Any color as long as it’s pink: I mix, match, compare & contrast 17 pink bathroom tiles for my retro remodel

Pink-tile-combinations-for-retro-bathroomPlanning a retro pink bathroom from scratch is not an easy task: As you well know, pink tiles are hard to find and then, all pinks are not created equal. My quest for pink tile feels similar to the story of Goldilocks and the three bears — except it’s Kate dipping her hungry spoon in pink bathroom tiles. Sure enough, I found that deciding on the right pink was tricky — some were too bright, some were too purple. And like anything else, it depends on personal taste to determine which pink tiles may be the *right* pink tiles for your bathroom design. What follows is my personal quest. I ordered up a bundle of samples from all the places I could find — and then began to mix, match, compare and contrast until, yes, all I could see was pink!

American-universal-4x4-pink-tilesThe quest began with 4″ x 4″ wall tiles — using Pam’s post 12 places to find 4×4 ceramic bathroom tile in vintage colors as my reference starting point. First on the list was requesting samples from American Universal Corp. — who seemed to have two different pink shades. At $7.95 per sq. ft., these tiles are a relatively affordable option. The BRM – 6070 (above, top) is more of a peach pink, but is close to what I was looking for. I had high hopes for the BRM – 6020 (above, bottom) color, but in person it was more purple-pink than I had in mind for my bathroom remodel.

pink-tile-combinations-retro-pink-bathroomAmerican Universal also had several pink mosaic options such as their 1 inch mosaics. These retail for $9.95/sq. ft. The top right mosaic, DOT-91, again was more of a peachy pink. It coordinate well with the BRM – 6070. Meanwhile, the DOT-94 (bottom) is a pink with a more purple hue, similar to the BRM-6020. Note: I also found that Mosaic Tile Supplies carries the exact same tiles (shown overlapping the DOT tiles from American Universal above) Blok 191 and Blok 194 for $11.95/sq. ft.

glazed-and-unglazed-hex-tilesBoth American Universal Corp. and Mosaic Tile Supplies also carry glaze and unglazed hex tile that appear to be the same tiles. The unglazed tile (top) was once again a little too purple pink for my liking. I did like the bottom glazed hex tile — which coordinates well with American Universal Corp.’s BRM-6070 peachy pink 4×4 tile. The unglazed hex (LGH-207) retails for $10.95 at MTS and $8.95 at AUC (SX-207). The glazed hex (SX-10) at AUC is $8.95/sq. ft. and (LGH-10) $10.95 at MTS.

pink-penny-round-tiles

I ordered samples of AUC’s pink penny round tile, but for some reason they weren’t sent in my sample pack. I can assume, though, that they would be the same as the samples of penny round from MTS (shown above) since it seems both companies get their tile from Japan — quite possibly the same manufacturer. Above left is MTS LPR -0307 which may be the same as AUC BRP-3070 and has a peachier tone. The sample on the right is LPR-0302 from MTS or BRP-3020 from AUC. AUC comes in again with slightly lower prices at $8.95/sq. ft. for penny round while MTS sells them at $11.25/sq. ft.

pink-unglazed-tile-mosaicMosaic Tile Supplies does have 3/4 inch square unglazed mosaic tile in varying shades of pink (shown above) which would be good for a shower or bathroom floor. Top left is C13 Flesh (5.73/sq. ft.), top right is C14 Rose Pink ($4.74/sq. ft.), bottom left is C17 Romance ($4.74/sq. ft.) and bottom right is C16 Antique Rose ($4.75/sq. ft.).

Daltile-carnation-unglazed-floor-tile

Daltile-mosaic-tile-pinkNext on the list was Daltile. They have one 4″ x 4″ pink glazed tile (Q095 – Carnation Pink at $7.44 sq ft.), which was simply too dark for the retro modern bathroom remodel I had in mind. I did like their mosaic tile tool which allowed me to make the pattern to the right with their Carnation pink unglazed tile and Carnation Speckle unglazed tile (plus Arctic white unglazed). At $9.75 sq.ft. it is a custom tile blend with a relatively affordable price. Still, I wasn’t sold that it was the right color pink for my bathroom design.

4x4-pink-wall-tiles

pink bathroom tile

Janice used B&W pink tile in her bathroom.

Just when I was starting to lose hope that I would ever find the right pink tiles, my sample from B&W Tile arrived. Shown above (right) next to the samples from AUC tile, the B&W 70W pink tile is the perfect color pink I had in mind. It is just the right shade of pink for a vintage bathroom remodel — which makes sense because B&W has been making these tiles for 60 years right here in the USA — where pink bathrooms began. At $4.09/sq. ft., B&W’s pink tile is a great price and just the color I was looking for.

Note: Reader Janice used just this shade of B&W pink in her bathroom remodel – it looks great!

b&w-tile-and-daltile-carnationMy next problem became deciding what to use on the floor that would coordinate with the perfect pink B&W tile. The Carnation Daltile didn’t quite work for me — the pinks were too different.

Pink-tile-combinations-for-retro-bathroomNext I tried the B&W pink tile with the glazed pink hex — I think this could work, but I wasn’t in love with the option.

Nemo-tile-Text-pink-unglazedI tried to get a sample of the Text Pink from Nemo tile – but I was sent totally different tile samples instead. I did find out that the price is $5.95 per sq.ft., but have yet to get an actual sample to look at.

university-pink-merola-tile-retroThen, in a frantic online search for more pink tile options, I discovered Merola Tile’s University Pink. Available at the Home Depot at the relatively affordable price of $9.26/sq.ft., this retro looking pink tile just might be the ticket. I got my hands on a sample and found it coordinated beautifully with the B&W pink tile.

University-pink-with-B&W-pink-tileBy golly — my Goldilocks search for pink tiles may be at an end. The B&W 70W pink and Merola Tile University Pink look to me to be a retro match made in heaven. I’d still like to see a sample of the Nemo Tile Text Pink in person before I make my final decision — but at this moment my mind is made up.

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Comments

  1. mikeD says

    I feel your pink pain. I looked high and low for a match to the two different shades of pink I have in my two bathrooms with no luck.

    I do think the 4×4 you have picked out looks pretty appropriate though.

    Good luck

  2. says

    Whoowhee…that made me tired just *reading* about it! We went through the same thing trying to match the existing tile in our pink bathroom and are still amazed at how many shades of pink there can be. Your current choices look great though – I hope that you are past that step soon and on to the install!

    • Kate says

      It was sort of exhausting Eartha! I’m still trying to work out some other details about the bathroom, which I’ll update everyone on when I come to some final decisions — I hope to be actually working on it soon too!

      • Victoria says

        One thing about the B&W tiles is that I’ve heard from a few sources that they have a lot of variation from lot to lot (different firings.) I am a little dubious to have them shipped from CA and then find out they don’t match a sample.

  3. Janice says

    What a surprise to see me sitting on the toilet in my bathroom again! Wait, that came out wrong. LOL! We used black and white mosaic tile on our floor in our bathroom retro redo. We’ve been very happy with that – partuclarly since we found it at Lowes. Good luck on your bathroom remodel. Can’t wait to see pictures!

  4. Suzanne says

    I can relate. When I moved into my 1954 home, the previous owners re-did the previous pink masonite (which still exists on the walls) with a taupe speckle ceramic tile. I was worried that I would have to come up with a similar tile when we remove the old shower doors and the safety rail that sticks out too far into the tub. I had already been looking high & low for the same tile without sucess.
    But when cleaning out the cubbard under the water heater closet, I found a big old coffee can with tiles in them. I felt like I found gold doubloons!

  5. Robin says

    I’m intrigued by the tiles you call “peachy pink.” I have a green bathroom that I would love to retile with yellow and pale orange tiles – orange being my favorite color. I’m envisioning yellow wall tiles with a soft orange or pale coral trim. Maybe the peachy pink color would work. Also – I love the Merola Tile University Pink mosaic floor tiles. I’m picking up a faint orange-y pink in the mottled squares – is it me or just my monitor? I think that mosaic would look adorable in my green bathroom if it had the right hues.

    • Kate says

      That sounds like a cool color combo Robin. The Merola Tile University pink is definitely more pink than coral — it might just be how your monitor is displaying the colors. None of the pink tiles I sampled really lean toward the coral. The AUC peachy pink tiles are very pale and lean slightly more towards peach than pink.

  6. tammyCA says

    I have a sample of the B&W pink and it matches the pink of some metal ’50s trash can and kleenex holders I have.
    My sister’s vintage pink bathtub/toilet is a different shade..more tannish.

  7. says

    KATE! You lifesaver, you!

    I currently have a pink bathroom in the exact shade you picked but due to my subfloor rotting, leaky pipes and a shower stall that is only tiled halfway up, I grudgingly agreed to replace all the tile after the fixes. I’ve been searching in vain for replacements (that weren’t too expensive). I can’t wait to order some samples of my own.

    Are you going to do an accent color for the border? Do tell.

  8. Heidi Swank says

    One of the things that helped us decide on the Merola Tile’s University Pink for our guest bath is the variation in pinks that appear in it.

    We have a pink (sink, toilet) and cinnamon brown (tile) bathroom. However, the toilet is new from Kohler and is more of a rose than pink. This mix of pinks will allow us to better integrate the bubblegum pink sink and the more rosey toilet by putting those colors together in the flooring.

    Bliss!

    • Victoria says

      VERY similar situation. peach/pink original fixtures, failing plastic pink tile that matches but is incomplete (we’re going to carefully remove it and sell). We’ve been on the hunt for almost a year. After getting a sample of the Merola University Pink tile, and seeing that that “splotches” on the large tiles are dead on the color of our fixtures and the other pinks harmonize well, we’re leaning toward plain white 4″ ceramic tile with a large stripe accent of the University Pink going around the walls and up and around the bath/shower. Also, replacing the worn out formica around the hudee pink sink with a University Pink tiled top. A very inexpensive option that will look completely authentic, IMHO. Finally excited and not horrified by the cost. Floor — tile floor won’t fly in this house. Any ideas? Also trying to think about paint colors…green, blue, pink…

        • Victoria says

          I’m thinking of using the Merola as an accent stripe (about 6″ wide) rather than a whole wall. I think in that context it would work.

  9. Brian T says

    I think you picked the exact right pink. It looks just like the pink in the kids bathroom of the 1960 house I grew up in, which had yellow 4×4 tile on the wall, pebbly vinyl floor, and pink sinks, tub, toilet and trim tile.

    People nowadays are so inured to nothing-but-neutrals that they think of pink as an outrageous choice. And I’ve seen some supposedly retro-inspired rooms where they used a unsuitable pink that was way too bright and bubble-gummy, and the effect was garish. Mamie Pink might be more “interesting” than greige, but it can still be a very relaxed, subtle color. The tile you chose is a natural, human-looking tone.

  10. Mike S says

    Hey, cool combo! If you can look at those floor tiles without thinking you’ve spilled some liquid foundation, then go for it! (Kidding… I’m kidding…)

  11. Joe Felice says

    Maybe it’s just the monitor, but none of those tiles looks truly pink, as in Janice’s bathroom, except for the Text Nemo floor tile. Some of those actually look close to the color you’re trying to replace, but most look dusty rose. Is it, in fact, possible to find actual pink tile in the shade used back then, instead of salmon, flesh, peach or rose? I honestly don’t know, because I’ve never looked for it.

    • Kate says

      Joe, The tile I am using for my bathroom walls is the B&W pink tile that Janice used — same color. In reality, it does read as pink, not salmon, flesh or peachy. I found a vintage 1960s sink that was torn out of an old bathroom and the pink of the sink exactly matches the pink B&W tile — so I’m thinking it is a pretty authentic pink.

  12. Wendy says

    You will not believe how much work you have saved me. We bought a house built in 1961 and this peachy/pink/salmon tile is in one of the bathrooms. It is in pristine condition and is in the shower/tub up to the ceiling and on the walls of the bathroom (up about half way or a little more) By the pictures shown here, it matches the B&W 70W pink perfectly! I am looking to redo the floor and am wondering if you used the Merola Tile University Pink for your floor …

      • Lisa Compo says

        Hi Kate, I looked on B&W’s website and am having trouble finding any versions of pink tiles. Maybe I am not looking at the right things. Did you just call them and they sent you samples to see? I am hoping to build a house next year with a big pink bathroom and would love to use new tiles because finding used ones is not as easy as I thought it would be. So you used 70W University pink? Can you let me know if this is correct so I can call and order a few samples. I want as close to the Mamie pink as possible and since you’ve seen them all maybe you could guide me. I don’t want peach or purple..just a true good old fashioned pink like you selected. Thanks for any help you can give me. :) BTW…your bathroom looks great–I just watched the video.

        • pam kueber says

          See Bathroom / Tile category. We have a story where you can see B&W tile colors from another company that sells B&W tile. Also, you can use the Search box – b and w colors comes right up

        • Kate says

          Hi Lisa,

          Yes, I used B&W Pink 70 ceramic tile for my bathroom. It is not peachy or purpley, but a true vintage Maime Pink. It is a near perfect match to my 1960 vintage pink sink that I salvaged. Just call B&W and they will send you a sample. Good luck on your project!

  13. Susan Grunke says

    I have the original pink tile in my very tiny bathroom in Jupiter Fl. I need to replace the floor tiles and your work on your pink bathroom had solved my problem. Eventually I will change the floor in the blue green bathroom

  14. Amanda Blanton says

    So glad I found this!! I am trying to come up with a way to incorporate pink tile into my bathroom! I am switching up the tub (I NEED a soaking tub) so that and the sink will be white. If I can do pink walls and counters, that University Pink floor just may be the answer!!!

  15. Kristin says

    The recessed soap dish, toilet paper holder and towel bar holders in my 1940 bathroom are a near perfect match to the B&W 70W pink. (I ordered a sample tile to compare.) Is there any place that carries other ceramic accessories in that pink? Would really like to find others such as a toothbrush holder or cup holder.

    I also really want to find a 1940 style pedestal sink or other appropriate style sink to restore my bathroom. I have the original tub which is very close to the B&W 70W pink except slightly duller which I think may just be the way the glaze looks over iron as opposed to ceramic. The sink was replaced sometime in the 60s I think so doesn’t match and the wood cabinet is starting to disintegrate a bit.

    (The toilet was also replaced with just a plain white one but it’s separated so doesn’t look as out of place although would be nice to restore it to a matching pink one too. :) )

    • pam kueber says

      Hi Kristin,

      Good on you! Have you gone through our categories — in the blue near the top of the blog? We have stories on where to find these items, all in the Bathroom category and its subcategories!

      • Kristin says

        Hi Pam,

        Thanks! I will keep searching through all your articles. Will post again to let others know if I am able to locate items matching B&W 70W pink tile color.

  16. Kristin says

    I contacted B&W tile and they informed me they do not make ceramic accessories such as toothbrush holders or soap dishes, etc. However they said they normally stock items from HPC Industries in 61 Light Pink which they claimed was a close match to B&W 70W pink.

    I ordered sample tiles from HPC in 61 Light Pink and also 62 Light Rose and compared them to my sample B&W tile. The 62 Light Rose was the closest match. It’s just a minute touch less warm colored than 70W pink but extremely close overall. The 61 Pink is much darker than 70W although it is warmer and more peachy-colored in tone than 62. (I think the ideal match would be 62 pink with a speck of 61 mixed in.) I found a place to order the ceramic HPC accessories online: prosupplycenter.com

    I haven’t tried ordering yet as I thought I would try emailing deabath first to ask if they have any vintage accessories in stock. If that fails then I will try prosupplycenter.

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