Symmons Blog

Now Trending: Brushed Bronze and Matte Black Finishes for Plumbing Fixtures

Check any design magazine, website, or renovation show lately and you’ll quickly notice that brushed bronze and matte black are the two most popular bathroom fixture finishes in design today. Commercial designers are using these finishes in a variety of properties like condominiums, hotels, and multifamily housing. And brushed bronze and matte black go beyond just faucets and shower valves and extend to towel racks, toilet paper holders, and robe hooks, even cabinet hardware and lighting.

Brushed Bronze

Brushed bronze finish has been steadily trending in the plumbing space since 2018. Manufacturers create it by applying a coat of matte powder to a bronze fixture, causing it to reflect more light than traditional oil-rubbed bronze. The color of brushed bronze can vary greatly from bright copper to a much darker shade, although it’s more consistent than oil-rubbed bronze. As a result, it’s easier to find a shade of brushed bronze that works for a particular décor. Its popularity also means brushed bronze is more widely available than oil-rubbed bronze and often costs less.

Brushed bronze complements dark and black cabinets particularly well, but also blends well with a wide range of other colors. Texture is especially important for fixtures that building occupants touch frequently, like faucets and light switches. Cleaning processes are also an important consideration since many typical cleaning solutions can degrade brushed bronze over time. Maintenance and cleaning crews should be given clear instructions on cleaning with products specifically designed to clean brushed bronze.

Matte Black

Matte black is a flat, non-reflective, slightly textured black finish that absorbs light. Manufacturers create it by applying a combination of finely-ground pigments and binders that create a dramatic, sophisticated appearance compared to a glossy black. The popularity of matte black has increased substantially since 2017 and it shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

A matte black finish has become particularly popular for bathroom fixtures and accessories and is often paired with gold, especially in contemporary designs. White and gray stone are also common pairings with a matte black finish in bathrooms, due to their timeless appearance. This monochromatic palette creates a clean, striking look that serves as a neutral background for design elements like backsplashes, vanities, and wallpaper.


The defining factor for brushed bronze, matte black, and other designer finishes is the quality. Inferior products with inconsistent or poorly applied finishes aren’t always easy to spot at first sight, so it’s important to do your homework. Stick to established manufacturers with rigorous QA testing processes for their finishes. And remember that beauty is more than skin deep, so choose products that have a long history of quality and durability.

At Symmons, we’ve been making the plumbing industry’s most reliable control valves, faucets, and shower valves for over 80 years. You’ll find trend-forward Brushed Bronze and Matte Black finishes on products for any project, and any budget, and we stand behind everything we make with our industry-best warranty.

Whether you choose products from our premier Dia® and Duro® collections or our affordable Elm® and Identity® lineup, you’ll find the same deep, rich, consistent finishes on everything we make. The finishes on all Symmons products are factory-tested for things like durability and scratch resistance, to make sure they stay looking good for years to come.


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