Tips on choosing the best kitchen backsplash for you – According to LiLu
Tips on choosing the best kitchen backsplash for you
A kitchen backsplash is a great opportunity to personalize your kitchen. This fun accent can often be a spot to splurge since the finish you choose will be fewer square feet of the space than any other material.
In prior decades, the materials often used for backsplash were limited to ceramic tile or the four-inch set-on of the countertop material. As design has evolved, so have the options for backsplash materials.
With all these options, it can be hard to figure out which one is best for you and your kitchen. Luckily, we have put together this guide to the pros and cons of different kitchen backsplash materials to help you find the best kitchen backsplash for you.
Ceramic tile backsplashes are the most common type. It’s a clay-based tile that is covered in a glaze. The pros to this choice are that there are almost limitless options for color, pattern, and shape with ceramic tile. You can work with a local tile maker to do a completely custom option that will fit your kitchen and personality perfectly.
We have designed custom tiles with local makers representing the first meeting place of a couple, a couple’s favorite winery, or just their favorite colors. This way, you have an opportunity to show your personality and story in the hard finishes of your home. If you like the sound of that, ceramic tile might be the best kitchen backsplash for you.
The cons for this backsplash choice are that it does include grout that requires cleaning. However, you can use tight joints and stain-resistant grout to limit maintenance.
Encaustic tile includes intricate patterns that appear inlaid. They are made up of two or more colors of clay that comprise both the design and the body of the tile. Because of that, the pattern of these tiles won’t wear off over time – the patterns are essential to the makeup of the tiles themselves.
The pros of encaustic tiles are obviously the intricate patterns and accent colors that can be perfect for accent tiles in your backsplash! They can be easily used to create emphasis in certain areas, adding depth to your backsplash. These are the best kitchen backsplash choice for those who want an intricate pattern that will stand the test of time.
The cons are, similar to ceramic tile, the grout. These tiles need to be sealed and cleaned often.
Cement tiles are made from a cement mixture that is placed in a hydraulic press to harden and then cured by air. While encaustic tiles typically air on the side of tradition, cement tiles can either be traditional or bold and modern. They can also work as a point of emphasis because of their boldness. You can also custom color them! No fossil fuels are burned in the process of creating cement tiles, so they are very eco-friendly and sustainable. This is the perfect best kitchen backsplash for the green-minded extrovert.
Click here for more information about green cement.
The cons of this tile choice are its heaviness and thickness. This requires planning and making sure the structure of your home can support the additional weight. In addition, without proper sealing, these tiles can easily stain. Especially in a kitchen, it’s important to be mindful of stains with this backsplash choice.
More often than not, dimensional is simply a ceramic tile with an impervious glaze that is molded to have a tone-on-tone pattern that creates dimension.
This backsplash choice has all the pros of ceramic tile, with the added bonus that it has an extremely interesting, but subtle tone-on-tone pattern to it.
Once again, one of the cons here is the grout, and stains from oil and food in a kitchen will require even more cleaning than flat ceramic.
Backsplashes made of slab materials can be stone, acrylic, or porcelain tile. However, it is one big sheet of material with very few seams or joints. Often, this is the same material as the countertop itself.
The advantage to this is that it can create a very minimal, spare look. This is the best kitchen backsplash for the minimalist who craves simplicity.
However, some of the cons are that if it is stone material, it will need to be sealed. If it happens to be marble, it could be easily stained by food if you don’t seal it properly. If you choose this kitchen backsplash material, make sure to seal it properly to avoid these problems.
Stone tile is exactly what it sounds like: tile made of stone. It can be made of anything from marble to slate: any stone can be cut into tile.
The pros of this kitchen backsplash material is that it’s a naturally occurring material, providing a connection to nature. Therefore, this might be the best kitchen tile for someone who wants to feel like they’re outside even when they’re inside.
However, it does need to be sealed and can be much more expensive than ceramic tile. Different stones have different properties, so you need to be aware of the specific stone you choose and what care and keeping it requires.
Glass tile has a long history. It has long been used in mosaic art in cultures around the world. You can use it in your kitchen backsplash too!
Glass tile is extremely versatile, there are so many colors, shapes, sizes, and choices – from stained glass to colored glass to back painted glass. In addition, it can be made out of recycled materials. The best kitchen backsplash for you might be glass if you have a flair for the arts.
However, these tiles can be expensive, and they’re extremely difficult to cut and install. Glass tiles are not a DIY project.
If this blog has left you feeling inspired, and you're interested in a kitchen update, check out this blog on doing kitchen updates on a budget.
10 April, 2021 at 5:55 am
As always, I learn something new from reading your posts, Lisa. This time, I didn’t realize the cement tiles I love so much were so heavy, but of course that makes sense. And the staining aspect is something else to consider, too. But, I sure do love their eco friendly quality!
Thanks for the great education!
10 April, 2021 at 10:09 am
So many beautiful kitchens and backsplash ideas. I’d like to see more of the integrated slab designs done, it is such a sleek look!
10 April, 2021 at 11:03 am
So many beautiful examples! I love that you shared the pros and cons for the various options – it is important to know the maintenance needs of any material and make sure it meshes with your lifestyle!
10 April, 2021 at 11:39 am
A fabulous round-up/cheat sheet! Great array of inspiration images, too.
10 April, 2021 at 4:04 pm
Fab breakdown and pros and cons of different materials Lisa!
10 April, 2021 at 11:25 pm
This was so interesting and informative! I was excited to hear about how the cement tiles are very eco-friendly and sustainable, and the idea of the stone tiles bringing the outside in, which I am always a fan of. Great information.
12 April, 2021 at 8:37 am
This was such an informative post, Lisa. We are in the process of shopping with clients (4 kitchen projects) and backsplash tile is on our list!
12 April, 2021 at 4:37 pm
This is a great resource – so thorough! Thanks for writing another terrific post.
5 July, 2021 at 3:52 am
Great post! I prefer the stone tiles as they are easy to clean, and stain and splatter resistant. They are also moisture resistant, making them ideal for cooking splatters.
18 October, 2021 at 5:51 pm
Thanks for your best tips on kitchen backsplashes. One of my favorite kind is ceramic tile backsplashes which are the most common type and there are almost limitless options for color, pattern, and shape with ceramic tile. Backsplash can be one of the best opportunities to get creative, and a great backsplash shall add that extra special touch, interesting texture and personality to the kitchen. I’m ready to start my DIY remodeling project and make sure to call some friends in RI for support in next couple months
26 October, 2021 at 12:36 pm
I’m glad that you mention the different kitchen backsplash options, such as dimensional tile and slab material. My mom wants to upgrade her kitchen. One of the things she wants is a backsplash, so I’ll let her know the various options.