How to choose a front door

How to choose a front door

There are plenty of reasons you may be looking at a new front door. You may have recently moved and want a visual change to signify this, or perhaps your old door may just have seen better days. Either way, choosing a new front door is a big decision to make!

The right front door will last you for years to come so it’s important you choose one you’re going to be happy coming home to for some time.

Choosing the right material for your door

There are a variety of materials used to be filled front doors, each with their own benefits. Here we’ll explain a bit more about some of the most common door materials.

Engineered wood doors

Engineered wood is one of the most popular material choices for internal doors and external doors. Engineered wood is built by creating a solid core of bonded wooden strips. This is then coated with a single solid layer of natural timber that means it looks exactly like a solid wooden door.

There are two main benefits to choosing an engineered wood door. They’re far more budget-friendly than a solid hardwood door, so if you can enjoy an oak door, hemlock door or pine door at a fraction of the cost. They also require far less maintenance than a solid wooden door.

Composite doors

Composite doors are a relatively new addition to the door market but they’re quickly growing in popularity. At first glance, composite doors look like they’re made of wood but really they’re made up of glass-reinforced plastic, timber and uPVC. They don’t just look brilliant either, with designs like the Castle Barnard creating a truly striking look in any home, they’re also incredibly secure.

To find out more about composite doors, we have a helpful guide with everything you need to know.

uPVC doors

UPVC doors share some similarities with composite doors but while composite doors use timber to create a solid core, a uPVC door doesn’t. Instead, uPVC doors will encase an insulated steel frame in uPVC to create a sealed unit. They also do retain a plastic look unlike composite doors and engineered wood doors which look like solid wooden doors.

They’re generally the most budget-friendly option when it comes to choosing a front door. UPVC is available in a variety of colours and designs, and we stock a range of UPVC external bifold doors which look great leading out to gardens.

Hardwood doors

While hardwood doors do require additional maintenance, they’re enduringly popular for their elegant look. This is especially true with options like our Derby Leaded hardwood door with ornate glazing.

Wooden front doors have a timeless appeal so while they are one of the more expensive options, you can be sure they’re always going to be a stylish choice. Hardwood doors look just as at home in rustic settings as they do contemporary homes.

Deciding between a traditional and contemporary door design

Thanks to advances in how doors are manufactured, you can choose modern construction methods and still enjoy traditional designs. For those who prefer a more contemporary feel, many of our door suppliers are always looking to push the edge of design offering something truly different. We have Country style glazed doors as well as more modern designs like the Double Glazed Modena.

While many people choose a door that fits with the period of their home, there can be a lot of kerb-appeal in contrast. Period properties can be given a modern makeover with a more contemporary design like the Modica or a touch of opulence with the Majestic Oak with Bevelling and Double Glazing. On the other hand, modern homes can create a sense of sophistication or rustic charm with a more traditional style design like the Westminster door with Black Caming.

Ultimately, there is no right or wrong option and it will entirely depend on your personal tastes.

Is glazing right for your front door?

Glazing is a popular choice for front doors. Not only does it make your home look welcoming, it’s a stylish way to let some natural light into your hallway. Glazing can, however, provide a weak point in your door which could provide burglars with an easy access point to your home. This isn’t to say you can’t choose a door with glazing though, you just have to be careful about choosing one with the right type of glass.

Choosing a door with slim glazed panels, like the M&T Balham, will allow natural light into your home but the narrow glazing means even if it was smashed, a burglar couldn’t gain access to your home. You can also use glazing in the top-third of your door, with a more traditional design, like the M&T Chigwell for a similar effect. If you want a larger glazed panel, then look at a design with double glazing such as the Hardwood Dowelled Malton.

Frosted glass, while not necessarily tougher than clear glazing, does offer additional privacy. This makes it so you can still let sunlight into your home without anything potentially catching a burglar’s eyes through the door.

What colour door should you choose?

The colour of your door will set the first impression of your home so it’s worth taking some time to decide!

Natural wood

If you want to give a more natural, rustic appeal to your home, consider a natural wood finish. You can use a clear lacquer to bring out the natural colour of the grain or a stain to create a richer finish.

Dark Blues and Greens

Bottle green and heritage blues are extremely popular choices for those who want to add a bit of regency to their homes. Midnight blues are especially striking with gold accessories while bottle green works well with silver and brass.

Consider the size of your property when choosing exactly which shade, larger homes can get away with extremely dark hues of blue and green while it can look oppressive on smaller properties.

Pastel blues and greens

Pastel colours work just as well on period and contemporary properties. In more rural settings, pastel shades can evoke a rustic, cottage feeling. In more modern properties, especially in city properties, they can offer a welcome softness and playfulness.


Add a pop of sunshine to your home with a warm yellow. From sunshine yellow to butter yellow, this is a colour that will grab attention and set a smile on anyone’s faces. What a welcoming sight after a hard day at work!


Red is available in many shades, from more muted burgundy and brick to bright chilli and candy apple red. For some, red is an aggressive colour but for many, red is a bold choice that adds a ‘wow’ factor to your home. Red looks wonderful when used in a brick house. White windows and surrounding accessories can really help to make your red bob too.

Black, Grey and White

You can’t go wrong choosing a more neutral colour like black, grey or white. While a glossy black may look overpowering on more modern homes, a more muted grey or matt white will add an elegant finish.

Whatever finish and colour you decide are right for your front door, check out our blog which has lots of helpful information on decorating your door.

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