Tile is an integral part of nearly every bathroom design. Tile is versatile, water resistant, and can be installed on the floor, walls, or ceiling. Mosaic tiles in particular have all of these same benefits and attributes, but can offer you even more with added function and style when used in the bathroom

What are Mosaic Tiles?

Mosaic tiles are defined as any material, type, or shape of tile that measures 2-inches or smaller. Most mosaic tiles are mounted onto sheets of either mesh or contact paper for easier installation, with most mosaics having the ability to be installed roughly 12-inches at a time. The sheets are easily cut between the rows of mosaic, allowing you to use the tiles in smaller areas such as single-row borders as well.

Because of their size, mosaic tiles can do things that larger tiles cannot, which offers you a variety of benefits and uses that can really enhance your bathroom design. Check out the following 7 benefits of using mosaic tile in the bathroom to take your design to the next level.

Photo of a newly tiled bathroom

What are the benefits of using Mosaic Tiles in the bathroom?

1. Slip Protection for Your Floor

Mosaic tile create beauty and a no-slip functionOne of the best things about using mosaics for your bathroom tile is their ability to help create a non-skid surface. Mosaic tile installations use more grout than larger tiles, and the smaller the mosaic, the more grout there will be. All of that grout helps add slip protection to the floor. If your mosaics are textured, this can increase that slip protection.

Universal design is becoming more standard for many homes. This means designing a space to be usable by the widest range of people, including the elderly, small children, and disabled persons. By using mosaic tiles on the floor of your bathroom, you increase the slip protection, and make the bathroom more usable and functional for a greater number of users. Don’t want to cover your entire floor in mosaics? You can still get the benefit by using them in specific areas, such as the shower floor or a tile “rug” right in front of the tub or sink – areas that are more likely to be wet and a risk for falls

2. Allows Water to Drain

Mosaic tile floors in the showerWhether your bathroom has a separate shower or you’re creating a wet room where the entire bathroom floor needs to slope down to the drain, mosaic tiles help facilitate that slope. In a shower, the floor must slope toward the drain ¼-inch for every foot. The larger the shower, the more dramatic this slope appears to be. If you’re creating a European-style wet room for your bathroom, the entire bathroom floor also needs to slope 1.5 to 2 degrees toward the drain. This is to help ensure that there are no standing puddles of water no matter how far out of the shower area the water has strayed.

Larger tiles may be able to make this slope initially, but will likely begin to crack over time, as they aren’t designed to flex. Mosaics, however, are small enough and have enough grout joints that they can conform to the slope, no matter how steep.

3. ADA Compliance

Mosaic tiles create a seamless floor designIn addition to Universal Design being on the rise, so is Accessible Design. While Universal design strives to meet the needs of the greatest number of people, Accessible Design tries to meet the needs of the individual, and in many instances may comply with ADA standard guidelines for the bathroom.

Some guidelines for creating an accessible bathroom include using a barrier free shower. In this design, the bathroom floor moves seamlessly into the shower floor, with no threshold between them. Because water can therefore move out of the shower and needs to drain, the area must slope toward the drain. Mosaics not only meet this need, they also have added slip protection, offer better grip for the wheels of wheelchair users or a texture difference for visually impaired persons. This makes mosaic tile one of the recommended flooring types for bathroom design in ADA compliant and Accessible bathroom designs.

4. Area Definition

Mosaic tiles can create spacial interestIn addition to the functional and practical aspects of using mosaics in the bathroom, there are also several benefits for the design and style of the space. The first is in area definition. Mosaics are a fantastic way to help define spaces. They can achieve this in several ways, such as creating a mosaic “rug” beside tubs, showers, and sinks, using a mosaic border to separate different areas, or creating a transition to a barrier free shower floor.

Mosaic sheets can be easily cut into strips as well, allowing you to use a border of mosaics to separate wall tile designs, accent the area beneath a chair rail, or define a space such as the area around a mirror. The fact that mosaics are each separate small tiles mean that when polished or glossy in finish, each tile catches the light separately. This gives them greater visual attention than larger tiles, so they can define areas more clearly. In addition to this, their change in texture from a larger field tile allows visually impaired persons to mark the area more easily, so they can tell where they are in the room.

5. Easy to Use Accents

Mosaic tiles are an excellent choice for creating visual accentsMosaics also come in an incredible range of patterns as well as materials, sizes, and shapes. It’s possible to find ready-made mosaic borders that are in set patterns, as well as to find mosaic field tiles that can be cut into strips for border use. In addition, companies that specialize in mosaic design can create entire murals, pictures, and scenes out of mosaic tiles. This makes mosaics one of the most versatile ways to add accents and visual design elements to your bathroom.

Use mosaics as a definition between two areas, line the back of a niche in your shower wall with a single sheet of mosaic to make it stand out, or take a single sheet of mosaic tiles and cut it into multiple strips to make an easy accent anywhere in the room. With this type of versatility, it’s possible to use mosaics to create an incredible range of styles from retro bathrooms with patterned mosaic floors to contemporary spaces that use glass mosaics as a way to add color to a room.

6. Eye Catching Focal Points

Glass and polished marble mosaic tiles create eye catching designsMosaics can create eye catching focal points in a bathroom in a few different ways. You can use them to create a mural for floor or wall use. They can also be used as a type of tile “wallpaper” to add pattern to the space.

Even plain mosaics in glass, polished marble, or another eye-catching material can be used to line the back of a single wall in the shower to draw the eye to that area. The way that mosaics can catch the light individually adds an extra element of interest to a design that instantly pulls the eye. If you’re trying to call attention to one area of the room, or you’re trying to visually shape the room by pushing the eye to certain areas, mosaics can help you achieve these goals more easily than with some other materials. Mosaics also tend to stand out more than larger tiles of the same material or color, so they’re more likely to get the viewer’s attention.

7. Visual Room Enlargement

Mosaic tiles create interest while visually enlarging a space.There are many rules of thumb when it comes to designing a small bathroom. Many homeowners with small bathrooms want to try and find ways to help make the room look larger, and mosaics can help do that.

While one method of visually enlarging a small space calls for large or oversized tiles on the floor to minimize grout lines and create a more minimal appearance on the floor, mosaics can help do the same thing. Despite their many grout lines, mosaic tiles don’t produce a grid effect on the floor, which is the problem with mid-sized tiles in a small space; the grid chops up the floor and makes it seem smaller. Instead, mosaics create an overall pattern on the floor, which in turn makes the space seem larger; the grout becomes part of the pattern, rather than something that is breaking up the space. Whether you opt for a classic basket weave or penny tile pattern, a solid field tile, or a custom pattern for the bathroom floor, mosaic tiles can help visually enlarge the space.

Get More From Your Bathroom Tile

Mosaic tiles have the capability to enhance both the function and the appearance of any bathroom. From older bathrooms with uneven flooring to contemporary spaces that call for an exciting and colorful floor cover, mosaics can help get the job done. Call or stop in to Tile Showcase today to learn more about the different types of mosaic tiles available, and how you can incorporate them into your home. 

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