Does A Bathroom Vanity Need A Backsplash?

Do you really need to put a backsplash behind your bathroom vanity? Or is it just one more design decision to make when you are already overwhelmed by your bathroom renovation? We’ve researched the functional purpose and aesthetic value of a backsplash to let you know if it is a necessity worth considering. 

While it may seem like only a design choice, a backsplash on your bathroom vanity protects your walls from warp and rot and helps prevent mold and mildew. They also provide a unique design element that can increase the resale value of your home. There is really no downside to installing a backsplash in your bathroom.

Even though you know now that a backsplash in your bathroom is a win-win, depending on your situation and budget, you might still be unsure if you want to install a backsplash as part of your bathroom renovation. To help you decide, below we have included some simple and cost-effective ways to add both style and value to your new bathroom.

bathroom vanity with tile backsplash, Does A Bathroom Vanity Need A Backsplash

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Practical suggestions for finding the right backsplash for your budget

It is very easy for a renovation to get out of hand, and sometimes the project outlasts the funds. If that is the case,  foregoing a backsplash may seem like a prudent financial decision, but if you spend more now, the increase in your home’s resale value will make the cost worthwhile.

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Bathroom in luxury home with double vanity. Features herringbone tile backsplash, quartz countertops, undermount sinks, and floating faucets and cabinets.

You can find also find a variety of options for a more inexpensive backsplash, such as peel and stick tiles which have become more popular lately. These are both easy to install and less expensive, so you can do what is best for the project and still be conscientious of your budget. 

Gorgeous modern bathroom

Achieve this look easily using peel and stick subway tiles: 

Click here to see this product on Amazon.

You may even decide that from a purely aesthetic point of view, you prefer not to install a backsplash in the bathroom. Perhaps your first apartment had a particularly hideous bathroom backsplash so you don’t see a backsplash as a positive design element.

Some types of the previously standard four-inch backsplash could be distracting or difficult to integrate into the overall look of a room. Now homeowners have many more options, from an eight-inch backsplash to the one below that goes all the way to the ceiling and makes the whole wall a piece of art. 

Gorgeous bright blue and gold themed bathroom

It is important to do your research before you make a decision. While a backsplash behind a bathroom vanity may seem to be only a design element, there is also a very practical reason for it. In addition to providing a unique look to the room, the backsplash over your bathroom sink also protects the wall from the spills and splashes that come from heavy use. It does this by creating a waterproof barrier that keeps the water from damaging the wall above the vanity.

A backsplash not only protects the walls you can see but also protects the wall area behind the vanity by preventing water from dripping down and being absorbed into the drywall.

Even what may not seem like a lot of water can add up to serious issues down the road. Hidden from sight behind the vanity, the water can work its way into the drywall, causing mold, mildew, and over time, the drywall can warp and rot, leading to a need for costly repairs.  The right backsplash not only protects your bathroom wall from water damage but also increases the value of your home by adding a great design element.

Do you need to waterproof behind a vanity?

bathroom vanity with tile backsplash

In many ways, the backsplash will protect the wall behind the vanity, but this is only from the water that can enter from above. Since paint by itself doesn’t provide any protection for the wall the vanity sits up against, it is a good idea to take the extra step of waterproofing the wall. If you have any problems with the pipes and end up with a leak under your sink that isn’t discovered immediately, you can end up with the expensive proposition of having to pull out the vanity to replace the entire wall. By waterproofing the wall, you ensure that a leak that isn’t discovered immediately won’t necessarily be catastrophic.  

How do you match your backsplash to the countertop?

There are different schools of thought on how to choose a backsplash in relation to the countertop. A lot of it depends on what look you are trying to achieve. One idea is to blend the color of the backsplash with that of the counter.

Seamlessly Blend

Using the same color tones, you can create a backsplash that almost seems to blend into the counter. 

Huge round mirror in the mirror with sage green backsplash

This look with a backsplash that goes all the way to the ceiling picks up the white and gray tones in the counter and sink and creates an almost seamless look that is both interesting and soothing. The light colors contrasting with the darker gray cabinets create an airy feel. 

Bridge Alike Colors

Another option is to pick up colors from the walls and counter to create a bridge between the two elements. 

Mediterranean themed bathroom

In the case above, they decided to use a variety of green shades from dark to light to connect the walls with the vanity without relying too heavily on either. The fact that it doesn’t match either makes it an interesting design element but one that neither blends in nor stand out.

Boldly Design

Sometimes a bathroom has very ordinary colors or features. Perhaps the owners are not as adventurous or they are more conscious of the resale market and afraid to go overboard on their designs.  In the design below, they took a very basic bathroom and added a completely unexpected look for the backsplash.

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The backsplash above neither blends in nor bridges two distinct elements. This backsplash is its own completely separate design.  It is both interesting and a little unexpected. 

How you decide what backsplash you choose will depend on your personal taste and also on the room and how often you use it. If it is your master bath, you may choose to create a calming oasis where you can relax at the end of a long day. For a guest bathroom, you might choose something a little more daring because the room is used less often.  The direction you choose is up to you.

What do you use for bathroom backsplash?

White Double Bathroom Sinks Updated

There are many different choices open to you when you are designing your new bathroom. We have mentioned many of these materials above. Below are some ideas for creating the perfect bathroom for you. 

This peel and stick waterproof tile decal can be used as a backsplash and is completely removable. If you are currently renting and desperate to change the look of your ugly or generic bathroom, this may be just what you’re looking for.

Click here to see these tiles on Amazon. 

These come in squares as seen above, and there are a few different styles you can mix or match. This is perfect if you like DIY but have a fear of commitment. 

These peel and stick tiles, which contain a layer of real stone, would be perfect for the bathroom in a rustic mountain vacation home. 

Click here to see these tiles on Amazon.

They have a variation that creates a natural look and keeps the overall effect from being too uniform. 

This wood-look backsplash gives the wall above the bathroom sink a  natural look. This less polished look has become more popular lately. Click here to see it on Amazon. As with the stone above, this tile gives the opportunity to create a look that is different but not out of place.

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This nickel backsplash is a little more adventurous.  It’s something a little more fun but is best used in smaller amounts. For example, just the minimum coverage behind the vanity in the master bathroom or used in the guest bathroom to create a statement space.

Final Thoughts

An all white master bathroom with gold hardware and faucets showing the vanity and shower with the door open. The shower has glass walls/door and beautiful tiles.

Whether this is for your master bath or the small guest bathroom, the ideas above will get your imagination working. Some of these items are a little more unique, some less so. Still, all of them allow you to create your own look. Not only will you have something you can be proud of, but when the time comes to sell your home you have created something special that potential buyers will remember.  

 Should You Tile Behind Bathroom Sink? [Inc. What Kind Of Backsplash To Have]

13 Backsplash Materials To Know

An interior of a small bathroom with vanity, Does A Bathroom Vanity Need A Backsplash?
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