, and is available in a myriad of designs. Glass may echo antiquity, and tradition or a glass backsplash can also meld a contemporary, or transitional theme.  

Pros: 

  • A glass backsplash adds depth, color, and endless possibilities.
  • Glass tile in a variety of colors and options gives new meaning to limitless possibilities. 
  • Although not as affordable as ceramic, glass offers mid-range budgets, many looks, and options. 

Cons: 

  • Smaller size dimensions can make a room or area appear smaller. 
  • Glass backsplash materials most often require near-perfect walls. Perfection. Translucent or transparent glass, generally will not hide walls in need of repair. 
  • Grout may need regular maintenance and sealing. 

Marble Tile

Nature’s artistry is the heir apparent in quarried marble. A kitchen backsplash in marble tile is a classic to behold. Marble hails from a lineage of families and generations that mine slabs of the natural stone often from family-owned quarries. Marble tile can be sourced from Europe or North America, and choosing a marble is a brush of genius. 

Pros:

  • A Marble tile backsplash brings classic luxury to the kitchen or bath. 
  • Marble adds depth and beauty to your project. 
  • New sealants and finishes have reduced maintenance, and better protects your investment. 

Cons: 

  • Pricier than many other backsplash options 
  • Mindful homeowners need only to apply - care and maintenance of beautiful marble tile are required to ensure acids from foods, does not mar or stain your backsplash investment. 

Mosaic Blends

Combinations of mosaic blend backsplash styles are hot, hot, hot. These hybrids combine several different materials, bringing textural and surface interest in a universe of kitchen backsplash possibilities. Glass, granite, ceramic, stone, glass, metal -- truly the sky is the limit when you choose to select a mosaic blend backsplash. 

Pros: 

  • Endless possibilities at an affordable price. 

Cons:

  • Regular grout maintenance may need to be scheduled. 
  • A bit pricier than regular ceramic tile - but still an option to consider in kitchen backsplash design.

 

Topics: Backsplash Kitchen Design Tile