10 Types of Shower Curtains: Find Out Which One Is For You

No one really thinks about their shower curtain until they have to replace it. It’s just one of those things that people take for granted. Do you have an idea about the types of shower curtains? How many actually are there?

There are several types of shower curtains. However, classification becomes easy if we create groups in terms of material, size, and design. Based on material, you will find cotton (fabric), vinyl, and microfiber shower curtains. In terms of size, you will find extra-long, extra wide, and weighted shower curtains in the market. Lastly, in terms of looks and design, there are waffle weave, ruffle, hookless, and magnetic shower curtains.

Since there are a lot of different types of shower curtains out there; each has its own benefits and drawbacks. Which type is right for you? Read on to learn more.

10 Different Types of Shower Curtains

Shower curtains not only add privacy to your shower space but also enhance the beauty of the bathrooms. They prevent the water from splashing and entering the entire bathroom space.

With plenty of shower curtains available, it is not possible to cover all of them. However, I have grouped them into three categories and tried to cover the main types.

Based on Material

Based on Material, you will find mainly three types of shower curtains i.e. cotton, vinyl, and microfiber shower curtains. 

1.     Cotton Shower Curtains

Cotton Shower Curtain

Cotton Shower Curtains are very popular among homeowners due to their soft stylish look. Cotton textiles are greatly known for flowery prints, strong geometric motifs, and vibrant colors. In addition, pastel colors and embossed patterns make the bathroom appealing and classy.

However, one of the major drawbacks of cotton is its ability to absorb moisture. Since the bathroom is a wet humid place, a cotton shower curtain will likely soak water, promoting the growth of mold and mildew. To get rid of this problem, cotton curtains usually have vinyl or microfiber lining on their back which protects the curtain from water.

2.     ‎‎Vinyl Shower Curtains

Vinyl Shower Curtain

Vinyl shower curtains are an excellent alternative to cotton curtains.  These curtains are well-suited for those who have a hectic schedule and don’t have the time to wash their curtains every few days. The common vinyl material is Polyvinyl chloride (PVC).

Vinyl curtains are low-maintenance since they are made from synthetic materials that are impervious to water. They weigh next to nothing, and you can clean them with a bucket of water and an old rag.

Vinyl curtains come in a variety of colors and patterns so you can easily choose a curtain to complement the style of your bathroom.

In addition, vinyl curtains are reasonably opaque and don’t need a lining, but you may need a lining if you select a curtain of a lighter color and it seems transparent.

3.     Microfiber/Polyester Shower Curtains

Microfiber/Polyester Shower Curtains

Microfiber or polyester shower curtains are also quite common. Polyester is slightly heavier than vinyl, however, it is water-resistant.

Microfiber shower curtains are very simple to maintain; they can be spot cleaned in the washing machine or washed by hand.

Since they are the heaviest of the several shower curtain options, you will need to ensure that your curtain rod can hold its weight before installing.

Based on Size and Weight

Next, we have a few types of curtains based on size and weight.

4.     Extra Long Shower Curtains

YoKii Boho Farmhouse Shower Curtain Extra Long 84 Inch Length

A standard shower curtain measures 72 inches long and 72 inches wide. However, a curtain with a length between 72 to 84 inches is considered long. The extra long shower curtain can have a length of 96 inches.

You will normally find these curtains in vinyl or cotton material. They are usually recommended when you need great privacy for your shower space.

The extra long shower curtains look quite good when installed around the shower or tub. However, you will need to place curtain rods higher for their installation.

5.     Wide Shower Curtains

Wide Shower curtains are wider than the standard curtains i.e. their width is more than 72 inches.

They mostly suit curved curtain rods and bathtub spaces. A wide shower curtain ensures that no voids are left in between and you get complete privacy.

You will find them in all three materials (vinyl, cotton, and polyester), and a variety of color patterns and designs.

6.     Weighted Shower Curtains

Dynamene White Fabric Shower Curtain - Waffle Weave Heavy Duty Hotel Luxury Cloth Shower Curtain

Weighted shower curtains, as their name suggests, are slightly heavier than other curtains. This property makes them stay in place. Unlike lightweight vinyl curtains, these curtains do not swirl around.

The weighted shower curtains suit senior people and disabled people since they prevent excessive splashing and stay in place the whole time you shower.

Based on Design

Lastly, we have some types of shower curtains based on design and additional attachments.

7.     Waffle Weave Shower Curtains

Waffle Weave Shower Curtain

Waffle Weave is a honeycomb 3D pattern that is observed on multiple clothing items. This pattern looks elegant and provides a spa-like experience.

Moreover, Waffle  Weave shower curtains prevent shower water from spreading into the bathroom space. The curtain is machine washable, and you can clean it easily.

8.     Ruffle Shower Curtains

Ruffle Shower Curtain

Ruffle Shower curtains have stylish bell-shaped patterns over their length. They add a girlish touch to your shower space.

The ruffle shower curtains are also available in multiple color options to match your bathroom interior. They don’t offer any benefit over other curtain types but are very stylish in appearance. Hence, improve the bathroom aesthetics.

They are easy to install and usually come with rings, which makes you slide them easily. One downside of these shower curtains is that you cannot wash them in a machine. They need to be dry-cleaned.

9.     Hookless Shower Curtains

Hookless Shower Curtains

Most shower curtains have hooks on the top for hanging them onto curtain rods. However, there are curtains without hooks.

In that case, the rod passes through the curtain rings (grommets). This makes installation quite easier since you don’t have to spend time hanging each of the hooks. Instead, you just have to insert the curtain on the rod and hang it. The rod is detachable and you can remove it for cleaning the curtain.

Hookless curtains come in multiple material and design options. Nowadays, they are quite popular among homeowners.

10.  Magnetic Shower Curtains

Magnetic Shower Curtain

These shower curtains have magnets placed at their bottom which makes them heavier. As a result, these curtains stay in place just like weighted curtains.

Water doesn’t spread around the bathroom and you can avoid accidents. However, if you have any metallic objects on the walls, then these curtains can be problematic.

Shower Curtain Buying Guide

With so many designs and types of shower curtains, it can be difficult for you to decide which one’s the best for you.

So, here are view factors/things you need to consider when buying a shower curtain for your bathroom space.

Select the Appropriate Material and Size

The first thing is selecting the right material. You have options to choose from cotton, vinyl, and microfiber.

Cotton ones come in multiple colors and vibrant designs which can easily match your shower interior. However, they easily soak up moisture and become wet. You will need curtain liners for these.

While if you are looking for a lightweight and easy-to-clean option, then vinyl is best. It also offers multiple color options.  However, if you want sturdy and heavy material, you can go with polyester. It is also water-resistant and easy to clean.

The second thing to consider is size, do you need a standard size curtain or one with extra length or width? Choose wisely based on your shower dimensions.

Pick Up the Right Style

Picking up the right style of curtain is also very important. You don’t want your curtain to look different from the rest of your bath space, right?

Keeping into account the tile and attachments, choose the color and pattern which matches them.

Choose based on Weight Limits

If you think the water pressure in the space is high and the shower space airy, then choose a sturdy and weighted shower curtain.

If you decide to go with weighted curtains, make sure the curtain is solid enough to hold that weight.


Lastly, we have a few quick questions related to multiple shower types.

What is the difference between the shower curtain and a curtain liner?

A shower curtain covers your shower space for privacy and helps to contain water. It is usually made from cotton, vinyl, or polyester. Some shower curtain materials (like cotton) are waterproof, so a curtain lining is added to their back. This curtain lining is made of waterproof materials like vinyl and polyester.

What shower curtain material is waterproof?

Vinyl and Microfiber (Polyester) are waterproof curtain materials. Whereas, cotton is a good absorber of water and is used with curtain liners.

Final Words

With a lot of shower curtains in the market, it can be difficult to choose one. However, if you list down your needs and match them with the listed curtain characteristics, then the choice can become easier.  

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