35 Beautiful Subway Tile Shower Ideas To Transform Your Bathroom

Revitalize your bathroom space with timeless elegance with 35 beautiful subway tile shower ideas. 

Subway tiles are known for their classic and timeless appeal. They originated from the subway stations of New York City in the early 20th century and have since become a staple in interior design. Their clean lines and simple rectangular shape contribute to a sleek and uncluttered appearance that can complement many design styles, from traditional to modern.

From contemporary chic to vintage charm, explore how these subway tile shower ideas can rejuvenate your bathroom into a haven of relaxation and style.

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1. Choose A Color That Can Provide Tranqulity

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Opting for soft, neutral color subway tile bathroom ideas like pale blues, muted grays, or gentle greens can instantly create a spa-like ambiance in your bath. These colors evoke calmness and serenity, providing a soothing backdrop for your daily cleansing rituals. 

2. Opt For Contrasting Hardware

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Subway tiles are revered for their timeless appeal and clean lines, often creating a backdrop that exudes elegance and simplicity. However, the beauty of these tiles truly comes to life when they’re paired with contrasting hardware. By selecting fixtures in a finish that stands out from the tiles, you create a dynamic interplay that draws the eye and enhances the overall design.

Read – 35 Fantastic Corner Shower Ideas You Will Love

3. Separate The Shower Area Using A Glass Door

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A glass door instantly adds a touch of sophistication to your bathroom. The transparency of the glass allows the beauty of your classic subway tile to shine through while creating a sense of openness. The clean lines of the glass door and subway tile create a harmonious and elegant look that suits various design styles.

4. Opt For A Contrasting Grout

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Contrasting grout color is a design technique that adds depth and visual interest to your subway marble tile designs for bath. By selecting a grout color that differs from the tiles, you create a distinct outline for each tile, emphasizing the pattern and structure.

5. Add In Matching Flooring Tiles

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Matching floor tile contribute to the illusion of a larger bathroom. When the same tiles are used throughout, contrasting materials do not interrupt the eye, resulting in an unbroken visual expanse. 

Read – 30 Amazing Hexagonal Tile Bathroom Ideas You Will Love

6. Create A herringbone Pattern

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Black subway tile have been a great choice for bath designs, known for their timeless elegance and versatility. If you want to take your subway tile showers to the next level, consider creating a herringbone pattern. This classic and eye-catching layout can add sophistication and visual interest to your bathroom space.

Read – 30 Amazing Black Floor Tile Bathroom Ideas For A Stylish Look, 35 Amazing Herringbone Backsplash Ideas To Transform Your Kitchen

7. Black And White Can Never Go Out Of Style

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Black and white tile bathroom design walls exude sophistication and simplicity that effortlessly elevates any space. The clean lines of subway tile, combined with the contrast of black and white, create a visually striking and refined bath area.

8. Wooden Ceiling For A Rustic Appearance

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Rustic design often revolves around blending rugged simplicity with refined aesthetics. Adding a wooden ceiling to your bathroom subway tile infuses the space with rustic elegance. The juxtaposition of the modest subway tile and the natural richness of wood creates a balanced fusion of inviting and sophisticated styles.

Read – 30 Beautiful Shower with Bench Ideas to Transform Your Bathroom Oasis

9. Keep It Simple

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The beauty of subway tile and gray floor lies in their simplicity. Opt for a straightforward installation pattern like the classic brick layout to create an uncluttered and clean look. Minimalism focuses on the essentials, and subway tile effortlessly fit this aesthetic.

Expert tip TCH: Experimenting with different tile patterns can transform your subway tile bath ideas from ordinary to extraordinary. While the classic brick pattern is timeless, consider arranging tiles in a herringbone, chevron, or vertical stack pattern for a unique twist. These patterns add a touch of creativity to the space and showcase your attention to detail.

10. Neutral Shades For Spacious Look

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Neutral shades like soft white walls, creams, and light grays are the perfect canvas for a clean and classic look. These hues lend an understated elegance to your subway bath, making it a versatile backdrop for many design styles, from traditional to contemporary.

11. Sliding Glass Door To Save Space

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A sliding glass door adds modernity to your bathroom’s design. The sleek lines and contemporary feel of the door pair well with the classic charm of subway tile, resulting in a balanced and stylish look.

12. Add Some Art Work For A personal Touch

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Artwork in your subway tile bath allows you to express your unique style. Whether you prefer abstract paintings, soothing landscapes, or vibrant prints, your choice of art can create a focal point setting your bathroom’s tone.

13. A Floating Sink For A Contemporary Look

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Floating sinks, also known as wall-mounted or wall-hung sinks, exude a sleek and minimalistic vibe. Their elevated position creates the illusion of more floor space, making them a great choice for smaller bathrooms. Paired with the clean lines of subway tile showers, a floating sink contributes to an uncluttered and spacious feel.

14. Bring Some Nature Into the Shower

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Not only do plants and greenery create a visual contrast against the sleek tiles, but they also contribute to a more refreshing and inviting atmosphere. Combining the organic textures of plants and the uniformity of subway tile strikes a harmonious balance that’s both soothing and visually appealing.

15. Add A Pop Of Color To White Shower

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Customize your white subway tile bath ideas with unique accent pieces, such as colorful ceramic soap dishes, candle holders, stools, benches, or even a tiny piece of artwork that complements your color theme.

16. Blue Tiles For A Serene Oasis

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The tranquility of blue tiles can transform your bathroom into a spa-like haven. Coordinate with calming lighting, soft towels, and aromatic candles to enhance the soothing atmosphere. The color blue is known to enhance relaxation, making your daily showers feel like a luxurious escape from the hustle and bustle.

17. Brown Tiles For An Earthy Vibe

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Brown subway tile evoke a sense of natural elegance reminiscent of earth tones and wood textures. They can transform your bathroom into a tranquil retreat that echoes the soothing colors of the outdoors.

18. Black Hardware For White Showers

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The stark contrast between black and large white subway tile in bathroom is the key to achieving an eye-catching look. The pristine white subway tile act as a canvas, allowing the black hardware to pop and become the focal point. Consider using black handles, faucets, showerheads, and towel bars to create a cohesive and visually impactful design.

19. Create Different Patterns With The Subway Tiles

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Combine the subway tiles with smaller tiles to craft a captivating basketweave pattern. This intricate arrangement brings texture and intricacy that can transform your bathroom into a visual masterpiece. It’s an excellent choice if you’re looking to add depth and character to your space.

Expert tip TCH: To make your subway tile floor stand out, designate one wall as a feature wall. Instead of tiling all the walls, focus the subway tiles on the back wall or the wall behind the fixtures. This not only reduces the cost of tiling but also draws attention to the shower area, acting as a stylish focal point within your bathroom.

20. Accent The subway Tile Showers With Wooden Beams And Shelves

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Wooden beams and shelves juxtaposed against the sleek backdrop of subway tiles create a beautiful contrast. The natural warmth of wood softens the crisp lines of the tiles, infusing the space with an inviting ambiance. The interplay between the tiles’ coolness and the wood’s warmth adds depth and character to the bath area.

21. Green Subway Tiles Paired With Gold Hardware

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Gold hardware, from faucets to showerheads, exudes an air of luxury that complements the clean lines of subway tiles. Opt for warm, brushed gold or polished gold finishes to infuse your bathroom with a sense of refinement and luxury. This choice will beautifully contrast the subdued tones of green subway tiles.

22.  Include A Built-In Shower Bench

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Integrating a built-in bench into your shower with subway tile allows for a seamless and cohesive design. Choosing the same subway tiles for the bench creates a consistent look that blends effortlessly with the rest of the space.

23. A Seamless Transition From Subway To Shiplap

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Before installing, carefully plan how the subway tiles and shiplap intersect. Consider where the two materials will meet and how they can blend harmoniously. This planning phase will ensure that your design vision is executed flawlessly.

24. Pallet Wood Sink Area As A Focal Point

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Pairing the sleek and classic look of subway tiles with the rugged beauty of pallet wood might seem unconventional, but this contrast makes the design stand out. The straight lines of the subway tiles create a modern and timeless backdrop. At the same time, the weathered texture of pallet wood introduces a touch of warmth and rustic character.

25. Half Board And Batten And Half Glass Wall As A Divider

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The beauty of the half-board, batten, and half-glass wall divider lies in its perfect blend of classic and contemporary styles. The traditional charm of the board and batten adds a sense of coziness and character. At the same time, the sleek glass divider infuses a modern and airy feel.

26. Introduce Wood And Green Accents

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Pairing the clean lines of the white subway tile with accent wood and greenery creates a harmonious blend of modern and natural elements. The contrast between the smooth tiles and the textural qualities of wood and plants adds depth and visual interest to the space.

27. Install Built-In Shelving

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With built-in shelving, you can keep your shower essentials organized and easily accessible. Store shampoos, conditioners, body washes, and even decorative items neatly on the shelves, eliminating the need for unsightly hanging caddies or cluttered corners.

Expert tip TCH: To elevate the visual impact of your bathroom subway tile shower, consider using a non matching grout color that contrasts with the tile. Dark grout with light tiles or light grout with dark tiles can highlight the individual tiles and create a striking grid pattern. This technique adds depth to the shower while maintaining the iconic shower subway tile look.

28. Use Various Shades Of The Same Color

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Incorporating different shades of a single color within your long subway tile shower instantly adds depth and visual interest. The play of light and shadow across the varying tones adds texture and complexity to the space, making it more engaging and dynamic.

29. Black Grout And Flooring For White Shower Walls

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The juxtaposition of white bathroom shower subway tile with black grout creates a bold, eye-catching contrast that adds visual interest to your shower walls. This combination not only enhances the individuality of each tile but also imparts a sense of timeless elegance that transcends trends.

30. White Subway Tile Walls With Brass Fixtures

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White subway tiles are the epitome of timeless design. Their clean lines and simplicity offer a versatile backdrop for various interior styles. Combined with brass fixtures, the result is a harmonious blend of classic and contemporary, giving your bathroom an ageless appeal.

31. Green Walls With A Distressed Rustic Green Bench

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Introduce a distressed green bench into your shower space to add a rustic charm. This bench complements the green walls and adds a natural and earthy element. The distressed finish gives it character, and the rustic green hue harmonizes perfectly with the greenery, creating a cohesive and inviting atmosphere.

32. White And Green Stripped Walls

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Green is often associated with tranquility and balance, making it a great choice for a subway tile shower with an accent strip. The white and green striped subway tile in the shower walls harmonize effortlessly, evoking the calming essence of a lush garden retreat.

33. Red Subway Tiles Paired With Black And White Checkered Flooring

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Red subway tiles bring bold and vibrant energy to your shower space. The rich hue adds depth and character, making a strong visual statement instantly attracting attention. Whether used as an accent wall or throughout the entire shower area, red subway tiles infuse the space with a sense of warmth and sophistication that’s hard to ignore.

34. Add In A matching Rug

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Selecting a rug that matches or complements the color scheme of your subway tiles creates visual continuity. This seamless coordination ties the shower area with the rest of the bathroom, resulting in a cohesive and well-designed space.

35. Match The Walls With the Flooring

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Coordinating walls and flooring can also play tricks with perception, particularly in smaller bathrooms. Light-colored tiles on both walls and floors can open up the space, making it appear larger and more inviting. This technique can be especially powerful in creating an airy atmosphere.


Are subway tiles good for showers?

Yes, subway tiles are excellent for showers. Their sleek and classic design and water-resistant properties make them a popular choice for shower walls. The uniform lines of subway tiles contribute to a clean and timeless look, enhancing the overall aesthetic of your bathroom. Their easy-to-clean surface and durability make them a practical option for shower environments.

What size subway tile is best for shower walls?

The size of subway tiles for shower walls often depends on personal preference and the size of your shower space. The most common sizes are 3×6 inches and 4×8 inches. The 3×6 size is a classic choice that maintains the traditional subway tile for shower appearance. In contrast, the larger 4×8 tiles offer a modern twist. Ultimately, the best size depends on the visual impact you want to achieve and how well it suits the proportions of your shower area.

Is ceramic subway tile good for a shower?

Yes, a ceramic large subway tile shower is a suitable option for shower walls. Ceramic tiles are known for their water-resistant properties and durability, crucial in a shower environment. They are relatively easy to maintain, and they come in a wide range of colors and finishes, allowing you to personalize the design of your shower. Ensure the tiles are correctly installed and grouted to prevent any water infiltration.

How to clean subway tile in the shower?

Cleaning the subway tile bathroom in the shower is relatively straightforward:

  1. Regular Cleaning: Wipe down the tiles with a damp cloth or sponge to remove soap scum and mildew buildup. Use a mild, non-abrasive cleaner or a mixture of water and vinegar to maintain their shine.
  2. Grout Cleaning: Clean the grout lines with baking soda and water or a mild grout cleaner. Use a soft cloth, brush or an old toothbrush to scrub gently. Avoid using abrasive tools that could damage the grout.
  3. Deep Cleaning: You can use a commercial tile and grout cleaner for stubborn stains or grime. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and ensure proper ventilation.
  4. Preventive Measures: To minimize the need for frequent deep cleaning, consider using a squeegee or a microfiber cloth to wipe down the tiles after each shower to prevent water spots and soap residue from building up.
  5. Avoid Harsh Chemicals: Avoid using abrasive cleaners that could damage the tiles or grout over time.

If you love these ideas, don’t forget to pin the above image to your “Home and Garden” board.

I have more than three years of experience as a content and copywriter, specializing in content related to lettering, bullet journaling, skincare, food, health, and well-being. I don’t usually get too personal, but often share my love for reading, travel, and the outdoors.

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