Showers have come a long way over recent years to the point where people with smaller bathrooms might feasibly opt for a shower rather than a bath without feeling that they were making a huge sacrifice.
At the same time, however, if you want a truly luxurious personal care experience, it’s hard to think of anything which really lives up to a comforting wallow in a bath.
That’s why Steam Shower Store stocks a range of straight baths, freestanding baths, P-shaped baths, whirlpool and spa baths, double-ended baths, corner and back to wall baths and easy access, walk-in baths, along with bath panels, bath shower panels and bath wastes and fittings.
Since only the best is good enough for us here at Steam Shower Store, all our products come from brands you can trust, such as Hudson Reed, Lisna Waters, Premier Bathrooms, Ultra Finishing and Vidalux.
Here is a quick guide to what is available at Steam Shower Store and how it might fit into your life.
Straight baths are probably what most people think of when they hear the word “bath”.
The standard straight bath has the tap(s), overflow and drainage all at one end and while it is a rectangular shape, inside straight baths are often slightly tapered with the deepest end being where the taps are.
The idea behind this is that when you take a bath, you rest your head on the edge of the bath away from the taps, but when you want to stand up to take a shower, there is a bit more room for you to do so.
There are a number of reasons why straight baths are the de facto standard in most bathrooms, many of which relate to the fact that they are usually the most compact form of full-sized, lie-in baths and that the plumbing in many homes, both traditional and new-build, is often laid out on the assumption that this will be the type of bath installed.
Nevertheless, it’s important to remember the difference between “standard” and “boring”.
The simple, everyday straight bath can be very stylish, particularly if you partner it with the right bath panel.
In fact, if your current bath is still serviceable and you’d like to make it last as long as you can but still want to refresh a dated room, simply replacing the bath panel can give a bathroom a whole new look at a very affordable price.
There is something incredibly glamourous about freestanding baths.
Maybe it’s the fact that they emphasize the spaciousness of a bathroom.
The key word in that sentence is “emphasize” since the whole point of freestanding baths is that you’re able to get in and out of them from either side and to walk completely around them.
In other words, when thinking about whether or not you have space for a freestanding bath in your bathroom, you need to think about the dimensions of the bath, plus the space around it because if you’re just going to put your freestanding bath against a wall, then you’ve rather defeated the purpose of buying a freestanding bath.
In addition to thinking about space, you also need to be aware of the fact that freestanding baths are pretty much synonymous with water overflow and if you want to avoid this (or at least minimize it) then you need to look for a bath which is big enough to hold the amount of water you want with room to spare, which again increases the space requirement.
Having said all that, if you do have the space, a freestanding bath can be a real statement piece in your bathroom and even though they are essentially the modern descendents of the old tin baths put by the fire, they look equally at home in both modern and traditional settings.
These days the over-bath shower is pretty much a given in bathrooms where space is too tight for a separate, self-contained shower cabin.
This is the reason why modern straight baths tend to taper down to the end with the taps. P-shaped baths take this one step further by effectively combining a bath and a shower cubicle, perfect for when you have a little bit of extra space you’d like to use effectively, even though it’s too small for a separate shower cabin.
Even though P-shaped baths tend to be sold on practicality rather than style, it’s still perfectly possible to integrate them into a chic bathroom.
The key is to pair them with accessories which provide that extra touch of luxury and glamour.
Depending on your taste and budget, this could mean something as simple as swapping out the plug and/or taps, upgrading the panels or investing in a top-quality bath mat.
Whirlpool and spa baths bring the health benefits of spas and gyms into the comfort, convenience and privacy of your own bathroom at home.
Enjoy all the mental and physical benefits of massage while you soak in your bath.
For extra luxury, add whatever bath goodies you like and/or a scented candle.
Like P-shaped baths, whirlpool and spa baths tend to be sold more on the basis of what they can do than what they look like, but they can most definitely be styled to fit in with any choice of bathroom decor and frankly, one look at the massage jets in the base of your bath is pretty much guaranteed to bring all the “wow” factor you could possibly want.
One point to bear in mind with whirlpool and spa baths is that they generally come in one, whole piece so you need to make sure that you choose a bath that can make it all the way from the nearest point on the road to your bathroom, passing clearly through the narrowest gap on the way.
Perfect for sharing, for larger people and, let’s be honest, for smaller people who enjoy having lots of space in their baths, double ended baths take their name from the fact that you can place your head at either end of the bath since the taps, overflow and drainage are moved to the middle.
Double-ended baths can also bring greater symmetry to a bathroom, which can be particularly valuable in odd-shaped rooms.
Corner and back to wall baths are both all about the flexible use of space.
Corner baths can be a great solution when you have a small and/or odd-shaped bathroom but still want to fit in a bath, for example if you really want to have a bath in your en suite to free up the pressure on the main, family bathroom.
Back to wall baths, as their name suggests, are designed so that they can be fitted with only their back end touching the wall, whereas typically, straight baths need to have one or both ends against a wall as well.
To achieve this, the taps are placed in the middle of the bath, meaning that, effectively, all back to wall baths are double ended baths, although only some double ended baths are back to wall baths.
Back to wall baths can be a great choice where you’d really like to have a freestanding bath, but need to be realistic about the available space.
Walk in baths have long been used in places such as Asia where city living takes on a whole new dimension and space is at a premium.
Over recent years, easy access, walk in baths have begun to grow in popularity across the world, including in the UK, for the simple reason that they solve two common problems at once.
They reduce the amount of space required for a bath and they eliminate the need to step over the edge of a bath to enter and leave it, which can be a significant barrier (literally and metaphorically) to those with reduced mobility such as the elderly.
They are often partnered with over-bath showers which can keep a person wishing to have a bath warm while the bath itself is filling or draining or can be used by people who simply prefer showers (or are in too much of a hurry for a bath).
This means that easy access walk in baths are a superb choice for anyone designing a bathroom with an eye to it being used by older people but can be enjoyed by people of all ages, particularly if a high-quality, over-bath shower is fitted as well.
You invest in a bath, perhaps with an over-bath shower as well, so why stick with whatever bath panel comes with it even if it’s out of keeping with the overall look of your bathroom?
At Steam Shower Store, we have an extensive range of bath panels and bath shower panels, either of which can be an affordable and effective upgrade to any bathroom.
They may lack glamour but they’re certainly important and so we have a wide range of bath wastes and fittings to complete your bathroom.