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One of the finishing touches of designing a bathroom is picking out the metal in the room: the cabinet handles and faucets, among other things. There are countless options for colors, shapes, and styles, and design-savvy people might be interested in mixing and matching the cabinet handles and faucets. Is this a good idea? We've researched interior design trends to answer the best way to coordinate faucets, fixtures, and hardware to give you a head start on selecting your bathroom bling.
The cabinet fixtures and hardware in a bathroom do not have to match the faucets. Matching all the hardware to each other is the safest way to make sure the fixtures look cohesive. But since it's your home, go with whatever you like! Focus on making the pieces complement and agree with each other, even if it doesn't match exactly.
It's amazing how something as small as faucets and hardware can alter your bathroom's entire look. But don't worry, if you're nervous about picking out your hardware, read through this guide. We'll give you advice on how to mix and match hardware, plus recommendations for the best metal for each situation.
Is it OK to mix hardware finishes?
Mixing hardware finishes across a room is a great way to give the room variety and depth. If you're worried about the room looking monochromatic, varying the finishes can be a great way to break it up. Mixing the fixtures is a subtle way to give the room color if you're planning on an otherwise plain bathroom.
We'll show you some examples of mixed bathroom fixtures, but first, let's discuss the options you have when choosing them.
Different types of finishes
The word "finish" refers to more than just color. Yes, the finish color is important, but so is matte (brushed) versus shiny, as well as the shape of the pieces.
All of these factors can be contrasted, but only if they make sense with the rest of the room and your preferences. Don't just pick out pieces for the sake of it or just based on the color of the metal. Do you want an informal feeling in your bathroom? Then look for rounded, matte handles and faucets, like the brushed nickel ones below.
Or would you prefer a clean, formal look in your bathroom? Then look for squared fixtures with plenty of shine, like these.
How to choose types of faucets and hardware
Think you're ready to mix it up? There are still some principles you can follow to make sure the room looks like it belongs together.
Black is a great color to consider adding to other types of fixtures. It can contrast brilliantly with stainless steel, nickel, brass, or copper. If you're looking for variety, this is a great place to find it.
For example, pairing matte black handles like the ones below with a shiny brass faucet can help highlight each fixture. Black handles on the cabinets will make the vanity feel multi-dimensional instead of washing out. The stark contrast also shows that care was put into choosing the hardware.
Now, picture this shiny brass faucet with the white and black contrast. It's enough to give the room a touch of color without clashing.
The bathroom below reverses these colors and looks great. The designer added in the brass light fixtures for another splash of color that brightens the room.
On the other hand, if you're going to get color from other areas, mixing up hardware finishes in the bathroom can be confusing and look too busy. The bathroom below, for instance, has plenty of color from the speckled shower and tile. It would be difficult to introduce a second metal color, so the designer stuck with shiny silver handles and faucets.
If you don't have confidence in your ability to pick out complementary, mixed hardware finishes, your best bet is to pick out the same finish across the board.
What is the best finish for bathroom faucets?
The best finish for faucets in your bathroom is mostly about your personal preference and the style you're aiming for. If you're looking for flexible options, silver-colored faucets are probably best. Many people would consider brushed nickel to be the most high-quality yet affordable option in the silver family.
When compared to stainless steel and chrome, nickel looks best. It comes in a variety of exact colors, partly because it most often covers a different metal. Of equal importance to most people is that brushed nickel is least likely to show fingerprints and water droplet marks.
Want more of the best options for faucet finishes? Read this article next: "18 Bathroom Faucet Styles (By Finishes, Handle Options, & Installation)."
What is the best finish for bathroom fixtures?
Just like bathroom faucets, bathroom finishes are largely based on personal preference. When looking at fixtures such as handles, however, durability is important. For this reason, we recommend polished nickel. Like its brushed counterpart, nickel matches a variety of decor schemes. Unlike chrome -- another popular choice for silver bathroom fixtures -- nickel doesn't feel cheap.
Polished nickel is easier to clean and more difficult to scuff than a brushed matte nickel. This is important for handles that are in the line of duty and take on a variety of hands.
Curious about more of the best options for bathroom finishes? Check out this article: "10 Best Finishes For Bathroom Fixtures."
What is the most popular color for bathroom fixtures?
Currently, gold fixtures are in style. As clean, cool-colored bathrooms rise in popularity, gold finishes give a bathroom warmth and color. These gold-colored finishes are most often brass or stainless steel. A set of gold-finished handles with white cabinets and a marble countertop stand out nicely. Gold comes in brushed or polished varieties and can match plenty of light fixtures and mirror frames.
Expect to see gold fixtures, like the ones below, grow in popularity for the next several years.
Is brushed nickel out of style 2020?
Brushed nickel, like in the photo below, is not as trendy as it once was but is still a popular choice for many bathrooms and kitchens. This is mostly due to its practicality; brushed nickel is easy to care for and affordable. Specifically, many users love how durable brushed nickel is and how it doesn't show fingerprints or watermarks. If you're looking for an option that will be practical and will last for years, brushed nickel might be the perfect option.
Cabinet fixtures and faucets in bathrooms do not have to match each other. As usual, when decorating, focus on making sure the elements support and complement each other, not necessarily matching everything exactly. Contrasting bathroom metal can be used to make the scheme brighter and more colorful.
If you'd rather play it safe, it's absolutely acceptable for all the metal in your bathroom to be the same. Do whatever looks best in your opinion, and it's hard to go wrong. Hopefully, this article has helped you make an educated decision, so your bathroom will look stylish for years to come!