Choosing a kitchen countertop is a big decision... one you will most likely live with for years to come. When remodeling or designing a new construction kitchen, countertops are the next biggest expense to cabinetry so you want to feel completely confident in your choice.
Today's round up includes some of the most common stone options starting with the most expensive and working down in price point for comparison. There are pros and cons to consider for each, especially if you have a busy family. Next week I'll focus on non-stone countertop options.
Marble is 100% natural stone. It is considered a timeless, classic beauty long used in European kitchens. For all its beauty it is also considered a delicate stone that can chip, scratch, stain and etch easily. Marble should be sealed for protection and maintained carefully to preserve it. It may not be the best option if you have young children and lots of spills.
Soapstone is 100% natural stone.
Soapstone has a beautiful aged, honed
feel to it. It is non-porous resisting stains and softer than granite so it's less likely to chip or crack. However, soapstone is prone to dents from heavy objects so use with care. Also it requires periodic oiling to keep its color consistency as it naturally patinas overtime.
Quartzite is 100% natural stone. Specifically, it is sandstone + quartz crystals fused over time from natural heat and pressure in its environment. Quartzite has a beautiful natural, loose vein pattern look and feel to it often mimicking marble without the risk of etching. These countertops are truly unique, one-of-a-kind treasures. Although they are considered harder than granite and are heat & scratch resistant, most fabricators recommend sealing them for protection.
Quartz is an engineered stone designed to offer the best of both worlds when it comes to beauty and function.
Quartz is made from quartzite crystals +
man made polymers, pigments and other materials like glass. The result is a countertop harder than granite or marble that is non-porous, stain resistant, chip resistant, crack resistant, heat resistant, bacterial resistant and maintenance free with NO sealing required (mic drop!) With all of these features it's a great option for busy families and received Consumer Reports top countertop rating.
Granite is 100% natural stone. Each slab is unique and comes in many patterns and colors. Granite is heat and scratch resistant but can chip or crack on edges and corners. Although it is considered a hard stone, it is porous so needs to be sealed periodically. Prices of granite vary from big box stores to exotic slabs.
I hope this helps you on your journey to finding the perfect countertop! It's good to know the pros and cons of natural stones before falling in love with a slab only to find out it's not a good fit for your house or too high maintenance.
I'd love for you to join me in my new FB group Kitchens, Baths and Mudrooms by Design to share your projects and see what other design loving mamas are up to. Each week I'll pick one members design challenge to solve on a FB Live! Can't wait to see you there!