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What’s the Difference Between Resin and Acrylic Tubs?

Resin vs Acrylic

Similar to choosing the fixtures for your new bathroom sink, deciding what type of bathtub will work best for your bathroom remodel can be a challenging task. 

There are many things to consider when it comes to picking out a bathtub, including the best material for your needs, budget, size, and even weight.

Here we’re going to compare a resin versus acrylic tub to help clarify their pros and cons, hopefully to help you make an informed decision about which tub type to use. 

Deciding which tub belongs in your new bathroom — a resin or acrylic tub — can be a tough choice, so get ready to learn the difference between resin and acrylic tubs so you can be better equipped to choose a tub best for you, your home, and your family’s needs.

What is an Acrylic Tub?

Acrylic tubs are one of the most popular tubs on the market today — and for very good reason. These comfortable, versatile, and low-maintenance tubs work with a lot of different homeowner needs, preferences, and styles, making them a favorite among many homeowners when it comes to a bathroom upgrade. 

They are also affordable which helps them suit practically any budget.

Acrylic tubs are made of vacuum-formed acrylic sheets that are usually reinforced with fiberglass to help add durability to the final bathtub. 

Acrylic tub

As a soft and supple material to begin with, acrylic is ideal for creating a variety of shapes, sizes, and tub styles.

This is one of the reasons that acrylic tubs are so popular since they can fit so many different preferences and situations. 

Acrylic tubs are perfect for homeowners looking for something unique or traditional or are to fit a specific space. 

As a lightweight material, acrylic tubs can be installed on any floor of the home without too much added trouble or expenses. 

With the added fiberglass, they become durable and low maintenance, making them perfect for homes that house only adults, or ones with kids and even pets.

Just like every bathtub out there, acrylic bathtubs have a lot of advantages but are not without their list of faults. Let’s consider the pros first:

Pros

Acrylic tubs are some of the most popular tubs on the market, partly because they are also some of the most affordable tubs. 

Acrylic tubs are durable and resistant to cracking or chipping, allowing them to last a long time and resist damage even when used regularly. 

If they do end up damaged, they are reasonably easy and inexpensive to repair, clean, and maintain.

With a smooth, comfortable, non-porous surface that retains heat and keeps water warmer for longer, you’re sure to get a nice, enjoyable soak that doesn’t get too cold too fast. Acrylic tubs are also lightweight and easy to install, so you don’t need to worry about reinforcing the floors before installing them on upper floors of your home. 

As mentioned before, acrylic tubs are a very versatile material, so they can come in a variety of different colors, sizes, styles, and configuration options. 

They can make for the perfect choice for a customized bathroom remodel, fitting both luxurious and practical designs. Acrylic tubs are perfect for homeowners looking for something unique or traditional or are to fit a specific space.

Cons

Just like any tub, acrylic tubs do have some cons that are important for you to consider before committing to having an acrylic tub in your bathroom. 

For one, acrylic tubs are prone to stains and discoloration, especially over time. If they are not properly maintained and cleaned regularly, they can stain and start to look unappealing.

While acrylic tubs are durable and resistant to cracking and chipping, they can scratch fairly easily, which many homeowners find annoying. 

Scratches that are left in a tub can begin to collect stains. That being said, scratches are pretty inexpensive and simple to repair in acrylic tubs.

Lastly, acrylic tubs do have a slightly “hollow” feeling to them, which many homeowners don’t prefer. 

That feeling mostly has to do with the material type and doesn’t make your acrylic tub any less durable, but some homeowners don’t prefer that feeling in a tub, especially if the goal is a more high-end bathing experience.

What is a Resin Tub?

Resin bathtubs are a more modern bathtub material type that not every homeowner is aware of, but that are becoming increasingly popular as people learn about their benefits. 

Resin tubs are made of stones, minerals, and acrylic materials and are becoming well-known for their solid surface and beautiful, natural appearance and feel. They effortlessly add an elegant, high-end atmosphere to your bathroom upon installation. 

Stone resin tubs are made of real, natural stones which are crushed and then bound together using polymer resin and other natural minerals. 

In a similar way that cultured marble stone tubs have a blend of limestone, resins, and fillers with a gel topcoat and are waterproof, resin tubs are impermeable against discoloration from water and are made with a glossy, gel coating.

Despite being made of stone, resin bathtubs are actually an incredibly flexible material to work with. 

This means they are able to be made into a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles, suiting many different homeowner preferences or bathroom designs.  

Let’s consider the pros and cons of stone resin tubs:

Pros

Resin bathtubs have a long list of pros. 

For starters, they are easy to clean and easy to maintain, so they’re a great choice if you’re looking for a luxurious bathing experience but want something that isn’t too high-maintenance. 

Stone resin tubs also have great heat retention, so you can expect to have a long, comfortable bath without needing to re-warm the water. 

Resin tubs are a highly flexible material that can be molded into a lot of different tub styles, sizes, and shapes, so you’re sure to find something that fits your preferences and design needs with this type of tub. 

Even though they are made of stone and minerals, resin bathtubs are lightweight, so they don’t require a complicated or expensive installation process.

Stone resin tubs are highly durable and don’t scratch, chip, or break easily. 

Stone resin tubs are aesthetically beautiful and will give your bathroom a truly luxurious atmosphere as well as offer an elegant bathing experience. 

As a non-porous surface, they are resistant to mold, stains, bacteria, chemicals, flaking, breakage, and dirt. Repairs are possible and not too complicated if damage does occur.

Cons

While resin tubs have a substantial list of pros, they do have some cons that are worth considering. 

For starters, while stone resin tubs aren’t the most expensive of bathtubs on the market, they certainly aren’t the most affordable either. 

When comparing a resin versus acrylic tub, it’s important to know that resin tubs definitely lose in the area of cost. Acrylic tubs are far more affordable.

Additionally, while stone resin tubs are easy to clean and maintain, if the gel coating wears off over the course of time or through heavy use, the tub becomes much harder to clean. 

Cracks can start to appear in the surface of the tub if the gel coating wears off, making it a bit scratchy and unappealing for many homeowners. 

Stone resin tubs can be repaired to look like new again, but the task is easier the earlier an issue is addressed.

Is a Resin or Acrylic Bathtub Right For You?

So what’s the difference between resin and acrylic tubs? Obviously, the material type plays a big role in determining the difference between these two types of tubs and which one is best for you. 

Acrylic tubs will look, feel, and behave differently from a stone resin tub simply because one is made out of acrylic and fiberglass while the other utilizes stone, resin, and minerals. 

Both of them are highly versatile so they both come in a lot of different designs and styles, but they will give your bathroom a slightly different appeal. 

Acrylic bathtub

Consider what effect you’d like your bathtub to have on your bathroom as a whole. Is it important to have the high-end, luxurious stone resin tub or will an acrylic tub get the job done?

While both tubs are lightweight and easy to install when compared to other bathtub types (such as steel or cast iron), acrylic tubs are slightly more lightweight than stone resin. 

Acrylic tubs are also a bit easier to install, but when it comes to how they feel, acrylics will feel flimsier or more hollow than stone resin tubs. In some cases, acrylic tubs need a little reinforcement in the installation process to be properly supported, while stone resin tubs are supportive and sturdy on their own.

Both acrylic and stone resin tubs are non-porous, making them both easy to clean, repair, and maintain, but acrylic surfaces scratch far easier and discolor faster than stone resin tubs. 

In terms of durability, stone resin tubs far exceed acrylic tubs since they are harder to scratch, break, or damage. You will save more on repair costs with a stone resin tub than an acrylic tub over time, but you will spend more upfront since stone resin tubs are more expensive than acrylic tubs.

While acrylic tubs are more affordable and easier to install than stone resin tubs, stone resin tubs are better in terms of high-end appeal, durability, and bathing experience. 

When it comes to deciding who wins the resin versus acrylic tub comparison, you have to consider your own needs, preferences, and budget.

It’s Time to Upgrade Your Bathroom

If you’re trying to choose between a resin versus acrylic tub, it’s important to know the differences between these material types and how each one may or may not suit your specific needs. 

The right bathtub for you and your bathroom remodel depends entirely on your own personal situation and preferences. 

If you have questions about the installation process or would like more information about Long’s acrylic tubs, don’t hesitate to reach out to our experts at Long Home Products.

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