Shower curtain or bath screen: which is right for you?

Shower curtain or bath screen: which is right for you?

Pauline, Self-taught DIYer, Leeds

Guide written by:

Pauline, Self-taught DIYer, Leeds

It's not always easy to choose between a bath screen and shower curtain. But if you want to keep your water in the bathtub, it's a choice you'll have to make! Bath screens can be fixed or mobile while shower curtains can come in various materials like nylon, cotton or plastic. Read on for our tips to help you decide.

Important features

  • Advantages and disadvantages
  • Installation requirements
  • Materials and price
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Bath screens: advantages and disadvantages

Bath screens are designed to stop water from splashing out of the bathtub and ending up all over the bathroom. A stylish option, bath screens are ideal for transforming a bathtub into a stand-up shower to keep the whole family happy. With this in mind, be sure to choose a model that is tall enough for each user to be able to rinse off comfortably.

There are several different types of bath screen: some are fixed in place while others feature one or several mobile (swivelling) parts. Bath screens also come in different materials: most commonly glass or PVC.

Advantages of a bath screen

Ideal for separating the bathtub off from the rest of the bathroom, bath screens offer a number of advantages:

  • with a mobile, fold-out bath screen, you can close off the entire length of the bathtub making it very watertight;

  • bath screens are attractive while also offering privacy (if you opt for an opaque model or one with a design);

  • prices usually start at around £50 (but can stretch to over £300);

  • shower screens made from solid materials will give your bathroom a stylish edge, especially models made of glass and stainless steel.

Disadvantages of a bath screen

It's important to be aware of the drawbacks of bath screens before fitting out your bathroom :

  • you will have to drill into walls to secure the screen;

  • you will have to ensure the screen is fitted with precision to make sure it is watertight;

  • you must clean glass screens thoroughly to limit limescale build-up;

  • cleaning the entire screen and the joints is essential to prevent mould growth. This should be done after showering or bathing – bearing in mind that not all parts will be easily accessible.

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Shower curtains: advantages and disadvantages

Available in a range of sizes, shower curtains come in different materials and can be chosen to match your existing decor, whether you go for a solid colour or pattern.

Advantages of a shower curtain

The upsides of a shower curtain :

  • affordable prices

  • wide variety of unique designs;

  • you won't have to drill any walls as shower curtains often rest on a bar fitted with a spring mechanism;

  • easy and convenient to change.

Disadvantages of a shower curtain 

As most of us know, shower curtains do have some drawbacks:

  • beware of the quality of the product: poor-quality shower curtains do not age well and the fittings are not strong;

  • shower curtains made of plastic can stick to the body when wet which makes for quite an unpleasant sensation. To avoid this phenomenon, it's best to go for a fabric shower curtain;

  • shower curtains that are left wet around the bottom (which is the last part to dry off) can also suffer from mould and bacteria growth and turn yellow or orange over time;

  • shower curtains can make your bathroom look a little cheap.

While shower curtains are easy to install and interesting from a financial standpoint, they do create a visual barrier. In more compact spaces, shower curtains can make your bathroom look even smaller. On the other hand, bath screens offer a cleaner finish and can add a lot to your bathroom, both in terms of convenience and aesthetics. Now, it's up to you to decide!

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Guide written by:

Pauline, Self-taught DIYer, Leeds

Pauline, Self-taught DIYer, Leeds

With a handyman-father, I grew up with the soft sound of the sander and hammer on weekends. I am both manual and cerebral, I learned the basics of DIY and the customisation of furniture because I was passionate. The salvage mentality is a true way of life that allowed me to know how to use all the tools and products needed to give something a second life, from a sander to varnish. I have two favourite activities: the transformation of old furniture and decoration tips. I am always ready to lend a helping hand to revamp a table or to restore a mirror that was intended for the tip that will become a friend’s centrepiece. I’m convinced that it’s possible to reinvent an interior by small, regular modifications and I constantly research low-cost ideas.

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