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Not only do they offer an opportunity to inject texture, pattern and colour into what can otherwise be a plain and sometimes sterile room, they perform a practical function too. Clad your walls and floors in the best bathroom tiles and they’ll protect them from moisture, making the surfaces easy to keep clean, hygienic and mould-free. The most popular and practical are porcelain and ceramic, but they can also be made from natural stone (which will need sealing and probably resealing), glass (often mosaic panels but can be larger tiles), or encaustic cement (though these are heavier and can fade over time). As the bathroom tends not to be an area of high footfall, and rarely has heavy items dropped on the floor, ceramic should fare just as well as porcelain. Naturally slip-resistant due to its tumbled (smooth, but with a distressed look) finish, this creamy travertine tile is excellent value for money. It’s also not suitable for use in an area that will have to cope with a lot of water, such as the floor of a shower, so you’ll need to find a different solution for your walk-in wet room.

Key details – Size: 61 x 40.6 x 1.2cm (WDH); Material: Stone; Suitable for: Walls and floors; Additional features: 2yr guarantee These are an excellent alternative to real marble – and don’t let the gorgeously glossy finish of these porcelain tiles fool you, they’re more than suitable for a bathroom.

While it’s on the lower end of the scale, its slip resistance rating of R9 is great on such an affordable tile, although that means that it’s still better to pop down a mat when getting out of the tub or the shower, instead of walking round with wet feet.

What’s especially appealing is the tile’s striking golden veining pattern – ideal for adding a feeling of warmth and making it versatile enough for both walls and floors.

Key details – Size: 30 x 60 x 0.8cm (WDH); Material: Porcelain; Suitable for: Walls and floors; Additional features: UFH compatible Whether as a feature wall section or as an alternative to ceramic, these off-white, glass mosaic tiles bring instant glamour to a bathroom.

Part of the Titanic Wave collection, the Linear tiles have a frosted matte finish, so you won’t have to keep them scrupulously clean of water marks and mess, unlike shiny glass. Plus, if this classic Alabaster shade doesn’t appeal, they’re also available in Pebble Grey and Desert Black, or as a chevron design, with coordinating large-format floor and wall tiles too.

Easily laid and suitable for walls and floors, the different tile patterns make it simple to create a random arrangement, while the dominant grey tone ensures they’re versatile enough to add character to any almost space, from an ensuite to a family bathroom. A wear rating of 4 makes them ideal for the bathroom where they can withstand regular footfall, while they’re relatively slip-resistant, it’s still best to put down a mat on the floor.

One place they’re not suitable for is wet rooms – for that kind of project, porcelain with a high level of slip resistance will be a better option. Choose a vibrant shade and it’s an easy way to add colour to your scheme while keeping it feeling sleek and uncluttered.

The only downside is that the choice of colours is mostly on the classic side of things, so if you’re keen to make more of an impact, you may want to keep looking for some brighter tones. They can be laid in almost any way you like to create eye-catching stars or a simple repeating pattern and look stunning around a shower area, basin or bathtub.

What’s more, as they have a matte, glazed finish and a slip rating of R10, they’ll offer a fair amount of resistance – although it’s still best to put down a floor mat for wet feet. The deep Azure blue looks great in a bathroom but if you’re looking for something softer or fancy mixing and matching, Varadero hexagons also come in Rose, Moonlight, Mint and Grey. Key specs – Size: 22.8 x 19.8 x 0.9cm (WDH); Material: Porcelain; Suitable for: Walls and floors; Additional features: UFH compatible

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