Etched Glass Vs Frosted Glass

By: | November 10 , 2022

When going for a house remodel or when designing a new home, you often land upon the conundrum of which glass to use for those special places which require being highlighted so that it stands out from the rest. Whatever it might be, whether it’s a glass separator or a specialty door; the right decorative glass can have the desired effect you’re longing for. Both etched and frosted glasses have their own pros and cons and are similar in style but in the end, it entirely depends on what look you’re after. Let’s shed some light on first the process used to create these designs and then individually, on both these types of glass, so that you can figure which one is more in line with what you’re looking for.

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The Process: Acid Etching and Sandblasting

Frosting can be achieved either by sandblasting or acid etching of a clear sheet of glass. Sandblasting is generally performed by blasting the glass surface with sand which is used to frost an entire sheet of glass and is perfect for rooms like a bathroom where people seek privacy. On the other hand, acid etching is done using hydrochloric acid and lets you experiment with varying opacity levels.

Acid Etching can help create intricate patterns like floral or geometric designs while letting you play around with colours and can be back painted as well for further customization. Sandblasted frosted glass can also have designs made on them by using a masking tape or some other material to block the sand, but those designs are readily available and usually simpler. Moreover, it is prone to fingerprints as compared to acid etched glass which is usually low on maintenance.

Frosted Glass
Frosted Glass

Frosted Glass

Frosted glass is a type of etched glass produced by the sandblasting or acid etching of clear sheet glass and has a white appearance. Frosted glass is 100% opaque and devoid of any designs or embellishments.  It has been created opaque by either roughening it up via an abrasive tool or application of a photo resistant film to lend it its frosted appearance. The frosting effect can also be achieved with the help of canned glass sprays. The look achieved can be used to enhance the beauty of glass cabinets, doors, medical offices, and bathrooms. It not only adds to the style quotient but also lends warmth to any existing décor. Furthermore, it has the effect of rendering the glass translucent thus helping keep a room bright and friendly while still blurring visibility so as to maintain privacy. Glass frosting can be achieved on any glass and in any colour.

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Etched Glass/ Sandblasted Glass
Etched Glass

Etched Glass/ Sandblasted Glass

Put simply, etched glass is frosted glass with custom or patterned etchings done with the help of a masking tape to create designs on the glass that alters the appearance of the glass. Etching can be done either by hand or with the help of a machine and can be used to adorn and personalize glass items like wine glasses, tumblers, glass plates, pantry doors, bathroom entry doors and many different interior spaces.

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Additionally, you can get different gradients and opacity levels and the best part is that it will not peel, chip, or wear over time thus retaining its appearance and appeal for several years to come. Etched glasses are quite popular in demand commercially to create items like etching a glass nameplate for the house or small key chains with the initials and surname of the person etched on the surface.

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