The Best Tile Ideas for Small Bathrooms

bathroom with black tile
Studio McGee
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    Stunning Tile Options for Small Bathrooms

    When the time comes to renovate your small bathroom, there are many things to consider: Should you stick with bright colors? Is it time to ditch that bulky tub? Can large tiles work in a small space? Designing a small bathroom means you'll have to be clever and purposeful with every decision, and your bathroom's tile is one of the first things you'll notice when you step into the room. 

    Retiling your small bathroom can be a big task, but the payoff is well worth it. And whether you decide to use space-widening whites like in this bathroom from The DIY Playbook or you want to mix it up a bit, there are virtually endless choices for creating your own personal spa. 

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    Consider Large Tiles for a Small Bathroom

    Think a small bathroom means you should stick with small tiles? Think again. Large tiles can actually trick the brain into thinking the space is bigger than it is. Consider this cozy bathroom from Bless'er House, where the beadboard wainscoting and black-and-white wallpaper add visual interest, and the large hexagon tiles appear to almost push the walls out. 

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    Lay Tiles in a Diagonal Pattern

    Not only does this modern bathroom from The Glitter Guide feature a tall mirror that helps to extend the space, but the subtle, glossy subway tile is laid in a herringbone pattern, drawing your eye to the longest part of the room. Don't be afraid to experiment with different tilework patterns, just make sure to plan ahead—when it comes to small spaces, there's little room for error. 

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    Large Square Marble Tiles

    This stunning little space from 2 Bees in a Pod utilizes large marble tile flooring, helping to widen the space. The deep royal blue vanity and wallpaper help to give the small space a more robust feel and add depth. If you want to use bold colors in your bathroom, large tiles reduce grout lines and won't distract from the focal point. 

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    Try a Bubble Gum Pink Bathroom

    We can't get enough of this retro-inspired pink bathroom from blogger Emily Henderson. The pink tile flooring attracts the eye and creates a long focal point throughout the room. By keeping the rest of the room mostly a stark white, it appears roomy and spacious in spite of its small size.    

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    Consider Black Tiles

    The black hexagon tiles in this bathroom from Studio McGee are not for the faint of heart, but they are the perfect anchor for a classy and sophisticated space. We love any excuse to use moody floral wallpaper, especially in small spaces. Floor-to-ceiling tilework can sometimes make a small space feel claustrophobic, so consider tiling only partway up the wall, as seen here. 

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    Stark White and Chevron Stripes

    Similar to a diagonal pattern, chevron stripe tilework elongates the space, adding a sense of depth. This bathroom from Decor Pad looks much larger than it is, partially due to the chevron stripe tiles and the stark white color palette, which doesn't contribute any visual clutter. Even the glass shower door helps to create a more fully open and airy space. 

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    Large Neutral Tiles

    The large beige tiles shown in this bathroom from Rooms for Rent Blog keep things simple and act as a subtle base for the black wainscoting. The light tiles help reflect more light and widen the space.

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    When it Comes to Mosaics, Think Vertically

    Though we've said larger tiles can create the illusion of more space, that doesn't mean you have to forgo the smaller mosaic tiles. This enviable powder room from Style Curator uses small hexagon tilework to draw the eye upward toward the ceiling and open up the space. Plus, the floating vanity takes up less square footage than a conventional one, and cuts down on the clutter factor.

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    Lay Tiles in a Brick Bond

    Despite its small size, this modern bathroom spotted on beckiowens's Instagram page is big on style. There are many different tiles used in this room, which add a lot of visual interest and distract from the smallness of the space. The brick bond pattern used on the walls is a great choice—it avoids the claustrophobic feel a grid pattern can sometimes create, and also visually extends the wall space. 

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    Grout Lines Can Work When Done Right

    The reason large tiles work better in small bathrooms is because they reduce the need for grout lines, which can cause distracting visual clutter. But this bathroom spotted on Instagram via alittlewhitelite proves with the right design, stark grout lines can actually work beautifully in a small space. By keeping the black lines isolated to the wall only, the eye is drawn up towards the ceiling, which helps open up the bathroom. 

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    Consider Glossy Wall Tiles

    Though glossy tiles are a no-no on the floor, using them on the walls can reflect even more light and make a small bathroom feel spacious. The pale green tiles used in this bathroom from At Home in Love are just glossy enough to create the feel of a larger bathroom without looking dated. 

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    Perfectly White Floor Tiles

    The bright floor tiles seen in this bathroom from Driven by Decor are pure white, creating a light, airy space. If you want to experiment with patterned wallpaper like the geometric one seen here, keep the rest of the space neutral.

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    Extend the Tiles Through the Shower

    Rather than changing up the floor tiles in the shower stall, the designer of this bathroom from Deuce Cities Henhouse extends the tiles through the entire room. This creates a seamless, uniform design that expands the space.

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    Black Floor Tiles

    This cozy little bathroom from A Beautiful Mess may be small, but it doesn't feel cramped. The small black mosaic tiles would feel overwhelming if used throughout the walls, but by keeping them confined to just the floor, the rest of the room feels airy and light. 

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    Be Brave With Tiles

    Graphic tiles can make a bold statement—and the Escher-like pattern in this bathroom from Suzy Hoodless is definitely bold. But it works because it's used with restraint, only being used beneath the mirror. This is a good guideline to follow when using graphic tiles (take them all the way to the ceiling, and they'll quickly become overwhelming), and the horizontal effect it creates visually elongates the space.