River Rock/Pebble Shower Floor Pros and Cons

By Samuel N •  Updated: 07/03/23 • 

There are different types of natural stone flooring, which include river rock or pebble stone, marble, quartz, or granite. Pebble shower floors have become popular recently and are mostly used in bathrooms or showers. They come in many color hues, so it’s easier to customize them to your home.

However, before you take the plunge and decide to install a pebble or river rock floor, you should be aware of its pros and cons. In this article, we’ll discuss the pros of installing a pebble shower floor in your shower. We’ll also cover some disadvantages you should be aware of before you make your final decision.

Pebble Shower Floor Pros

1. Versatile & Unique Color Hues

The pebble shower floor is one of the most versatile types of flooring available. They come in different shapes and colors that you can choose from. You can choose your pebble shower floor that will blend into your home or stand out. With pebble shower floors, you can express your imagination and artistic ability with your designs.

Pebble Mosaic Shower Floor

Pebble Mosaic Shower Floor

They also come in different textures, determining how they feel against your feet. There are also different shapes and forms available to choose from.

You can opt for the standard pebble tile floors, which are in their original form. Some slices are cut for a smooth surface. Lastly, standing pebbles are larger and raised, so they massage your feet when standing on them.

2. Easy to Install

Installing pebble shower floors is easy and does not require specialized skills. If you’re an avid DIYer, you can easily install a pebble shower floor without problems. However, although it’s easy to install, it’s backbreaking work and will take more time to arrange the pebbles in the bathroom.

When working on smaller floors, like showers or bathrooms, installing a pebble shower floor is easier and faster. However, for a larger floor area, it will be harder and will take more time.

You can opt for preinstalled onto mesh mats to save time when installing pebble shower floors. These can speed up things, especially when installing a larger floor space.

3. Therapeutic Effect

After a long day of walking and moving around, the uneven surface of a pebble floor can be therapeutic once you step into the shower. The difference in size and the smoother texture will massage your feet, which can be relaxing after a long day.

Standing on Pebble Stone Shower Floor

Standing on Pebble Stone Shower Floor

This is similar to getting your foot stimulated by the process known as reflexology or zone therapy. The difference in the sizes of the pebbles applies pressure to different points on the foot.

4. High Slip Resistance

Slipping in the bathroom is common, and sometimes it can be fatal and even cause death. Tiles are the most slippery when used in the bathroom because of their smoother surface. Special tiles can be used to minimize slipping or add an anti-slip finish to increase adhesion between your foot and the tile.

However, with pebble shower tiles, installing leaves with high and low points increases the grip of your feet. The grout also provides more traction, especially when not sealed to a smooth surface. This can be particularly helpful in preventing injuries among children and elders.

5. Budget-Friendly Option

Pebble stone floor is a cheaper flooring option compared to most natural stone flooring options out there. Pebble tiles usually range from $6 to around $10. If you live near a river source or rocky beach, it can be even cheaper if you collect the pebbles yourself.

You’ll require a thinset, grout, and a grout sealer to install the pebbles. Buying and installing a pebble shower floor is cheaper and more budget-friendly. If you install the pebbles yourself, you can end up saving more as compared to hiring a professional flooring installer.

Pebble Shower Floor Cons

1. Harder to Maintain

Because of the lowered and higher points, the pebble shower floor will hold water after a shower. To avoid standing water that may encourage the growth of mold and mildew, you’ll need to sweep the floor after using the shower. This can take a toll on you, especially with a bigger family that uses a shared bathroom.

You’ll have to also be careful when sweeping the water from the pebble to avoid damaging the sealant. A damaged sealant coat will cause more work cleaning and maintaining the bathroom.

2. Can be Damaged by Water & Mold

Mold and mildew thrive in places with a lot of moisture, such as bathrooms, around leaks, windows, pipes, and recently flooded areas. Because the pebble shower floor can hold water after using the shower, it is susceptible to mold or water damage. This is because the floor does not drain all the water properly.

The lower points between the grout should be swept to reduce water damage or enable mold growth. You can also opt for flat or sliced pebble style instead of the normal pebble shower floor.

Pebble Shower Floor in Kitchen Bath

Pebble Shower Floor in Kitchen Bath

3. Uses More Grout

Pebble shower floors will use more grout than normal ceramic tiles during installation. You’ll need to properly fill the smaller spaces between the hundreds of small pebbles. However, adding up the cost of buying and installing pebble shower floors is still cheaper than other flooring options.

Samuel N

Samuel N is the founder of Improve Floor and has been in the flooring industry since 2005. Since then, his mission has been to make flooring easier for everyone. He helps countless people with flooring installation, finishing, maintenance, and repairs each year.