Never underestimate the power of a beautiful kitchen. Did you know that this is the room that homebuyers consider the most important? When your kitchen is designed to look luxe with the latest amenities and new stained cabinets, that’s a major plus. Another important aspect adds an extra level of oomph to a kitchen: the perfect backsplash.

The term backsplash refers to the material that covers the area between the kitchen countertops and upper cabinets. While it’s essentially an extension of your countertop, the backsplash is very important because it must combine functionality with visual aesthetics. Here are some tips to achieve the perfect look.

Tip #1: Understand the Importance of the Backsplash

Don’t allow your backsplash to be an afterthought. When you choose the ideal backsplash, it can become the room’s focal point. This key area of the kitchen is generally positioned behind the stove and sink and serves an important purpose — it guards against water damage from steam or splashes. A backsplash keeps grease and food particles away during cooking that would otherwise ruin your walls.

A backsplash is a functional and protective part of the kitchen and an aesthetic or fashionable one. The right backsplash can enhance the room and tie everything together.

Tip #2: Compliment Your Cabinets

Once you’re pleased with how your cabinets and countertops look together, then you can choose a backsplash that will complement them. The sky’s the limit because there are many creative colors, patterns and materials to choose from. A new, vibrant backsplash can bring a welcome update to your kitchen, especially if you’re starting with basic white cabinets.

Allow the backsplash to express your personal style. Think of the space as a blank canvas for displaying your favorite look. For example, you can choose tile as your backsplash because it’s a timeless and elegant material. Or, you could opt for glass, which exudes that smooth, sleek effect. How about a backsplash made from granite or marble or a contemporary stainless-steel backsplash?

Some like their countertops and backsplash to be of the same material. Try granite countertops with a matching granite backsplash. The only advice here is to ensure the granite slabs all match with seams that appear perfect.

Tip #3: Consider Price vs Material

Each backsplash material comes with unique features, but you want to consider the price of the material, its durability and how much maintenance it may need. For instance, interior design experts recommend ceramic and porcelain tile if you want an affordable option that looks classic, is easy to clean and comes in a wide assortment of shades and patterns. Ceramic is the least expensive; however, porcelain is more durable and better for areas with more foot traffic.

If you’re looking for a mid-range cost option, there’s the lovely look of travertine tiles that give off a Mediterranean, old-world vibe. Even laminate flooring planks can be used as backsplash material for those who enjoy do-it-yourself projects.

Another key aspect of choosing a backsplash comes down to its dimensions. Tiles can vary in size and shape, for instance. How much backsplash will you need? In other words, you can go for a low-profile backsplash covering only a small portion of your kitchen walls. You could also go for the dramatic look with a backsplash that goes all the way up to your ceiling.

Tip #4: Take Your Time With a Selection

Don’t rush when looking for the ultimate backsplash. You want to choose wisely so your kitchen delivers a cohesive and gorgeous aesthetic. You also want a backsplash that isn’t too trendy and might go out of style in a few years. The pros suggest selecting a backsplash that you would be happy looking at each day for 10 years.

Before you purchase, take home a few tile samples to see how they look in your kitchen and match up against your flooring, like Stonecreek SPC click flooring. Even the lighting you have in this room can affect the color and texture of your backsplash tiles. When in the showroom, the tiles may look very different from when they’re in your kitchen, so play around with samples first.

Tip #5: To Grout or not to Grout?

An important question to think about is this: Do you go grout or grout-free? The purpose of grout is to fill in the gaps around the tiles, which will ultimately prevent them from moving or cracking over time. However, grime, gunk, mold and mildew are attracted to grout and can end up dirtying your backsplash’s overall appearance. The decision will ultimately come down to your aesthetic preferences. These days, you can find exceptional grout that doesn’t require sealing and is stain-resistant. You could also go grout-free with a backsplash made from real stone boulder panels for a luxurious look.

Think of Your Backsplash as the Icing on the Cake

Your kitchen is an important room to gather, eat, live and love in. Your backsplash can elevate this wonderful space. By following the aforementioned tips, you’ll have an easier time narrowing down your options. Just remember to have fun adding this final step for a warm, inviting kitchen.

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