What are the Different Styles of Bathtubs to Choose From?

3-Wall Alcove Tub-Shower Combinations

Your standard 5 foot alcove tub utilizes a skirt on the front of the tub, these are the most commonly used tubs and work great in smaller bathrooms. With this tub you tile three walls and the tile finishes to the top edge of your bathtub. These are usually what you would see in a smaller home where you need to get the most out of your space. You would see this style in most hotels as well.

Drop-In Tubs

This type of tub is mounted on top of a finished pedestal. This requires installing the tile or stone “deck” before the tub is installed. This installation also requires access for any motors or connections that may need maintenance. These installations are custom made and come in a variety of shapes and sizes. One thing to be aware of in purchasing the larger sized tubs is: will your water stay warm long enough for you to take your bath? You can have in-line water heaters installed that work with your jacuzzi motors and keep the temperature warm during the duration of your bath.


This style of tub is mounted on top of the rough frame pedestal. These are specially made tubs that get sandwiched in between the wood frame and the finished deck surface. These tubs cannot be removed without first removing the finish deck surface. These tubs will also require an access for maintenance. Note: Do not try to install a drop in tub as an under mount tub. We have had to replace many of these installations as they will not seal properly.

Corner Tubs

These are variations on the alcove and drop-in designs. Their large proportions are conducive to dual bathing. So couples who like to bath a lot tend to enjoy the large space. They are beautiful if done correctly and can add a lot to a bathroom. Make sure your water heater can handle the size of these tubs, for example some people buy a 50 gallon tub but only have a 30 gallon water heater. That doesn’t work because you will run out of hot water before your tub is full.

Freestanding Tubs

This features a sculpted bathing bowl on a solid base or a cradle. It is a show piece in any bathroom. It is a statement in luxury and is seen in a lot of larger homes. If you have the money to get exactly what you want, you may want a beautiful free standing bathtub that really shows off your bathroom well. Keep in mind with these free standing tubs to maintain enough clearance between walls and the tub so maintenance can be done. For example, if the bathtub is too close to a wall you cannot clean behind it.

Claw Foot Tubs

These tubs invoke images of a grand Elizabethan era of soaking. The signature legs support tubs that are especially deep. These are definitely one of the most popular bathtub styles at the moment, and I hope for a long time to come. There is so much elegance in the look of these tubs. They can make any bathroom look more beautiful just by being in the space. They are very heavy and that is definitely a down side. They are heavier in weight because they are made of cast iron material. But in my opinion the beauty outweighs the size or weight. They are great to soak in because they are deeper than most standard bathtubs these days.


1). The classic style clawfoot bathtub has one round end and the other end is squared off.

2). Double ended clawfoot bathrubs are rounded on both ends.

3.) Slipper style clawfoot bathtubs are squared off on the one end. The other end is rounded off, but is also at an upwards angle.

4.) The Double Slipper style consists of both ends being rounded off and both at an upwards angle.

Since the Slipper style and the Double Slipper style clawfoot bathtubs have at least one end that is rounded off and at an upwards angle, it makes these tubs especially nice to lay back, relax, and soak in.

This was a brief overview of the most common and most preferred styles of bathtubs out there right now. I hope you have a better idea of which style you would like for you home. If you are interested in a bathroom remodel and have any questions, please feel free to give us a call here at RWT Design & Construction. We are more than happy to help you. We know it isn’t easy to figure out every step on your own. That is why we are here, to make your remodeling experience a whole lot easier and less overwhelming.

RWT Design & Construction

Romney Tripp of RWT Design & Construction“Romney Tripp started construction in 1977 and formed RWT Design & Construction in 1992, eventually setting up the shop in Burbank. From the mid 1980’s Romney has been working on building recording studios as well as… Read more.”

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