Backsplash for Laminate Countertops Different Styles for Laminates


Choosing the right backsplash can make or break the look of your laminate countertops. Laminate countertops are an affordable and durable option for kitchens and bathrooms, but the plastic laminate surface lacks the beauty and versatilty that natural stone or quartz countertops offer. This is where a creative backsplash comes in – it allows you to add visual interest, color, and personality to balance the uniform, matte look of laminate. With so many backsplash tile options to choose from these days, including glass, ceramic, metal, and stone, you have endless possibilities to consider for your laminate countertop backsplash.

In this article, we’ll explore some of the most popular backsplash design ideas and styles that work especially well with laminate countertops. Whether you want to highlight the laminate with a contrasting or complementary backsplash, or disguise it altogether with an eye-catching tile design, we’ve got you covered. Read on for tips, trends, and backsplash inspiration for laminate countertops.

H2: Glass Tile Backsplashes

Glass tile is one of the most versatile and visually striking backsplash options for laminate countertops. The glossy surface and vibrant colors of glass tile provide the perfect contrast to matte laminate. Glass tile comes in every color imaginable, from bold primaries to pastels, metallics, and even recycled glass in earthy hues.

The sleek, smooth finish of glass tile also enhances the seamless look of laminate countertops for a polished, upscale style. For contemporary kitchens, choose dynamic colors like cobalt blue or fiery orange glass tiles laid out in a checkerboard mosaic pattern. For a softer look, use tumbled glass tiles in faded aqua or seafoam hues. Frosted or crackled glass tile is ideal for hiding imperfections and giving your backsplash an antique, handmade appearance.

Glass mosaic sheets make installing a glass tile backsplash much easier for DIYers. Just cut the mesh-backed tiles to fit your space and apply with thinset mortar. Mix clear, opaque, and iridescent tiles together for added dimensionality. No matter what color or style you choose, glass tile adds light and sparkle to laminate countertops.

Travertine Tile Backsplashes

If you want to warm up the look of your laminate countertops, a backsplash made of travertine tile is a perfect choice. Travertine is a type of limestone known for its neutral colors, rustic texture, and natural beauty. While laminate countertops have an artificial look, travertine backsplashes add organic interest and movement with their pale hues, pitted surface, and veining that varies from tile to tile.

For kitchen backsplashes, travertine tile comes in three finishes: honed, tumbled, and polished. Honed travertine has a matte, flat finish that complements matte laminate countertops nicely. It has a subtle texture but retains the natural color variation and veining of travertine stone.

Tumbled travertine has been aged and weathered in appearance, with softened edges and a rougher surface that exposes more of the pits. This rustic style pairs well with country kitchens. Polished travertine has a shiny, reflective surface that contrasts with the matte look of laminate. Polished travertine in warm beige hues can brighten up laminate countertops and add dimension.

Travertine backsplash tiles should be sealed to prevent staining and discoloration from kitchen messes. But minimal maintenance is required for this natural stone that will enhance laminate countertops for years.

H2: Stainless Steel Backsplashes

For contemporary kitchens with a sleek, modern aesthetic, a stainless steel backsplash is the perfect match for laminate countertops. The industrial metallic look of a stainless steel backsplash plays up the futuristic vibe of solid surface laminate in ways that tile cannot. Stainless steel backsplashes come in several forms:

  • Stainless steel backsplash sheets – Available in mirror, brushed, and bead-blasted finishes, stainless steel sheets offer a seamless, ultra-modern look. Easy to cut and apply with adhesive.
  • Stainless steel backsplash tiles – Mimic the look of steel sheets but with defined grout lines and more textural interest. Great for a subway tile look.
  • Perforated stainless sheets – The holes add decorative flair while allowing some sound absorption. Provides an edgy, punk rock style.

Stainless steel pairs especially well with darker laminate countertops like black, charcoal gray, or deep blue. It acts as a neutral, metallic canvas that brightens up the look of dark laminate. Brushed or bead-blasted stainless finishes disguise fingerprints and water spots better than mirror finishes.

Use caution when cleaning stainless steel backsplashes to avoid damaging the surface finish. But this durable, water-resistant material can stand up well to kitchen messes while giving contemporary laminate countertops a sleek, professional edge.

H2: Ceramic Tile Backsplashes

Ceramic tile is a classic backsplash choice that offers versatility and affordability. The variety of sizes, shapes, colors, and textures available in ceramic tile provides endless options to suit any kitchen decor. You can mimic high-end stone, metal, or glass backsplash looks with ceramic tile that costs a fraction of the price.

Here are some top ceramic tile backsplash ideas for laminate countertops:

  • Subway tile – Affordable white 3″x6″ subway tiles create a clean, minimalist look. Pair with matching white caulk for grout-free seamless finish.
  • Shape Accent tiles – Use decorative tiles like honeycomb, fishscale, or moroccan star-shaped tiles to add interest. Great for breaking up all-white tile.
  • Brightly colored tiles – Make laminate countertops pop with vibrant cobalt, emerald, or fire-engine red ceramic tiles. Keep in mind color undertones.
  • Handpainted ceramic tile – Choose tiles with designs like fruit, flowers, or Mediterranean-style patterns painted on. Provides a handmade appearance.
  • Faux stone ceramic – Replicates look of natural stone like marble, travertine, granite, and onyx for a fraction of real stone’s cost.

With ceramic tile, pay close attention to color and style so your backsplash doesn’t look out of place with the laminate countertop. But the right ceramic tiles can be a budget-friendly way to give laminate countertops personality.

Mosaic Backsplashes

Backsplashes made of tiny mosaic tiles offer big design impact! The small scale and multi-colored patterns of mosaic tile backsplashes provide visual dynamism perfect for complementing solid surface laminate countertops. Glass, ceramic, stone, and metal are all popular mosaic tile options. Here’s how to add mosaic magic to your laminate countertops:

  • Opt for mosaic sheets for easier installation. Mesh or paper-backed tiles peel and stick onto backsplash area. Grout to finish.
  • Choose mosaic “tiles” made of irregular colored chunks, like an artsy glass version of pebble tiles. Creates organic flow.
  • Combine glass, stone, and ceramic pieces in one mosaic design for multifaceted color and texture.
  • Consider mosaic “rugs” – customize your backsplash design by having mosaic tiles cut and mounted to fill a specific area, like behind the stove.
  • Use mosaic tile trims and borders. Outline backsplash perimeter or accent niches and electrical outlets with eye-catching mosaic trim.

With endless options for colors, materials, and patterns, mosaic backsplashes let you create a truly signature look. Laminate countertops will come to life against the lively, intricate backdrop of a mosaic tile backsplash design.

H2: Metallic Backsplashes

One way to really elevate a laminate countertop design is with the addition of a glamorous metallic backsplash. Shimmery metals like stainless steel, tin, copper, and brass add reflective sparkle and a hint of luxuriousness to kitchens with basic plastic laminate countertops. Here are some striking metallic backsplash ideas:

  • Stainless steel backsplash tile – Mimics commercial kitchen aesthetic with industrial edge. Great choice for contemporary spaces.
  • Weathered tin backsplash – Antiqued tiles with muted silver-blue finish have a vintage, timeworn look. Provides contrasting color and texture.
  • Copper penny tile – Classic 1″ copper tiles get an antiqued finish. Warm, muted finish complements most color schemes.
  • Brass hexagon tile – The currently trending hexagon shape creates clean lines and visual interest against laminate counters.
  • Hammered metal subway tile – Textural metal tiles add artisanal appeal and disguise surface imperfections. Great for farmhouse kitchens.

The subtle sheen and light reflecting qualities of metals keep your backsplash visibly active. Pair with glass mosaic accents or bring in metal finishes on fixtures for a coordinated metallic theme with major design impact.

H2: Contrasting Stone Backsplashes

Laminate countertops tend to be fairly subdued and uniform in color and pattern. Installing a backsplash made of exotic, boldly patterned natural stone is one way to create captivating contrast in your kitchen design. Think vivid turquoise and brown patterned travertine, wildly striated polished granite, or intricately swirling white-and-gray marble with dramatic veining.

Not only does a high visual contrast between laminate counters and stone backsplash call attention to the backsplash as a dramatic focal feature, it also disguises any laminate countertop seams or imperfections. Here are some eye-catching natural stone backsplash ideas:

  • White Carrara marble herringbone mosaic – Thin gray veining pops against bright white stone.
  • Multicolored slate in mosaic or ledgestone – Rustic appeal works great in traditional kitchens.
  • Peacock granite – Vivid blue, green, and brown pattern makes a colorful statement.
  • Terra cotta marble – Warm pink and orange swirled tones for a sunny Spanish style.

By essentially ignoring color cues from the laminate countertops and selecting a vivid, distinctive stone for your backsplash, you can create captivating contrast. The backsplash steals the show and elevates a basic laminate countertop’s design.

H2: Wood Backsplashes

Wood may not be the first material that comes to mind for kitchen backsplashes, but advances in waterproofing technology have made wood a viable option. Wood backsplashes infuse warmth and texture that balances smooth laminate countertops nicely.

While they require extra sealing and maintenance to stand up to kitchen messes, wood backplashes offer beautiful natural patterns that simulate high-end stone or concrete for less. Best of all, you can create a completely unified kitchen design by matching wood species in cabinets, laminate countertops, and backsplash. Here are some ideas:

  • Reclaimed barnwood planks in whitewashed or gray-washed finish
  • Classic white oak or maple boards in clean-lined contemporary designs
  • Rich walnut or ebony-stained wood for dramatic contrast
  • Pale birchwood for Scandinavian minimalism
  • Rustic cedar or knotty pine for country charm

Using wood panels, tongue and groove boards, tiles, or shingles, a wood backsplash adds striking visual interest. The varied grain patterns and natural whorls bring life to matte laminate countertop surfaces. Careful sealing and prompt water cleanup are key for maintaining wood backsplashes.

H2:Patterned and Handpainted Backsplashes

For highly personalized laminate countertop backsplashes, opt for artisan-crafted tiles with handpainted designs, customized patterns, or special effects like decoupage. Talented artisans can create one-of-a-kind backsplashes that match your unique style. Here are some possibilities:

  • Handpainted botanical tiles with wildflowers, vines, or leaves
  • Portuguese azulejo tiles in vivid blues and yellows with geometric patterns
  • Moroccan zellige tiles with traditional 8-point stars and mosaics
  • Decorative decoupage tiles with paper cutouts for collage-like effects
  • Custom reproduced vintage designs, like retro 1950s wallpaper prints
  • Reproduction tin ceiling tiles with pressed fleur-de-lis or floral designs
  • Personalized tiles with family names, dates, or quirky printed sayings

For the ultimate in self-expression, work with an artisan backsplash designer to bring your creative vision to life. Handpainted and crafted backsplashes make laminate countertops feel special and unique.

H2: Mix-and-Match Backsplashes

Don’t feel locked in to choosing just one backsplash tile type! Mixing and matching several complementary tile materials, colors, shapes, and designs creates captivating backsplashes tailor-made for your laminate countertops and personal style. Consider combining:

  • Ceramic subway tiles with glass mosaic accents
  • Honed travertine with copper penny tiles
  • Marble and glass tile in a checkered pattern
  • Salvaged tin ceiling tiles with white ceramic tiles
  • Natural stone listellos with stained wood plank tiles

Drawing the eye upward with this type of purposefully eclectic backsplash also distracts from uniform laminate countertop surfaces. Follow general design guidelines like maintaining alignment, symmetry, and consistent grout color. But don’t be afraid to break backsplash design “rules” and get creative with vibrant, diverse tiles that showcase your unique personality!

H2: Inset Materials for Backsplashes

Rather than cover the entire wall area behind a laminate countertop with a backsplash, you can add visual interest by insetting special materials in targeted backsplash niches. Some eye-catching design options include:

  • Inset antiqued mirror tiles above the stove – Adds light reflection and a touch of vintage glam.
  • Inset beadboard or shiplap wood behind the sink area – Provides rustic contrast and protects the wall from water.
  • Inset open shelves displaying pretty dishware – Eliminates need for backsplash tile in some areas.
  • Inset chalkboard panels – For family communication, reminders, artsy designs.
  • Inset wallpaper or faux finishes – Metallic or graphic print wallpaper makes a contemporary statement.

Creative backsplash insets like floating shelves, framed artwork, or succulent vertical gardens can be impactful too. Limiting specialty backsplash materials to key areas allows you to create a custom look that complements your laminate countertops without overpowering the space or busting budget.

H2: Matching vs. Contrasting Backsplashes

One of the first decisions when selecting a backsplash for laminate countertops is choosing whether to match or contrast the backsplash with the laminate counters. Both design schemes have potential benefits and drawbacks.

Matching backsplashes tend to look more seamless and visually expand lighter laminate colors. For example, pairing white laminate quartz counters with white subway tile backsplash and white grout. Matching materials minimizes busyness. But some matching solid surface backsplashes can end up looking blah and monotonous.

Contrasting backsplashes are bolder and add more visual punch. Dark natural wood plank backsplash against light laminate counters makes a lively style statement. The key with contrasting backsplashes is to find colors and textures that complement rather than clash with the laminate counters. Too much contrast looks disjointed.

Accessories like grout, caulk, metal trim, and fixtures help marry matching or contrasting backsplash materials with laminate countertops into a unified whole. Thoughtfully blending textures and tones creates a custom backsplash design that highlights the best qualities of your laminate countertops.

FAQs About Backsplashes for Laminate Countertops

How do I know what color backsplash will look best with my laminate countertops?

Consider the undertones of your laminate counters – beige, gray, brown? Then choose a backsplash tile that has similar subtle undertones. Warm travertine backsplash for beige laminate, blue glass backsplash for cool gray laminate. Neutral white subway tile works with most colors.

What’s the best backsplash height for laminate kitchen countertops?

Standard backsplash height is 4 inches tall, measured from counter to bottom of wall cabinets. Full height backsplashes that extend from countertop to underside of cabinets make a bolder visual statement. Height depends on your aesthetic vision and if you want to highlight a beautiful backsplash or understate it.

Can I install a laminate backsplash to match laminate countertops?

Yes, laminate backsplash “tiles” or sheets are available to match the manufacturer, pattern, and color of your countertops exactly. But due to seams, many homeowners opt for materials like ceramic tile that offer more durable, seamless backsplash options.

What about using glass sheet as a laminate countertop backsplash?

Tempered glass makes for an ultra-sleek backsplash. Frameless sheet glass backsplashes channel an elegant, mirror-like finish. Some concerns are keeping edges chip-free, preventing hard water buildup, and potential for condensation. Pros outweigh cons for contemporary spaces.

Should I caulk or grout between laminate backsplash and laminate countertops?

Caulk creates a clean, seamless transition. Bright white silicone caulk matches white laminate counters and backsplashes. Grout can stain and discolor over time. Grout does allow some movement which prevents cracking but best to caulk laminate joints for sleek finish.


The perfect backsplash design can take laminate countertops from basic to beautiful. With so many tile materials and colors to choose from, the possibilities are endless. Just keep in mind important factors like your overall kitchen decor and style, complementing or contrasting the laminate counters, and creating visual cohesion. Combining creativity with practicality will lead you to the ideal backsplash design.

From glass mosaics to reclaimed wood, there are countless options for innovative backsplashes that enhance laminate countertops. Use backsplashes to infuse your personality into the kitchen. Accent with metals, handpainted tiles,