Tile is a popular choice for homeowners in kitchens and bathrooms, and a tile backsplash is a great way to freshen up the area around your sink. Traditional tiles can be difficult to work with depending on the style, so they aren’t exactly ideal for beginners. That’s where a peel and stick backsplash comes in handy as they are easy to install and certainly the bank.
Installing this type of wall covering is simple, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some things you’ll need to know. Our peel and stick backsplash buying guide will help you hone in on a style, and we’ve even compiled a quick list of featuring some of the top peel and stick backsplash manufacturers around.
Peel and Steel Backsplash Breakdown
When it comes to peel and stick backsplashes, there are two options with vinyl products and tiles that use real material. While it’s generally only a sliver of wood or stone due to weight concerns, self-adhesive tiles of this nature have a completely different look and feel compared to vinyl products.
Tiles and mosaic that are mainly comprised of plastic do have several advantages, however, including the overall price. They are cheaper to install, easier to cut and you don’t have to worry about adhesive wearing out quickly as these are lightweight tiles.
Both are installed in a similar fashion and have a layer backing paper on the back. Once removed, they’ll stick to almost anything although it’s not uncommon for homeowners to use additional adhesive to ensure a smooth installation process.
The Pros and Cons of Peel and Stick Backsplashes
Peel and stick backsplashes may share a lot of similarities with peel and stick vinyl tile, but there are several significant differences. In fact, many backsplashes of this nature aren’t made from vinyl at all, which brings us to the pros and cons of peel and stick backsplashes.
It’s hard to find a material that’s easier to install than a peel and stick backsplash. As long as the wall is safe for use with this type of tile, you can work your makeover magic in a matter of minutes. If there is an issue, it’s much easier to remove a tile that’s glued to the wall than to replace a cracked porcelain or stone tile.
You don’t need expensive tools are additional accessories to slap these tiles on your wall. In most cases, you just need a set of scissors or snips, a measuring tape, and a straight edge to cut along. You won’t need to buy grout or mortar mix, and there’s no need for trowels, buckets or tiles saws. It never hurts to have an extra box of material on-hand, but the cost is minimal overall.
Variety is another reason we love a peel and stick tile backsplash. Want the look of wood in your kitchen without worrying about water damage? You can have that along with stone, glass, or even metal. Regardless of the material, they are easy to clean and maintain as long as you follow the manufacturer’s guidelines.
It’s nice to be able to use scissors instead of a saw, but there are a few serious drawbacks to using a peel and stick backsplash compared to ones made from solid tile, glass or stone.
While you don’t have to deal with grout lines, most of these tiles are not waterproof. They can handle water splashing into its surface, but if water gets behind them, you’ll have a problem on your hands. In most cases, that isn’t an issue, but there’s a reason they are rated for use as a backsplash and not ideal in the shower.
If you’re covering the back wall behind your sink in marble at $18.00 per square foot, it’s going to add some value to your home. The same goes for traditional grouted tiles, but peel and stick wall tiles and flooring do not have the same effect.
Placement can be critical as well. Adhesives are only rated to last so long, so things like heat from a stove or direct sunlight all day long could cause tiles to sag or pop loose prematurely.
Peel and Stick Backsplash Buying Guide
When you understand the advantages and drawbacks of a peel and stick backsplash, it’s time to seriously consider a style. We’re going to touch on all the popular options, but our guide will also cover key areas like warranties and safety concerns as well.
What’s your Style?
Before you start choosing between a traditional or wood look backsplash, think about the current look of the room where it will be installed. The color scheme in your kitchen may not be a good fit for tin tiles, but you can change a shower curtain or rug with ease.
When in doubt, find a style you like and pick up a few samples. While you won’t find any porcelain or ceramic on our list, below are the most common styles of peel and stick backsplashes available.
- Stone – Stone is one of our favorite materials. It can blend in with a wide variety of styles, and you’re not just limited to one kind of mineral. Granite, slate, and travertine are all popular options, although other types of stone are available as well.
- Metal – This one can be an acquired taste, but only until you see it in person. Stainless steel tiles won’t corrode while tin and copper will add rustic charm to your home. Metal peel and stick backsplashes tend to be made from recycled materials as well, which makes them an eco-friendly option.
- Glass – Glass was the go-to material for decades when it came to mosaic tile, but out of reach for some as it’s tricky to install. Well, you can pick up peel and stick mosaics that use a layer of glass and will be surprised by the number of patterns and designs available thanks to modern manufacturing techniques.
- Wood – Want your backsplash to match your hardwood flooring? That’s an option with wood look peel and stick tile. Like stone, it will add character to your wall, but you may want to add some sealant for protection as well.
- Vinyl – A vinyl peel and stick backsplash is by far the most affordable, and can be quite realistic when proper techniques are used. These tiles are easier to clean than any product featuring real material and can mimic stone and wood or come in a variety of patterns.
You can find most of these styles in vinyl or veneer form, but the latter will add more weight to the tile or section. Vinyl is more cost effective, but not nearly as realistic as products that use a slice of stone or wood. You may also have to seal certain types of tile like stone, which can be quite porous in some cases.
Peel and stick tile backsplashes are sold by the pack, but a pack can consist of 1 to 6 pieces depending on the size. While it’s important to take measurements and know the square footage, you also need to understand how these tiles are sized and sold.
A peel and stick backsplash can come in single tiles, which gives you the freedom to mix and match or design your own backsplash from scratch. Cheaper material or tiles with less texture are often sold by the roll while sheet-based peel and stick tile is usually heavily textured or features real material like stone or glass. There’s no average on sizes, so you can pick up tiles measuring 12” x 12” or sheets that are 3” wide and over 20” long.
On that note, if you want a peel and stick tile backsplash with real stone, measure the area carefully. You can trim vinyl tiles with scissors or a knife but will need tile cutters or a tin snip for some materials. Those measurements also come into play with electrical outlets or any other areas you may need to cut around on with your backsplash.
Peel and Stick Installation Tips
Any “peel and stick” product is generally easy to install, and certainly something you won’t need to call a professional for. You still need to follow a few rules, however, or your weekend project could turn into a week-long headache…
The first step is to prep the surface, and unfortunately, every manufacturer will recommend a different product or technique. Your best bet is to follow their advice although you simply need to make sure it’s clean and free of grease and totally dry.
You’ll want to get a pencil and mark your height before removing the backing. If possible, have someone help you hold the strips across the wall to get an idea of how things will flow beforehand. Use a ruler or straight edge for all your cuts, and take your time when there’s an outlet you’ll need to deal with.
If you’re installing a metal, glass, wood or stone peel and steel backsplash tile, your household scissors won’t cut it. Be prepared to pick up a set of tin snips or borrow a saw if necessary. Edging isn’t always an option, so you want nice clean cuts all-around.
After you’ve peeled off the protective layer and the backsplash is stuck to the wall, you can often adjust them if needed. Again, this process may vary by brand and style of tile, but a hair dryer can usually do the trick. On the flip side, additional adhesive is an option as well, but only use products rated safe by the manufacturer.
Peel and Stick Backsplash Cost
Our chart features a random selection of styles from the best peel and stick backsplash manufacturers around. While we included several styles, keep in mind, you may have to pick up a few supplies depending on the current condition of your wall.
23.6” x 5.9”
10” x 10”
$6.17 per sq. ft.
Emperador Split Face
12” x 6”
$7.99 per sq. ft.
11.5” x 9.6”
6” x 3”
$17.98 per sq. ft.
12” x 12”
$4.09 per sq. ft.
12” x 12”
$9.17 per sq. ft.
Tic Tac Tiles
12” x 12”
$5.50 per sq. ft.
Peel and stick backsplashes are very popular, so there are dozens of manufacturers and thousands of styles and patterns available. While MSI, Tic Tac Tiles, ABOLOS, and others make high-quality backsplashes as well, we feel these companies have the best combination when it comes to cost, quality, and availability.
When you’re looking for a brand that produces high-quality tiles made from natural materials, look no further than Aspect. From metal mosaics to peel and stick stone, they have something for everyone along with a line of accessories to match your new backsplash.
Aspect specializes in wood, stone, metal and glass peel and stick backsplash tiles. Their glass tiles are easy to mix and max if you want a custom design and come in two forms with matted glass tiles and 3” x 6” glass tile. Each pack contains one square foot of flooring, and the glass is made from 50% recycled material as well. Their wood look peel and stick lineup is small with only two shades, but you get a lot of bang for your buck with Weathered Barn and Petrified Forest.
If you prefer metal to wood or glass, you’ll be thrilled with their matted and distressed metal tiles. The matted lineup includes subway and honeycomb tiles in a variety of colors while the distressed series has five unique hues available. There are also 3” x 6” tiles with brushed surfaces ranging from bronze to copper and white.
The stone series from Aspect gives you the most variance as you can find everything from slate and quartz to sandstone and ivory colored marble. Autumn Sandstone and Frosted Quartz provide some uniformity along with the marble tiles while options like Medley Slate use contrasting tones. Accessories include several shades of trim and metal outlet covers.
Aside from the overall quality of these peel and stick tiles, we love the fact you can find Aspect tiles at a number of popular hardware stores including Ace, Home Depot, Lowes and Menards. It’s also available through Amazon and other retailers if you live outside of the United States and would like to purchase their products.
Wall Pops is a brand we previously touched on as they have an excellent range of peel and stick products for floors and walls. Those wild designs come into play with backsplashes as well, and they should be high on your list if you prefer vinyl to slivers of natural material.
Wall Pops backsplash tiles don’t feature any real wood or metal, but they can mimic marble, porcelain, and even stone. Want some brick backing behind your stove? That’s an option with Old Bricks Kitchen Panels. Their Grey Wood panels will give your kitchen the look of a cozy cottage while stone look tiles add a bit of depth and texture.
Consumers looking for something a little “different” won’t be disappointed with their printed lineup. You can find backsplashes that feature photos of spoons and spices or wine bottles. Alternatively, there are also panels and sheets covered in text to go along with peel and stick copper and tin tiles. All use an adhesive, but some are rated for higher temperatures or waterproof.
Wall Pops products are sold in rolls or by the sheet in a variety of sizes. They are easy on the eyes, extremely simple to install, and most can even be repositioned with minimal effort. You can pick up Wall Pops vinyl backsplashes at big box hardware stores as well as online retailers like Wayfair.
When you’re looking for a wide selection and don’t want to spend a fortune on high-end tiles, Smart Tiles is an excellent choice. With over 80 peel and stick backsplashes in their arsenal, it’s safe to say there is style and design for everyone.
Whether you want something simple, a rustic pattern or large panels, Smart Tiles has you covered. They have a few collections with Blok, XL and Vintage along with a large number of solid color, textured and patterned backsplashes. That includes Milano Lino which features a Dual Finish and resembles glass along with the cool tones of Norway Bleached Wood.
Their extra-large lineup is interesting and a good option if you have wide, long areas to fill. Blok Gray is a Mega or XL tile measuring 22.56” x 11.58” and will provide you with a clean uniform look. The company also has a Smart Panel for high-heat areas like gas stoves where vinyl can’t hold up and a Smart Edge system with four colors of border.
Smart Tiles are guaranteed against cracking or yellowing and can easily handle the heat from an electric stove. It’s hard to argue with the price as well with options ranging from $6.50 to $17.99 depending on the style and size. Smart Tiles are sold in hardware stores and online throughout the United States and Canada.
From high-style interior remodels to envy-of-the-neighborhood backyard makeovers, MSI brings your dreams to life with 5,000 of the world’s most coveted surfaces - including flooring, countertops, wall tile, and hardscaping products.
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