Choosing the Perfect Bath

A bath is the focal point of any new bathroom and with so many designs to choose from it's not always easy to know where to start. The importance you place on bathing is likely to affect your choice. A couple may opt for a double ended bath so they can relax together, a family may choose a large bath so that all the kids can jump in together. If space is tight you may choose a shower bath. It is necessary to ask yourself a few key questions before you buy but above all a bath should be comfortable.

Who will use the bath?

Your choice of bath is likely to be affected by who will be using the room. Do you need a low-sided bath to make life easy for any less-able members of the family? Are you on a water meter or have a cess-pit, both considerations when deciding on the size? If you don't have space for a separate shower should you opt for a shower bath? Is your bathroom all about speed and efficiency or is it somewhere to relax, a haven, in which case maybe a jacuzzi bath would be nice.

Your Budget

You'll need to consider your budget before you choose your bath as they vary hugely in price reflecting the materials used, the amount of styling and the extras a bath may include.

What Look do I Want?

Baths come in many different looks and the style you choose will largely be dictated by the overall look you are trying to achieve.

Bathroom suites come in two main styles: traditional and contemporary, but within these main styles are many options.

Traditional baths - feature classical styling such as Victorian roll tops and cast iron claw and ball feet, or the strong symmetrical lines typical of the Art Deco movement. Slipper baths, boat baths and double-ended slipper baths are traditional bath shapes

Modern baths - feature bold shapes and clean lines. They are simple and stylish. They often include traditional styling but with a modern twist e.g. claw and ball feet may be replaced with stylist polished chrome feet or a freestanding wooden plinth.

Bath Material

Baths are made from many different materials and this will affect the look and the price.

- Acrylic baths are lightweight and affordable and available in many shapes, sizes, styles and colours. They are also warm.

- Original cast iron baths are durable, robust and very heavy but cold to the touch when you first climb into one. They are often quite small.

- Composite baths, such as stone resin, are strong and more durable than acrylic, as well as scratch resistant. They feel nice to the touch and any accidental damage can be polished out.

- Porcelain or vitreous enameled steel baths are tough and rigid but colder than acrylic.