Faucets: High or Low Profile? Yay or Nay

Waterworks faucets

I’m actually afraid to write this post because I know y’all will post all kinds of links to faucets that I love that might be even better and I just placed my order this week, I just haven’t had time to write this post sooner.

As many of you know, I am renovating all three of my bathrooms this summer. The master (which I’m calling ‘my’ bathroom, the main bathroom (Terreeia’s) and the powder room. The tile and plumbing fixtures have all been ordered.

I’m sure you won’t be surprised to learn that my tile is mostly white with a hit of black which is in Terreeia’s bathroom only. She loves black and white.

When I started shopping for faucets in ernest, I was once again dismayed the number of ugly faucets out there.

It’s the same with lighting. The reason why there is so much ugly lighting installed in homes today, is because there are so many bad light fixtures available on the market.

It took me years to get good at sourcing lighting. At the very end of my Specify Colour with Confidence events, if there’s time, I have a power point presentation with the headline “10 lessons I learned in 15 years of decorating”.

I show photos of some of the very first rooms I decorated. As Terreeia likes to say “Every master was once a disaster”.

The first chandelier I chose for one of my first decorating clients, they hated, and quickly replaced with a different one. The next time I arrived, there was a totally different chandelier hanging in their dining room.

So one of the lessons I learned was ‘How to source lighting’. I actually show a slide with a photo of a dining room where you can still see the hole in the ceiling where the chandelier should be. AND it’s an after picture. I was hoping my client wouldn’t notice that I had not selected a dining room chandelier for him because I was scared the same thing would happen as with my previous client, haha.

Anyway, back to faucets.

I’ll show you the one I chose at the end of this post, but 6 years ago when my Mom built her carriage house and I helped her select finishes and faucets, in the end, after everything was installed, we liked the powder room faucet much more than the one we chose for her master ensuite, so I used that same lesson when selecting my faucets this time.

Related post: The Rule of More

Plus, I couldn’t find another one I liked more that wasn’t crazy expensive, so I just chose the same one for both bathrooms. It will also provide continuity in both bathrooms.

I’m grateful that I can bite the bullet and renovate all three bathrooms at the same time (I certainly don’t want to go through this again next year) however many homeowners often renovate one bathroom at a time and you’ll often notice, when house hunting, that each bathroom looks like it was renovated in a different era.

For example, one might be brown, because that was the tuscan trend, and then a few years later, it’s grey because now the grey trend is here. Now you’ve moved in and maybe the previous homeowners had one bathroom left that is still from the 80’s and now that black is the new grey, you decide to introduce black tile in the last bathroom. Are you getting the picture?

Well, it certainly validates my argument for why all bathrooms should be white or cream, period.

Related post: The Best White Bathrooms

I always notice faucets in hotels because we travel so often. It is extremely rare that I like them.

There is an overabundance of high profile faucets on the market, but I prefer a lower profile.

I have also seen many high profile faucets combined with sinks that are too small. So the water hits the front side of the sink, which highlights that the sink is too small for that style of faucet.

I don’t like modern or contemporary faucets. Nothing wrong with them, I simply prefer the more traditional look of a low profile faucet that you would expect to find in a vintage bathroom with hex tile floors and subway tile walls.

Okay so here are some of the low profile (or low arc) faucets I considered:

Restoration Hardware

I loved the cross handles and low profile this one (above) but was told that the parts came from China and were not the best quality. So I kept looking.

Dina Holland Interiors

I also really like this Kohler faucet (above) but I already installed it in a client’s home last year (that reveal still to come) and thought I should be a little more original than just choosing the exact same faucet for my bathrooms.

I also liked this Waterworks Faucet but not more than the one I chose in the end (below).

Kohler Pinstripe

I’m getting this style with the cross handles but without the pinstripe option (shown above).

Chrome for my bathroom and polished nickel for Terreeia’s bathroom.  I plan to introduce gold in the framed mirror, wall lighting scones and the vanity hardware. Terreeia’s bathroom will be all polished nickel.

So there it is. The end of my faucet search. I chose an entirely different faucet for my powder room but that will be another post for another day. My powder room is right beside my laundry room so I want it to be a place where I can cut flowers and fill vases from the garden. It will definitely have a high profile faucet.

All of these faucets are expensive. If you have a low profile or low arc faucet that you love, please post the link in the comments below!

Thank you in advance for your comments. They will make this post a really great resource for my readers who love to research thoroughly before making a decision.  Unfortunately, I am not that person, I make decisions much faster and live with the consequences, thankfully, my good taste helps in that department, haha.

I’m getting excited. . . I have never had a new bathroom in all my 50 years!

PS. My 50 Gifts for turning 50 giveaway continues, go here to enter. The winner will be announced July 1.

Related posts:

The Best Cream Bathrooms

A Classic Cream & White Bathroom (And how to get one)

One Carrara Marble Bathroom, 4 Colours

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  1. Personally, I prefer a higher profile, makes it easier when washing my face! However, to each their own, your selections are beautiful. When renovated two of my tiny bathrooms (5×7) in the 1941 home, I went with a high and low profile, just to switch things around – this was done over 10 years and both bathrooms still look fresh. Thanks for the wonderful blog.

  2. I hope you have a third bathroom to use while the renovations are underway! We have three full baths and a powder. We did the powder and two full baths at one time. And the master last but right after so we had one bathroom to use. We needed a plumber and electrician for all but one renovation because we moved plumbing and added more lighting.

    Faucets are like the jewelry in a bath so the decisions are so personal. I like a mid- or high-profile with a single hole required in the counter. I find one lever/handle easier to operate when washing your face, etc.

    Can’t wait to see your after photos. You save us thousands by not picking trendy tile and sticking with subway tile and letting other things, more easily changed in the future, be the stars.


  3. Beautiful choice Maria! I prefer a more modern faucet with a high profile and ease of cleaning is a must for me. Cleaning is easier with a single lever, curved line rather than squared, and the least amount of grooves possible. To that end we recently installed this one in my husband’s BR: http://www.us.kohler.com/us/Alteo-single-handle-bathroom-sink-faucet/productDetail/sink-faucets/925554.htm?skuId=925513&brandId=431618 It functions very well, looks great and is super easy to clean.

    When we eventually renovate my BR, I will most likely choose one of these 2 faucets: http://www.us.kohler.com/us/Forte-single-hole-bathroom-sink-faucet-with-sculpted-lever-handle/productDetail/sink-faucets/424186.htm?skuId=404932&brandId=1152510 or https://www.ferguson.com/product/delta-faucet-lahara-single-handle-lavatory-faucet-with-lever-handles-polished-chrome-d538mpudst/_/R-3986280?skuId=3986280

  4. Good feedback on this post. Love reading everyone’s comments. When we moved into our present home we gutted almost everything. We made the vanity higher which is standard now. I couldn’t make up my mind about low profile vs high profile or even chrome vs brass sooo I found a Delta faucet that is slightly arched and has a combo of both chrome and brass. We have had them for 17 years with no problems other than the plunger in one broke. They look like the day we bought them and I put them in all three bathrooms. I would buy them again because they are transitional.

  5. I recently remodeled my bathroom, and I chose high-profile faucets for my double sink vanity, very much like the ones in the top photo, on the right, although in a different finish.
    Why? Because all I’ve ever had in bathrooms is low profile, and I just wanted something different and fresh. Plus, I have a 6′ double vanity, and needed faucets that would stand out. I really like them, and to me they are easier to clean around.

  6. Lol! I love crosshatch and not too tall spout. Our gc stated it was appropriate, in chrome, for our bath (our white with touch of black vintage inspired bath). I go with chrome fixtures anytime I can as that to me seems always around.. bath or kitchen. This recent reno is no different. Oh. Moen

  7. Hi Maria,
    Maybe a little late to comment here. Just wanted to say that when I remodeled my bathroom I had the sink already picked and went to a specialty plumming/bathroom store. The representative helped me pick the right faucet. I learned that the stream of water is supposed to hit in the middle of the sink. With the spec sheet of the sink and faucet he drew up schematics to see where the water would hit the sink. This way I was able to pick a combination that works well.
    And as an idea if you are left with one extra hole in your counter when you have to replace the faucet: how about putting a soap dispenser in?

  8. You made great choices! I know you can mix metals in a bathroom, but imo you should stick to all chrome. It would look cleaner and calmer.

  9. We’re building a Craftsman style home and I found a 1950’s resealed, cast iron pedestal sink that we’re putting in our powder room. We love its timeless style. We felt going with a traditional cross handle faucet would go best. I chose Mirabelle’s Boca Raton low profile sink faucet in chrome. Putting in white marble octagon tile (w/the black dot accent) and a vintage recessed medicine cabinet that I will strip down and repaint white once we move in.


    In the main hall bath I’m going with the same faucet also in chrome using the high profile to change up a bit. This too will be getting white carrara marble flooring and tub surround. The vanity will be black with a carrara marble top.


    In our master I’m going with Kohler’s Artifacts single faucet with lever handles in polished nickel (so pretty) since it will be the ones we use daily. Also going w/the Artifact for the kitchen faucet.

    I must say that I absolutely love the Kohler Margaux you listed (contemporary & traditional at the same time) and am tempted to switch out my PR & Hall bath for these but at this point in the build I would have to change the tub fixtures, towel racks etc. and just don’t have the energy (or budget) left to do so.

    Cant wait for your final pic’s.

  10. In our all white master bathroom, we have high profile faucets, which I like because I water the plants in the sink and I can more easily clean the leaves of the plants. We also have pretty big sink basins so it looks nice. In the powder room, where the sink is smaller, we have a low profile sink, which is nice as well because it seems the water does not splash as much. They both have pros and cons.

  11. I had to buy a new faucet for a bathroom, and I will tell you that I ended up putting function first. If you have children who visit or are in the house, two handles can result in scalded little hands. It is much easier and safer for temperature control to have one handle in all faucets, even though it is not as pretty. And outside that argument, I find it bothersome to continually fiddle with the knobs to achieve an acceptable temperature.

  12. What was the Kohler model you put in your clients bathroom last year that you didn’t want to duplicate? I am staying glued to my iPad for your bathroom redo. We are in the final planning stage.