the pros and cons of black tapware

The Pros and Cons of Black Tapware

Black tapware doesn’t seem to be waning any time soon from bathrooms and kitchens. This tapware finish seems to be nearly as popular as the classic chrome or stainless steel taps that have had a timeless appeal over the years. Despite our new found love for black tapware, there a pros and cons for using this style of finish in your bathrooms and kitchens. What often looks great at the beginning of installation, doesn’t always hold its look or appeal after a few years. I’m going to share the pros and cons of black tapware from a plumber’s point of view, while giving tips to ensure your black tapware retains its elegance over time.

the pros and cons of black tapware the plumbette

Let’s discuss the pros of black tapware.

It’s visually pleasing to look at.

Because we’re so used to seeing chrome or metallic finishes on tapware, we find ourselves stopping to look at black tapware because it’s different and sleeker than previous mixer and hob-mounted tap styles. Black tapware offers a modern edge to bathrooms and kitchens. It’s a trend that can instantly uplift a wet space.

It’s versatile with most bathroom and kitchen colour palettes.

Most bathrooms and kitchens these days are designed from a neutral palette to ensure the longevity of the style and design. These neutral colours work well with black tapware. Black tends to contrast or match well with most neutral colour schemes. The best part of installing black tapware in a neutrally coloured space is it will stand out, and the tapware itself can become a pivotal feature in your kitchen and/or bathroom.

It’s competitively priced.

You can get black mixer taps at a competitive price compared to chrome. The more expensive styles of black tapware will have a more quality finish and the hardware inside will have an extended warranty compared to cheaper mixers on the market.

It looks exquisite against natural materials like stone, marble and timber.

A push for natural materials in bathrooms and kitchens have been a big trend in the last year or so. These materials match beautifully with black tapware. In fact, they offer a sleek and modern look that won’t date.

It’s relatively easy to order.

Unlike some tapware finishes – like bright colours or specific metallic finishes, black tapware is easy to acquire and order. Because of its popularity, it’s easy to order or purchase from most plumbing stores.

It suits most interior styles.

Black tapware can suit most interior styles. It’s most commonly featured in modern and contemporary spaces, but has been used successfully in heritage or country styled spaces. It all comes down to choosing the right shape of mixer to suit the interior style.

Won’t show finger prints.

Unlike chrome, finger prints can be less visible on matt black tapware. Most black tapware is manufactured with an electroplated finish for durability and resistance to marks and scratches. Despite this finish, the tapware can still be prone to damage if not looked after.

Now here are the cons of Black Tapware

It will fade.

No matter what the finish is on your black taps, the colour will fade over time. Trust the plumber on this because they are the ones that come to replace it when the colour has gone off or it looks more grey than black.

The best way to avoid your black tapware from fading is to wipe the taps with a washer or microfiber cloth after every wash. This can be annoying, but I can guarantee this will prolong the look of your black tapware.

It can get damaged before it’s installed.

Even though the black coating is hard to scratch, it will scratch from simple plumbing tools that keep the tap in place during installation. Your plumber will need to use care when installing the black tapware to avoid dents or scratches made from multi-grips or footprints. A cloth should be wrapped around the mixer to ensure the teeth from the tools don’t scratch the tap’s surface.

It can’t be cleaned with chemicals or wax based cleaners.

The big rule of thumb here is don’t use ANY cleaners on your black taps. Especially on matt black tapware. Use mild soapy water to clean and dry the tapware well so the water doesn’t leave stains on the outer finish.

It will show dust and make-up powder.

This sounds a little absurd, but I’ve seen this on older black style taps. If you apply powdered make-up in the bathroom, remnants of this can fall on your taps which can cause them to look cloudy when the powder is wiped away. Always have a microfiber cloth handy to remove any dust or make-up powder particles.

There is a lot to consider when deciding what finish your tapware should have, but the cons for black tapware shouldn’t prevent you from installing them if you really love the look and are prepared for the constant maintenance.

black tapware mixers

  1. Highgrove Bathrooms Spin Nero Tall Mixer $156.00
  2. Nobili New Road Black Chrome Mixer $331.00
  3. Dorf Bloc Basin Mixer in Black $579.00
  4. Black Waterfall Basin Mixer $99.00
  5. Mizu Soothe Basin Mixer $303.00
  6. Highgrove Bathrooms Eden Nero Tall Mixer $189.00
  7. Highgrove Bathrooms Eden Nero Basin Mixer $156.00
  8. Dorf Enigma Basin Mixer $289.00
  9. Mizu Bloc Sink Mixer $424.00

If I were to renovate my bathroom, I would install black taps, just because I really like them and because when they start to look crap, I can easily replace them.

What do you think about black tapware? Like the look? Would you consider purchasing this style of tapware for your own home?

Disclosure: There are affiliate links on this post. Should you choose to purchase an item, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Why not check out 10 Tapware Mixer Brands to consider for your home


  • LydiaCLee

    I did not know it would fade!!

    • Yes, it does over time. All coloured tapware fades over time.

      • Sara Arrow

        When you say over time. How much time are you talking. I am aware that varies depending on usage and care taken, but are we talking months, a year or 10 years ?

        • Hi Sara, you’re looking less than a year for powder coated taps, but for electroplated taps you will get a few years before it starts to look dim and faded. The more you pay for coloured tapware, and ensuring it’s an electroplated finish, the longer it will retain it’s colour.

  • I really love the black tapware. I think it looks super smart. We chose black tiles in two of our bedrooms and they’re such a nightmare to keep clean.

    • I like the look too, but maintaining their look – just like your tiles – requires regular cleaning. Black tends to show everything. x

  • I have to say I really, really like the look of them, but the maintenance would stop me from installing them. We recently had to get a new mixer on the kitchen sink thanks to the original hot tap basically exploding at midnight and leaving us having to have our water turned off for almost 3 days while we waited for the plumber to be able to pull out the old taps & faucet and instal the mixer. What a drama that was! As it is, we have a chrome mixer and I get annoyed when that is dirty, so I can only imagine how much more anal I’d be with a black one, so standard chrome is definitely ok with me, lol!

    • Haha! I get anal when my chrome taps get dirty too.

  • We installed “gold” tapware when we built our home nearly 25 years ago, it looked very posh. However, it soon tarnished and left greenish marks around the taps and of course now it would look very dated. So I think if I had the choice again I would stick to the classic silver look.

    • yes chrome is the best, but it can tarnish over time, but not as much as gold. x

  • Handmade John

    Great article. I love the idea of black tapware in my next home. It really seems like black does go with everything!