Designer vessel sinks are the ultimate in custom bathroom design. With thousands of intricate, colorful, unique styles out there, a good vessel sink is the perfect signature finishing touch to any bathroom, and a perfect way to add a little personal flair to any bathroom, whether it’s a private master bath or a more heavily trafficked guest bathroom. Nowhere is this more true than with hand-pounded copper vessel sinks. Made by skilled artisan craftsmen, no two are created exactly alike. More than that, they age naturally over time, developing a one of a kind patina, and really are 100% unique to you. If that thought sounds a little scary, or if you’re worried about maintenance, don’t be – copper sinks, especially in a bathroom, are just about the easiest material out there to maintain. Here are a few reasons why it’s worth looking into.
Normal Wear And Tear Actually Makes Copper Sinks MORE Beautiful
Custom vessel sinks come in a wide variety of beautiful materials. But where porcelain, glass, or stone sinks age, chip, stain, and scratch over time, the very same daily grind that causes your average sink to lose its luster is part of the process that enhances the beauty of a copper sink. Think of a penny. The day it’s minted, it’s bright and dazzlingly shiny, but give it a year or so of tossing around in pockets and getting passed from hand to hand, and it starts to develop a darker color, not all over and not exactly the same color everywhere, but the whole surface will develop a rich, layered color. The same is true of copper vessel sinks, only it’s a heck of a lot prettier. Not many copper vessel sinks start out looking like a new penny – some do, but most ship with a little aging on them already. Dump a quart of lemonade in the sink and let it soak for a few hours, and that beautiful finish will go away… but otherwise, if you use it for soap, toothpaste, hair gel, shaving cream, or any other normal every day use, then rinse, the finish will actually mature and deepen with each use.
Copper Is Naturally Self-Healing
If you get a crack, chip, scratch, or stain in any other kind of sink, it can be difficult or even impossible to repair, and extremely unsightly. Especially with a white porcelain sink with a cast iron interior, even a small amount of damage can be glaringly obvious. Not so with copper vessel sinks. The material is naturally nonporous, so it won’t stain, and a hand-hammered sink already has a slightly more rustic, varied, uneven texture, so dints and dings aren’t likely to show up. More than that, because copper vessel sinks are continually aging and maturing as you use them, if you DO damage your sink – scratching or even gouging it, a little shiny copper will show through for a little while, but within a few days or weeks the mark will age and start naturally blending right back in to the rest of the sink. Depending on the depth of the scratch, the mark can completely disappear in as little as a few weeks or a month. So if you want a beautiful, signature sink for your bathroom, but are paranoid about hurting it, a copper vessel sink is actually one of the best choices, because they’re effectively damage proof, almost no matter what you do to them.
…And That Means, No Cleaning
The only real “damage” you can do to a copper sink, short of going at it with a chain saw or a braise welder, is to rub it down with lemon juice, vinegar, or any other acid. Just like a penny, acids and salts will erode away the patina that builds over time, but unlike a penny (or, say, that beautiful set of copper-bottomed pots) the “new-penny” look isn’t what you want. Instead, you want to leave your sink to maintain itself, allowing that rich, burnished finish to mature. That means supremely easy maintenance – no softsoap and no scrubbing pads, you just want to thoroughly rinse your sink every time you use it, and, if you have especially hard water, make sure that you wipe your sink dry between uses to prevent hard water spots. That’s it. In fact, the more you use a copper vessel sink, the faster the finish develops, and the greater depth and character the sink will have.
Copper Is Naturally Hygienic
If the thought of never applying bleach to your bathroom sink gives you the willies, try this on for size: Copper is naturally antiseptic – not just non-porous, it actually kills bacteria better that any other surface. Bacteria deposited inside a copper vessel sink actually die faster than those on the surface of a stainless steel surgeon’s sink, and not just by a little – bacteria in the surgeon’s sink can live for up to a month. The ones in a simple copper vessel sink will die in just a few hours. That means that even if you never once put scrub pad to drain plug, your copper vessel sink will probably be the cleanest, most hygienic surface in your bathroom, if not in your entire home.
Copper Vessel Sinks Are Truly One Of A Kind
All of that adds up to a sink that’s not only 100% hands off, but also one that’s genuinely one of a kind. Even ignoring the individual craftsmanship of hand pounded sinks, or the beautiful but subtly varied designs on patterned sinks, every time you use a copper vessel sink, you’re making it more your own. Glass vessel sinks are beautiful in their color and design, and even in the way they catch the light, but copper vessel sinks are beautiful in their mutability, the constantly changing, living designs that appear in the metal as it ages, and the natural patterns that no human hand could quite replicate. So if you’re looking to add a truly regal, timeless piece to your bathroom (or to add something a little rustic or antique, depending on how you accessorize), you really can’t beat a copper vessel sink.