Maybe you want to redo the grout in your bathroom or kitchen because it’s beginning to look dingy and dirty, no matter how often and well you clean it. Maybe you’re planning a bathroom remodel that includes tile replacement in the shower, on the walls, or of your floor. Maybe you want to redo (or add) a backsplash in your kitchen.
You may be wondering how grout and tile together affect the overall look of a room. In order to help you choose the right grout color as you get ready to replace your tile, we’re going to explain how various grout color works with different tile colors.
Choosing matching tile and grout
Matching your tile color and your grout will draw attention to your tile rather than to the grout.
Light tile with light grout
The combination of white tile and white grout is probably the most popular in homes across the country, and that makes sense: It provides a clean, timeless look that will complement the rest of your appliances and fixtures. You can update the rest of your kitchen or bathroom and not worry that your tile and grout choices will detract or distract from the rest of the room. However, a light grout will also show stains more quickly than a darker grout will, so keep that in mind as you are thinking about your design.
Dark tile with dark grout
Rather than choose a lighter tile and white or other light grout, you might want to opt for using black tile and black grout; they will blend together as the white tile and white grout do, but are a bit more eye-catching together and add a modern flair to the room. If you use this combination on your walls, you can pair it with a white-tiled floor and white grout. Unlike a lighter grout, a darker grout will render stains a bit less obvious.
Choosing contrasting tile and grout
Choosing a grout color that contrasts with the color of your tile will draw attention to both the grout and the pattern of your tiles.
Light tile with dark grout
Another design option that is also popular is to use black or other dark grout rather than a lighter one. Contrasted against the light tiles, your eyes will be drawn to the grout. The darker shade will hide dirt and debris a more than white grout will, and it will also make the grout “pop,” and add an additional visual element to the room. One important caveat: if you choose a darker grout, know that it may stain your lighter tile. Make sure that you use a sealer on the tiles to protect them from staining. Once you’ve chosen your tile and grout, you’ll want to do a pre-installation test to see how many coats of sealer you’ll need.
Dark tile with light grout
As is the case when you pair white or other light tile and dark grout, here your eyes will be drawn to the white grout and the pattern in the tiles. It is another modern twist on a classic combination.
With either of the above combinations, when you are working with contrasting-colored grout and tile, keep in mind both the size of the tile and the amount of space that you are covering. For some, a lot of small tiles with a contrasting grout color may be too busy and overwhelming.
Striking a balance
Maybe you don’t want to opt for any of the above options, but don’t want a wall or floor that appears to be too bland or too busy. Choose a more neutral shade of grout that is close to your tile color, for example, yellow tiles with a beige grout, blue tiles with grey grout, or white tiles with grey grout. You’ll notice both the tile color and the grout color, but they will complement rather than “fight” each other, and won’t be as arresting together.
Whichever combination you choose, you’ll want to make sure to clean your grout and tile properly and ensure that it’s protected from fixtures, furniture, and appliances, especially if the tile is on your floor. Regular professional cleaning and sealing of your grout and tile will also keep it protected and prolong its lifespan. We have additional suggestions for maintaining your tile and grout after you’ve had them cleaned.