The 6 Types of Shower Heads You Should Know About

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We all know how beneficial a relaxing, peaceful shower can be. It’s that time where you get to rock out to your music and let all of the stress melt away. I always look forward to showering in hotels and spas because of how luxurious and pleasurable my showers are!

But, you don’t have to wait for special trips to have an enjoyable shower. In fact, there is a way to completely transform your shower experience from the comfort of your own home. How? That’s simple. By choosing a showerhead that fits your everyday needs!

Now, some of us don’t need all of that fancy stuff, which is why I’ve also laid out alternatives for the environmentally-friendly and cost-conscious individuals. So if you’re clueless about shower heads, here are six types to choose from based on your needs, wants, and budget!

Fixed Shower Head

#1. The Fixed Shower Head

A fixed shower head is attached to the shower arm that is permanently mounted to the wall. It is the most commonly used shower head solely because it is simple and budget-friendly. The price range typically varies from $5 to $50 depending on the style and finish, with some luxury options costing much more. Additionally, fixed shower heads are also very easy to install so if you aren’t very handy, this is a great option for you!

Since it is inexpensive, there are a wide variety of styles and designs to choose from to match your bathroom aesthetic. Many come with adjustable nozzles that offer different spray styles such as full-body, mist, rain, water-saving, and other unique spray options. This allows each user to have a customizable, delightful experience!

Although fixed shower heads are ideal for a lot of users, they do not look as aesthetically pleasing as some of the other more expensive shower heads. This means that they won’t add any value to your home. In addition, since they’re permanently mounted to the wall, the height isn’t adjustable so users who are too tall may not favor these particular shower heads.

Also, a fixed shower head and its limited functionality is not suitable for the elderly, children, or people with disabilities because of its lack of adjustability. So, if you need a shower head that gives you full control over your shower experience, this may not be the right one for you.

Who Fixed Shower Heads are Best For

Ideally, a fixed shower head is best for users who: 

  • Want to save money on installation fees, and other expenses such as additional shower arms
  • Enjoy simplicity in both design and installation
  • Do not need it for specific reasons such as kids, pets, disabilities, or elderly accessability 
Rainfall Shower Heads

#2. The Rainfall Shower Head

Another type of shower head is the rainfall shower head, which provides a steady flow of water directly above you with light water pressure. This shower head covers a larger surface area and imitates rainfall to give you an even, consistent water flow.

The great thing about the rain system is that you can buy one that has an extended shower handle so it doesn’t have to be built into your ceiling for that waterfall experience! And it saves you time and money because you won’t have to hire professionals for the installation.

With the extended shower handle, it gives you coverage with a larger surface area, which means you don’t have to constantly move around to access all areas of the body. All you have to do is stand right underneath it and enjoy the consistent, gentle water flow that will make you think you’re having a spa day!

And it adds a stylish design to your bathroom, which can improve your bathroom’s overall appearance. You’ll have your guests thinking you’re chic and trendy without having to break the bank.

Even with all of these pros, one of the major drawbacks of a rainfall shower head is that the larger its diameter, the weaker its pressure. New water flow regulations consistent with the Federal Energy Policy Act of 1992 requires that “all faucet fixtures manufactured in the United States restrict maximum water flow at or below 2.5 gallons per minute (GPM) at 80 pounds per square inch (psi) of water pressure or 2.2 GMP and 60 psi.”

Therefore, it doesn’t matter what the diameter of your shower head is, you’ll always receive the same amount of water output. This means that if you’re looking for a shower head that has strong water pressure, this isn’t the one for you. Also, they’re a bit more on the expensive side ranging from $50 to $400, typically.

A rainfall system shower head also isn’t suitable for small or medium showers because of the greater surface area coverage. But if you don’t mind spending a little more for a pleasant spa experience, this is the way to go!

Who Rainfall Shower Heads are Best For

Ideally, a rainfall shower head is best for users who: 

  • Want light water pressure and the full-body shower experience
  • Want a consistent, relaxing spray pattern
  • Have larger bathrooms capable of housing the larger spray patterns without water getting all over the place
Handheld Shower Heads 2

A great choice for a multi-purpose shower head is the handheld system. You get to have the freedom of using it as a fixed or handheld shower head. This is a perfect option for children, the elderly, people with disabilities, and for pets because they don’t have to move around to rinse themselves off.

Another key benefit is that you can use the shower head to hit pressure points and sore spots, unlike many other types of shower heads. It also gives you the ability to control the level of pressure depending on how close or far you hold it. With a handheld shower head, you get to have 100% control! It’s also helpful when cleaning the tub and shower because the hose allows you to rinse hard-to-reach areas.

One downside is that it isn’t aesthetically pleasing and may ruin the aesthetic of your bathroom. The long hose may change the elegant, modern style that so many people are striving for these days. It also is more difficult to install than your traditional shower head and will need constant fixing because the hose may develop holes.

Traditional fixed shower heads are more durable and are made of heavy-duty, tough material. Over time, the cost of having a handheld shower head will add up. A handheld shower head ranges from $10 to $80, but can be even more expensive with dual options featuring a handheld and another shower head in tandem.

Ideally, a handheld shower head is best for users who: 

  • Need flexibility and versatility provided by the long hose
  • Want to control the water placement in any way they choose
  • Want to save money by taking shorter, but more concentrated, showers
  • Value the function of their shower head over the aesthetics of their bathroom
Low Flow Shower Heads

Do you find that you’re water bills are increasingly high? If so, a low flow shower head is the best option for you! With this shower head, you limit the amount of water that is used which increases water efficiency.

Today, a typical shower head wastes about 5-8 gallons of water per minute. By using a low flow shower head, you’ll dramatically decrease your water waste because it wastes about 2.5 gallons per minute. That’s a huge difference!

Another benefiting factor is that you’ll use less energy with a low flow shower head. The water that is used for showers need heat to make the water warm or hot. Since you’ll be using less amount of water, you’ll also be using less heat, which in turn, will save you money on your electricity bill. You’ll be helping the environment while also saving money!

One of the disadvantages of using a low flow shower head is that it doesn’t exert as much pressure so your shower won’t be as relaxing or soothing. It’ll also be less enjoyable because you’ll have to focus on rinsing your hair and body because of the limited water availability.

A low flow shower head also takes longer to adjust to warmer temperatures because of the low amount of water you are using. A low flow shower head typically costs anywhere from $20 to $120.

Ideally, a low flow shower head is best for users who: 

  • Want to save a lot of money over time on their water bills
  • Are environmentally conscious and want to reduce their impact on the ecosystem
  • Do not mind sacrificing a more luxurious shower experience for one that does the job adequately
High Pressure Shower Heads 2

If you’re having an issue with water pressure in your home and apartment and have tried doing everything you can to solve it to no avail, then a high pressure shower head might just be the best option for you. High pressure shower heads typically have a very small overall spray spread, but make up for this by converting your low water pressure into a great shower experience.

For many people, especially those living in apartments in California, low water pressure can be the breaking point between a luxurious shower feeling and one that barely gets the soap and shampoo off your body. High water pressure shower heads can help with these problems and make all of your showers feel just as great as your last hotel stay.

However, high pressure shower heads aren’t great for people with sensitive skin. Water pressure varies a lot between models, of course, but some can be a little too intense depending on your actual water pressure.

High pressure shower heads vary in price from anywhere between $20-150, typically, with the higher prices models made of solid metals opposed to the cheaper plastics that tend to break in high pressure scenarios.

Ideally, a high pressure shower head is best for users who: 

  • Have an issue with water pressure and want to change their weak shower into a much better feeling one
  • Are receiving below the standard 2.5GPM in their shower despite exhausting all options to fix the issue
  • Love the feeling of high water pressure on their skin
Filtered Shower Head

Are you tired of having frizzy hair and dry skin? Suffer no more! By using filtered, high-quality water, you reduce the amount of chlorine, bacteria, and fungus that you find on unfiltered shower heads. A filtered shower head decreases the number of chemicals found in water, which results in softer skin and shiny hair.

This is because unfiltered water can worsen sensitive skin or skin diseases such as eczema, psoriasis, and dry skin. It can leave your skin feeling tight after you hop out of the shower because of the water’s impurities. Everyone thinks you need to waste so much money on high-end lotions when in reality all you need is purified water.

Unfiltered water is also harsh on your hair because it contains chemicals that limit moisture leaving your hair brittle and your scalp dry. So stop wasting money on buying expensive moisturizers and conditioners and swap them out for a filtered shower head!

You should make sure that the shower head is NSF (National Sanitation Foundation) approved because they meet strict standards to ensure the safety and well-being of consumers.

The price range is from $20 to $150. The only main downside about using a filtered shower head is that you’ll have to buy replacement filters every 6 months.

Who Filtered Shower Heads are Best For

Ideally, a filtered shower head is best for users who: 

  • Want to eliminate dry skin and promote better, healthier, silky hair
  • Don’t want to shower with harsh chemicals such as chlorine
  • Are willing to keep up with replacement filters every six months or so

Final Considerations

So, there you have it. The pros and cons of every single one of the most common types of shower heads, all summarized for you in one location. Whether you’re a fan of rainfall shower heads, or love the heck out of high pressure ones, we understand.

Hopefully, you’ll be able to use the information provided above to create your dream shower experience and live life in luxurious comfort.

Thanks for reading, shower aficionados!