The Best Kitchen Sink Designs To Perfect Your Kitchen

Kitchen Remodeling
Additions and Remodels
Small Projects and Repairs
By Mateos Glen Hayes September 30, 2021

Not all heroes wear capes and those who wash most of the dishes at home are one such example. They’re also more privy to certain information more than others: they know how annoying a bad kitchen sink can be. Kitchen sinks are an essential component of any kitchen, so it’s worth taking some time to pick out the one that you like and that fits your needs well. A good kitchen sink will be a seamless addition that completes your kitchen remodel, and adds value and practicality to your kitchen. A mismatched sink will stick out like a sore thumb and regularly fall short of what you need — and water splattering everywhere is not what you need. There is no shortage of design and functionality options out there and each of them has a set of pluses as well as some details to consider.  

Farmhouse Sink

Also known as an apron sink, the farmhouse sink has a deep basin and an exposed sink front that lends itself to a bulky, vintage aesthetic that has become so beloved.

Create A Vintage Aesthetic With A White Porcelain Sink

Create A Vintage Aesthetic With A White Porcelain Sink

Stylish and Strong

Apron sinks are quite durably built and can be found made in a wide range of strong materials such as granite, copper, cast iron, and stainless steel. This allows for a wide range of different looks that fit many design styles. The bulky design of the farmhouse sink makes it quite a strong piece of hardware that is built to withstand heavy use for decades to come.   

Farmhouse Functionality

There’s an undeniable vintage charm to this sink design that spells “farmhouse”. But the apron sink is about more than just looks. It has a lot of functionality as well, and that is proven by its defining features. The traditional farmhouse sink is a single basin design that is large enough to serve a variety of functions equally well, from washing dishes to cleaning clothes and newborn baths. 

Versatile

Even with a double basin, an apron sink offers extra capacity over traditional sinks which allows for large dishware to be washed with ease. Most apron sinks do not come with premade holes for a faucet, but this is actually a benefit since it means you get to pick the size of the holes (and therefore the kitchen sink faucet) you wish to use.

An Apron Sink Offers Extra Capacity To Wash The Dishes with Ease

An Apron Sink Offers Extra Capacity To Wash The Dishes with Ease

Things to Consider 

The downsides of a bulky and heavy sink design are obvious. For one, farmhouse sinks take up a lot of space and may not fit in smaller galley kitchens. Making an apron sink fit means losing quite a bit of countertop space, as well as under-sink storage. That may be fine if you have a large kitchen, but it’s something to consider if space is at a premium for you.

Also, it is a bit difficult to install one of these sinks yourself because they are very heavy. A proper installation may require making some changes to your cabinets so they can support the weight. 

Undermount Sink

A Stylish White Sink That Is Both Practical and Easy to Maintain

A Stylish White Sink That Is Both Practical and Easy to Maintain

Also known as an integrated sink, the under-mounted sink is the perfect choice for anyone looking for something that’s sleek, modern, and functional.

Easy To Clean 

The seamless design of the undermount kitchen sink makes cleaning up quite easy. All you have to do after some prep work is dump the waste directly into the sink. Because it has a rimless design there is no need to worry about little pieces of food or mold getting trapped in the seams or edges of the kitchen sink.

Functional

As striking as the looks of this design are, it’s important to emphasize that this modern kitchen sink is more than about aesthetics. In fact, undermount sinks are a perfect example of an appliance that works as well as it looks. The rimless design makes this sink more spacious when compared to traditional kitchen sinks, and the clean simple lines give this sink a very elegant, contemporary appearance.

Undermount Kitchen Sinks Perfect for Custom-Made, Seamless Integration

Undermount Kitchen Sinks Perfect for Custom-Made, Seamless Integration

One of a Kind

The important thing to know about an integrated sink is that each one is built to order. Unlike bathroom undermount sinks you’d choose for your new floating vanity, kitchen undermount sinks aren’t generally available as premade units. Instead, they must be custom-made to fit your sink’s specific dimensions. Undermount kitchen sinks are therefore more expensive than other sink types. Integrated sinks are therefore a bit harder to replace if damaged, and in most cases, it will be more cost-effective to repair the sink rather than replace it.    

Self-Rimming Sinks

Also known as a top-mount or drop-in sink, the self-rimming sink is one of the simplest sink designs out there.

A Time-Tested Kitchen Sink for Durability

A Time-Tested Kitchen Sink for Durability

Tried and True

It’s also one of the most common, which is good news because it means that this sink design is tried and tested. Top-mount sinks are also one of the most durable kitchen sinks as well as one of the most affordable. The simple self-rimming design means that there’s little that can go wrong. Considering Because this design type is so common it can be found in nearly any hardware store that sells sinks. 

DIY Install

The biggest benefit of this design is the ease of installation. After all, there’s a reason that it’s called a drop-in sink. Because this design comes with an outer rim that’s designed to carry the kitchen sink’s weight, installation is a simple matter of cutting out a slot in the countertop according to manufacturer specifications and then “dropping in” the sink. Once that’s done, all that’s left is to caulk the rim with silicone and your self-rimming sink is ready to use! These qualities make the drop-in sink the perfect fit for an aspiring DIYer. 

An Easy-To-Install Sink For Aspiring DIYers

An Easy-To-Install Sink For Aspiring DIYers

Appearance

This standard stainless steel sink, however, isn’t exactly for everyone. Some people may not like the visibility of their sink rim since it isn't as sleek as, say, an undermount sink. The rim also makes it difficult to sweep water and food waste into the sink from your counter. This can also make cleaning a bit of a chore with drop-in sinks since the rim also needs to be wiped off regularly.

Prep Sink

Also known as a bar sink, the prep sink is the perfect addition to your kitchen or galley since it gives you one extra place to do prep work and clean up. 

The Perfect Accessory Sink for a Backstage Kitchen

The Perfect Accessory Sink for a Backstage Kitchen

Versatility 

The small size of a prep sink can be a major asset, especially if you are short on space in your kitchenette. Because of its compact size, a prep sink can be installed almost anywhere. Plus, there are many different shapes, materials, and styles to choose from so you’re sure to find one that fits your tastes and your kitchen. If you wish, you can even have your prep sink hooked up to a water filtration system for the cleanest water possible.  

Practical 

The convenience of having an extra kitchen sink speaks for itself. Having an extra place to do meal prep, wash your hands, or quickly rinse out mixing bowls means greater efficiency. If your main kitchen sink gets overwhelmed with dishes after a big dinner party, you can use the prep sink for overflow or as a backup so your cooking doesn’t grind to a halt.   

Size 

Of course, the prep sink’s small size can also limit just how practical it can be. It is not, for instance, a substitute for a full-size kitchen sink since it is too small and shallow. On its own, a prep sink becomes rather limited in its use and practicality. As such, it’s better to use a bar sink in addition to your main kitchen sink rather than have your bar sink be a standalone feature.

A Bar Sink Might Just Be the Helping Hand You Didn’t Know You Needed

A Bar Sink Might Just Be the Helping Hand You Didn’t Know You Needed

Super Affordable Installation 

The other major advantage of a prep sink is simply cost. These sinks are super easy to install and are quite affordable, too. Assuming you have the plumbing or electrical connections already in place, a prep sink may cost no more than $200 to have installed. If you have to add the plumbing and electrical connection the price is still relatively affordable at $1,000. 

Drainboard Sinks 

None of us want mold or mildew in the house, and a great way to avoid those two yucky hazards is to keep things dry. A drainboard sink is a great way to do that because it’s designed to keep water from pooling and make drying dishes easier.

Drainboard Sinks Can Protect Your Dishes From Mold or Mildew

Drainboard Sinks Can Protect Your Dishes From Mold or Mildew

Easy By Design

Most drainboard sinks are in essence a different version of the self-rimming sink design, although some undermount kitchen sinks can also be found with drainboards. The main difference between a drainboard sink and a regular self-rimming design is that it has one basin instead of two. The second basin is replaced by an apron that is grooved and angled down to allow the water to drain into the sink. This makes drying dishes and keeping water from pooling quite easy. Most drying racks fit perfectly on the drainboard, too. 

Practical Design 

This also frees up space since you’re not taking up an entire washbasin for drying dishes as you would with a double basin sink. This also means you can minimize how often you use your dishwasher, which is great news if you have an older machine that tends to be something of an electricity hog. Drainboards can even be used for collecting food scraps and funneling them into your sink and garbage disposal.

Custom-Made 

Drainboard sinks are generally a specialty item, which means they have to be made bespoke for the customer. As such, this sink design can cost more than others and is a semi-permanent fixture since it cannot be easily replaced or changed. So if you’re planning to get one, be sure to take adequate measurements beforehand. 

Written by
Mateos Glen Hayes

Written by Mateos Glen Hayes