Difference Between Lavatory and Sink: Lavatory vs Sink

Lavatory vs Sink

Lavatory is a word that has traditionally been used for a room or a place that has a toilet seat and a basin to wash one’s hands. However, it is also the word that has served as a synonym for a basin or a sink whether in a bathroom or a kitchen. This is confusing for many people as they cannot decide between lavatory and a sink when describing a facility. This article takes a closer look at the words lavatory and sink to find out if there are differences between the two or not.


Lavatory is a word that instantly brings images of a restroom or a bathroom across one’s mind. It is a kind of euphemism that is used to find a neutral word for something that is perceived as dirty. Lavatory may refer to both the fixture used inside a restroom as well as the entire room that is used for excretion of urine and waste. There are many other words that are used interchangeably to refer to this facility such as bathroom, toilet, restroom, and washroom. Interestingly, dictionaries also mention a washbasin that is used for washing of hands as a synonym for lavatory.


A sink reminds one of a bowl shaped object that is seen in bathrooms and kitchens and used primarily to wash one’s hands and vegetables under flowing water coming from a tap. A sink is an integral plumbing fixture in all bathrooms and kitchens. While ceramic sinks are preferred in bathrooms, sinks made of stainless steel are most popular in kitchens. In earlier times, sinks that were made of marble and granite were in vogue. However, it is much easier to clean and maintain stainless steel.

Lavatory vs Sink