Shower Liner Vs Shower Curtain: What’s The Difference?

The shower liner and shower curtain share a sheer resemblance with each other. That’s why people often find themselves confused when distinguishing between them.

But not anymore because this guide will help remove this confusion forever; so what’s actually the difference shower liner and a shower curtain?

Shower curtains are used mostly for privacy and decorative purpose inside the bathroom, whereas shower liners usually go inside the tub to prevent water splashes from getting outside. The shower-liner also protects the shower curtain from mold and mildew.

Read on to learn more about shower curtains and liners, including their differences, pros and cons, why you need them, and the best materials you should look for when buying them.

What Is A Shower Curtain?

A shower curtain hangs from a rod and separates the shower or bathtub area from the rest of the bathroom. It is primarily used for privacy and decorative purposes but is still effective in protecting showers from water splashes.

Some shower curtains are plain and simple, while others are adorned with decorative elements such as flowers, stripes, or abstract designs. They are made from materials such as polyester, vinyl, or nylon, each offering unique advantages.

What Is A Shower Curtain Liner?

The shower curtain liner can be used separately or with the shower curtains. It is usually hung with the rod and goes inside the tub to protect the shower base from water, keeping it dry and clean.

Shower liners are water-resistant and made from materials such as polyester and vinyl. Sometimes, a shower liner is referred to as a shower curtain because it can be used solely without an outside shower curtain.

Do I Need Both a Shower Curtain and a Liner?

When it comes to outfitting your bathroom with the right accessories, choosing the right shower setup can be a tough call. 

One question that often arises is whether you need to use a shower curtain and a liner or get by with one or the other. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the three different options.

Option 1: Only a Shower Liner

A shower liner is a clear, plastic sheet that attaches to your shower rod and provides a waterproof barrier between the shower and the rest of your bathroom. 

This is the most basic option and can be a good choice if you are on a tight budget or looking for a minimalist design. 

While using only a liner won’t add any decorative value to your bathroom, it is easy to clean and replace when needed.

Option 2: Only a Shower Curtain

If you want to add style and personality to your bathroom, you might consider using only a shower curtain. 

Shower curtains come in various colors, patterns, and materials, making finding one that matches your decor easy. 

While a shower curtain on its own won’t provide a waterproof barrier, it can still help to contain some of the water sprays and prevent them from splashing out of the shower.

Option 3: Both a Shower Curtain and a Liner

You can use a shower curtain and a liner if you want the best of both worlds. This option provides maximum protection against water damage while allowing you to express your style through your choice of curtain. 

When using both a shower curtain and liner, it is important to ensure that they are properly installed and that the curtain is placed on the outside of the liner to prevent water from getting trapped in between.

Best Material For Shower Liners and Curtains

When it comes to designing your bathroom, choosing the right shower liner and curtain can make all the difference. You want a combination that looks good and is functional and easy to maintain. Here’s a breakdown of the best materials for shower liners and curtains.

Best Material for Shower Liners

Vinyl and polyester are the most popular materials for shower liners. 


Vinyl liners are affordable, easy to clean, and water-resistant. They are a great option for those on a budget who still want a durable, long-lasting liner. 


Polyester liners are more durable than vinyl and resistant to mold and mildew. They’re an excellent choice if you’re looking for a liner that can withstand frequent use.

Best Material for Shower Curtains

Regarding shower curtains, there are several materials to choose from. 


Cotton is a classic choice that is soft, durable, and easy to clean. It’s perfect if you’re looking for a simple and understated look in your bathroom. 


Linen is a luxurious option that adds a touch of elegance to any bathroom. It’s a textured, natural material with a more sophisticated and organic feel. 


Hemp is an eco-friendly option that is resistant to mildew and bacteria. It’s perfect for those who want to maintain a healthy and environmentally conscious home. 

Silk or Satin

Lastly, silk or satin curtains offer a glamorous and luxurious feel that is hard to beat. They are perfect for those looking to add a touch of glamour to their bathroom.

If you’re designing your bathroom, you may wonder whether you need a shower curtain and liner. Here’s a breakdown of the pros and cons of each and why you might want to consider using both.

Do I Need Both A Shower Curtain And Liner?

While having a shower curtain and liner is unnecessary, using both can provide added benefits to your bathroom. 

A liner helps protect your curtain from water damage, ensuring it lasts longer. It also provides extra protection for your bathroom floor, preventing slips and falls. 

A shower curtain helps give your bathroom a sophisticated and classic look and also prevents water splashes from getting on the shower to some extent. That said, having both in your bathroom is a lethal combination you have always dreamed of!

Pros and Cons of a Shower Liner

A shower liner is an essential component of any shower setup. Its primary purpose is to prevent water from leaking from the shower and onto your bathroom floor. 

A liner is typically made of vinyl or polyester, which are water-resistant and easy to clean. However, it’s important to note that liners can be prone to mold and mildew growth, which can be difficult to remove.

Pros and Cons of a Shower Curtain

A shower curtain adds a decorative touch to your bathroom and can help create a cohesive design scheme. They are available in various materials, styles, and colors to fit any bathroom decor. 

However, curtains are not typically water-resistant; they can absorb moisture and become moldy or mildew over time. They also require regular washing and maintenance to keep them looking their best.

Pros and Cons of a Shower Liner and Curtain

Using both a shower liner and curtain can provide the best of both worlds. The liner provides protection from water damage and prevents slips, while the curtain adds a decorative touch to your bathroom. However, using both requires more maintenance and upkeep than using just one or the other.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I keep my shower curtain liner from mildewing?

To prevent mildew on your shower curtain liner, allow it to fully dry after each use, use a dehumidifier, regularly wash it in hot water and detergent, and use a vinegar solution to clean it.

Do Shower Curtains Stay Inside Or Outside The Tub?

If the showerhead is directly over the tub and there is enough space, the shower curtain can be placed outside the tub to create more room for showering. 
However, if the showerhead is at an angle or the tub is smaller, placing the shower curtain inside the tub can help prevent water from splashing onto the bathroom floor.

Is It Better To Have Two Shower Curtains?

Having two curtains can provide a more balanced and symmetrical look, while one curtain may be more practical in smaller bathrooms with limited space. Ultimately, it comes down to your design preferences and what works best for your specific bathroom setup.

Is A Fabric Or Plastic Shower Liner Better?

It depends on your personal preference and needs. Plastic shower liners are more affordable and easier to clean, while fabric liners are more eco-friendly and can be washed in the washing machine.

How Often To Replace A Shower Curtain?

Replacing your shower curtain every six to twelve months or as soon as it shows signs of wear and tear is recommended.


A shower liner and shower curtain are two separate bathroom accessories. Shower curtains provide privacy and decoration, while shower liners prevent water from splashing out of the tub and protect the shower curtain from mold and mildew. 

A shower liner is a transparent plastic sheet that attaches to the shower rod and provides a waterproof barrier. In contrast, a shower curtain is hung on the outside of the liner and can be made of various materials. 

Both a shower curtain and liner can be used together for added protection and style. I hope this article explains everything you need to know: Shower Liner Vs Shower Curtain: What’s The Difference?

Hey there, I'm Abdul Moeed Shahid, the DIY aficionado and experienced writer. With a wealth of knowledge gained from years of honing my craft, I bring my expertise to the world of DIY and home improvement projects.

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