8 Tips for Tiling a Showstopping Shower

Lydia Schapiro
Written by Lydia Schapiro
Updated March 24, 2022
Modern bathroom with open shower
Photo: Martin Barraud / OJO images / Getty Images

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Installing a new type of shower tile is an exciting home project, and a new feature like a honeycomb tile arrangement across a shower wall might be what you need to tie your bathroom together. While it can be tempting to jump right in, consider some of these tips for tiling your shower before you start creating your dream bathroom. 

1. Set a Budget

Just as you would for almost any home project, you’ll want to set a budget. Having a specific number or range will help you narrow down your options for materials. 

Once you have a budget, you’ll have a much more specific scope when searching for the right tiles for your project, which will make the whole process a little easier. Plus, your wallet will certainly thank you. 

2. Choose a Color Scheme

When tiling the shower, planning out a color scheme beforehand will make for a more organized process and installation. If you’re redoing your entire bathroom, you might want to design a whole new color scheme, but if you’re just tiling the shower, you can pick colors that go nicely with your current bathroom color palette.

3. Consider Tile Size

Grey tiled bathroom with large mirrored medicine cabinet
Photo: John Keeble / Moment / Getty Images

Something else to think about when choosing your shower tiles is the size. Usually, larger tiles make the space seem larger and vice versa. So if you have a small space, consider using larger tiles to make the shower area feel more open and spacious. 

On the flip side, when you use smaller tiles, you’ll have more grout lines, which means more maintenance for you. However, if you have small children and are looking for a tile option that offers more traction, smaller tiles may be the way to go. 

4. Plan Tile Layout

Stay organized while tiling your shower by planning your layout ahead of time. Creating your layout beforehand provides you with a blueprint you can follow through the installation. Plus, with a plan in place, you’re less likely to be left with bits of tile sticking out. 

Consider tile shape, size, type, and pattern when designing the layout. You’ll have many options to choose from; some tile pattern ideas include grid, staggered, and diamond. 

5. Check Stud Walls

Before it’s time to install your tiles, check your shower stud walls, ensuring they are straight and level. This is essential because studs that aren’t level will likely yield irregular-looking tiles. 

Use a level to do this; place your level across all studs, and do it vertically, horizontally, and diagonally. If you’re finding non-level studs, contact a local shower repair service before moving on to tile your shower. 

6. Be Careful With Glass

Large bathroom with tiled shower stall
Photo: Aneese / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Although glass tile can be sleek and pretty, it does come with some downsides. Glass tile on a shower floor or wall can become incredibly slippery when wet, which may be a hazard, particularly if you have small children.

In addition, using glass may affect your shower’s appearance since glass tiles can show the moisture that gets trapped behind them—which may alter the whole look. 

7. Use Smaller Tiles on Curves

Depending on your shower layout and design, you may need smaller tiles on hand for the curves. It’ll likely be much easier to install these smaller tiles on the curves than trying to cram in the standard tiles. 

8. Add a Tile Accent Wall

If you’re looking to get creative and create a unique shower look, consider adding a new tile style as an accent wall. In other words, one of the shower walls will showcase a different tile than the rest of the layout. Adding a tile accent wall provides more creative freedom and is a great way to spice up your bathroom.

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