Our kitchens are often overlooked when decorating the house but we believe a stylish kitchen is one of the most telling signs of a sophisticated household. After all, why wouldn’t your cooking area be well-designed? It is one of the most important rooms in your house and should be given the respect it demands.
Now you must be wondering; how do I make my kitchen look better? Well, an easy way to do that is to spruce up your sink.
Yes, it sounds silly but bears with us; after you take a look at the various types of kitchen sink, you’ll see just how elegant this simple part of the home can be and how underutilized and neglected it is when it comes to interior decoration.
6 Types of kitchen sinks that are available on the market
In general, we divide kitchen sinks by their functionality; how it is positioned, the number of bowls, the mounting technique, etc. Let’s take a thorough look at these types of kitchen sinks.
1. Single-bowl kitchen sink
We start off with the simplest sink you can think of. These are, as the name suggests, kitchen sinks that have only one bowl — one central location for the water to be drained out or collected.
Moreover, this gets a lot of points for its simplicity; whether it be looks or functionality, this sink is the textbook definition of minimalistic. This is both its biggest strength and biggest weakness. Let’s start with the good side.
In terms of looks, it is one of our favorites as it appears really classy and easy on the eyes. This not only blends into any kitchen decor pretty easily but elevates any setting to the next level.
We love the minimalistic look as it really plays to the less is more architecture models. This would probably be the sink at ‘Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s home. This does lack a little in terms of functionality as the single bowl can limit your efficiency in the kitchen.
Think about it, you have to use one bowl for every dish and utensil. You really do miss the second bowl, as many of us are accustomed to using the two bowls for different purposes.
2. Double-bowl kitchen sink
Speaking of two bowls, the double bowl is perhaps the most type of famous kitchen sink in this category. This is part of most common households. The stats really show how much it dominates the industry.
13.21% of all kitchen sinks are double sink bowls, this is pretty significant when compared to 6.29% and 0.17% held by the single bowl and triple bowl sinks, respectively. The fact that it is so popular shows how balanced this design is. Of course, it does not have the same minimalistic approach as the single bowl, but it will still fit into most kitchen settings.
We’d go as far as to wager it appeals to both those who love the single bowl sink and its critics as it does just barely enough to meet the less is more criteria and looks, and definitely is practical at the same time.
Speaking of practicality, the functionality is amazing here as the second bowl comes in really handy. You can use the second bowl to separate different types of dishware, or you can use one for washing food and the other for dishes. The purpose is entirely up to you.
3. Triple bowl kitchen sink
The third distinction in terms of the number of bowls is the triple bowl setup and it is definitely the rarest one among the three. Very few households have these sinks and despite how useful they are, they have their drawbacks.
This is anything but simple; this is a heavy-duty sink that focuses on functionality. It’s a bit of a commitment as you need to free up a lot of counter space to house this sink. (Getting a small triple bowl sink is useless as it defeats the purpose of functionality. You can’t do much with small bowls.)
How it looks in your kitchen depends entirely on your setup. If you are trying to go for a classy and refined look, this sink should be at least 500 meters away from your kitchen. Get a restraining order!
But if you have a kitchen with a lot of space and are not aiming for a condensed style, then feel free to go all out. We believe functionality justifies the sacrifice of simplicity.
This is the kind of functionality if we had to pick one. You can designate each segment for whatever purpose you want, this multi-tasking capability really helps you speed up your work in the kitchen.
4. Farmhouse (Apron Front) kitchen sink
As opposed to the name, this type of sink can be installed anywhere. It isn’t exclusively meant for farmhouses.
This is a bit of a complicated system, and you really need to see it to know the difference between one of these and a conventional sink. We will try our best to explain. Unlike most in-built countertop sinks, farmhouse sinks have an exposed front that bulges out sometimes (Hence it is also called an apron front).
It is super useful as you don’t need a large countertop to store more items in the sink. The depth and added width play in really nicely here.
However, keep in mind that the installation is by no means easy as these sinks are usually quite heavy, no matter what material is used to make them. This also means that dishware will shatter quite easily if you drop it in the sink.
There is no way a dish is surviving a fall down that deep sink with a tough and strong bottom. If it doesn’t break, don’t put that dish near kryptonite. A little bit of warning: these sinks get dirty real easy and really quickly as it is exposed. Make sure you rub it down with soap every few weeks, so it doesn’t lose glossy appeal.
5. Top Mount kitchen sink
Now that we know how many bowls a sink can have and what a farmhouse sink is, let’s move on to how it is mounted; this is the first of two mounting techniques on the top mount.
Top mounts are much easier to install than our next method as the edges of your sink simply need to drape over the counter. This doesn’t even require you to remove and disassemble the counter sometimes.
This system is very sturdy and rigid. You won’t find top-mounted systems breaking down easily or needing frequent repairs and management.
It doesn’t look tacky either, as the portion of the sink laying over the counter looks pretty nice and, in a lot of cases, compliments the decor. Try to get colors that blend with your decor.
A quick heads-up: this isn’t a look that suits all kitchens. Although the edges don’t look horrible, they won’t be earning you any extra points when judging interior decor.
On the plus side, they are quite easy to clean as the gunk accumulated on the countertop, and all you need to do is give it a good scrub down every once in a while.
6. Under-mount kitchen sink
Lastly, we have the prettiest type of sink, in our opinion the under-mounted sink. Why are they so pretty?
Don’t get us wrong – we’re all for showing off your marble white or light blue sink but keeping it hidden under the counter from the sides just looks much more refined and really makes the decor a lot simpler.
It’s not like they are invisible either, you can still see them from the right angles, and those are the only angles we want to see our sinks. You must be wondering if this system is so nice and looks so stunning, why isn’t everyone using it?
The answer to that question is installation and high cost. For its huge perk, it has possibly the biggest demerit on this list. The installation is incredibly hard and time-consuming. That installation also runs up quite the tab, along with the higher cost of the sinks themselves.
Not only do you have to disassemble and reassemble your entire countertop, but you also need to back it up with several safety measures, as it is not the sturdiest mounting method either. Make sure your sink is made of strong materials.
What material are kitchen sinks made of?
Now that we have seen the types of kitchen sinks let’s take a look at the materials that make up the sinks and how they affect your sink’s build, functionality, and look.
Stainless Steel: This is a pretty popular choice when it comes to sinks. In fact, it is the most popular option as 70% of sinks are made of this material. Talk about a stronghold on the market. What makes this so highly demanded?
Let’s start with cost, stainless steel is quite cheap when compared to other high-quality materials. But don’t let the low price fool you, this is still one of the best materials in the market. It is insanely durable, it is called stainless for a reason. This material can handle quite a bit, and it is known for its rigidity and strength all over the world. Additionally, for its rigidity, stainless steel is quite light.
This material does have a downside, though. They are considerably louder than other sinks. The sound of metal and water is very irritating and evident in these sinks. You do get used to it, though, and if not, there are always headphones.
Granite Composite: Granite composite sinks are a little rare but a very classy option. This option is almost guaranteed to jazz up your kitchen counter. Not only is it visually stunning, but it is also quite durable. It is incredibly heat resistant, and the granite makes that strong.
This durability is a double-edged sword, however, as this makes the sink very heavy. So bring out your superman dishware for this one as well, normal dishes will not survive a fall on this sink.
Fireclay: Another rustic and classy option would be a fireclay sink. As the name suggests, fireclay sinks are made of a strong ceramic clay material that, like the previous entry, is really durable. The durability plays against these sinks, too. Again, it is super heavy and plates and glass are not surviving collisions with these sinks.
Cast Iron: This is basically a heavy-duty version of stainless steel sinks. The cast iron sinks are coated with porcelain to make sure it does not get any stains. This is arguably even more stainless than stainless steel.
However, the downside? It is much more expensive. The improved quality does bump up the cost. Also, the durability works against it here.
Copper: Copper sinks are really rare as well. But they are a great material as well. Again, it is very durable, and much like the cast iron sink, it doesn’t stain easily. It also has natural antibacterial properties, which is a huge pro in our books.
This has the same downside as most of the sinks on this list, the durability is a little too much to handle for a lot of dishwares. It also turns green sometimes if not maintained properly.
Concrete: This is super rare and for a good reason — it looks absolutely amazing. It blends with any kitchen decor quite easily and doesn’t get dirty easily.
Unfortunately, its durability makes it almost unusable (You WILL break a couple of dishes.) It is insanely heavy, a lot heavier than any other sink.
Ceramic: This is the prettiest in our books but we highly recommend going against this because as with most porcelain objects, it is very fragile.
Acrylic: For our last entry, we have a really good option in terms of looks, but yet again, it fails in durability. Acrylic sinks are easily customizable, but it needs to be used very delicately, which doesn’t seem possible for a kitchen sink.
What is the most popular kitchen sink shape & style?
Now that we have seen the types of kitchen sinks and the materials that kitchen sinks are made of, let’s take a look at another very important factor when it comes to picking the perfect kitchen sink: the shape of the sink.
Rectangular: These sinks are pretty popular, and for a good reason— the rectangular shape not only looks great, but it also is very practical. Why? This is because the rectangular shape wastes very little space and is perfectly designed to make the most of a conventional kitchen countertop. You should find a lot of space for your plates and enough space for your hands and the faucet quite easily.
Square: The square and rectangular shapes are very similar and so have the same benefits. This is an equally ergonomic system as you get a lot of space for your hands. It also maximizes the use of counter space.
The latter largely depends on your countertop and how it is shaped. If you have a rectangular countertop, a square setup obviously won’t utilize nearly as much space. It looks very nice and aesthetically pleasing as well. This is the perfect sink for those with OCD, as all its sides are equal.
Oval: The oval sink is another form of kitchen sink that looks really cool and different from the conventional square and rectangular sinks.
Moreover, this shape makes it lose a lot of its functionality as there is a lot less space for your hands and plates. This loss of ergonomic value is a bit of a deal killer for a lot of people. The shape also decreases the utilization of space quite a bit unless you have an oval kitchen sink, in which case, that is a super cool kitchen that we would love to see.
It does have the other sinks beat in terms of aesthetics, however. At least in our opinion, it does. The oval shape looks stunning yet simplistic at the same time, and that is a look to die for.
Round: The distinction between round and oval sinks is quite similar to that between square and rectangular. How? Round sinks are basically oval sinks but in a perfect circular shape. How does that change anything? Well, for starters, the functionality becomes worse as you get even less space to gain the rounded edges.
How does it make up for this loss of utility? By its amazing aesthetics, of course. These sinks are unrivaled in terms of looks. They fit seamlessly into any setup, and it looks super classy and trendy.
Bored of reading?
Check out this video on how to select a sink.
What Is the standard size for a kitchen sink?
Now that we have taken a look at the types, materials, and shapes of sinks that you can get, let’s address another huge concern when it comes to kitchen sinks size.
The ideal size for your kitchen sink depends entirely on the size of your kitchen. Most experts would tell you that the standard size of a kitchen sink is around 22 inches in length and 30 to 33 inches in width, but you can get sinks smaller and bigger than this size.
We recommend getting the biggest size possible for your kitchen as bigger sinks are more ergonomic since more space is always better. You can move your hands, faucet, and dishware more freely if you have a bigger sink.
If you are going for a minimalist look, however, you should opt for a smaller sink as it looks really quaint and aesthetically pleasing. Bigger sinks can come off as clunky and visually off-putting. You need to note that the size depends on the type of kitchen sink that you are getting as well.
For example: as we mentioned before. It makes no sense to get a 22-inch by the 30-inch triple bowl as each of the bowls will be too small to serve its purpose. Unless you have T-rex hands, this system is almost impossible to use.
Top-Rated kitchen sink brands you should consider
Next up on the agenda, we have the brand. These are the best brands in the business when it comes to kitchen sinks. They dominate the market and you can be sure that you get the best product if you purchase a sink from these companies.
Kraus: Kraus is an American company that has been in the kitchen sink industry since 2007, and in this short time, they have garnered a lot of attention for their innovative designs and high-quality sinks.
Kohler: You’ve almost certainly heard of Kohler at one point or another in your life. They have been around for ages (since 1873) are goliaths in the bathroom industry, and they are also pretty big competitors in the kitchen sink scene as well.
Elkay: Elkay has been satisfying customers since 1920. Their sinks are guaranteed to deliver. This quality assurance has put them at the top of a lot of people’s lists.
Ruvati: If you get a sink from Ruvati, quality is a guarantee. The brand never fails to deliver with its super high-quality, reliable, and rigid systems.
BLANCO: This is a great brand dedicated to making the best sinks in the business, and their sinks really do stand out as they are both durable and beautiful.
Lordear: Lordear is another decent brand that is sure to give you a high-quality kitchen sink that will last for a very long period of time.
Sinkology: As the name suggests, this brand is dedicated to making sinks, and this specialization means that they produce some of the finest sinks in the business.
Bocchi: Bocchi is one of the oldest manufacturers on this list, having been around since the 1950s, their sinks show why they have been in the game for such a long time.
American Standard: You thought Bocchi and Elkay were old? This brand has been operating since 1875. This experience has made them one of the finest crafters of kitchen sinks.
Nantucket: The last company on this list is another very reliable and renowned brand that never disappoints. All their sinks are of fine quality, much like all the companies we’ve talked about.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How wide are kitchen sinks?
This is a question of how wide you want it. As we said, the standard sink is between 30 to 33 inches wide. You can go much wider or narrower, it’s all up to your comfort zone.
Do kitchen sinks come with drains?
Any high-quality sink definitely comes with a drain. If it doesn’t come with a drain, you can always custom-fit it, but it is just an extra expense that seems entirely unjustified to us.
What size kitchen sink do I need?
Again, most kitchen sinks are 22-by-30 inches in size, but you can get a variety of sizes. You need to measure your designated space for the sink and then find the right sink to fit that space.
What is the smallest kitchen sink size?
If you are looking for a super-petite kitchen sink, then we recommend getting a 15-inch sink. They are tiny, take up barely any space, and look adorable. These sinks may lack utility, but they fit into any kitchen and offer a great option for those of you who lack space.
What kind of kitchen sink is easiest to clean?
Avoid farmhouse sinks. They need a lot of maintenance. We recommend getting a stainless steel kitchen sink as it is pretty easy to clean up and especially suitable for sterilization (that’s why it is used in medical equipment.)
Where can I buy kitchen sinks?
You can buy kitchen sinks either online or at your local home depot. We suggest checking out both and looking for the best bargain. Just make sure you aren’t getting scammed online; use verified sites such as Amazon and eBay, or you can buy from big brands such as Kohler and Kraus directly on their websites.
Which kitchen sinks are the best?
This depends on your taste and priorities. Each sink is designed for and caters to specific needs. Your ideal sink depends on what your kitchen looks like, what you use it for, and how often you use it.
What is the most popular sink brand?
All the brands we mentioned are the cream of the crop and so are also very popular. If we had to pick one, it would probably be between Kraus and Kohler.
So, there you have it, the ultimate guide on types of kitchen sinks. You can use this as a buying guide or simply to know more about sinks. If you are using this as a buying guide: it is important to consider each factor carefully before deciding on the perfect kitchen sink for yourself.
All these factors contribute in one way or another, how much it contributes to your decision depends entirely on your priorities. We hope this article helped you buy the best kitchen sink for yourself or informed you of the types of kitchen sinks.