Disclaimer | This article may contain affiliate links, this means that at no cost to you, we may receive a small commission for qualifying purchases.
No matter how uniquely you try and design your bathrooms, the shower always seems to be lacking in two specific things: privacy and aesthetics.
A bare open shower will always leave a feeling of incompleteness in the mind of the house owner.
So what better to solve this problem than with the help of shower doors, right?
They are some of the very few bathroom accessories that can cater to both these issues simultaneously and are now off-late rising in popularity among homeowners.
Featured Image via Visualizer Inkreacje
However, if picking the right type of shower door seems like a complicated task to you, then our list today might just be the inspiration you need!
So sit back and read along.
Types of Shower Doors
- Types of Shower Doors
- In Terms Of Operation
- In terms of Shape
- In Terms of Frames
- In terms of Glass Style
- In Terms of Additional Features
- In terms of Style
In Terms Of Operation
Hinged Shower Doors
One of the more conventional shower doors on our list today. The hinged bathroom doors work exactly like the regular doors around the house.
They have pivot joints built into their designs that allow these doors to swing out and open whenever someone wants to get in and out of the shower, these are entitled swinging shower doors.
Though conventional in build and design, these doors are some of the most versatile model options out there. They fit a variety of bathroom styles ranging from stand-alone showers to bigger and wider family restrooms.
But they fit the larger bathrooms much better than, the smaller ones.
If you choose to fit these doors around the shower, then you can always opt for a glass base, which helps to provide a bit of elegance to the overall aesthetic appeal of the bathroom.
The Sliding Shower Door
Commonly known as the ‘bypass’ shower door by many homeowners, the sliding shower door has a function which is quite similar to that of a sliding patio door.
It is generally constructed out of two glass panels propped on a track, where it can easily roll or slide along the line of the pathway.
There are also certain door models that have mechanical rollers built into it to make the shower doors easier to open and close, making it much more user-friendly.
These shower door models are just amazing to look at and are incredibly functional, to say the least.
They can be used for vasrious bathrooms, even for showers that are stand-alone, and can also be mounted on a bathtub. Its purpose will depend primarily on the configuration of your bathroom but are best suited for smaller structures as they don’t have a swing-in/swing-out, and hardly requires much space to operate.
Fixed Bathroom Doors
Fixed bathroom doors can provide your shower with a fantastic modernistic touch, and significantly enhance its overall appeal.
However, these frameless shower doors are not limited in its use for the more standard bathrooms alone. If you have a gorgeous and highly-modern restroom, to begin with, the fixed shower doors can be quite effectively used to show it off without having to open the door, to begin with.
These frameless doors are designed with glass panels that are installed and do not move once they are screwed into the fixtures.
Though very aesthetically appealing on their own, a lot of owners today tend to buy the ones that have various designs as well as frames or even etching in the glass to make for an even more attractive set-up.
But, make sure that your bathroom is large enough before installing these frameless doors, as they don’t fit smaller showers all that well.
The Folding Shower Door
Nothing screams class and elegance more than folding shower doors, which can make the dullest of bathrooms come to life.
They primarily come in two different types of ‘bi-fold shower doors’ and ‘tri-fold shower doors’ and have a very unique folding mechanism, which looks and feels incredibly modernistic.
These are made out of several glass panels, out of which only one of them is fixed to the wall, while the others are free to fold and move as they are attached to each other with flexible hinges.
Much like the folding closet doors, they operate in quite the same way and are very user-friendly with easy to open and easy to maintain features, making them a very popular door choice for any modern bathroom.
Moreover, the lack of a swing feature makes them quite versatile and can allow them to operate quite well in small and enclosed spaces, like the shower. Most commonly you will encounter bi fold shower doors but tri fold shower doors start to gain popularity as well.
In terms of Shape
Corner Shower Door
Corner shower doors don’t exactly have a set structure. The doors are in no way installed at right angles in the bathroom, because of the particular location of the shower inside it.
Corner shower doors are fit around only those showers which are located at a particular corner of the bathroom. The doors can have five or more than five glass walls depending on the shape and size of the shower.
Most of these panels will form the shower surround, while the rest of them will form the glass wall as well as the shower door.
Just like the folding showers, these ones have a hinged design as well; but the panels will be fixed in place, without a folding feature while the door will be allowed to swing in and out.
Hence, they are best suited for large bathrooms, which will have more than enough space for the shower door to operate.
The Alcove Shower Door
If you’re looking for a sliding shower door for your smaller bathroom, then the Alcove design might just be the perfect model to suit it.
These sliding shower doors take up very little space, to say the least, but you will have to have some space in front and the required amount of clearance for the swing door to work optimally.
However, if you have claustrophobic tendencies, it’s better not to opt into this sliding shower door model, as the entire design function will feel rather closed and limited. It’s not as free or even as luxurious in design as some of the other models on the list, but it’s the most cost and space-effective.
It’s a much more utilitarian purchase, as it gets the job done, and does it rather well.
They are just amazing when it comes to giving the smaller bathroom a new look.
Round Shower Door
Though at first glance, these type of doors may seem like models with a swing-in/swing-out function, that’s simply not the case.
These doors have a sliding mechanism and are specifically designed to enclose the shower in a rounded glass structure that will glide gently in and out along the track to close and open the enclosure.
These shower doors work amazingly well, almost anywhere in the bathroom; including the corners, and boasts a pretty elegant touch that can improve the decor of any restroom design.
As these shower doors are not flat, the glass thickness is not all that much, and hence, it will not require much space in your bathroom to be functional.
It will fit small and large restroom sizes equally well and are rather pleasing to look at.
In Terms of Frames
Framed Shower Door
These types of shower doors are quite popular today. They come designed with a frame that runs all the way around the glass panels to give it a sort of a defining border.
These frames are usually made up of a composite material or aluminum and are just perfect when it comes to providing a sort of aesthetic beauty to your bathroom.
However, these doors have a track along the bottom, which forms a sort of an edge to catch the dripping water, and would need regular cleaning to prevent the growth of mold and mildew.
But this downside aside, one aspect of the framed glass shower doors which we absolutely love is that it comes in a variety of finishes to pick from. It makes it quite easy to match the color of the hardware to the bathroom and is one of the reasons why it’s so popular today.
Frameless Shower Door
Frameless shower doors are much easier to clean in comparison and are much more economical as well.
They have the ability to make the bathroom feel a lot more spacious, which the framed ones, on the other hand, makes one feel quite limited.
The glasses of the frameless doors can be around 3/4-inches thick and making them much heavier and as a result, easier and more comfortable to operate. Thes glass panels can also come with a towel bar, which you can very easily mount and can come rather handy for a variety of purposes.
And as the bar can be mounted on the glass, it’s going to be very sturdy, to say the least, so you do not have to be concerned about it breaking down and becoming damaged in the process.
Semi-Frameless Shower Door
If you’re searching to get the best of both worlds, then the semi-frameless versions of the shower doors might just be exactly what you’re looking for.
They have a bit of metal around the actual perimeter of the shower; however, the shower door itself is absolutely frameless, except on the bottom side.
Semi-frameless shower doors can indeed be made to look very unique, and can certainly grant a lasting impression on your bathroom.
They are very sleek in design and can quite easily fit any form of bathroom design effortlessly.
But on the downside, just like for the framed doors, water will start to form on the bottom of these glass panels and will need regular cleaning to prevent the growth of mold and mildew.
However, they are easier to clean than the framed models and can be better to look at under certain settings.
In terms of Glass Style
The clear glass shower doors and panels are some of the most popular models today. Their minimalist design gives them a sort of elegance, which, when coupled with the unobstructed view, makes them the go-to choice for many homeowners.
These showers are best for those who live alone or aren’t afraid of being seen or are in the habit of locking their bathroom doors every time they step into the shower.
Now, one advantage of this shower door model which we absolutely love is how clean it looks, and how less of an effort it takes to clean it.
The unobstructed view helps a lot as well, especially if you have a smaller than average bathroom with minimal or dim lighting. It will greatly enhance the visibility inside the shower and make for a memorable showering experience every day.
Frosted Shower Doors
These are your semi-opaque shower doors, which allow just a sliver of light through.
In terms of functionality, they’re exactly the opposite to that of the clear glass doors and would be beneficial for those users who have a lot of residents at home and forget to lock the door when entering the shower.
These shower panels provide one with a sense of much-needed privacy, and you won’t have to worry about anyone walking in on you while you’re still in.
However, the frosted glass doesn’t have a clean finish like the clear ones and moreover will need you to have bright bathroom lights, so that you have the necessary visibility inside the shower.
But before you want to invest in a frosted glass door, make sure that the amount of frosting on the door is to your liking.
Patterned Glass Shower Door
Patterned glass panels are a very creative option to pick from the different variety of glass doors out there today.
They are an amazing way of upgrading your bathroom with minimal effort and expenses.
And as the patterned glass shower doors come in a lot of different patterns and designs, you can pick the one that can best suit your bathroom decor. From flower designs to leaves to even tree branch themed panels, you get to choose from a whole wide range, allowing you to customize your shower area the way you want.
One advantage that these patterns do have is that they are much easier to clean, and you will simply have to wipe the panels down with a cloth to get them looking as good as new.
But you will have to wipe them down more regularly as water can start to form around the edges and lead to the growth of mold and mildew.
Obscure Shower Doors
The Obscure shower doors are perfect for busy homes where there is a lack of privacy when it comes to bathroom time every morning.
The panels of this glass door are specifically made to make it near about impossible to see the person inside the shower and grants a great sense of privacy to anyone using it.
However, these obscure glass panels are not entirely opaque and allow a lot of light to enter it so that you don’t have to shower in the dark. But they’re a bit more expensive than the other glass types and are also harder to clean, and you will have to clean them periodically as well.
These glass doors can be the perfect choice if privacy is important to you.
The Rain Door
The rain doors work much like the obscure ones but are much more intricately designed and incredibly pleasing to look at.
If you want to enhance the overall aesthetic appeal of your bathroom along with maintaining your privacy during shower time, then the rain doors are going to be the ideal pick.
Tough, they are not as patterned as the patterned glass doors, they are quite sleek in build, and are very elegant due to the reduced thickness of the glass.
Rain doors are specifically designed to be versatile enough to fit into any kind of bathroom decor. If you have a rather modern or minimalist bathroom, then these glass doors will fit right in
Unlike the patterned glasses, the design on the rain door is not as loud, and hence can never be the centerpiece to your bathroom. So, you can bring in other design elements to customize your bathroom the way you want.
The Tinted Glass Door
The tinted glass doors are usually colored and come in a variety of tones such as bronze, black as well as certain shades of grey.
You can choose to make the glass panels of this door semi-opaque or completely black, depending on how much privacy you need.
It will depend on the lighting of your bathroom as well. As dark panels will not allow any light to enter, it’s important to see if you can house a lighting fixture inside the showering area if you’re going to install a black shower door.
In terms of privacy and functionality, tinted glasses are a good pick. But they are not as crisp looking as the clear glass panels.
The Hammered Glass
Hammered glass doors around the bathroom help to provide a very fun showering experience.
Hammered glasses boast textures and have specific indentations on the surface, but that’s only on one side of the glass.
These types of glass doors are called so because the indentations on the surface look like hammered metal. These designs and features provide a sort of a decorative texture that allows the light passing through it to create a variety of visual effects to dance across the walls of the shower.
But these glass panels are rather expensive, and not as durable, so some repeated violent door closing can cause them to crack and shatter on impact.
In Terms of Additional Features
Safety and Tempered Glass
If you have a lot of kids at home and are afraid that rough use or kids playing with the glass door will lead to the glass cracking and shattering, then going for a tempered glass build would be a wise choice indeed.
But tempered glass is not exactly known for its durability. It will break if the door is slammed repeatedly or if someone falls onto the glass; however, it will not shatter into a million little pieces.
With kids running around the house, glasses that can shatter into tiny shards can indeed be very dangerous. Hence, tempered glass shower doors and panels tend to be a very family-friendly and safer alternative.
They are affordable as well and easy to clean and maintain, but may not look as elegant or luxurious as some of the other glass types.
Though shower curtains are a more familiar bathroom accessory when it comes to the bathtub area, there has been a steady rise in the use of glass doors as well.
These types of glass doors are specifically designed to fit on the top of the tub and are actually a really good alternative to the curtain both in terms of privacy as well as keeping the water inside the tub.
They also help make the tub look much more compact than the shower curtains, and are much easier to clean in comparison and last longer as well.
These doors have the capability of making your tub look significantly more expensive and classy. They offer a rather elegant touch and can fit a variety of bathroom designs seamlessly.
In terms of Style
Every home has a unique bathroom design. Where some likes to apply a particular theme behind the design of their restroom, others like to go for a more contemporary and classic look, emphasizing on practicality and minimalism over everything else.
So, if your bathroom has a clean utilitarian look about it, then the contemporary glass doors would be the perfect choice for a space like that. So instead of going for a bulkier and thicker glass and design choice that would take up extra space, we would recommend that you go for a much lighter and thinner glass type.
It will help make your bathroom look a lot more spacious in the long run. These glass doors usually support minimal metal, if any, and are often frameless, as a frame would always make it bulky and heavy.
If your home is supporting a more traditional bathroom get up, then it’s better to go for a glass door that would match that particular space design.
However, these glass doors would look strikingly out of place if you choose to install them in very modernistic restrooms, so make sure that the two go together before purchasing them.
The traditional shower glass doors boast function over aesthetics and will match the design of an old bathroom very well.
The industrial shower door and panel design make for an amazing bathroom accessory that can splash a bit of elegance on the dullest of restroom decors.
So if you’re going towards an industrial look for your shower door, then it’s important to look for panels that have dark metal surroundings and are entirely frameless.
This will help your bathroom look much more modern and help it to fit in rather well with the rest of your house and not look out of place.
However, one thing you should always remember is that when picking the glass, make sure to get the clear ones and not the ones which are obscure or patterned. Clear glass will make the entire design look crisp along with providing a fantastic contrast with the darker features of your bathroom.
If you take the industrial glass door designs one step higher and make it even more minimalist in approach, then you will get the modern glass door.
These glass panels hardly have any extra lines or framing to speak of, and will be designed in a way in which the door hardly draws any attention of the bathroom user.
It’s something that lies in the background and provides a particular sort of subtle elegance to the overall aesthetic of the restroom space.
It will prevent you from overcrowding your bathroom with excess design elements, and help you to put in anything you want. As these glass doors fit almost any bathroom decor, you will not have a single problem designing your bathroom around it.
There are a lot of different types of shower door designs and models out there today. We have listed some of our absolute favorites today, and we hope that one among them was able to catch your fancy.
We consider ourselves pundits in all things shower doors and shower doors service, and our list houses some of the best shower door types segmented in various categories but were you able to find what you are looking for, have you found the ideal shower design for you?
Leave your thoughts in the comment section below!
Till next time!