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Best Shower Rods of 2021

Updated
We've found the 7 best shower rod options available in various styles and finishes.

Shower curtains get all the headlines, but without a sturdy shower rod, they would simply fall down. Matching the rod to the shape and size of your enclosure or bathtub is crucial for the best results.

We look at various options and rate the best shower rods on their ease of installation, price, design, and usability.

Our Top Picks

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Model
Product Comparison Table
Features

Product Image of the Amazer Bronze Shower Curtain Rod 42-72 inches Adjustable Shower Rod Tension Spring Curtain Rod No Drill for Bathroom Bedroom Study Window Closet Doorway, Bronze
Best Adjustable
Amazer Bronze 42 to 72-Inch Adjustable Shower Rod
  • Twist and lock system is easy to install
  • Comes in other size variations
  • Maximum 30-pound weight capacity
Product Image of the Ausemku Shower Curtain Rod Tension - 40-72 Inch Never Rust Non-Slip Spring Tension Curtain Rod No Drilling Stainless Steel Curtain Rod Use Bathroom Kitchen
Best Tension
Never-Rust Spring-Tension 40 to 72-Inch Shower Rod
  • Fully adjustable from 40 to 72 inches
  • Stainless steel to repel rust
  • Grips most rough and smooth surfaces
Product Image of the PrettyHome Adjustable Curved Shower Curtain Rod Rustproof Expandable Aluminum Metal Shower Rod 38-72 Inches Telescoping Design Exquisite Customizable for Bathroom,Bronze
Best Curved
PrettyHome Adjustable 38 to 72-Inch Curved Shower Rod
  • Fully adjustable from 38 to 72 inches
  • Telescoping design makes it easy to adjust
  • Permanent mounting brackets hold it in place
Product Image of the BRIOFOX Tension Curtain Rod 43-73 Inches, Rust-Resistance Shower Curtain Rod for Windows or Doorways, Matte Nickel
Best for Tile
BRIOFOX Tension 47 to 73-Inch Rust-resistance Curtain Rod
  • Extends from 43 to 73 inches
  • Double the rustproofing of other rods
  • Holds 30 pounds in weight
Product Image of the BRIOFOX Tension Curtain Rod 43-73 Inches Brushed Nickel, Never Rust and Non-Slip and Heavy Duty Shower Curtain Rod, 304 Stainless Steel
Best for Heavy Curtains
BRIOFOX Tension 43 to 73-Inch Heavy-Duty Shower Rod
  • Constructed from 304 stainless steel tubing
  • Finished in brushed nickel
  • Tension mounted rod for zero damage to walls
Product Image of the Hudson Brass Works WO L-Shape Shower Curtain Rod, Polished Chrome, 61. 5 x 25. 75 x 24 inches
Best L-Shaped
Hudson Brass Works L-Shaped Shower Curtain Rod
  • Ideal for corner tubs and showers
  • 24-inch ceiling support rod for added durability
  • Highly polished chrome finish
Product Image of the Shower Curtain Rod Hoop Square Shape Bathroom Heavy Duty No Rust Oval Shower Rod 58.3'x24' for Clawfoot Tub,for Free Standing Tubs Bronze
Best Square
PrettyHome Hoop Square Shower Curtain Rod
  • Ideal for freestanding tubs and showers
  • Ceiling support rod for added durability
  • Aluminum with a bronze finish

How To Choose the Best Shower Rod

Before you rush out and buy that new shower rod, take some time to consider the important factors. What should you be looking for when selecting a new rod? Here are some pointers.

Material

Most shower rods are made from metal or plastic. The plastic varieties are not as robust and should only take the weight of a light shower curtain. Metal versions are much more resilient and can hold heavier curtains.

You can get brushed nickel, stainless steel for anti-rust capabilities, and aluminum.

The choices are seemingly infinite. Which one you prefer comes down to personal preference and how well it matches your existing bathroom decor.

Shape

Most shower rods are straight because they can take the most weight; however, not all bathtubs and shower enclosures are standard size and shape. You can get curved, square, and even L-shaped rods. These curved shapes are ideal for freestanding bathtubs and showers.

Decor

The bathroom is often the smallest room in the house, especially if it’s an ensuite. Choosing a rod that blends in is crucial because otherwise, it will stand out like a sore thumb.

Luckily, you have a vast array of colors and finishes to choose from. Nickel, brushed nickel, brass, bronze, and stainless steel are some of the effects you can get to match your color scheme. They are also great for repelling moisture, and rust.

Tension Rod vs. Mounted Rod

Each model has advantages and disadvantages, but which is the best?

Tension

Tension rods are by far the most convenient to install. You need two opposing walls next to your bathtub or shower enclosure, which is the most common layout. They are sometimes called “spring-loaded” rods, and they work by twisting the rod in opposite directions to extend or shorten the lengths.

These rods don’t need any drilling and fixing because the ends are typically non-slip rubber, which makes them ideal for tiled wall surfaces. Plus, even those with the most basic DIY skills could install a tension shower rod.

The downside with these rods is they are not fixed, so you are limited to the types of curtains you can support. The most weight they can handle is about 20 to 25 pounds. Tension rods are also ideal for rentals, where you don’t want to make holes in the bathroom wall.

Mounted

Mounted rods are more robust and come in varied shapes and sizes, and can take weights of 25 to 30 pounds. The extra choice gives you more flexibility when planning your new bathroom layout.

However, mounted rods are fixed in place using screws, so if you have surfaces you don’t want to drill into, like drilling through tiles or fiberglass walls, you might want to choose a tension rod.


The Best Shower Rods of 2021

Selecting the best shower rods based on our in-depth research was a challenge, but we think we have our final 7.

Amazer Bronze 42 to 72-Inch Adjustable Shower Rod

Best Adjustable Shower Rod

This adjustable shower rod extends from 42 inches to 72 inches, so it matches the space you have available. It has a twist and lock system that enables you to size the rod to the length and twist it to lock it in place. This rod is bronze and has a maximum diameter of 1-inch.

You can get this rod in larger and smaller models, but remember that the longer you extend it, the more you decrease the load capacity. This model has a maximum weight of 30 pounds, which should be plenty.

And thanks to the non-slip rubber ends, it grips most surfaces, including plaster, tiles, wood, and fiberglass. It’s affordable, easy to install, and ideal for rental properties.

Pros

  • Twist and lock system is easy to install.
  • Comes in other size variations.
  • Maximum 30-pound weight capacity.
  • Requires no drilling or fixing.

Cons

  • Over-extending reduces the weight capacity.

Additional Specs

Weight 2.03 pounds
Size 42 to 72 inches
Material Bronze
Maximum load 30 pounds
Type Tension
Price $$$

Never-Rust Spring-Tension 40 to 72-Inch Shower Rod

Best Tension Shower Rod

Tension rods are the same as adjustable versions in that they extend out and, when locked, rely on strong springs that push both ends against opposing walls to hold it fast. This is a never-rust rod, so it can withstand all the moisture you can throw at it.

It extends to a maximum length of 72 inches, and it has non-slip rubber grips on each end of the rod. It’s constructed from high-grade stainless steel, and the full load is slightly less than the previous model, at 25 pounds.

You can apply this rod to most rough and smooth surfaces, including wood, glass, and tiles; plus, you can use this tension rod in other situations. It can mount over windows and doorways as well as inside your wardrobe.

This model is slightly more expensive than the previous rod, which is surprising considering it has a lower load capacity.

Pros

  • Fully adjustable from 40 to 72 inches.
  • Stainless steel to repel rust.
  • Grips most rough and smooth surfaces.
  • Easy to install. Just twist and lock.

Cons

  • More expensive than other similar models.

Additional Specs

Weight 1.55 pounds
Size 40 to 72 inches
Material Stainless steel
Maximum load 25 pounds
Type Tension
Price $$$$

PrettyHome Adjustable 38 to 72-Inch Curved Shower Rod

Best Curved Shower Rod

Sometimes showers and tubs are freestanding, and you need a solution to hang your shower curtain. Also, some shower enclosures are fitted into the corner of the bathroom. This PrettyHome curved shower rod is the perfect product.

This shower rod is rustproof and constructed from durable aluminum, although it is finished in a bronze color to give a stylish look to your room. The rod is telescoping, so you can adjust it to match the space available.

There are no plastic elements; it is a mountable rod, so you will need to drill some small holes in your wall, and it extends to a distance of 38 to 72 inches.

This shower rod is not a budget option, costing several times that of the first two products to feature on the list.

Pros

  • Fully adjustable from 38 to 72 inches.
  • Telescoping design makes it easy to adjust.
  • Permanent mounting brackets hold it in place.
  • Aluminum with a bronze coloring.

Cons

  • Requires mounting, which damages your wall.
  • The most expensive rod to feature so far.

Additional Specs

Weight 2.4 pounds
Size 38 to 72 inches
Material Aluminum
Maximum load Not stated
Type Mounted
Price $$$$$

BRIOFOX Tension 47 to 73-Inch Rust-resistance Curtain Rod

Best Shower Rod for Tile

If you can’t stand the idea of drilling into your tiled surfaces, this BRIOFOX shower rod is a great alternative. It is rust-resistant, thanks to the steel tube, copper plating, nickel plating, and then finally, a resin dip. It doubles the resistance factor.

The large, non-slip rubber plates at either end of the rod can withstand 30 pounds of weight. It grips most surfaces, and the matte nickel finish will complement any bathroom scheme.

It extends from 43 to 73 inches, although you can buy a 62 to 105-inch version for larger spaces. The only negative is if you stretch the rod too much, it weakens the amount of weight it can hold.

Pros

  • Extends from 43 to 73 inches.
  • Double the rustproofing of other rods.
  • Holds 30 pounds in weight.
  • Matte nickel finish is stylish.

Cons

  • If you over-extend it, you reduce weight capacity.

Additional Specs

Weight 2.1 pounds
Size 43 to 73 inches
Material Steel
Maximum load 30 pounds
Type Tension
Price $$

BRIOFOX Tension 43 to 73-Inch Heavy-Duty Shower Rod

Best Shower Rod for Heavy Curtain

This is the second BRIOFOX rod to feature. This one holds up to 30 pounds, giving it one of the best tensile strengths of any rods to make the list.

This one is constructed from 304 stainless steel tubes and finished in brushed nickel. Stainless steel is highly resistant to rust, making it ideal for bathrooms. It spans 43 to 73 inches, is a tension rod, so it won’t damage your walls, and it grips on all wall surfaces.

It has a modern feel to it, so it should fit right into your contemporary bathroom design, and it comes with a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty against defects. However, this model is slightly more expensive than the other BRIOFX to feature

Just be careful not to overextend the reach because that reduces the load capacity.

Pros

  • Constructed from 304 stainless steel tubing.
  • Finished in brushed nickel.
  • Tension mounted rod for zero damage to walls.
  • Stylish design suits most modern bathrooms.

Cons

  • If you over-extend it, you reduce weight capacity.
  • More expensive than the other BIOFOX rod.

Additional Specs

Weight 2.59 pounds
Size 43 to 73 inches
Material Stainless steel
Maximum load 30 pounds
Type Tension
Price $$$

Hudson Brass Works L-Shaped Shower Curtain Rod

Best L-Shaped Shower Rod

This L-shaped shower rod is the perfect model to use when you have a corner tub or freestanding bath and shower. It is constructed from aluminum, which is resistant to rust, and finished in polished chrome to keep it looking good for longer.

Unfortunately, this is a mounted rod, so you will need to drill holes in your wall and ceiling to attach the additional support rod.

The installation is a little more complicated, and the company recommends that it is a two-person job. However, it is excellent value for money and very stylish. It will complement your decor, giving it a classy feel.

Pros

  • Ideal for corner tubs and showers.
  • 24-inch ceiling support rod for added durability.
  • Highly polished chrome finish.
  • Excellent value for money.

Cons

  • Mounted rod requires screws in walls and ceiling.
  • Needs two people to perform the install.

Additional Specs

Weight 1.25 pounds
Size 61.5 x 25.75 x 24 inches
Material Aluminum
Maximum load Not stated
Type Mounted
Price $$

PrettyHome Hoop Square Shower Curtain Rod

Best Square Shower Rod

Square shower rods are the best shape for bathtubs and freestanding showers. It means you can enclose the entire tub for a better shower experience. These rods look especially good over claw-footed tubs.

The tubing is high-grade aluminum with a bronze coating to give it a classy feel. There are no plastic elements, so it is durable; however, you do have to mount this rod, and that includes a ceiling support, which means holes in the ceiling as well as the wall.

It’s also more complicated to install, so you might need some help. The rods are square rather than round, and aluminum doesn’t rust.

The other thing to bear in mind is the cost. This is the most expensive rod to feature in the review.

Pros

  • Ideal for freestanding tubs and showers.
  • Ceiling support rod for added durability.
  • Aluminum with a bronze finish.
  • Makes the bathroom look classy

Cons

  • Mounted rod requires screws in walls and ceiling.
  • Needs two people to perform the install.
  • The most expensive rod to feature.

Additional Specs

Weight 3.99 pounds
Size 58.3 x 24 x 24
Material Aluminum
Maximum load Not stated
Type Mounted
Price $$$$$

Shower Rod Comparison Chart

Product Best Weight Size Material Maximum load Type Price
Amazer Bronze 42 to 72-Inch Adjustable Shower Rod Best Adjustable 2.03 lbs 42″ – 72″ Bronze 30 lbs Tension $$$
Never-Rust Spring-Tension 40 to 72-Inch Shower Rod Best Tension 1.55 lbs 40″ – 72″ Stainless steel 25 lbs Tension $$$$
PrettyHome Adjustable 38 to 72-Inch Curved Shower Rod Best Curved 2.4 lbs 38″ – 72″ Aluminum Not stated Mounted $$$$$
BRIOFOX Tension 47 to 73-Inch Rust-resistance Curtain Rod Best for Tile 2.1 lbs 43″ – 73″ Steel 30 lbs Tension $$
BRIOFOX Tension 43 to 73-Inch Heavy-Duty Shower Rod Best for Heavy Curtains 2.59 lbs 43″ – 73″ Stainless steel 30 lbs Tension $$$
Hudson Brass Works L-Shaped Shower Curtain Rod Best L-Shaped 1.25 lbs 61.5″ x 25.75″ x 24″ Aluminum Not stated Mounted $$
PrettyHome Hoop Square Shower Curtain Rod Best Square 3.99 lbs 58.3″ x 24″ x 24″ Aluminum Not stated Mounted $$$$$

FAQs

What Is the Best Material for Shower Curtain Rod?

The best material for your shower curtain rod is almost certainly aluminum or stainless steel. Both these materials are impervious to moisture, so they don’t rust. You can get shower rods in plastic, but they are far less durable than metal versions.

How Do I Keep My Shower Rod From Falling Down?

The best way to keep your shower rod from falling down is to use adhesive wall brackets that ensure the rod is supported at either end and the weight is distributed evenly. You could also use foam or rubber pads to give it extra grip.

Can You Use a Curved Shower Rod in a Small Bathroom?

You can. In fact, a curved shower rod increases the size of your shower instantly giving you more room, even in small bathrooms. They also look classy compared to other curtain rods.

What Color Should Your Shower Rod Be?

It can be any color you like, as long as it fits your bathroom scheme. Most tend to be stainless steel, nickel, or bronze, but you can buy all manner of colors.

Where Should a Shower Rod Be Placed?

It all depends on the size of your tub. The first thing to do is measure the length of the shower curtain, so if it is 6 feet long, you need to allow 5 inches overhang below the rim of the tub. That means your rod should be 5 feet and 7 inches high.

You need to allow the overhang because the water would drain onto the floor and flood the bathroom.


Headshot of Mark Weir

About the Author

Mark Weir

Mark spent 24 years working in real estate, so he knows his way around a home. He also worked with contractors and experts, advising them on issues of planning, investments, and renovations. Mark is no stranger to hands-on experience, having renovated his own home and many properties for resale. He likes nothing better than seeing a project through to completion.