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Bathroom Wall Tile Alternatives

A bathroom is probably one of the most critical parts of your home. It’s a place where you start and end your day, a place for relaxation and rejuvenation. A bathroom should be seen as an extension of your personality. If you are unsure what style would make you feel at home, why not add some individuality?

To do that, you will have to make a few improvements. One way of improving your bathroom looks is by changing the material on the walls. It’s hard to deny that tiles are among the most common materials used for bathroom walls all over the world. However, if you’re bathroom remodelling or upgrading, it’s good to consider other alternatives to tiles for bathroom walls.

Continue reading to discover more about choosing between some of the most popular tiles to help you style the bathroom of your dreams.

Why Look For Alternatives To Tiles For Your Bathroom?

While tiles are one of the popular options for bathrooms walls, their use depends on certain factors. Here are some reasons you should try alternatives to tiles for your bathroom walls.

Quick and Simple Installation

Some alternatives to tiles are faster and easier to install than tiles, which require a lot of time and skill. For example, if you prefer using shower panels, all you have to do is cut them into sizes, stick them to the bathroom walls and seal the edges. This is easier compared to tiles, whereby you have to install each tile individually, and this may take a lot more time depending on the number of tiles.

Furthermore, if you’re using shower panels, you won’t have to wait for the grout to dry before you start using your bathroom or shower. As soon as you’ve covered the borders, your bathroom will be ready for use.

Easy to Clean

It’s time-consuming to clean tiles because of the grout. If you don’t like cleaning your bathroom frequently, you can opt for alternatives. This way, you may save some cash on bleaches or scourers. All you need is warm soapy water and a soft towel in some cases.

Long-Lasting and Leak-Proof

Some alternatives, such as resin stones, are incredibly durable. Unlike tiles, some of these materials are waterproof, scratch-resistant, do not decolourise, and resist chipping.

No Mould Concern

The bathroom is definitely one of the most humid rooms in a house. This leads to the growth of mould and mildew. The grout between the tiles is a breeding ground for mould and mildew in a tiled bathroom. Replacing or using an alternative can eliminate the possibility of mould thriving in your bathroom.


The cost of some alternatives versus tiles depends on the sort of tiles you choose, like colour, style, and size. If you’re pressed on a budget, you can consider cheaper alternatives that do not require a lot of labour or additional supplies to install. For example, using waterproof wallpaper is more affordable than installing tiles on your bathroom walls.


Whether you’re worried about the water backsplash on sinks, or bathrooms, some alternatives to tiles are more adaptable than tiles. Some materials, such as shower panels, are easily cut to fit the space.

Best Alternatives To Tiles For Bathrooms


Paint is likely one of the most common wall finishes in bathrooms. Paint can provide limitless décor options and be applied in under an hour. Unlike tile, paint does not last long, but the painted surface can still be waterproof for a long time if the walls are waterproof.

Paint is ideal for bathroom walls because it is straightforward to clean, creates a smooth finish similar to that of ceramic tile, and gives you more design freedom. Paint is also less expensive than tile.

However, paint is not as durable as tile, and it does not last as long. Paint will eventually peel off the wall, especially if you have kids or pets in your home. You can use special paint made for bathrooms, but it will cost you more.

Laminated Panels

How about using one of the oldest alternatives to tiles for bathrooms? A laminated panel is a cost-effective tile alternative. They are primarily used in bathrooms in commercial buildings because they are water-resistant, long-lasting, and sturdy.

Laminated panels are usually supported with a watertight form or wood core. They are available in many colours and designs and are easier to install than tiles.


The new material called Ceramin is becoming popular in Australia. It is a contaminant-free, 100 percent recyclable, waterproof composite material.

This product comes in various styles, colours, and designs that make it the perfect material for any bathroom decor. Ceramin can be used with other materials to decorate the bathroom floors or walls.

It is a waterproof, non-porous material impervious to mould and mildew. Ceramin has high compressive strength, ideal for the shower base and floors. It is pretty straightforward to maintain and clean. Moreover, it is a healthy alternative to tile showers.

Shower Panels

Next on our list of tile alternatives for bathroom walls is shower panels. They are the second most popular option for bathroom walls after tiles. These panels have the advantage of being put over existing bathroom tiles. This means you won’t have to go through the time-consuming and costly removal of the old tiles. Waterproof shower wall panels are available in various colours, designs, and patterns.

Shower wall panels are available in various materials, including aluminum, wood, acrylic, and fiberglass. They can match any bathroom design. These panels require less upkeep and are often less expensive to install than traditional wall tiles. The cost of shower panels varies depending on the type of material used.

PVC Panels

If you didn’t like any material among the first four, consider getting PVC bathroom walls panels. This material is suitable if you’re on a tight budget when decorating your bathroom. They are water-resistant, easy to install, and mould-resistant. Depending on your bathroom design, they are cheaper than traditional tiling.

They are, on the whole, reasonably priced. PVC panels are also available in various finishes, colours, and patterns. They can blend in with any bathroom design or be tailored to match whatever style you want in your bathroom.

Wood Panels

If you’re not worried about a material that doesn’t do well in damp or humid environments, then you can consider using wood for your bathroom walls. Wood panelling can complement your bathroom while providing a romantic atmosphere.

If you’re highly concerned about the cost of repairing and replacing wood in the future, you can start by using it in non-splash locations. Furthermore, you can paint the wood with semigloss paint and oil-based prime or waterproof varnish to protect it.

To select the best for your bathroom, inquire from local sellers about each wood panel and its water-resistance levels.


fiberglass wall panels

Are you looking for a custom design decor for your bathroom walls? If yes, consider using fiberglass for your wall decor because it can be easily moulded into specific shapes.

In addition, using fiberglass eliminates grouting and leaky seams. It’s also worth noting that fiberglass is less expensive than tiling bathroom walls.

However, if you decide to use fiberglass, be prepared to spend more on costly repairs in the future. It is prone to scratches, the colours fade with time, and the porous substance will be damaged if the fiberglass cracks due to excessive dampness. All this may necessitate replacing the entire wet wall panel.

Acrylic Sheets

If you still want that traditional look in your bathroom without tiling your walls, then consider using acrylic sheets. It’s among the easiest materials to use for your bathroom, especially if you’re doing a bathroom renovation since they require little skills to install. It’s worth noting the price of acrylic sheets depends on the choice of pattern.

Another benefit of using acrylic sheets is that you won’t have to worry about cleaning shower grouts; soapy water and a towel is enough to clean the walls. However, the choice of colours available on the market is limited.

Wall Paper

How about having a custom photo in your bathroom? This is possible if you consider using wallpaper as an alternative to tiles for your bathroom walls. It can add charm to your bathroom while giving you a vintage atmosphere.

While wallpapers get wet when splashed with water, you can have waterproof wallpapers that are specifically engineered to withstand steam. Also, to make them more appealing, you can apply transparent acrylic varnish. This will help them resist the dampness.

Stainless Steel

Still not chosen the material for your bathroom walls? If so, stainless steel is another great alternative to bathroom tiling. Stainless steel is waterproof, easy to install, and gives your bathroom a modern look.

All you’ll have to do is merely screw them into place. You can use them in non-splash areas or anywhere else in your bathroom. You can order pre-cut sheets from your local store to get started.


You can consider using marble instead of tilling walls if you have the cash to spend when renovating your bathroom. Marble is a scarce resource. However, it provides a beautiful and timeless appearance since no two pieces are alike.

One advantage of using marble for bathroom walls is it can endure repeated damage. It can even last a lifetime if it’s well cleaned and cared for. Also, you won’t have to worry about mould and mildew since it’s resistant to these.

However, marble is prone to discolouration if exposed to acidic elements. It must be sealed regularly, making it not ideal for bathroom remodels.

Stone Resin

In case you’re thinking of never having to remodel your bathroom again, then consider stone resin as a tile alternative. Stone resin is incredibly strong and long-lasting and is both a wall and flooring option. It can resist abuse without chipping, cracking, or being damaged. This makes it ideal if you won’t need to improve the beauty of your bathroom in the future.


If you’re only interested in finishing your bathroom renovation project with little or no consideration for flare, you can consider using bricks as an alternative to tiles for the walls. Bricks will give your bathroom a minimalist and contemporary impression.

One disadvantage of using brick for bathroom walls is that they are too porous for the bathroom’s humid atmosphere. However, you can make them waterproof by painting them with water-resistant paint.

Stone Slabs

Is having a solid shower surface befitting royals one of your bathroom design ideas? If yes, you can try solid stone slabs. They are suitable for any part of the bathroom; the floor, walls, or non-splash regions. You can create stunning designs by mixing and matching different natural stones. You can order pre-cut and caulked.

Best Alternative To Tiles For Your Bathroom

When choosing materials for a bathroom or shower wall, there are several factors to consider. You should consider each material’s advantages and disadvantages and how much physical space you have in the bathroom to deal with, whether you can work with your current design or need a complete renovation, and your budget.

If you’re working with a tight budget, it is crucial to find a way to get value for your money. Fortunately, many of the materials used for bathroom walls today will give your bathroom a luxurious look at a fraction of the cost.

The key to making your bathroom look good is to ensure it is well-maintained. If you choose certain materials, you may have to keep up with frequent and costly repairs. For other choices, you’ll have to fight with mould and mildew growth frequently.

To simply put it, there is no definite answer to which is the best alternative for your bathroom. It all varies depending on your choices and preferences. To select the best material for your bathroom decor, consider consulting a professional bathroom designer.