An efficient and attractive shower can be a stunning focal point in any bathroom, and there are so many types of showers to choose from. Showers help to wake you up in the mornings, wind down after a long day, and help you present your best self to the world. No matter if you’re remodeling your existing shower or building a brand new one, you want to pick out the type of shower that will work best for your space and your needs. You can choose everything from prefabricated options that are DIY-friendly, or there are custom showers that can cost thousands of dollars. You also have to consider the various shower enclosures available.
Because all types of showers revolve around water, you can’t forget about having a high-quality water delivery system in place too. This is why we’re going to outline 20 popular types of showers you can choose from, other features to consider, design considerations, and more below.
20 Types of Showers to Consider for Your Bathroom
The goal is to get a functional and pretty shower that complements your shower’s design, and this can be a process because there are so many considerations you should keep in mind. We’ve picked out 20 high-quality options to showcase the most popular options below.
1. Body Shower
Just like you’d get from the name, this type of shower will put out a water spray from all directions. You get jets of water that are massaging and strong, and it gives you a spa-like experience each time you use it. Body showers usually come equipped with a shower tower to spray water on your body from the sides. They’re specially designed to help soothe aching muscles like the jets on a hot tub or bathtub. You can usually get this type of shower with several flow settings, including a mist and massage setting.
2. Concealed Shower
If you’re someone who really likes minimalism for the design style, a concealed shower is one type of shower to consider. The shower head gets cleverly hidden away behind different design elements so it’s not visible when you step into the bathroom. Most of these shower types have the shower head mounted right to the shower’s ceiling. So, instead of having a stream of water coming from a shower head mounted on the wall, it comes from the ceiling.
Your specific options are virtually endless, but many concealed showers have a waterfall or rainfall flow type from the shower’s ceiling. This type of shower is also very well-known for having additional features included in the cost like built-in LEDs to help you set whichever mood you like.
3. Corner Enclosure Shower
This type of shower is any freestanding-type of walk-in shower that gets designed to slide neatly into the corner of your bathroom. A corner shower can’t fit in the middle of the room’s wall like a curved, rectangular, or neo-angle enclosure showers can. This is a good option if you have a very small bathroom, but it can be slightly more expensive than installing a rectangular shower stall.
4. Curved Enclosure Shower
This is a second type of walk-in, freestanding shower, and a curbless shower or a curved enclosure type of shower has a rounded entryway. Generally speaking, this shower comes shaped like a slice of pie with the end that faces the room being rounded. The other end has a squared-off design that fits into the corner of the bathroom. This type of shower really helps to maximize your space in a tighter bathroom. They also add a contemporary design feel to the room.
Custom types of showers look nice, but you’re going to pay for them. However, they can pay for themselves in the long run because they’re usually very eco-friendly and long-lasting picks. They also boost your home’s resale value much more than your traditional prefabricated shower will. A custom shower gets built from scratch in your bathroom, and it features a unique design to meet your preferences and specific needs. Maybe you want a specific size or you want a walk-in model. You can get both with this design.
The design options are nearly endless with this type of shower. You can pick from a huge range of design options to create a totally unique shower in your bathroom. In addition to this range of design options, you can build this shower to fit virtually any size, even small spaces where you can’t fit a prefabricated model. You can also design an unconventional shower drain if you so wish.
You can easily pick from a curbless shower enclosure, a frameless shower enclosure, or you can decide if you want a shower seat or shower chair built in to give you a more relaxing experience. You also get the choice of a fixed or handheld shower head. However, this is a very difficult project to DIY, and they have a much higher price tag attached to them. Most people hire a professional contractor, and this makes the price go up even more.
6. Electric Shower
Electric showers are nice because they don’t require a hot water supply to work, unlike manual or thermostatic mixers. As long as you have a cold water supply, this type of shower will work for you. This shower has a built-in heating unit that it uses to heat up the cold water to your desired temperature. They’re a fantastic choice if you’re going to remodel your basement and have a bathroom and shower down there since they don’t need a hot water supply connection. However, they’re not extremely energy-efficient as they need electricity to heat up the cold water each time you use it.
7. Exposed Rain Shower
This type of shower is very similar to a concealed shower. However, with this shower, your water will fall directly from above you instead of coming in at an angle. Unlike a concealed type of shower, this shower comes with the shower head mounted on the wall instead of on the ceiling. You can use this type of shower to get the feeling like you’re taking a shower out in the middle of nature. You can also get high-end exposed rain shower types that add bursts of air when you turn it on to simulate the feel of raindrops.
8. Fiberglass or Acrylic
When you pick out an acrylic or fiberglass type of shower, you’ll usually get a shower that comes as one large single piece. This makes these showers a very durable option that are extremely easy to clean, and they’re usually a budget-friendly option if you don’t have a lot of money to spend on your new shower.
9. Manual Mixer Shower
This type of shower comes with a traditional shower valve, and it’s one of the most common showers used today. It mixes cold and hot water together every time you shower. You can move the valve to decide which temperature you want the water to be every time you take a shower. This is a very simple and user-friendly choice, and they have a simple installation process to them. This is also one of the most affordable shower valves to have if you’re on a tighter budget.
10. Multi-Setting Shower
If you have a multi-setting shower head, you get one that is highly adjustable. For example, centerjet and wide will get caked-on mud off. If you’re just looking to cool down because you live in a hot planting zone and you’ve been outside, massage, mist, or pulsing can help. You can move between several settings to pick out the correct flow type. The top models with this type of shower head come with more than a dozen stream settings, including massage. It also lets you switch between water stream sizes from a wider one to a narrow pulse.
11. Neo-Angle Enclosure Shower
The neo-angle enclosure type of shower is one of the most modern-looking designs you can get with a walk-in, freestanding shower. It has a very elegant look and feel to it that can easily elevate your bathroom’s look. The majority of these showers come with a five-sided base, and it’s usually a diamond pattern that fits neatly into any corner of the bathroom. A lot of these showers are on the smaller side, but they have the door placed at the center of the shower to make entering or exiting it easy.
Prefabricated types of showers are available at a huge range of prices, but they’re great for people on a tighter budget. Just like you’d get from the name, this shower is a self-contained unit that comes with a preconceived design. It’s a single-piece design that usually has laminate, plastic, molded fiberglass, or other synthetic material. A single-piece type of shower in this category has all of the standard shower features you’d expect to get, including shelves, shower panels, a shower base, and a grab bar. You’ll typically get a quadrant shower enclosure if you go with this type.
The benefits of picking out this shower type include the lower price tag, water tightness, and how easy they are to install. In fact, you can DIY it. You won’t get an extravagant shower experience with them, and they do lack customization options. They usually have a more plain look to them, and there are only a few different sizes available to choose from. You won’t be able to custom fit them to your bathroom.
13. Quadrant Enclosure Shower
A quadrant or rectangular type of shower enclosure is a walk-in shower with a freestanding design. They come in a square or rectangular shape, just like the name implies. You can choose from a large variety of sizes to fit small, medium, or larger bathrooms. If you have a smaller space, you can easily tuck this showre into a smaller corner. If you live in a smaller apartment in a place like New York City, this is most likely the shower you’ll get.
14. Shower Tower
A shower tower is a very popular and unique type of shower head that you’ll see in high-end bathroom setups. A lot of these shower towers have a vertical strip to them with body jets. The jets will spray water directly out and onto your body to give you a Jacuzzi-like feel in the shower. You can pick what area you’d like the water to come out when you set up the shower, and it’s very useful if you don’t want to get your hair wet. These towers also come with an additional head on the top that is fixed to the vertical strip. It functions just like a traditional shower head does.
15. Single-Setting Shower
You get a single setting with this type of shower, just like the name implies. However, this doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing because some people are perfectly fine with one spray pattern. In fact, this is usually the type of head you find on outdoor showers. You can’t change the flow with them, and you get the exact same stream pressure and type each time you shower. The benefit of this model is the price because they’re some of the most affordable shower heads on the market.
Installing a stone type of shower can transform your bathroom to several potential looks, ranging from a calm mountain design to a rustic style. There are dozens of types of stone styles available on the current market, so it’s easy to find one to suit your tastes. It can make a very elegant addition to your decor, and it gives your shower a very elegant look and feel. It’s very attractive, and it works well with a modern decor style. Stone is easy to upkeep and clean, but you will need to reseal it on a regular basis. Stone can last for years, but it’s more expensive.
17. Thermostatic Mixer Shower
If you have smaller children in the house, you may want to consider this type of shower. It’s a great way to ensure that you have the perfect water temperature throughout your shower’s duration. This valve works to control the temperature of your water for every shower. All you have to do is set it to the preferred temperature and each shower will stay at this temperature. It’s also much easier on the shower pump.
This is one shower system that can prevent scalding, and this reduces the chances of any burns. However, it does require you to know what the exact water temperature everyone who uses the shower wants. You get a digital control panel with this mixer, and this is why many people call them a digital shower. You won’t have to manually control the temperature because you leave this up to an internal control system.
18. Tile Shower
A tile shower is a very stylish choice to have, and it’s an extremely popular material to put on the floor of your bathroom too. What’s even better, the tile in the floor and the tile in the shower can be different. You can choose from a huge range of styles and colors with tile, and you can create custom patterns that give you eye-catching designs. However, tile does require regular maintenance. You have to regularly clean the grout lines between the tile to prevent mold growth, and getting into all of the small crannies and nooks can be time-consuming and labor-intensive.
19. Tub-Shower Combo
This is the only type of shower on our list that isn’t a freestanding model with a walk-in design. As the name suggests, this is a combination of a shower and tub where you install a bathtub at the base of the shower. This is a very space-saving design for anyone who wants to have both a bath and a shower in one room, and it’s a great way to help you save floor space.
The downside of this type of shower is that it isn’t the most attractive option. You’ll find them commonly installed in apartments and hotels, and you’ll most likely need a shower curtain to help prevent the water from spilling out. Recently, several companies have started offering tub-shower combinations with a greater emphasis on style and design. As an added bonus, you get space for your cosmetics on the side of the tub instead of having to put them outside.
20. Waterfall Shower
The final type of shower on the list is a waterfall shower, and the shower head is slightly higher than a traditional one. It gives you a very soft rainfall-esque water flow. This shower head isn’t a good pick for people who want the massage-like feeling of water pressure on their shoulders and neck. You can convert a regular shower into a waterfall shower without spending a huge amount of money by adding a gooseneck-shaped adapter that raises your shower head’s height. You’ll also have to get a waterfall shower head style.
Other Features You May Want to Add
Along with picking out your type of shower, there are several other features that you may want to include in your new shower, and having them put in at the same time you install the shower can help you save money and time.
Accessibility features are things that companies created for anyone with limited mobility. For example, low-step thresholds give an easy way to enter and exit any type of shower for the elderly, and roll-in thresholds make it easier for people in wheelchairs to get in and out. Adding another grab bar can make showering easier for everyone by reducing the chances of falling, not just for people who have limited mobility.
Incorporating a built-in seat into your shower can make it much more comfortable and make it easier to relax when you use it. Having a shower chair means that you won’t have to stand the entire time you’re in the shower. It’s also helpful if you want to shave your legs, and it can double as a small storage space for your shampoo, body wash, conditioner, or other cosmetics.
You want to get a shower that is going to be a good fit for your space, and this is where custom showers excel if you can afford it. A walk-in, freestanding shower is usually pretty spacious, and any type of shower that doesn’t have a bathtub attached to the bottom will give you even more room. Smaller showers work well in smaller bathrooms, but the trend is shifting toward larger showers. Big bathrooms usually have showers with much larger dimensions, and it’s common to create showers with more than one person in mind. You can outfit a larger shower with several shower heads too.
Handheld Shower Heads
There is nothing wrong with a fixed shower head as it’s practical and it works. However, a handheld shower head is very nice because it allows you to give yourself a full body shower quickly and easily. It’s also a nice way to save on your water usage if you’re washing the dog or shaving your legs, and you can direct the water flow to the exact location you desire.
LED lights may be popular in motion sensor lights, but they’re also popular for helping you set the mood in your shower. You can even time some LED lighting with your shower’s water flow. The lights will change and pulsate to different colors as your shower’s stream changes. This isn’t a necessary feature by any means, but it’s a fun one to consider adding.
LED lighting on your shower head is more of a want than a need, but it gives a nice visual effect to your space.
A lot of the higher-end luxury bathrooms have types of showers with a built-in steam generator. It’s hard to imagine anything more relaxing than allowing the steam to build up and create a steam room in your own home. This helps make the colder temperatures a little more bearable.
Buying Considerations for Various Types of Showers
Along with everything we outlined so far to help you pick out the perfect type of shower, there are four big buying considerations that will help define which shower and features you end up with.
Budget and Cost
The cost of your type of shower will depend on a range of factors. The type of shower you pick out will be one of the biggest costs and it can easily range from a few hundred dollars up to $10,000 and up. The biggest thing you should consider as you shop is whether you want a custom or prefabricated shower. As we talked about, a prefabricated shower is much cheaper. They’re very affordable upfront, and they also cost less when it comes to installation. You could even install a prefabricated shower as a weekend DIY project with little experience.
Custom showers can build up a huge price tag very quickly if you look at the other end of the spectrum. In addition to the higher price you’ll pay for the materials, you typically install a customer shower piece by piece. You also have to hire a professional contractor 99% of the time. Then comes the price for any extra features you want. LED lighting, shower towers, and mist generators will drive the price up more. The same rule goes for picking out high-quality materials like tile or stone. It’s much more expensive to outfit your type of shower with these materials than it is acrylic or fiberglass.
Color and Finish
Depending on which material you pick out for your shower, you could be able to customize it further by adding a specific finish or color. You can get tile or stone in virtually any color or pattern you can think of, and adding a finish will allow you to create a subdued or bold look. Each additional feature you want inside the shower you can customize based on the color scheme you pick out. Most valve controls and shower heads are stainless steel, but you can also find them in colors if you want them to match.
You don’t want a bathroom shower that sticks out. This is why it’s extremely important that you take the time to match your type of shoer to the decor and style of the bathroom. Browse through shower shapes, tpes, and sizes to narrow down which one will look best in your space. If you have a smaller bathroom, you’ll usually want a smaller showre that tucks into a corner. If you have more space, you may want a larger shower or one with several shower heads. Also, consider your bathroom’s overall look. Is it contemporary and modern or more traditional and rustic? Pick a shower design that fits in well.
You should also consider ventilation and lighting. Poor ventilation can create the perfect environment for mildew and mold growth. You want to ensure that you install a ventilation system that is strong enough to accommodate your shower size. Also, if you have a steam generator in the shower, you’ll need more ventilation, and you may want to consider getting a humidity-sensing unit. This is a fan that turns on as soon as it senses moisture in the air.
Lighting is slightly less important than ventilation, but it’s something that you want to keep in mind. Ceiling fixtures can do just fine, but they cast shadows throughout the room. You can consider mounting other light fixtures in the bathroom like sconces, vertical strips, or tasks lights. LED bulbs give you the best illumination you can get, and you can consider dimming switches for your lights.
Water System and Pressure
Finally, water pressure is one of the first things you want to check before you pick out your type of shower. The water pressure you have at your home will directly influence which shower type is best because different types of showers need different levels of pressure to function correctly. You can check the pressure using a gauge, but it’s usually easier to get a contractor in. Once you figure out the water pressure levels, you can figure out which water system you have. The three most common types include:
- Combination Boiler – This unit heats your water as you need it without storing it hot.
- Gravity System – This is an uncommon system that uses a cold water tank in the attic or loft space that trickles water down using gravity. You can add a pump to increase the water pressure.
- Unvented System – Finally, this system allows for large water volumes to get heated and stored in your water tank under high pressure until you need it.
We showcased 20 types of showers for you in this post, and we also touched on the most important buying considerations and extra features you can add. You can use this information to pick out the best type of shower for your wants, needs, and bathroom space and design.