The Battle of Chrome vs Stainless Steel: Bling or Durability?

Jessica Lawrence
13 Min Read
chrome vs stainless steel

Are you going to get a brand-new kitchen faucet? But you’re trapped between the Chrome vs Stainless steel faucet debate. With the variety of finishes available, choosing one for your faucet might be challenging.

The choice has undoubtedly grown more difficult because the chrome and stainless steel are the two faucet finishes recognized as the most popular. Both types need minimal maintenance, are farewell-built, and are lustrous.

They may both be used in practically any design. However, there are certain distinctions between chrome and stainless steel and their benefits. So let’s carefully examine the comparison of stainless steel vs. chrome for a kitchen faucet in this article.

Also read: Satin nickel vs. brushed nickel, which one is better?

What are stainless steel faucets? 

Stainless steel faucet

Kitchen faucets made of stainless steel are among the most preferred existing models. They have been the market leaders for kitchen fittings for over a century. To make faucets, stainless steel should ideally not be used as a raw material since it is sometimes used in cooking pans and utensils. Instead, it is a finish or coating for faucets made of steel and brass.

Stainless steel is a remarkable material with incredible wear resistance, corrosion resistance, moisture resistance, and fire prevention qualities. Stainless steel is an alloy containing a minimum of 10.5% chromium. Due to its construction and polishing, it is the shiniest and most durable type of faucet. They are quite practical in damp situations, such as bathrooms and kitchens. Additionally, stainless steel is renowned for its mirror-like appearance, making it appear outstanding in your kitchen.

Pros of stainless steel faucets: 

  • Durability: 

Kitchen faucets have long been made of stainless steel. Its durability is one of the factors contributing to its popularity. Stainless steel can resist corrosion and depression, and its service life can last more than ten years. 

  • Polished appearance: 

 Stainless steel, as we all know, is also good at keeping a consistent and polished appearance. It is much easier to clean and maintain and more resistant to water stains and fingerprints. In addition to performing well in harsh temperatures, stainless steel faucets are perfect for use as kitchen faucets. The low cost of stainless steel faucets is another benefit.  

  • Affordable pricing: 

Several internet vendors offer a large selection of stainless steel faucets at affordable costs.  

  • Corrosion Resistance:  

Stainless steel faucets’ exceptional level of corrosion resistance is arguably its most important benefit. They have an amazing finish that includes a polished surface with a silvery shine created by cutting-edge casting techniques. A notable consequence is a surface resistant to technology, wear, abrasion, acid, and alkali. 

  • Stain and Scratch Resilient:  

Stainless steel kitchen faucets are a fantastic choice if you want a kitchen faucet that will remain spotless even in a busy and hectic kitchen. Due to its resistance to stains, smudges, and fingerprints, it may be left uncleaned for extended periods. 

  • Environmental friendly coatings:  

This faucet finish has a friendly production process which you will appreciate if you are concerned about the environment. Due to the absence of electroplating, less environmental damage is caused during manufacture. 

Cons of Stainless steel faucets: 

  • Toxicity of the steel: 

Although stainless steel faucets are always lead-free, they may still contain trace amounts of toxic substances like nickel and chromium. Chromium is somewhat hazardous. However, the toxicity levels are minimal and have no negative effects on human health. 

Do stainless steel faucets are out of fashion? 

Stainless steel is not out of vogue, though. Stainless steel is becoming more and more fashionable. It is a highly desired option for kitchen and bathroom sinks, faucets, appliances, and other fixtures.

What are Chrome faucets? 

Chrome faucet

Chrome finishes come in three categories: shiny, matte, and brushing. While satin chrome is a little more subdued glossy finish, polished chrome radiates a high-shine, glossy, and eye-catching finish. Due to its more matte look, brushed chrome often resembles satin chrome. The chrome finish is made up of a coating of nickel that is applied first, followed by chrome using an electroplating technique. Brass parts are either buffed for a striation look or polished to a mirror sheen.

A nickel coating is used as the base for chrome finishes, which are subsequently electroplated with chrome. Brass components are either buffed to a striped appearance or polished to a mirror sheen.

The components go through a multi-stage process on a conductive rack where they are cleaned, nickel-plated, and chrome-plated. The components are submerged in an electrolytic solution while the current is given to the anode and brass components during the plating process.

The chrome finish is incredibly easy to maintain. Simply use a gentle, dry towel to clean the faucet and handle after each usage. This will stop water damage and mineral accumulation. To further preserve the surface, you may add a small wax coating.

Pros. of using chrome faucets: 

  • Eye catchy faucets: 

Chrome faucets can be manufactured from steel, brass, plastic, or stainless steel. It is made by plating the top of the base metal using an electroplating technique. Chrome kitchen taps are picked because of their glossy finish. It makes the fixture an eye-catching part of the kitchen décor. 

  • Versatile and durable

Chrome faucets are known for their versatility and durability. They are easy to maintain and don’t need to clean repeatedly. 

  • Easy to maintain: 

Simply use a gentle, dry towel to clean the faucet and handle after each usage. This will stop water damage and mineral accumulation. To further preserve the surface, you may add a small wax coating. 

  • Vitality 

With proper maintenance, chrome is resilient in dry conditions and may last up to 10 years. Once you get through the chrome plating, They will not rust easily. Chrome is the material of choice if you love modern kitchen designs. Most chrome-finished faucets are rather fashionable and will go well with the rest of your modern kitchen decor. Combining the sparkling finish with it means giving your kitchen a contemporary feel. 

Cons of chrome faucets: 

  • Stained easily: 

Chrome kitchen faucets have a bright surface that is easily stained and fingerprinted. Therefore, every little touch will be obvious on the faucet body. 

  • Required frequent cleaning: 

Maintaining the shiny surfaces of chrome faucets is difficult. However, keeping them up is a challenge. Any type of grime will be obvious, and cleaning the surfaces might be a difficult task. 

  • Not Long-Lasting: 

Chrome faucets seem amazing when new, but if they are not properly maintained, this sleek aspect inevitably fades after a few years. Because chrome surfaces are not scratchy and abrasion-resistant, they will eventually fade and may require a new faucet. 

Do chrome faucets out of fashion now? 

Chrome faucets are still in fashion. They still keep their position as one of the most common finishes. With their brilliant and reflected brightness, faucets with a chrome finish add a touch of elegance without trying too hard.

Comparison between chrome vs. stainless steel faucets: 

Chrome Stainless steel 
These faucets are available in satin, polished, and brushed.  These faucets are available in three types of finishing Artic, Stainless, and steel optiks. 
Bright and shiny in appearance Glossy and mirror-like appearance 
Cannot have much resistance against finger stains and spots. Have resistance against spots, stains, and finger smudges. 
Clean with the dump, moist and wet clothes. Clean easy with dry clothes 

Chrome vs stainless steel faucets-which one is better? 

Suppose you are confused between two basic faucets: chrome and stainless steel. Then consider your home requirements first. Understanding price, durability, designs, and care differences will be less complicated. Let’s make things easier for you. Here’s a quick table of the pros and cons of Chrome vs stainless steel faucets.

Stainless steel: 

  • Durable and versatile 
  • Having high and low-temperature resistance 
  • Easy to clean with dry clothes 
  • Affordable pricing 
  • Variety of designs are available 
  • Don’t need high-level maintenance 
  • Scratch easily 
  • Visible water and finger spot 

Chrome Faucet: 

  • Have modern and latest designs 
  • A shiny and mirror-like appearance 
  • Easy to maintain
  • Easy to clean 
  • Required detergents and DIY techniques for a glossy appearance 
  • Stains and fingerprints are obvious. 
  • Expensive in pricing


  • Chrome vs. stainless steel faucet, which one is easier to clean? 

Chrome has a mirror-like appearance and is shinier than stainless steel. So it’s obvious to have fingerprints and spots visible every time and needs to clean frequently for decorative purposes. In contrast, Stainless steel has a clean surface and is easy to clean. 

  • Why are chrome faucets corrosive? 

Although chrome has a corrosive-resistant surface, it can be damaged by tap water. Scouring pads and sharp tools won’t easily remove hard water build-up.  

When someone uses hard detergents to remove hard water spots, the corrosive-resistant surface also damages. Once the surface is damaged, the chrome starts getting rusted. 

  • Why are stainless steel faucets considered good for larger families? 

Due to their ability to hide water stains and fingerprint smudges, stainless steel faucets are perfect for high-traffic locations like family homes. Maintaining them with a soft, dry cloth will keep them clean and shining. 

  • How Can I Tell The Difference Between Stainless Steel And Chrome Steel? 

Using a magnet, you can distinguish between them with ease. Magnets won’t adhere to stainless steel since it is not magnetic. 

Although the metal substrate is normally magnetic, chrome is not. Chrome may consequently adhere to the magnet. 

  • Are Clorox wipes safe to use on chrome faucets? 

That is possible. Clorox Disinfecting Wipes are disposable, bleach-free, and eliminate most germs without leaving streaks on chrome. 

Final verdict: 

Considering your particular preferences before choosing between stainless steel and chrome faucets is essential. A chrome faucet is an excellent option if you want something beautiful and shiny, while a stainless steel faucet is a fantastic option if you want something durable.

Additionally, choosing a stainless steel faucet would be preferable due to its excellent longevity and reasonable price. A chrome-plated faucet is the best option for someone who cleans more regularly and is concerned about upkeep.

However, invest in a stainless steel faucet if you have a hectic lifestyle and a job. You ought to be able to select the faucet that best suits your needs and tastes using the information provided here.

Also, glance through How to remove Moen faucet handle without screws?

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