What’s Better – Brushed Nickel or Chrome Fixtures?

Updating kitchen or bathroom hardware and fixtures is an easy and inexpensive way to breathe new life into a space. But with so many options, choosing a finish can be a major challenge. Two timeless, affordable, and versatile options are brushed nickel and chrome.

Torn between the two? Consider the following factors to understand the pros and cons of each.

  • Brushed nickel has a subdued, matte-like appearance from being treated with a wire brush to dull the shine. Chrome is brighter and more reflective due to chrome electroplating over the base metal.
  • In general, brushed nickel works best with warmer colors while chrome compliments cooler tones. Because of its toned-down quality, brushed nickel takes on a natural yellow or whitish shine, appearing warmer than chrome.
  • Both are typically more affordable than other finishes, like oil rubbed bronze. At one point, brushed nickel carried a higher price tag, but that’s changed with the large number of manufacturers offering kitchen and bath fixtures.
  • Both finishes are durable and corrosion-resistant. However, nickel can develop a milky-white tarnish over time, especially in the presence of high humidity – including bathrooms that aren’t properly vented. Always follow the manufacturer’s care and cleaning instructions to keep fixtures looking their best.
  • Because of its matte, textured nature, brushed nickel hides fingerprints and water stains better than chrome. Chrome requires a little more dedication to keep it gleaming and stain-free.
  • Chrome is more susceptible to scratches than brushed nickel. Avoid abrasive, ammonia-based, or bleach cleaning products, as well as harsh scrubbers like steel wool. Instead, clean chrome with gentle soap and water or a 50-50 mixture of white vinegar and water – then rinse and dry.

By contrast, brushed nickel finish is often the more durable of the two.

As whole-house remodelers, Pann Home Services is uniquely qualified to do much more than advise you in finishing materials. We can handle any size home remodeling project – including kitchens and bathrooms – from start to finish. Have an idea that you’d like to further explore? Contact us today for a free in-home consultation.