Whether you’re renovating your bathroom, doing an update or swapping out your existing tub, there’s one factor that usually takes precedence during the process: comfort.
The reason why is simple. All of your design decisions won’t make a bit of difference if you end up choosing a tub that feels awkward when you go to relax. And given all the decisions you have to make with this kind of project, it’s easy for comfort to get lost in the shuffle.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. Let’s take a look at what goes into getting the most comfortable tub possible for your bathroom to make sure you get exactly what you want.
Size Matters When it Comes to Being Comfortable Comfort in Your Bathroom Tub
The best way to get a comfortable tub is to start at the top and focus on sizing. There are some surprising subtleties associated with this decision, starting with the size issues associated with freestanding tubs.
Basically, you can break the sizing decision down into three basic parts:
- Overall length: 48-72 inches.
- Width: 30 inches minimum, but if you’re taller with a larger frame, you may want to go larger.
- Depth: This one varies, but soaking tubs generally have a depth of at least 19 inches.
Now that we have some numbers to play with, let’s do a further breakdown.
How to Determine the Length of Your Bathtub?
There are two common length sizes, 60 and 66 inches, respectively. A 60-inch tub is the most common choice, largely because most people face limits when it comes to their overall bathroom space.
But a 66-inch tub can be considerably more comfortable. It will give you more room to stretch out, and that extra room can make a huge difference when you’re really looking to relax after a tough day. A 66-inch tub is built to be comfortable for those over 6 feet tall, which is a significant portion of the population.
An Additional Luxury Bathtub Option if You Have Multiple Bathrooms
If you have a larger bathroom, another length option is to go with a two-person tub. This is the ultimate in comfort and luxury, especially if you and your partner enjoy the unique kind of intimacy a longer tub can provide.
Now let’s consider the width of your tub. While 30 inches is generally considered comfortable, most people choose tubs that are at least 32 inches.
Width is the size factor that commonly causes problems, but they’re minor issues that can easily be solved. Most bathrooms aren’t that wide, so a 32-inch tub can complicate the installation process, so make sure you dot all your i’s and cross your t’s if you’re going to go with this particular size.
Make Sure You Go Deep With Your Freestanding Tub Material
Depth is a huge factor when it comes to comfort. The key number to remember here is 19 inches, but the preferred depth can be very subjective.
If depth matters to you, you need to look at deep soaking tubs. You can get tubs that are a lot deeper than 19 inches, which means the water will extend over your shoulders and up onto your neck.
This is where a lot of people tend to hold tensions, so adding depth can be an excellent way to add more relaxation to your bathing experience.
Finding a Comfortable Slope in Freestanding Tubs is Another Bathtub Priority
Slope is another possible issue that goes hand in hand with overall sizing. It might seem like a small matter, but it can make a huge difference when you’re talking about comfort.
Let’s take a simple example of how this might work. If you’re taller, a tub with less slope might make you sit up straight, which will help solve any overall size problems you may have.
But it may also make it harder to relax. Think about those days when you really need to stretch out, and evaluate the slope accordingly. It’s a small but important factor that can matter a lot.
If you’re adding a tub that your entire family will use, there’s another simple way to solve this problem. Just consider the tallest person in your household who will be using the tub the most often, and use that person’s comfort as a guideline to meet your bathtub needs.
Lumbar Support is Another Comfort Factor
Lumbar support is another hidden issue when it comes to having a comfortable tub. Many people who get freestanding tubs have back issues, and they need the lumbar support to completely relax and be comfortable.
That may also play into the materials you select for your freestanding tub. Lumbar support is usually only available in acrylic tubs, so you may want to steer clear of stone and metal tubs if this kind of support is a priority for you.
Why Bathtub Material Matters?
Lumbar support isn’t the only issue that can affect your choice of materials. There are a couple of other things you need to consider when it comes to material and comfort:
- Inner size. Thinner materials will give you a bit more room, and sometimes that inch or fraction of an inch can make a big difference when it comes to comfort.
- Heat retention. Many people don’t realize how important heat retention is to comfort. Acrylics, for instance, can be lined to hold more heat, while metals other than cast iron tend to lose heat faster and lower the water temperature.
- Adding whirlpool or air jets to acrylic tubs. If you’re considering adding jets as part of the buying process, you may want to go with an acrylic tub. The design makes it easier to add jets, which will be impossible to do after the fact if you select a metal or stone tub.
- Inline or surface heaters. You can also add these kinds of heaters to acrylic tubs if extra heat is a priority for your bathing experience.
- Custom arm rests. These might seem like a small add-on luxury feature, but they can make a big difference when it comes to comfort. Once again, they’re usually only available with acrylic tubs, so think accordingly when you choose your materials.
Solid Surface Materials for Freestanding Bathtubs
If aesthetics are a major part of attaining comfort, you may want to go in the opposite direction when you choose your materials.
Stone tubs are thinner, and the material tends to be denser, which will add a little bit of room. You’ll forfeit some luxury options, but the psychological effects of these kinds of tubs shouldn’t be underestimated.
Cast Iron Tubs
For those who love them, cast iron tubs make a major fashion statement. They give you an elegant look that will never go out of style, and for some people that look also says “comfort.”
It’s important to keep in mind that they are heavier and harder to install, but they will last a long time, so once you go with cast iron, you won’t need to replace it.
In addition, cast iron tubs are great for conducting heat, so they’ll maintain the temperature of your tub water for a lot longer if you’re going to do a lengthy soak.
What the Experts Say About the Most Comfortable Tub?
Believe it or not, there is a general consensus among experts when it comes to finding the most comfortable tub.
Oval tubs win the comfort prize hands down, mostly because of their shape. They also have natural lumbar angles, which means you don’t have to fidget around trying to find a comfortable position when you go to relax in your tub at the end of a long day.
There are no bath taps to get in the way, and another advantage of oval tubs is that they’re easier to clean. There are plenty of choices when it comes to style and materials, too, so it’s hard to go wrong with an oval tub.
Some people like their comfort on the exotic side, and fortunately there are choices to accommodate them as well. An hourglass tub can be a serious attention-getting, or you can go with a slipper tub to create a unique tub experience.
Luxury Add-Ons That Can Increase Comfort
For many people, comfort is about a lot more than just water temperature and materials. Here are some luxury features you can consider if you’re looking for the ultimate home spa tub experience:
- Tub lighting. Many high-end tubs offer underwater lighting, which can actually be relaxing in a therapeutic way. The lighting experience is called chromotherapy, and if you’re interested you should explore the effects of various colors on your mood, comfort level and overall health.
- Speakers. Yes, some tubs actually have speakers. If you add a surround sound system to your bathroom—which is far easier to do than it sounds, you can choose the best music to increase your sense of comfort.
- Digital controls. Being able to vary the bathing experience is an important element of comfort, so if you’re adding features like jets or lights, having digital controls can make the experience that much more enjoyable
- Adding a shower. For some people, comfort is about convenience, and adding a shower head can make a major difference. A showerhead can also be used as a substitute for jets, i.e., you can focus it on a particular part of your body when you’re bathing.
Disabilities and ADA Compliance for Freestanding Tubs
It’s important to remember that many people who value comfort in their tub choice have disabilities, and there are different ways for them to get comfort and more with a great tub.
There are even regulations associated with tubs for those who have disabilities. They come under the purview of the American Disabilities Act, which was designed with the needs of those with disabilities in mind.
These tubs are designed with easier to negotiate entrances and exits, along with special armrests and lumbar features that can make all the difference when it comes to comfort.
Use Hydro Massage to Find the Most Comfortable Tub for Your Bathroom
At Hydro Massage, we understand that comfort is a personal experience when it comes to your bathroom and getting the best possible tub.
But we also know that there are certain universal issues that cut across any tub installation, and we can help you solve any problems associated with them and make your tub buying experience as smooth as possible.
We also know about great products. We have them, and we can recommend the right ones for you, regardless of how individual your needs may be. Hydro Massage also offers excellent home installations that can make your dream bathroom come to life with whatever tub you choose.
To find out more, call us at (303) 356-7427, and you can also visit us at hydromassageproducts.com, where you can do a live chat to talk specifics when it comes to finding the most comfortable tub for your situation. We also have some great videos and blog posts that will fill you in on how they work, what they cost and how to realize the health benefits these tubs provide.
Also Read: Perfect Alcove Whirlpool Tub for Your Bathroom