Which bathtub trays are best?
Few things are better than enjoying a long, relaxing soak after a hard day at work. But if you want to elevate things to a luxury spa-like experience, you need to get a bathtub tray. They provide you a safe place to put your reading material and spa essentials.
The Royal Craft Wood Luxury Bathtub Caddy Tray stands out for its attractive style, variety of compartments and ability to adjust to most tubs. There are many other great options though too, if you prefer something made of metal or plastic.
What to know before you buy a bathtub tray
Bathtub trays come in several types of material, which vary in their durability and aesthetic appeal.
- Arguably, bathtub trays made from teak, bamboo and other woods are some of the most attractive options. They tend to be very strong too, however they can be susceptible to mold and water damage if they aren’t allowed to dry completely between uses, especially unpainted models.
- Metal is another common material used in bathtub trays. Unlike wood, metal isn’t prone to mold, but it can be susceptible to rusting. This shouldn’t happen in high-quality stainless steel models, but it is a concern in lower-quality units that are made from other metals and have cheap chrome plating. Most metal models have a basket design so you don’t have to worry about water pooling up on top of them like you may with bathtub trays made from other materials, but this does mean that small items can slip through their open spaces.
- You can also find bathtub trays made from plastic or acrylic, both of which are completely impervious to water. Oftentimes though, these have less features than wooden or metal trays. Some may also find they don’t look very attractive.
All bathtub trays are designed to fit basic tubs, but they do vary in width so it is important to measure your tub before purchasing any model. This is especially important if you have an uncommon or extra-wide tub. Many models are also adjustable, which not only allows you to increase their usable surface space when needed, but also ensures you can perfectly fit the tray to your tub. Some bathtub trays measure as much as 42 inches long when fully extended.
Features to look for in a quality bathtub tray
If you like to have a beverage on hand while relaxing in the tub, you’ll be happy to know that many bathtub trays feature dedicated cupholders. There are even some models that feature holders specifically designed for wine glasses.
Most bathtub trays have a media stand of some kind. Often, these are angle adjustable to hold your tablet or book at the optimal position for comfortable viewing. They also fold flat when not in use for more convenient storage of the tray.
The spa tray is where you can keep all your soaps, bath bombs, sponges and any other personal care product you like to use while soaking. Ideally, these should be removable so you can clean them off when you’re finished bathing.
In addition to soaps and media devices or books, you may like to keep other items close at hand while bathing. All-purpose trays provide you with a bit of extra space to do exactly this.
Bathtub surfaces can be notoriously slippery when wet. To reduce the chances of your bathtub tray slipping off the edge and potentially dropping your stuff into the water or onto the floor, look for a model that features nonslip grips on the bottom. These will be made of a high-traction material like rubber or silicone.
Handles make it easier to carry your tray to and from the tub, especially when it is already loaded up with your various toiletries, reading materials and a drink. On some models, these may be raised handles or integrated into the frame of the tray. Some trays are completely lacking in handles, which can be cumbersome to lift and carry.
How much can you expect to spend on a bathtub tray
Most bathtub trays cost between $15-$75.
Bathtub tray FAQ
Do bathtub trays require any assembly?
A. Most bathtub trays require little or no assembly. For those that do require assembly, the process should be very easy and, if tools are needed, they will come with them.
Will a bathtub tray damage the surface of my tub?
A. Bathtub trays shouldn’t damage the surface of your tub. However, if you are worried about this, make sure to choose a model that has a rubber, silicone or other soft material coating on any surfaces that will come in contact with your tub.
What are the best bathtub trays to buy?
Top bathtub tray
What you need to know: Smartly designed with tons of great features and available in a wide variety of colors, this bathtub tray makes a nice addition to any bathroom.
What you’ll love: It extends up to 43 inches so it can fit practically any tub, and it has a dedicated wine glass holder that prevents them from spilling if the tray is accidentally bumped. The spay tray is removable too, for easy cleaning.
What you should consider: It can feel a bit oversized in small tubs.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top bathtub tray for the money
What you need to know: This stainless steel tray is a top option for those who like that minimalist style or who are looking for something with a bit of extra durability and longevity.
What you’ll love: It has nonslip handles, so there is no worry for it to fall into the bathtub.
What you should consider: Small items can fall through its grates.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: If you don’t want to feel limited with dedicated holders and trays for certain items, this acrylic tray that features a single long surface is the way to go.
What you’ll love: Its raised edges keep things like pens from rolling off, making it great for those who like to write in a journal while soaking. Also, it has a modern style aesthetic that many others can’t match.
What you should consider: Its length is not adjustable.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Brett Dvoretz writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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