Choosing the best bath mat for your bathroom
A bathroom isn’t complete without a bath mat. It provides a comfortable place to step, stand, and walk, and allows you to incorporate different textures and colours to match your bathroom décor. Whether used in front of the shower stall or outside a bathtub, these handy accessories must be functional, stylish, and comfortable. But which bath mat should you choose?
With many options available on the market, finding the perfect bath mat for your bathroom can be challenging, especially when shopping for the first time. However, this means plenty of options to suit every requirement, taste, and budget. This guide will walk you through the various stages of choosing the right bath mat.
What material should you choose for your bath mat?
The key determinants to your choice of material are comfort and function. Bath mats are exposed to water every day, so they need to dry up quickly to avoid becoming breeding grounds for bacteria. Below, we look at the materials you can choose for your bathroom mat.
This material needs no introduction as it is common for many household items. It soaks up liquid easily and dries quickly. Cotton is also easy to clean and feels soft underfoot. Depending on the weave pattern and design, most bath rugs can be washed in a standard machine. However, cotton is not as durable as other materials and can slip on tiled floors.
Although less common, bamboo bath mats are quickly becoming the preferred choice for many homeowners. They are great alternatives to traditional bathroom rugs. You can also find models that fit around the toilet. These mats are made from wood, so they don't absorb water like their fabric counterparts. Bamboo mats come in different styles, from options that lie flat on the ground to those that roll up. Most bamboo mats are slip-resistant. They lack the softness and comfort other materials provide, but they make up for that with their sleek texture and minimalistic look.
Since the main function of bath mats is to absorb water, polyester-based materials are often used to make them. In most cases, bath mats listed as polyester are actually microfiber. This material is easy to clean and dries quickly. It is also durable, making it a great choice for bathrooms with high traffic. Bath mats made from polyester can also be washed in the machine, although it's important to read the manufacturer's instructions on cleaning. The only downside of polyester is that it has a low absorption rate.
Bath mats made from plastic are often used in baths, showers, or even outdoors. They do not absorb water and don't come in stylish designs. On the upside, they are easy to clean and do not slip even on wet floors.
Solid teak mats will instantly transform your bathroom, giving it a space-like feel. Teak has a high oil content, making the wood resistant to water and termites. However, teak is often treated with anti-mildew and anti-mold varnish for extra protection as they are constantly exposed to wet conditions. With proper care, they can last for many years.
Bath rugs made from polypropylene have the appearance of natural fibre. However, they have a better absorption rate than most natural fibres. This attribute makes them a great choice for bathroom or outdoor areas. In addition, propylene bath rugs don't grow mildew or mould, so they are also a low-maintenance choice.
What size of bath mats and bath rugs should you choose?
Apart from material, another important point to keep in mind when shopping for a bath mat or rug is size. You want to ensure you buy a rug that comfortably fits your bathrooms. Anything too small won't look right, while a rug or mat that is too big won't lie flat against the floor, creating a trip hazard.
Measuring your bathroom, bathtub, and shower before placing your order for a mat is crucial. It doesn't have to cover the whole floor space, but rather the area you step out to after taking your bath.
Bath mats for catching splashes or drips outside the shower or bathtub are usually smaller and range from 43cm x 61cm to 53cm x 34cm. On the other hand, a bath rug of 56cm x 152cm in front of a double vanity should do the trick.
The size of the bath rug you choose will also determine how long it will take to dry, but the material used in its construction is a key factor in influencing this.
Choosing a bath mat and rug for a small bathroom
In most cases, small bathrooms are either narrow or short. You can always turn a rug or mat 90 degrees to fit in compact spaces where normal options would overlap. You may also want to try a longer mat if you have a smaller bathroom.
A runner-size mat or rug extending from the tub to the sink would be an exceptional addition to a small bathroom. It will give the bathroom a more cohesive look compared to using two small separate rugs close to each other.
Which colours of bath mats and rugs should you choose?
Bath mats and rugs offer an easy and quick way to add colour to your bathroom. They should work well with other accessories and the overall theme of the bathroom. You can showcase your personality through your design choice. Here are things to keep in mind when choosing colours for your bathroom mats and rugs.
Your bathroom floor material can influence your choice of mat colour. While bathroom mats are meant to be functional, you also need them to match or work well with other bathroom elements. For example, if you have a light-colored floor, avoid going for light mats, and vice versa.
The style of your bathroom fixtures will also determine the mat colour you choose. You want all the fixtures, from the vanity to the faucets to lights, to work together to give your bathroom a complete look. As far as fixtures are concerned, something as minor as the colour of light can affect the look of your mat.
You may also want to get a bathroom mat that works well with the colour of your towels. This is a great way to tie the room together and bring balance to the space. You don't necessarily need to get mats that match the colour of your towels – as long as the colour schemes and patterns work well together, you can create a harmonious look in your bathroom.
Overall colour scheme
The colour palette of your bathroom is another important point to keep in mind. The mat colour will obviously contribute to the overall colour scheme of your bathroom. It’s a good idea to select a mat colour that supports the existing colour scheme of your bathroom. However, this wouldn’t apply if you want to make the rug a focal point.
What’s the difference between a bath mat and a bath rug?
Bath mats and bath rugs work more or less in the same way. They are often placed in front of the bathtub or shower to absorb water dripping from your body after washing. Most importantly, they absorb splashes of water, keeping the floor dry and preventing injury that could be caused by slipping. However, there are some notable differences between the two that every buyer should know.
Bath mats can be stored or hung up until needed. On the other hand, bath rugs always remain on the bathroom floor.
Bath mats are function; however, you can still find options that look nice.
Bath rugs tend to be fluffier and are more about contributing to the look of the luxurious bathroom. They usually have an anti-slip backing to prevent users from slipping.
Bath mats have a high absorption rate and are usually easier to clean than bath rugs.
Bath rugs are great for keeping your feet warm during cold winter mornings.
How to care for your bath mat
Looking after your bath mat or rug will make it last longer. Cleaning regularly is crucial to ensuring your bathroom mat is free from dirt, dust, and bacteria. Bath mats can be tossed into the washing machine at least once a month and hung over the shower or tub to dry, but bath rugs are slightly difficult to clean.
Different mats may require different care requirements, but here are general guidelines.
Take the mat outside and shake it or beat it vigorously to remove hair, dirt, and debris.
Check the manufacturer’s instructions on how to clean the mat. This is important for proper cleaning.
Although most rugs can be washed in a machine, choosing a gentle cycle is recommended to avoid damaging the mat's backing. Choose warm or hot temperatures for fabric rugs to kill mould and bacteria.
Bath mats made from bamboo and other natural fibres can be cleaned using warm water, laundry detergent, and a sponge. Clean the rug gently and rinse it with cool water to remove all the soap.
Treat any stains before washing your bath mat. Apply a stain remover directly to the affected area and give it time to work.
Looking for a bath mat that suits your bathroom? Feel free to browse our extensive selection.