Pros and Cons of Using Black Grout in Bathroom or Kitchen

Black Grout White Subway Tile

Grout is a necessary requirement when filling spaces between tiles. Grout creates a seamless tile appearance while helping to protect the tile from cracking and moisture from seeping through. While white grout is the more traditional grout color in many homes, tile with black grout has become quite popular and trendy because of its boldness, timeless look, and perceived low maintenance.

White tiles accented by black grout can give your home a sophisticated and modern look. While this color scheme is undeniably elegant, it’s important to consider the pros and cons before installing black grout with white tile in your home.

So if you’re thinking about black grout for your next bathroom design or kitchen backsplash, I am sharing all the pros and cons of choosing black grout and how to take care of it properly. 

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White Tile with Black Grout

With the popularity of Farmhouse style trends, the use of black grout is becoming commonplace in some household kitchen remodels and bathroom renovations. Black grout works well with just about any tile pattern, including classic white subway tiles, white mosaic tiles, and herringbone tiles. It can also be used on the bathroom shower tile, kitchen tiled backsplash, and bathroom floor. 

Black grout works best with lighter-colored tiles because of the beautiful contrast and dramatic aesthetic it creates when paired with light colors, but it can also be paired with darker-colored tiles as well. White tile with black grout is a popular option among homeowners and interior designers because of its bold appearance. In fact, black grout with white tile is one of the most popular tile and grout combinations today because of its traditional and modern look. 

When choosing white tile with black grout it is common for the black grout to become the focal point because it stands out with its deep color against a basic plain white tile or not-so-basic tile pattern allowing your tile to truly pop. So let’s get into the pros and cons of choosing black grout in a bathroom or kitchen.

white tile with black grout

Pros of using black grout

Visually Stunning 

There’s a reason why black grout is trendy. And that’s because it’s dramatic, absolutely stunning, and appealing to the eye. It is known for showing off a bold design look while emphasizing the tile’s shape. Using black grout in your space will make an instant statement and deliver the ultimate design punch.

This dark grout contrasts nicely with lighter-colored tiles such as subway tiles and mosaic tiles. White subway tiles with black grout are my favorite as this look is not only trendy but it is simplistic yet sophisticated, and it will continue to look great over time. 

Ability to Conceal Dirt 

It’s almost impossible to see dirt on black grout (but that doesn’t mean it’s not dirty). The fact that you can’t really see the dirt through black grout makes it most appealing. Black grout has a way of masking any evidence of dirt. 

It’s Modern and Timeless 

While trendy, black grout presents a timeless look. It is one of those farmhouse-style trends that won’t go away anytime soon. It won’t go out of style and will make any kitchen or bathroom look modern with a classic look.

black grout white tile

Cons of choosing black grout

It is prone to fading.

Unlikely white grout and light grout colors, black grout is more prone to fading. Because of fading, the black grout may lose its ​​beautiful color and luster over time.  This is primarily from water hitting against the shower walls over time.

In addition to the shower area, fading may also happen in areas with high foot traffic. Even with fading, there are many ways that you can maintain the grout color of the black grout – assuming you are up to the challenge.  

It doesn’t show dirt.

While one of the pros of black grout is that it hides dirt, there’s a misconception that it doesn’t actually get dirty. Unfortunately, black grout can easily and equally have dirt, gunk buildup, and mold if not taken care of properly with regular cleaning. While it can be challenging to keep clean, it needs to be cleaned frequently to be preserved. 

Black grout is messy to install.

It’s always best to use tile professionals when installing this type of grout for a cleaner look. Black grout is messy to install and even more difficult to clean up.

However, if you choose to DIY it yourself, it’s important to note that you have to be very careful and meticulous when installing black grout. Mistakes are often hard to correct, so take your time with the prep work.

Black grout will show all its imperfections and any mistakes you might make during installation – especially if you don’t get your lines straight.

Black grout lines may appear busy.

Depending on the size of the grout line, it can appear busy after installation. This busyness can be distracting, drawing the eye around the room. It is best to keep the black grout lines thin instead of thick for a more refined look. Thinner grout lines are more sophisticated and appear cleaner in design. 

black grout tile work

Tips for maintaining black grout

Seal it 

Since black grout is porous, it needs to be sealed regularly. Grout tends to soak up dirt and moisture easily. Sealing grout will not only prevent it from fading but also from growing mold. This will allow your grout to continue looking good year after year. 

Clean black grout regularly.

While you may feel inclined to leave it alone because you don’t visually see the dirt, it is important to clean black grout regularly to help preserve it. Refrain from using harsh cleaners and opt for gentle cleaning products with a neutral pH balance.

Harsh cleaning products may lead to the breaking down of your sealant leading to discoloration and fading. A neutral cleaner will be the best solution to prevent this from happening. 

Have a black grout pen handy.

A black grout pen is a type of paint pen that can be used to color over your existing grout. Grout pens are usually waterproof and don’t create any form of mess. You can easily grab and go with grout pens to quickly touch up the grout if you notice visible fading. This is a great way to keep the black grout black. 

Still wondering if black grout is for you?

One of the biggest pros of using black grout with white tile is that it creates a vivid contrast. The stark colors draw attention to the textural elements, emphasizing the beautiful details of your tile work. Also, having a dark color behind lighter colors will make them look brighter and more luminescent.

While black grout may have its imperfections, it may be the perfect solution for your family and household. Let’s face it, no grout is perfect, but black grout is extremely effective at hiding dirt and gunk buildup. And if you have a busy household where you might not be able to maintain cleaning regularly, then black grout is still a great choice. 

And if you are looking for the best grout to pair with your white tile, then white tile with black grout is a timeless yet attractive way to upgrade your space. While it may not be the safest option to use black grout with white tile, it is the boldest and the most fun. It will guarantee to wow your guests, friends, and family.

Does black grout fade over time?

Yes, black grout is prone to fading over time. This is especially true in bathrooms and other areas with regularly damp or humid air. The greatest cause of fading is exposure to water and moisture over long periods of time, which can cause the dye to leach out of the grout. Regular cleaning and sealing may help prolong the life of your black grout.

Where to find black grout?

Black grout is very easy to find. You can find black grout at any hardware store (Harbor Freight Tools or Ace Hardware), home improvement store (Home Depot and Lowes), a local paint store (Sherwin Williams), or even online at Amazon. Here the top-recommended black grout:

Red Devil 042260 Pre-Mixed Tile Grout, Black

MAPEI Ultracolor Plus Max Jet Black

Hopefully, you have found this list of pros and cons of black grout useful.  

I’d love to hear your thoughts. What do you think about choosing white tiles with black grout? Please leave a comment below. Feel free also to follow me on my social media pages – Pinterest and Instagram or subscribe to my mailing list for other design inspiration and home decor ideas. 

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Hi! I'm Tamara White