Choosing bathtubs can be confusing with the plethora of options to choose from.

5 basic types of bathtub designs:

Luckily, there are several common bathtub designs, including drop-in, corner, freestanding, whirlpool and alcove bathtubs.

1. Drop-in Bathtub

Bathroom with a drop-in bathtub.

The drop-in bathtub is the tub shell only. These tubs are one of the most common basic types. Because it is fitted inside a framed enclosure that is finished to match bathroom cabinets or tile. An enclosure is a separate item, so budget accordingly.

2. Corner Bathtub

Bathrroom with a corner bathtub.

A Corner bathtub is triangular in shape and is designed to fit into a corner like a wedge. These types of tubs may be a good solution when space is limited and a regularly shaped tub isn’t practical. Corner tubs are often enhanced with air jets, turning them into whirlpool baths.

3. Freestanding Bathtub

Bathroom with a freestanding nostalgic bathtub.

As the name implies, a freestanding bathtub is not built on the floor or enclosed by sides. But are simple bathtubs standing on four legs or a solid base. The taps or faucets are generally mounted on the tub itself and even may be mounted on the wall. Therefore these bathtubs are usually made out of cast iron, porcelain, and acrylic.

4. Whirlpool Bathtub

Bathroom with a whirpool bathtub.

Whirlpool tubs and air tubs offer a therapeutic bath by shooting water and air bubbles into the tub at strategic locations to give you the sensation of a massage. The difference between a whirlpool and an air tub is that the whirlpool bathtub injects water into the tub, stirring the water, whereas an air tub pushes air through its plumbing system into the water, creating thousands of bubbles that invigorate the water.

5. Alcove Bathtub

Bathroom with a alcove bathtub.

The alcove tub is the kind we all know, and many of us may have grown up with. Because this tub fits in a three-walled enclosure. When the walls are tiled or fitted with panels, the enclosure can be used for a tub/shower combination. Because the alcove bathtub is all about maximizing your space: it’s the tub with the smallest footprint. The standard length for an alcove tub is 60 inches but can range from 53 to 72 inches.


We hope this post assists you in choosing bathtubs that can best fit your bathroom style. More information about general bathroom reno you’ll find in our Bathroom Renovations Tips.

Thinking about a Bathroom Reno?

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