Think about it, you spend a lot of time in your bathroom. And being comfortable in this setting, especially when you’re on the toilet, is important. You don’t want to have to sit on various types of toilet seats that are falling apart or uncomfortable each time you go to the bathroom. This is why you can now make the time you spend in the bathroom more comfortable by customizing your type of toilet seat so that you get the maximum comfort level possible.
You may think that picking out a type of toilet seat is an easy feat, but there are surprisingly several options to consider. The most important thing you want to keep in mind as you shop is to try and find a type of toilet seat that is compatible with your current toilet because if you end up buying the wrong one, it won’t fit correctly on the toilet bowl. We’re going to walk you through 22 types of toilet seats below, and you can use this guide to find the perfect fit.
There are dozens of types of toilet seats available, and each one offers something slightly different in terms of looks and comfort.
22 Types of Toilet Seats
If you’re on the lookout for a type of toilet set that fits with the decor of your home and offers excellent comfort, read the guide below. We’ll help you find the best toilet seat for your needs.
1. Bidet Toilet Seats
Bidets are a type of toilet seat design that comes with a bidet built-in, as you may have guessed from the name. Bidets are devices that spray a stream of water to clean you after you use the toilet. Bidet toilet seats are usually slightly more expensive than other types of toilet seats on the market, and they’re also not as common. So, you may have to search a bit if this is what you want.
2. Colored Toilet Seats
Most types of toilet seats come in white, black, or taupe once in a while, but you can get wood and plastic toilet seats that come in a huge range of colors and design possibilities since these materials take color the best. Plastic seats come in a huge range of colors, and you can also pick out prints or patterns to match your decor. In turn, you can make a statement piece out of your toilet.
The color selection is now so diverse for different types of toilet seats that many companies have online color chips you can browse through that allows you to pick out a set of colors and toilet lid that match the rest of the powder room or bathroom. You may not realize how many choices you have today, but you can buy a toilet seat that matches your tile or grout too. You also find different hues of traditional colors to get a perfect match.
3. Custom Toilet Seats
If you’re trying to get the picture-perfect match to your current decor, take a swatch of your paint color or wallpaper to the printers. You can get a unique toilet seat cover that fits your current toilet that is an exact match to your decor scheme. This way, it can tie into the room nicely.
4. Heated Toilet Seats
The Japanese were responsible for this type of toilet seat, and this trend is now quickly catching on around the world, including in the United States. If you were to live in a northern portion of the United States during the cold winter months, a heated toilet seat can make a huge difference in your comfort level.
5. Lighted Toilet Seats
This type of toilet seat is a unique way to prevent you from having to turn the light on if you get up during the night to use the bathroom. The lighted toilet seat emits a soft glow from the toilet bowl, and it comes in a huge range of colors to help you find a great look that helps you find your way through the dark.
6. MDF Wood Toilet Seats
This type of toilet seat is made out of pressed wood fibers, and they’re easy to maintain and clean, comfortable, and easy to get. Since these seats come with a protecting coating, they’re heavier than other types of toilet seats. The seats are also available in a range of color options, and you can use graphics or designs to decorate them. White-colored seats look very similar to plastic seats, however, this wood fiber is much warmer than traditional plastic.
7. Open or U-Seats
Open front or U-shaped types of toilet seats are the ones you find in most public bathrooms. There is a very good reason for this, and it’s due to the fact that the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) requires it. According to the Uniform Plumbing Code 411.3, made in 2018, all public toilets should have this type of toilet seat or an automatic seat cover dispenser.
The reason for these seat types is sanitation. When kids use the bathroom, someone squats instead of sitting, or someone doesn’t lift the seat, uring can drip on the front portion of the seat and down the front of the bowl. Getting rid of this portion of the toilet seat keeps the germs from spreading as much. These toilet seats are usually made out of metal or plastic, and it’s rare to see them in residential spaces.
8. Oval (Elongated)
These are oval-shaped or pointed seats that are longer than they are round, and they usually measure roughly 18.5-inches. Elongated types of toilet seats are usually more comfortable than rounded ones, but they require more space. They are good for bigger-sized bathrooms, but they’re also more expensive.
Elongated types of toilet seats are preferred by taller or larger-sized people, but they may not work well for younger children. If the toilet is too close to the door, then it’s not a good idea to install this toilet seat because there is a chance that the door can hit the toilet as it swings open or closed, and this increases the risk of damage.
9. Padded Toilet Seats
If you spend a decent amount of time in the bathroom, you may want to consider investing a little more money to make your type of toilet seat extra comfortable. A padded seat can increase your comfort levels and take your bathroom experience of a notch or two each time you use it.
Also, padded types of toilet seats are warmer to sit on. They do tend to have a much shorter lifespan than plastic or wooden seats, because, with regular use, the seats can split. It’s something to consider though if you find a regular type of toilet seat too uncomfortable to sit on.
10. Plastic Toilet Seat
This is the most common choice when it comes to types of toilet seats. Plastic seats are usually flexible, inexpensive, and very easy to clean and maintain. Thermoplastic and thermoset plastic are the two main materials used to create them. Seats that feature thermoset plastic are more durable and resistant to scratching, but they’re also more expensive to buy. Thermoset seats mimic the look of ceramic, and this makes them much more aesthetically-pleasing to look at.
On the other hand, thermoplastic toilet seats are cheaper and found on many entry-level types of toilets. They come with a shiny, glossy finish and are more durable, but it’s easy to scratch them by accident. The main drawback of using any type of toilet seat made out of plastic is that, during the colder weather, the seat can get very cold to the touch and uncomfortable, especially if you just got up from a warm bed. Also, if you don’t use them properly, they can break or crack.
Plastic toilet seats are some of the most common options you have available, but they can also break relatively easily.
11. Polyresin Toilet Seats
Polypropylene or polyresin types of toilet seats give you a more flexible, lightweight material over wood or plastic. They’re also available in several designs and colors, and these are your more decorative toilet seats. If you’ve ever seen a clear or see-through toilet seat that had fish that seemed to swim across it or a lobster sitting around, or you’re someone who wants to swap toilet seats for the holidays, this is the one to go with. Pick from Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Halloween, Christmas, Easter, and more.
12. Porcelain Toilet Seats
Porcelain types of toilet seats are a very common type available on the market. They are conveniently made from the same materials as the rest of the toilet, and this makes cleaning and sanitizing them a much easier project. You can use the same cleaner across each surface without worrying about damaging one or the other.
13. Quick-Release Toilet Seats
Cleaning your toilet can be a challenge, especially trying to get into all of those small areas around the hinges. This is where this type of toilet seat can come in handy. These toilet seats allow you to remove the seat and lid from the toilet very quickly, and you won’t need to unscrew the bolts that attach the toilet to the seat. Not only does this type of toilet seat make it very easy to give the seat a thorough clean along with the lid, but it also allows you to get into those hard-to-reach spaces on your toilet bowl that you can’t easily get to with a normal toilet seat.
14. Raised Toilet Seats
Many people like this type of toilet seat. They’re very popular with taller people, the elderly, and people who have posture issues, chronic pain, or other disabilities. Some have attached handles in the design while others give you a simple elevated seat.
15. Round Toilet Seats
A round type of toilet seat with a lid will measure between 16 and 17 inches from the front to the mounting hole on the toilet bowl. On the other hand, the oval or elongated type of toilet seat will measure between 17 and 18 inches from the front of the seat to the mounting hole. A square seat with a lid usually comes in the standard size. Square seats come with a closed front design, and round and oval seats have both open and closed front designs. Round toilet seats are what you usually see in most residential bathrooms. It’s a very simple and traditional design with no hole in the font.
16. Smart Toilet Seats
If you’re after a more luxurious type of toilet seat, a smart toilet seat is a great answer. They have everything you could ask for with a range of advanced but optional features built in. These features include LED night and day lighting, bidet cleaning, heated seats, deodorizing, air-drying, adjustable temperature levels, automated cleaning, energy saving modes, and adjustable water levels. And, the best part of choosing this type of toilet is that it comes outfitted with a remote that lets you control all of these functions with the push of a button.
17. Soft-Closing Toilet Seats
If you have kids, chances are, you’ve heard them slam the toilet seat after they finish using it. Not only can this be a very jarring noise, but it can also increase the risk of pinching little fingers. You can avoid all of this by choosing a soft-closing toilet seat. If you don’t want this kind of lid but still want to protect your kid’s fingers, you can pick out a heavy-duty lid that has a child seat you can add or remove, or there are slow-close seats available too.
18. Square or D-Shaped Toilet Seats
If you’re after a more contemporary look in your bathroom, a square-shaped or D-shaped type of toilet seat can be a nice choice. These shapes are aesthetically appealing, sleek, and stylish, and they look fantastic with minimalist-style spaces. Generally speaking, these are more angular, soft-close types of toilet seats that lend a modern flair to your bathroom. However, you want to ensure that your toilet bowl will fit these more unusual shapes.
19. Squatting Pan Toilet Seats
This type of toilet seat features a classic design. It comes with a very unique design that you’d find hard-pressed to find in the United States. However, they’re very popular in India and Japan. They’re generally less expensive than traditional types of toilet seats, and they connect directly to the drainage pipe using an S or P trap that keeps a distance from the gateway of the toilet to the drain line using a water seal.
When you see this toilet, you’ll notice that it’s sunken into the floor instead of sitting above it. They’re usually square instead of round, and you literally step over it and squat to use it. When you finish, water flushes your waste away, just like a normal toilet.
20. Transparent Toilet Seats
Maybe you’re after something that looks funny for your bathroom. If so, this type of toilet seat is a unique pick. You can get a clear toilet seat with a lid that has an inserted design, like fish that seem to swim around the inside of the lid.
21. Wood Toilet Seats
You can choose from solid wood or molded wood when you look at this type of toilet seat. Natural wood gives you more versatility when it comes to decorating since you can easily stain it almost any color you want, and you can pick from a matte or high-gloss finish. The most popular choices include natural wood, medium-density fiberboard, and bamboo. One big downside of using natural wood as your type of toilet seat is that it’s easy to damage it by using the wrong cleaners. While you won’t have to worry about splinters, any wood or wood-based product can warp if it’s extremely moist. Other than this, these toilet seats are very durable, and the design and style give you a much more opulent feel.
22. Wrap Over Toilet Seats
The final type of toilet seat on the list comes with a lid that completely covers the toilet seat. This lends a very stylish, minimalist, and modern look and feel. Wrap-over toilets have a more neat and compact look and feel. Since they have protection from the top lid, this helps to keep the seat cleaner.
Choosing A Type of Toilet Seat – Considerations
When it’s time to go shopping for a new type of toilet seat, you don’t want to wander around your local home improvement store and pick out the first thing you see on the shelf. There are a few things you want to keep in mind as you shop to ensure that you get the correct type of toilet seat for your design aesthetic, needs, and personality.
Durability and Comfort
The durability of the seat and your comfort are the two most important factors to keep in mind when you pick out a toilet seat. You might want something that is going to be comfortable to sit on for extended periods if you need it. And, if you have high traffic or kids, the durability is something you want to consider.
For example, a wooden toilet seat is a good choice if you want something that stays warm and comfortable. However, it’s challenging to keep it clean and you may need to sand and refinish it every few years to keep it looking nice. On the other hand, plastic toilet seats are less comfortable and colder, but they’re easier to clean.
Material and Color
You need to decide what material you want for your type of toilet seat. The most common options you have are bamboo, plastic, and wood, but there are also some odd materials we touched on earlier. The hinge and bolt materials are also important considerations to keep in mind. Zinc-plated or stainless steel are the most durable options, but plastic doesn’t rust and is easier to clean while being less durable.
The color you pick out is entirely up to you, and there are dozens of options to choose from, including patterns and designs. You might want a more neutral black, white, or beige. Or you might choose to go with a color scheme that matches your bathroom decor or stands out.
You have to measure your toilet to make sure whatever type of toilet seat you pick out is the right size. You don’t want to pick out a seat that is too small or big for the bowl. The last thing you want to do is get an ill-fitting seat that is constantly slipping to one side or the other or it’s so tight that you can’t move it. To get an accurate measurement to work with, you’ll need to find out the width, length, and height of the bowl itself. Make sure to either take a picture of the measurements or write them down so you have them when you get to the store.
Taking your time when you shop for your type of toilet seat helps to ensure that you get one that will last and be comfortable for years.
Finally, there are a few special considerations to keep in mind as you shop, such as whether or not someone in the immediate family has a disability that impacts how they use the toilet, or if you have younger kids or run a home-based business that involves having children around, like a daycare.
For example, if someone in your family has a disability that affects how they use the bathroom, you may want to pick out a bidet or raised type of toilet seat. A bidet-style seat attaches to your toilet and gives you a water stream to clean yourself after you use the restroom, and raised seats are food for people who have trouble sitting or bending down. They add a few inches of height to your seat, and this makes it more comfortable and easier to use.
There are also seats that come with nightlights built in, and these can be very helpful if you routinely need to use the bathroom in the middle of the night and you don’t want the bright overhead light on. Some seats have soft-closing lids that are great if you have pets or small kids who like to play around the toilet seat. It prevents the lid from slamming down and pinching anything.
The shopping climate today leans more toward specialities, so if you have your mind set on a certain feature, it’s a good idea to try and Google it. It most likely exists already and you can purchase it online and have it shipped right to your door. The selection of types of toilet seats has grown so much in recent years, it’s easy to find the perfect fit for your bathroom.
Jen is a master gardener, interior designer and home improvement expert. She has completed many home improvement, decor and remodeling projects with her family over the past 10 years on their 4,500 sf Victorian house. She is also a passionate farmer who keeps goats, chickens, turkeys cows and pigs on her farm, and an instructor for her community’s Organic and Sustainable Farming project.