2020 changed everyone’s lives. Working and schooling at home full time caused major lifestyle changes and the need for cleaner and safer practices came into focus because of the pandemic. Combined, these changes made a lot of people take a closer look at the layout and design of their homes.
In this article we look at five kitchen and bathroom trends for safer and healthier homes. They were recommended by interior design experts in Fixr.com’s Kitchen and Bathroom Trends 2021 report and range from small changes to larger updates. The trends that emerged can fit most budgets too!
Whether you’re looking for a quick update to certain aspects of your home or a full renovation, there are some unique ways to improve the overall health and safety of your home while also elevating its design and functionality.
Quartz is a common material found in kitchen and bathroom countertops. It’s a manmade material, and because of this, there are a lot of different color options you can consider. Your options range from more natural and earthy tones to more unique colors like blues and greens.
According to Fixr’s study, quartz is the preferred choice for kitchen countertops in 2021. Quartz offers a lot of value when it comes to keeping a home safe and clean from viruses, too, as it’s non-porous, naturally antimicrobial, and really easy to maintain. It is also one of the hardest natural materials used in construction and is scratch and stain resistant. Added to these many benefits, the fact that it is not natural stone makes quartz countertops also a pretty affordable choice.
Touchless Bathroom Features
Coming out of 2020 and the pandemic, touchless is the way to go. The bathroom is the perfect place to do it, too. More features in bathrooms are touchless than ever, including touchless toilets, faucets, lights, and even mirrors. All of these reduce the number of times someone needs to touch an item, which naturally limits the chances for the transfer of germs.
A touchless toilet is the most complex of the above to replace because it requires switching out the entire toilet. They are also typically a little more expensive than traditional toilets. For faucets, mirrors, speakers, and lights though, these can be fairly easy switches and, depending on the brand, updates that are also relatively low in cost.
Touchless Kitchen Features
By having touchless features in a kitchen, the chance for passing germs around is reduced. Touchless features also reduce the number of items that need to be sanitized and cleaned on a regular basis. Not surprisingly, the most common touchless kitchen feature that is gaining in popularity is the touchless faucet. Handwashing is the most common way to reduce the spread of germs, and traditional faucets are a high-risk area for germ transfer.
In the past few years a lot of touchless kitchen features have been released, and they’re also becoming more affordable, especially the faucets. The price for these can vary depending on if you want a standard model or you choose a toe-operated one. Other options for touchless kitchen features include smart appliances like refrigerators, ovens, and even lighting. The simple act of reducing how often something is touched inherently limits the risk for germs to transfer. Being able to control faucets, appliances or lighting with motion, voice or apps is an effective way to maintain a sanitized and healthy home.
When looking to upgrade or replace surfaces in a home, it is important to consider several different things. There are a lot of antimicrobial surface solutions out there, from paint to flooring to fixtures. These are typically well-advertised on the product itself and are a great step in preventing bacteria from sitting on surfaces.
Finding surfaces that don’t have a lot of grooves, texture, or grout makes them easier to clean and keep clean. Using materials like a large format style tile reduces the amount of grout and grooves that need to be cleaned. Non-porous surfaces, which don’t absorb anything and do not have any places where bacteria and germs can live, are another easy-to-clean surface. For light fixtures, faucets, or other handles, materials like chrome, brass, and copper are best.
Kitchen and Bathroom Tiling
Tiles are not only an easy-to-clean surface, but they’re also very trendy. Choosing a tile that complements the overall design of your home is important, and the design options are endless. You can choose to incorporate patterns in your tiles, go for a more personalized look by creating a mosaic, or stick to the basics and pick a solid or more neutral color.
In addition to elevating your home’s design, cleaning tiles is really straightforward and most tile materials are easy to maintain. Porcelain for example, is non-porous, allergen-free and stain-resistant. Most common household cleaning solutions work just fine on tiles, and scrubbing them isn’t too labor intensive. They’re the perfect solution in kitchens and bathrooms, which tend to be the two areas of the home that attract the most germs. One tip to make this task even easier is to opt for large-format tiles to cut down on grout.
There are a lot of ways to help make and keep homes safe and sanitary while maintaining an attractive appearance. Some projects, such as installing touchless appliances, remove the risk of germ transfer altogether. Others, like using non-porous or antimicrobial surfaces, make cleaning and sanitizing more efficient and effective. Whether you choose a full-scale remodel or small improvements in your household, these trends can make your home healthier and more functional.