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A Brief Bathroom Sink Buying Guide

Whether you are buying a new bathroom sink because you are updating an old or outdated bathroom, or you are installing an entirely new bathroom in your home, there are several key factors you’ll need to consider. They include:

  • The material the sink is made from
  • The size of the cabinet
  • How the sink is installed
  • The shape of the sink
  • The number of holes
  • The color of the sink

Each of the factors has an effect on the look and function of the sink (or sinks, since it is possible to have two sinks in a single bath). They create a sense of style or décor, they can help you to work within the limited amount of space in the average bathroom, and they allow you to make the most of the features your sink and faucet offers.

The Materials

The most immediate choice to be made is that of the materials from which the sink is crafted, with two dominant options being:

  • Porcelain
  • Marble

There are options for solid surface materials and even options such as glass, metal, stone, and enamel coated cast iron. “Vessel” sinks exist, too and they are made of any number of materials, including pottery and even wood.

Once you have a material in mind, you need to consider how that sink is to be installed.

The Installation

Also referred to as the “mount,” this describes the way the sink is attached or affixed to the counter or vanity. While there are pedestal sinks that sit on a base, the most common installation or mounting types are:

  • Drop-in – Also called a self-rimming type, it is the easiest to use as it just drops into place and is held by the lip molded into the sink’s outer edge.
  • Undermount – As it sounds, this type is mounted from under the countertop and is a sleek and modern look that is easier to clean than many other styles.
  • Vessel – This is an actual vessel that is mounted to a surface, such as a free-standing bowl that sits on a countertop, and is a stylish and modern way to install a bathroom sink.

With the choice in material and mounting style, you can then start to consider the overall look of the sink. That means considering factors like color and shape.

Stylish Features

The color you choose for a bathroom sink is going to always need to coordinate with the overall style of the bathroom. Common colors are white, black, and beige, and each will create a specific mood. For example, a black sink is extremely modern and sleek, while the white sink may be a traditional or transitional style.

Paying attention to what the color says is important, and so too is the shape of the sink. For example, the most common are:

  • Rectangle
  • Square
  • Round
  • Oval

Each conveys a specific look and function differently in space. The round or oval bowls will always present a more fluid feel than a square shape.

Final Thoughts

Once you have considered these basics, there are still such factors as the cabinet size and the number of holes for the faucets. These are functional more than anything else, but the most common installation type for faucets include single holes and no holes (i.e. vessel sinks or wall-mounted tap styles).

Cabinet sizes typically range from 18” and under, 21” and 24” and over. This can allow room around a sink and a unique sort of faucet, or it can greatly limit you based on space around the cabinet. Either way, as you narrow down the options in bathroom sinks, it is important to consider all of the factors and not just single issues like color or general design. This way, you get the look and function desired.