Beautiful tile is the ultimate indicator of prestige in a home. It’s what many homeowners use to distinguish their homes. In addition to being aesthetically spellbinding, tile also offers many practical benefits for homeowners.
Tile is generally easy to clean and maintain without the need for complicated cleaners or stain removers.
It also offers hypoallergenic benefits for reducing risks for mold and bacteria caused by water damage and moisture.
Tile can also save homeowners money in the long run by being a durable choice that may never need to be replaced. It’s no wonder why tile has been used in homes for thousands of years.
Tile’s biggest benefit is that it’s limitless. Homeowners have thousands of options to choose from when selecting tiles.
Of course, there is a potential for the endless possibilities of these products to be slightly overwhelming for homeowners.
Don’t let that stop you from getting the right tile for your house.
Take a look at the following roundup of 20 popular types of Tiles for flooring, walls, countertops and backsplashes to get a feel for its endless potential!
By Material Type
1. Ceramic Tiles
Ceramic tiles are commonly used in bathrooms and kitchens because they are waterproof, nonabsorbent and easy to clean.
They are available in just about every color, finish and cut under the sun. It’s actually very common to use ceramic tile finished to look like natural stone as a cost-effective alternative to actual natural stone.
In fact, ceramic tile is one of the most affordable ways to bring tile into a home. Ceramic tiles have been used in one form or another since antiquity.
They are made today using a mixture of water, sand and clay. Yes, ceramic tiles really are that natural! During application, the spaces between ceramic tiles are filled with grout to for a clean, uniform look.
2. Marble Tiles
Marble tiles are made from natural stone that has been quarried and cut for use on floors, countertops, walls and more.
Marble is renowned for its high-polish, shimmering appearance. It’s also considered a premium material in terms of pricing.
The appearance of marble tiles varies based on the variety being used. While an option like Calacatta marble is known for its feathery veins over grayish surfaces, Carrara marble is known for its dark veins over white surfaces.
While marble is commonly used throughout luxury homes, homeowners should know that the porous nature of marble does mean that risks for staining and water damage are slightly higher when compared to other tile options.
3. Travertine Tiles
Travertine tiles are made from limestone formed by natural springs. Travertine is available commercially in polished, honed (matte), brushed and tumbled designs.
Many people choose travertine when creating highly textured looks. The natural non-slip texture of unpolished travertine makes this a popular choice for bathrooms and walk-in showers.
While travertine is much harder than something like marble, it can still scratch if proper precautions aren’t taken.
4. Porcelain Tiles
Made from refined clay, porcelain tiles have a durable, nonporous nature that makes them ideal for spots all over the home.
Almost all porcelain tile sold features a surface glazing that actually gives it a leg up on an option like ceramic tile in terms of preventing water infiltration in spots like kitchens and bathrooms.
Porcelain’s ability to handle heat also makes it a popular choice for tiled countertops.
Generally, porcelain tiles are available in solid colors. However, patterns mimicking everything from natural stone to wood grain are becoming increasingly popular.
5. Granite Tiles
Granite has become the standard for many homes in recent years. Granite tiles are beloved for their strength, durability, resiliency and high shine.
They also bring the prestige of having natural stone in your home. Granite offers natural scratch resistance that makes it very possible that tiles will never need to be replaced.
In fact, granite is considered by many builders to be the “indestructible” choice. Granite offers heat resistance, acid resistance and easy maintenance. Of course, choosing granite tiles means accepting natural stone patterns that can vary by tile.
6. Limestone Tiles
Beloved for centuries, limestone is the quintessential natural-stone choice for tiles. It comes in earthy shades of brown, tan, red, gray and more that work beautifully for countertops, floors and backsplashes.
Limestone is made naturally by minerals settling over the earth. While limestone is a natural stone, it’s actually much less expensive than options like granite and marble.
Many people love it for creating rugged, antique-inspired rooms even though polished options are available. Limestone tiles are popular for being durable, easy to clean and nonflammable. They can last a lifetime when properly sealed.
7. Sandstone Tiles
Sandstone tiles bring a natural, earthy look to a space. As a natural option, sandstone does leave you at the whim of the patterns nature creates! Every sandstone tile is “unique” because these tiles are cut from giant slabs of quarried rock.
Colors can range from white tones to charcoal. While sandstone is durable enough to last for decades with very little maintenance, it’s not quite in the same league as other natural stones like granite or slate.
8. Wooden Tiles
Wood-like tiles provide the warm appearance of wood without the maintenance required.
Tile also offers longevity when compared to wood. Many homeowners choose wood-look tiles for areas like kitchens and bathrooms because they are concerned about the moisture issues and warping caused by real wood. Most wood-like tiles are made of porcelain or vinyl.
9. Quartzite Tiles
Quartzite tiles are made from metamorphic rock. They are beloved for their sparkling texture, durability and strength.
This is a great choice for an area of a house in need of a very strong tile. Many people use it as a hardier alternative to marble. Quartzite is available in a brilliant range of textures and colors.
10. Quarry Tiles
Despite the name, quarry tiles do not come from quarries. They are actually paving-grade tiles created using ground-up minerals.
The process is a lot like creating brick. However, quarry tiles don’t have the porous qualities of clay bricks.
The fact that they are able to resist moisture without the need for a surface glaze allows them to retain a rustic, bespoke look. Quarry tiles are typically only available in smaller sizes. They are commonly used when creating rustic kitchens or pavements.
11. Cement Tiles
Known for their strength, cement tiles can hold up against wear and tear much better than wood or ceramic.
It can safely be assumed that cement tiles will last for life once they are installed. Once cement tiles are sealed, they require essentially no maintenance.
The fact that cement tiles are synthetic means that they are available in a wide range of colors and patterns.
Many people use them to make “villa-style” kitchens. Cement tiles can also be refinished if you grow tired of a pattern.
It’s important for homeowners to make sure subfloors are in good shape for handling a heavy tile because cement tiles are much heavier than other traditional tiles. Cement tiles also need to be resealed every few years.
12. Onyx Tiles
Onyx is a beautiful, delicate tile choice that is in the same style family as marble. In fact, this precious rock is actually a gemstone.
Many homeowners love onyx for its translucence. Onyx tiles are typically installed using a resin or fiberglass backing to create strength. Onyx should also be sealed due to its extremely porous nature.
13. Terrazzo Tiles
Terrazzo tiles are composite tiles featuring marble, granite or quartz chips that are bound together using cement or epoxies. Some varieties use glass or shells instead of natural stone.
While Terrazzo tile is known for being both durable and easy to clean, many people love it simply because it comes available in so many sensational patterns. It’s perfect for making a bold style statement in a home!
By Surface Finish Types
14. Polished Tiles
As the name implies, polished tiles have a polished finish. They offer a glossy, shiny finish that can look beautiful under both natural and artificial light.
Polished tiles are created using a double-firing method that applies the pattern or color before a final clear coat is applied.
They then undergo the same polishing process of running through polishing wheels that is used on natural stone.
15. Matte Tiles
Matte tiles are great for creating minimal light reflection. They offer a rustic, unfinished look that is considered warmer than polished tiles.
Matte tiles are processed using fewer “finishing wheels” to maintain a rougher finish.
While people love the rugged, natural appearance of matte tiles, the lack of a smooth surface can make these tiles a little harder to clean. It’s also somewhat easier for stains to stick to matte tiles.
16. Anti-Slip Surface Tiles
Non-slip floor tile is a popular choice in homes with kids! It takes care of the problem of tile being “slicker” than options like carpet and wood.
Anti-slip tiles vary by manufacturer. However, many brands use materials like recycled clay. Linoleum tiles and natural stone are the best bets when looking for tiles that have natural slip resistance.
By Design Options
17. Mosaic Tiles
Mosaic tiles are commonly used to create intricate backsplash detailing. They can be made from a wide range of materials that includes natural stone, porcelain and ceramic.
They also come in a variety of different shapes, sizes and colors that allow homeowners and contractors to create true works of art!
Mosaic tiles can be placed in floors, backsplashes, walls, walk-in showers, fireplaces and many more places.
They typically come on mesh-mounted sheets that make it easy to apply patterns.
18. Geometric Tiles
Used commonly in high-end homes, geometric tile can be made using ceramic, porcelain limestone or glass.
However, most geometric tile on the market is made from porcelain simply because this is the most practical option.
While geometric tile is available in many different sizes and colors, the main shapes available are squares, rectangles, triangles, polygons, hexagons, diamonds and pyramids.
These shapes can be used to create custom detailing in floors and walls.
19. Patterned Ceramic Tiles
Patterned ceramic tile makes it easy to create resort-level looks in a home without necessarily being a masonry expert.
Pattern ceramic is mostly used to create accents on backsplashes, walls, fireplaces, staircase risers and floors.
These tiles often feature bold, colorful and exotic designs that look best when use sparingly to draw attention to the “custom” element of a home.
20. Hand-Painted Glazed Tiles
The ultimate choice for creating an artisan interior in a home, hand-painted glaze tiles are created by painting a pattern over a raw glaze.
They can be used as accents for kitchen backsplashes, built-in shelving, bathroom backsplashes, fireplaces and much more. Hand-painted tiles add value and prestige to a home.
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