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Glossary of Bathroom Terms and Definitions

Bathroom remodeling can be overwhelming if you're not completely familiar with all the associated terminology. To help you navigate the world of bathroom vanities, faucets, sinks and other bathroom fixtures, Modern Bathroom has created this helpful glossary of definitions for some of the most common bathroom-related terms. If you're unsure about a bathroom vanity feature, unclear on the benefits of different counter materials or simply want to communicate better with your general contractor, you can brush up on your bathroom furniture vocabulary right here.

A

Antique Vanity
A bathroom vanity that is made of new materials but which features styling, hardware and finishes representative of an antique era such as Victorian or Colonial

B

Backsplash
A piece of granite, marble, stone or glass that attaches to the back of the bathroom vanity counter and protects the adjoining wall from water damage due to splashes
Basin
The container that holds water from a bathroom vanity faucet, also referred to as a sink
Brass
A metal alloy made of copper and zinc known for being strong and resistant to corrosion, sometimes treated for an antique look and often used in the construction of bathroom faucets and sinks

C

Cabinet
The storage area of a bathroom vanity featuring drawers and/or interior shelves, or a separate storage unit (wall-mounted or freestanding) used to house bathroom products such as towels, soap and cosmetics
Caesarstoneā„¢
A material made of 93% natural quartz known for its stain, scratch, and heat-resistant properties, typically used in bathroom vanity countertops
Ceramic
A material made from nonmetallic minerals such as clay, known for its hard, heat-resistant and corrosion-resistant properties, typically used for bathroom vanity sinks and countertops
Clawfoot
Refers to a bathtub that has four "feet" shaped like an animal's foot and claws, and which is free-standing in style rather than enclosed in an alcove or dropped into a tile enclosure
Contemporary Vanity
A bathroom vanity that features a modern take on traditional styling, with a look that is popular in the current era
Counter or Countertop
The top surface of a bathroom vanity that surrounds the sink, typically made of glass, stone, granite or marble

D

Demilune
Crescent or half-moon shaped, typically used to describe bathroom vanities
Double Vanity
A bathroom vanity that includes two sinks, typically used in master bathrooms

F

Factory-Direct
Refers to a retailing method where products are manufactured and sold by the same company without a middle man, typically resulting in lower prices
Faucet Mount
The opening(s) in a bathroom vanity countertop for the installation of a faucet, typically a single hole (for one-piece faucets) or three holes (for widespread faucets)
Finish
A stain or weathering process applied to wood in order to give it a certain color or appearance
Full Immersion
Refers to bathtubs that are deeper than normal, allowing water to cover the bather up to their shoulders

G

Granite
An igneous rock typically composed of quartz and other minerals, known for its hardness and durability, often used in slab form as a countertop for bathroom vanities

H

Hand-Hammered
A process whereby metal is pounded by hand with a hammer to induce a rough surface, typically used on metal sinks
Heat-Tempered
Refers to glass that has been hardened to prevent cracking and shattering through a process of rapid heating and cooling
Integral or Integrated
Refers to vanity sinks that are constructed of the same piece of material as the bathroom vanity countertop, resulting in a clean, continuous surface that deters the growth of mold and bacteria

L

Laminate
A composite material formed through the pressing and bonding of several layers of wood, plastic or other materials
Lavatory
A sink or basin with running water and a drain, can also be used to refer to a toilet or bathrooms in general

M

Man-Made Quartz
A material that has the strength and durability of natural quartz, but which is created using a man-made process
Marble
A metamorphic limestone-based rock featuring natural color variations and known for its hardness and smoothness, often used in slab form as a countertop for bathroom vanities
Modern Vanity
A bathroom vanity that pushes the boundaries of contemporary styling, featuring cutting-edge, futuristic design
Mounting Ring
A ring-shaped piece metal and rubber, used to stabilize curved vessel sinks and seal the opening between the sink and drain pipes

O

One-Piece Toilet
A toilet comprised of one single piece of china or other material (as compared to a two-piece toilet)

P

P Trap
A section of pipe that contains sewer gases and prevents them from being released through bathroom sink drains
Pedestal Vanity
A narrow, vertically-shaped vanity that usually does not include a vanity cabinet, sometimes featuring a sink and base both constructed of one piece of porcelain or china
Pop-Up Drain
A drain for bathroom sinks with an adjustable cap that can be lifted to allow water through or lowered to seal the drain and fill the basin
Porcelain
A nonporous, typically white material made from ceramic that has been fired and then glazed, often used in the manufacture of bathroom vanity sinks and countertops
Pre-Cut
Typically refers to a bathroom vanity countertop that has been cut to allow the insertion of a drop-in sink

R

Rub-Through
Refers to a finishing technique that involves sanding away the top layer of paint or stain to reveal the wood below, sometimes used on bathroom vanities to create an antique look

S

Shower Panel
A shower fixture that features multiple showerheads at varying heights and locations to target different parts of the body
Single-Hole Faucet Mount
Refers to a bathroom vanity countertop that has a single hole for the installation of a bathroom faucet

T

Transitional Vanity
A bathroom vanity representing a style found between antique and modern, sometimes referred to as contemporary traditional
Two-Piece Toilet
A toilet comprised of a separate bowl and tank (as compared to a one-piece toilet)

V

Vanity Console
Another name for a vanity cabinet or one-piece vanity and countertop
Vanity Set
Refers to a bathroom vanity, mirror and sometimes storage cabinet that are sold together for one price
Veneer or Veneered
A thin layer of wood applied to another surface for decorative purposes, or a surface that has been decorated with veneers, often used on upscale bathroom vanity cabinets
Vessel Sink
A bathroom sink designed to sit partially or fully above the vanity countertop, typically made of colored glass, porcelain or ceramic
Vitreous China
Porcelain or ceramic that has been made nonporous and glossy through the heated application of a glass or silica based solution

W

Wall-Mounted
Refers to bathroom vanities, mirrors, faucets and storage cabinets that must be installed on a vertical wall rather than stood on a horizontal surface
Widespread Faucet Spacing
Refers to a bathroom vanity countertop that has three holes for the installation of a bathroom faucet, where the number of inches refers to the distance between the two outside holes (ex. 8" widespread spacing)