Best Shower Head
Did you know that the average person uses about 25 gallons of water for a 10 minute shower? That equates to about 9,125 gallons a year for a single person! Investing in a nozzle that has an eco function or that produces less than 2.5 gallons per minute will help a great deal by saving water and lowering your energy bills. However, a nozzle that has a drippy and weak stream or that doesn’t provide enough pressure to wash all of the suds out of your hair is something that will follow you throughout your day. Many of the designs can provide users with enough pressure while still having a positive impact on the environment. In this guide, you will find some of the best products out there on the market that will help you get your day started off right.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 5 hrs of research
Easy to install
- Aqua Elegante
- HammerHead Showers
- Criteria Used for Evaluation
- Frequently Asked Questions
Top 10 Picks
Easy to install
Some users have experienced leaks over time
This model lands on our number one spot based upon its ease of use, innovative design, and it’s many adjustable settings. Plus, users found that it is incredibly easy to install even with very limited plumbing knowledge.Read more
What users really love about this design is that it has an adjustable frame that has 6 different power settings that range from powerful steam to a light rain mist. Users can also adjust the nozzle to focus water out of the base nozzle and the handheld option at the same time.
This unit is just as powerful as the government will allow- offering the maximum pressure of 2.5 gallons per minute.
Made from chrome plated ABS and stainless steel, this unit has a design that is going to inhibit the built up of lime and water deposits that sometimes can affect the pressure of the water.
The main nozzle measures to be 7 inches in diameter, and the smaller handheld nozzle has a diameter of 4 inches. What makes this unit great is that users can elect to have both nozzles running at the same time.
The cost of this unit is pretty affordable when you compare it to some of the higher end options out there on the market. We love that it comes with an impressive lifetime warranty in case anything should go wrong with your product.
The AquaDance design is our favorite pick because it offers users superior water pressure with the ability to adjust the power of the flow with a simple click, and it also has a handheld option. Plus, installation can be done without tools simply by tightening three screws on the base to any standard arm.
LED lights work from magnets and require no batteries
Easy to install
Makes a clicking noise while in use
For those that are looking for something that is a little unique that will have your houseguests raving about your modern bathroom- this is going to be your best option. We loved that the nozzle has LED lights that change color at various water temperatures, but it doesn’t skimp on features or water pressure.Read more
This unit has 5 power settings that can be adjusted simply by twisting the base to the desired setting. Settings include a powerful direct stray, pulsing massage, or a more gentle rain. Users can also elect to use water saving settings at the risk of a weaker stream.
The power of this spray is about 2.5 gallons per minute, which is just as powerful as the law will allow. For those that want something that is going to conserve water, you can play the adjustable nozzle on a water saving feature.
The entire unit is made from ABS plastic that has been coated with chrome that makes wiping it down easier, and the jets are considered to be run-clean which means they are going to be easier to wipe down and less likely to develop lime and water deposit build up.
The base unit has a face that measures to be 5.25 inches. For an additional cost, users can select a model that has the addition of a 4 inch hand held nozzle that attaches the base.
The cost of this playful unit is slightly less than many of the other standard options out there on the market. Plus, it comes with an 1 year warranty in case anything goes wrong with your design.
We loved this design because of the LED lights that need no batteries to operate, but also that it delivers superior water pressure and function to your daily cleansing ritual.
5 foot stainless steel hose
Easy to install
Cannot use both nozzles at the same time without losing significant water pressure
What we liked most about this option from Hydroluxe is that it is incredibly easy to install, and it comes with all of the things that you will need to get up and running right out of the box. Plus, it has a lot of settings on the nozzle to accommodate just about anyone.Read more
Settings on this model include a powerful direct spray, a massage option that pulseates the water, mist, and a gentle rain shower. It also as an eco rain mode that will use less water.
With no clear indication of gallons of water that is used per minute on the brand description, we can only assume that it uses the standard 2.5 gallons per minute. If you were looking for something that was going to conserve more water, you can elect to set it to the eco rain setting.
While the base of this unit is made from plastic that has been coated in chrome for an easily cleaning, all of the installation components are made from high-quality materials. Users will receive a stainless steel hose with brass nuts and the plumbers tape and washers they will need for an easy installation.
This unit is a little bit different because the base nozzle and the hand held model are the same size: 4 inches. What users really like about this design, however, is that the hose for the handheld nozzle measure to be 5 feet long.
The price of this unit runs about pretty par for the course, and may set you back the same amount that you would spend on a high end bottle of shampoo from the salon. Users can feel good about the fact that it also comes with an impressive 10 year warranty.
We feel that this unit is an excellent choice, especially considering the price point. It’s easy to install, and uses high-quality connection components so you will not have to worry about leaks that will make it lose pressure over time.
Easy to install
45 jets placed on a silicon base
Some find that the pressure of the jets to be too strong
Perhaps you want something that is simple and easy to use, and doesn’t get bogged down with additional features that you have no intention of using. If that’s the case, you might want to check out this option from WASSA. It comes in at a really affordable price point, and boasts a well crafted classic design.Read more
While users aren’t going to be able to change the flow of water to something that suits their needs, they will have the option of easily changing the direction of the nozzle. It uses a swivel ball joint at the base to make finding that perfect angle simple and easy.
45 jets found at the base of the nozzle deliver excellent water pressure, even in low flow conditions. While there is no indication of just how much water this produces per minute, we can assume that it isn’t going to be more than 2.5 gallons per minute.
Just like any other affordable option, this unit is made from ABS plastic that has a chrome finish for a sleek look and easy cleaning. Where this unit differs is in the 100 percent silicon jet base. This silicon is going to be resistant to the lime and water deposits that can build up over time, and it also can wipe down very clean as well.
This little unit measures to only be 3 inches in diameter, which is a little bit smaller than many of the standard 4-inch options out there on the market.
What we liked most about this option from WASSA is that it comes in at one of the most affordable price points on the market without sacrificing quality or design.
For users that want something that is simple and easy, and will be able to really deliver a powerful stream without draining your wallet, this option from WASSA is going to be your best bet.
5. Aqua Elegante
Powerful water flow
Easy to install
Color options available
Cannot adjust the angle of the nozzle
This is another option for those users that aren’t interested in a wide variety of adjustable settings, and just want something simple, affordable, and to the point. We liked that this design comes in a few different sleek color options that will add a little bit of style to your bathroom rather than just the standard chrome finish.Read more
The downside to this design is that it doesn’t have any adjustable features that change the flow of water. Plus, from what we have gathered, the base of the unit does not swivel or is able to be adjusted as well.
Some users like their nozzles to have all of the pressure of a firehose, and this unit really delivers. For all of those rebels out there that want a nozzle that exceeds the government limit of 2.5 gallons per minutes, this design has a flow restrictor as the base that is easy to remove.
This unit is composed of ABS plastic that has sturdy brass fittings to lessen the risk of leaks that will diminish water pressures. What users like about this model is that they can select from color finishes that include brushed nickel, chrome, oil rubbed bronze, or polished brass. It also has a silicon jet base for easy cleaning and eliminate the risk of build up over time.
The size of this base measures to be 3 inches in diameter, which is just a little bit on the small side. The addition of 42 jets on a silicon base makes this unit small, but powerful.
What we liked most about this option is that it comes in at one of the more affordable price point of any of the other options out there on the market.
If you are someone that hates the low water pressure of many of the adjustable options out there on the market, and you want something that is going to come close to blowing you right out of the shower- this is going to be one of your best options.
Filters water through mineral beads
Has a water saving feature
Users replace beads by purchasing a whole new unit, which can get expensive over time
If you live in an area outside of the city that has to contend with problematic well water, you might want to check out this option from LuxsegoDirect. It has a series of minimal beads that are built right into the base of the unit that serve to infuse the water with soothing minerals.Read more
This unit has three of the most popular settings that can be adjusted simply by turning the base. These settings include a powerful spray, pulsating massage, and a gentle rain setting.
Pumping out about 2.5 gallons of water per minute, this units power runs pretty par for the course. What is important to note about this design is the addition of the anion and infrared mineral balls in the base that infuse water with important minerals that will wash over your skin.
The base of this unit is made from ABS plastic, and all of the important components such as the hose and the washers are made from a high quality stainless steel to prevent leaks over time.
The base of this unit measures to be 3 inches in diameter with a hose that connects to the base that is 57 inches in length.
The cost of this design is just a little bit more expensive than some of the other standard options out there on the market. From what we gathered, however, is that users often buy a whole new nozzle after the minerals in their base lose their potency- which can get rather pricey over time.
For users that suffer with hard water that leaves their skin feeling dried out or with a residue- this option that filters the water before it even reaches your skin and hair is going to be one of your better options.
Easy to clean
60 jets on silicon base
Some have found that it leaks from the ball joint
Hands down, this is one of the most affordable options out there on the market. If you are working with a very limited budget, but you still want something that seems high end, this is going to be your best bet.Read more
There isn’t much to offer in the form of adjustability with this option. Users will not have the option of varying the type of spray that is produced, but they will be able to adjust the angle of the nozzle.
Users like that even though it has a flat and sleek base, it is still able to pack quite a punch. This unit offers an impressive 2.5 gallons per minute, but it also allows the user to switch to an eco-friendlier option to conserve water.
One of the most impressive features about this product is that it is composed of stainless steel and chrome, and it has silicon jets to prevent build up of lime.
The head of this unit measures to be 6 inches in diameter, and the base has an impressive 60 jets to create an even and powerful stream.
Our favorite thing about this unit is that it is one of the most affordable options that you are going to find, and it is still made from high quality materials such as stainless steel and chrome.
For those that want something that is simple and stylish, and still comes in at a really affordable price point without skimping on quality, this option from NearMoon is a great choice in our opinion.
Detachable head can be converted into a handheld design with very long hose
Stainless steel and brass components
Cannot adjust the head while mounted
Users did not like the massage function setting
What we liked most about this option is that it is a mounted and handheld model all in one without the need for two separate bases. The sleek wide base is going to give your bathroom and modern feel while offering great and adjustable water pressure.Read more
Users can select from three different pressure features that include a soft and relaxing rain, a high pressure stream, or a pulsating massage. The entire unit can be detached and used as a handheld feature as well.
This unit offers users about 2.5 gallons of water per minute, which is the maximum level that is allowed by law.
The head of this unit is made from a high quality ABS plastic that has a chrome coating. All of the pivots and brackets are made from a high quality brass that is designed to prevent against leaks, and the hose is made from stainless steel.
The head of this unit measures to be about 5 inches, while the entire base measures in at 5.7 inches. The hose that attaches to the base measures in at 63 inches, but it can stretch to up to 75 inches.
The cost of this unit is double, and almost triple of what many of the other options cost out there on the market. We feel that this price tag is just a little bit higher than it should be considering that it isn’t from a name brand and the base is composed of ABS plastic. However, it does come with an impressive 10 year warranty.
Users really seem to like how this unit delivers on water pressure as well as design. While the price tag is quite higher than most, many past users feel pleased with their purchase.
9. HammerHead Showers
Made from 100 percent metal
Very long 72 inch hose
A little expensive
Some users have found that it leaks from the ball joint
If you don’t want to take the risk on the chrome plated plastic designs, this sleek and stylish option is made from 100 percent metal- but it comes at a much higher price point.Read more
The bad news about this nozzle is that it doesn’t offer users a lot of options when it comes to the type of spray that is offered. Users will only have the powerful rain option that is offered, and they cannot adjust it to a more eco-friendly water conservation option. Users will be able to adjust the head at the mount with a ball joint swivel, and the entire unit can be detached to offer a handheld option.
This unit is able to provide 2.5 gallons of water per minute, which is pretty standard across the board. As we mentioned before, it doesn’t provide a mode that will conserve water.
This is where this model really shines. While many options made their heads from plastic and then coat them with a layer of chrome, this option is composed 100 percent metal- from the connections to the base.
The base of this unit is 4 inches in diameter, which is pretty standard, and the hose that connects to the base is an impressive 72 inches long- which makes it one of the longer hoses that we have seen on these products.
The cost of this unit makes it one of the more expensive designs that we have seen. However, if you are looking for something that is composed of solid metal materials and doesn’t use plastic, this is a great choice. Plus, it comes with a 90 day money back guarantee as well as a limited lifetime warranty.
If you are looking for something that is made from solid metal but you don’t want to pay the hefty price tag that comes with some of the name brand and higher end models, this option is going to be your best bet.
Can be adjusted based on height
Some found that it leaks right out of the box (can be fixed with plumbers tape or O-rings)
Some found that is if difficult to get it to stay in one spot
Waterpik is known for their home dental tools, but their expertise in getting clean doesn’t just stop at the mouth. We loved the design of this option because it can be easily adjusted for various heights- which is something a lot of other designs don’t do.Read more
The height of the spigot that you attach these models to is something that isn’t going to be able to change, and if you are taller than that top spigot, you are going to be out of luck. However, with the adjustable hose feature of this design from Waterpik, you can actually position the nozzle above the spigot, or adjust it downwards for your shorter family members.
This unit offers up 2.5 gallons of water per minute, or for a lower price point, users can select a design that offers slightly less (2 gallons per minutes) at a slightly less expensive price tag.
The downside to this model is that it is comprised of primarily plastic parts that are finished in chrome. What this means for you is that it may not last quite a long as units that use materials such as brass and stainless steel for their component parts.
The head is a little smaller than normal, measuring in at 3.5 inches in diameter. What makes this unit different is the patented 18 inch flexible head that allows users to position it wherever they want.
The cost of this unit is just a little more expensive than many of the others out there, but it is far from being the most expensive unit out there on the market.
If you are someone that wants something that is going to be able to be adjusted left and right as well as up and down, this is going to be one of your best options.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
This is an important feature because it determines the type of stream that is going to work for you.
As human beings, we like to have a lot of options, and we wanted to select styles that offered that to you. We loved products that allowed the user to adjust the stream coming from their nozzle with just the turn of a dial. Typical streams that were most prevalent with most models were the rainfall option, power stream option, and a pulsing massage options- which was a little hit or miss amongst most users. We also gravitated towards options that had an additional nozzles mounted to the base that was attached to a hose to create a handheld option. These designs are not only perfect for users looking to spot clean or need something that is going to be able to reach the top of their head (if they’re tall), but they also serve a few other functions as well. Most users like the handheld option because it makes cleaning their pets a lot easier, and it works for cleaning household gear such as mini blinds and houseplants.
Hands down- this is the most important feature that we considered. If you have a product that isn’t very effective, then you just aren’t going to have that same spring in your step with all of that leftover shampoo in your hair.
What we discovered is that there is a limit to how much power these devices can put out, and that number is determined by the EPA in an effort to conserve power and water. Almost every product on our list puts out maximum pressure that is allowed by the EPA, and that is 2.5 gallons per minute. For some users that like a stream comparable to a firehose, that just isn’t going to be powerful enough. In that case, we made sure to select brands that had a pressure indicator that was easy to remove so that users wouldn’t have to back by 2.5 gallons per minute. It’s important to consider, however, that selecting an eco friendly option will not only make the planet happy, but it will also benefit your energy bills as well.
Just like with any type of gear, the materials used to make it is going to be the recipe for a long lasting unit.
For the more affordable models, ABS plastic is the way to go. These options typically don’t have the same weight as metal options, and some may be prone to cracking on a long enough timeline, but they typically hold up quite well with extended use. Plus, these ABS designs are coated in a layer of chrome that make them a little bit more durable, but it also makes them easier to clean. One thing that we noticed some companies offered was a jet based composed of silicon. This is a fantastic addition because it provides a surface that makes lime and water deposits more difficult to accumulate. Plus, when they do start to accumulate, cleaning the base is much easier than their plastic or metal counterparts. If you are looking for something that is going to be a permanent fixture in your home, you might way to dish out a little bit of extra money and opt for a metal frame. However, if you like to change up the look and feel of your device every few years, an incredibly affordable plastic option is going to be your best bet.
The size and diameter of a device is going to be a good indicator of how powerful it is going to be.
Designs that measure to be about 3 inches in diameter aren’t going to provide a whole lot of square footage in terms of water distribution. This means that you are going to have to walk up to the stream and let it hit you, instead of walking into a misty water box. The benefit of the smaller bases is that it generally means that the stream is going to be a lot more powerful. Designs that have a base that is over 4 inches typically provide a weaker stream that is going to cover a lot more square footage in your tub. The downside to these styles is that it isn't going to be as powerful. But the size of the nozzle isn’t the only thing that we considered when it comes to size. We also looked at the length of the hose for options that come with a handheld unit. Of course, you aren’t going to be using this outside in your garden, so you probably assume that the length won’t matter that much- but you would be wrong. If you are using it to do things like wash a pet or a piece of furniture, you are really going to want something that is going to be able to reach all the way down to the bottom and still leave you some maneuverability room for those squirmy pooches.
Last but not least- we wanted to save you a little bit of money where we could.
The cost of these devices are a little bit all over the map. There are some that will set you back about the same amount that you would a decent microwave, while there are others that cost the same amount as a bottle of shampoo. The way we looked at it was that there is a federal limit to how much power these devices can put out (2.5GPM), so the higher end designs cannot possibly use more water or be more powerful. These higher end options most likely cost more because they are made from solid materials (such as stainless steel), and they boast a sleek and modern design. In terms of power, however, they legally are not going to be able to compete with many of the modestly priced options. That’s why we wanted to stick to designs that were highly regarded by users, and that had a price tag that ran about in the middle of the road.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
Many designs on the market offer users the ability to change the different type of stream from powerful options to more gentle streams. It is important to keep in mind that these options are going to be just a little bit more difficult to clean because there are more moving parts in comparison to options that only have one setting.
Water pressure is going to be the trick to getting all of that shampoo out of your hair. Keep an eye on how many gallons per minute each unit moves. 2.5 is the industry standard, but many water conscious users feel that 2 GPM is great for conserving a good deal of water while still offering a powerful enough stream to rinse off all of those suds.
The materials used for each unit are going to determine how well it is going to hold up to daily use. ABS plastic that is coated in chrome is great because it will hold up over time, but it still comes in at an affordable price point. The downside to this material is that it has a tendency to crack on a long enough timeline, but the price point makes it sting less when you need to replace it.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Why can I only purchase options that offer 2.5 gallons of water per minute?
You might have noticed that there seems to be a cap as far as water pressure is concerned. This is because the EPA regulates that all nozzles offered for sale can not exceed 2.5 gallons per minutes. Now, this doesn’t mean that the EPA is going to bust down your door and arrest you if your nozzle produces more than that, but it means that Captain Planet might want to speak to you about water conservation. Some find that 2.5 GPM doesn’t produce enough power to really kick off the grime after a long day of outdoor adventures, so many companies offer an easy way to remove the water regulator in an effort to create a more powerful stream.
q: Will using a eco friendly option really save all that much water?
When you hop in the tub to hose off after a long day, a 2.5 GPM nozzle uses about 20 gallons of water if you are in there for about 10 minutes. If you shower every day (as you should!) you will save, on average, about 1,825 gallons of water simply from swapping out your 2.5 GPM nozzle to a 2.0 nozzle. That’s a lot of water!
q: What are hand held models used for?
You might have noticed that a lot of options out there on the market often supplement their mounted models with the addition of a hand held option that mounts to the base and has a long stainless steel hose. So, what exactly are these used for? Some users prefer this method because it allows them to do some serious spot cleaning to focus the jets on their hair to ensure that they get every last sud to rinse down the drain instead building up on their hair. They can also be used to to hose down all of your furry friends like they would get cleaned at the groomer. Washing your pets with just a tub and a faucet can be a terrible experience for both you and your pet, so using a hand held nozzle makes the experience easier on everyone involved.
q: Are they easy to clean?
No one likes to do the dreaded tasks of cleaning the bathroom, because the grime that can accumulate in the tub is some of the most difficult grime to remove. These units are often used more than once a day, and that means that deposits from your water are going to built up on the surface by the jets. We found that companies that use silicon bases are typically a little more resistant to water deposit build up, and they are generally easier to clean. For solid metal bases, most experts suggest that you are going to need to remove the jets from the base. Using an old toothbrush and vinegar, gently brush along the surface of the jets. For lime deposits inside of the jets, we suggested using a toothpick to poke through the opening to ensure that it will work just as good as the first day that you purchased it.
q: What is the difference between the various settings?
Many options out there allow users to switch between a number of different jet settings. Most can achieve this simply by turning the base until it clicks on a certain jet pattern. The gentle rain setting found on most is exactly as it sounds. The water pressure diminishes a bit, and it feels as if you are standing under a gentle rain cloud. While some users feel that this setting is wonderful and relaxing, other find that it doesn’t offer enough power to rinse all of the suds out of their hair. For those users, they may benefit from the sharp stream setting. This option may not cover as much square footage as the rain option, but it will ensure that it will kick up all of the dust from the day off of your skin and down the drain. The last function offered is probably the one that will get used the least: the pulsing option. This is designed to give you a massage by pulsing the water. While it may feel good, most users feel this isn’t effective enough to really get clean.
q: What size base should I select?
From what we gathered, there is a range in base sizes that start out at about 3 inches in diameter and run up to about 8 inches in diameter. Those that are designed to be a little bit on the narrow size tend to have a little bit more pressure to the because the water has less places to travel that would cause it to become weak. If you are someone that like base to have pressure of a fire hose, you might want to try out the 3-4 inch base designs. Options that have a base that are over 4 inches typically are designed to cover more square footage in your tub, but at the risk of lessening the power of the stream. If you like the rainfall options out there on the market, you may benefit more from the base designs that measure to be between 4-8 inches in diameter.