A countertop is an investment that you keep for years to come. Your sense of design and lifestyle determines the right countertop for your abode. In terms of properties like hardness, durability, heat, and stain resistance, each type of countertop comes with certain advantages and disadvantages.
Here are the numerous countertops to consider whether you have a conventional, modern farmhouse, or contemporary kitchen. See our quick guide to several types of countertops below, or continue reading for more information on each one.
Marble countertops have become super popular in recent years because it instantly uplifts a kitchen, giving it a clean, contemporary look. There is nothing quite comparable to a dazzling white marble finish, but marble countertops come in various colors as well, including grey, brown, taupe, and even green. No two marble countertops are alike.
Marble, however, is not the most practical option, as it is softer than other natural stones. Therefore, it is crucial to use caution and invest in quality cutting boards. Marble will scratch if you cut it directly.
Another issue with marble is that it is porous, so spills can easily turn into permanent stains. This means you will need to clear up any red wine or lemon juice spills quickly, and you will want to clean the surface regularly.
Marble has the unique property of maintaining a naturally low temperature, making it suitable for those who enjoy baking. Rolling out and shaping dough on marble is a breeze.
Marble countertops are also less expensive than you might think. While marble appears posh and refined, some varieties are more affordable.
Quartz countertops are made using a composite stone developed from natural quartz mixed with a resin binder. The resulting stone is likewise non-porous, extremely hard, and requires no resealing.
Quartz countertops are a terrific way to achieve the look of natural stones like marble or granite without worrying about durability because they are artificial.
Granite countertops have been the norm for decades since they are made using a natural stone that is exceptionally durable. Granite comes in various dark and light tones and specks and variances. Another distinguishing aspect of granite is that it can be cut with various edge styles, including square, beveled, ogee (an S-shape), half, and full bullnose.
Although strong cleaning agents should be avoided, granite countertops are low-maintenance and simple to care for. Granite can be cleaned using a little soap and water. Some granites are comparatively more porous than others, and stain prevention may necessitate periodic sealing.
Since granite is heat-resistant, you can put pots straight from the oven on the granite counter; say goodbye to trivets. However, cutting straight on granite is not recommended because the stone is so hard that it will dull your knife.
Concrete countertops are great to elevate a chic farmhouse kitchen or add a unique touch to an industrial, modern kitchen. Concrete has a very bold and striking appearance. It is also nearly unbreakable, so it is used to construct roads and sidewalks.
Commercial concrete countertops are available, or you can construct your own using a kit if you are a true DIYer. Keep in mind that concrete might take up to 28 days to completely dry, so it is not ideal if you are on a tight deadline. It must also be sealed.
Concrete, on the other hand, is far from flawless. As a house settles, these countertops may crack. The good news is that cracks are relatively simple to fix. However, if you insist on a countertop that will appear Pinterest-perfect for years to come, you should probably go with something else.
- Stainless Steel
Stainless steel has long been a popular material in industrial kitchens, but it is increasingly catching on in the home. Stainless steel countertops instantly transform your kitchen into a sophisticated, industrial space.
It is simple to maintain stainless steel if you clean it properly. However, cleaning up will be more challenging if you leave a splash or spill for longer. Stainless steel counters can be cleaned using soap and water or a solution designed specifically for this surface type. Stainless steel, however, is susceptible to fingerprints and watermarks, making it unsuitable for a family with young children.
Another con of stainless steel is that it can scratch and dent. Stainless steel, on the other hand, is highly durable and non-porous.
During the 1980s and 1990s, laminate countertops, sometimes known by the brand name Formica, were super popular. While previous laminate countertops may appear dated, today’s laminate countertops are more modern. Newer laminates can imitate more expensive materials such as wood and stone for a fraction of the cost.
However, pricing is not the only benefit of laminate. This product is non-porous; thus, bacteria will not stick to it. It also never needs to be resealed and is simple to clean with soap and water.
If you pick laminate, keep a few things in mind. Because it is easily destroyed by heat, failing to use a trivet can destroy your countertop.
Additionally, unlike other synthetic materials or stones, laminate will not increase the value of your home when you sell it. While it is not perfect for huge kitchen renovations, it is a terrific method to reduce costs on smaller projects like rental property kitchens, basement bathrooms, and guesthouses.
Tile countertops were popular in the 1970s and 1980s, but they are making a resurgence again. Tile is a wonderful alternative to consider if you are good at DIY and need to stick to a budget.
Tiles come in an extensive range of sizes and forms, from traditional squares to subway tiles and even fashionable hexagons, and are made of several materials such as porcelain, ceramic, and even natural stones. Large slabs of granite, quartz, and marble are more expensive than granite, quartz, and marble tiles.
While the care and lifespan of tiles vary depending on the material, all tile countertops have one difficulty in common: keeping grout lines clean and fresh-looking.
If your kitchen countertops Mississauga get dirty easily, a darker colored grout, such as grey or black, can be good.
- Solid Surface
This countertop, made of acrylic and resin, is a wonderful middle-tier alternative. There are many styles to choose from, including some excellent granite and marble dupes.
There are numerous advantages to using this countertop. It is stain-resistant, seamless, and can be sanded to remove most damage. It is crucial to remember that solid surfaces are not heat-resistant, so have plenty of trivets available.
Soapstone has a high amount of naturally occurring talc, imparting a soapy or soft feel to the surface. It has several advantages over other materials. It requires minimal upkeep and is entirely non-porous, making it stain, bacteria, and heat resistant. Soapstone also has a distinctive appearance and comes in grey with blue or green overtones.
While soapstone is prone to breakage, its patina gives it an ancient appearance. Did you know that homeowners must oil the countertop once a month to allow the surface to oxidize and the patina to develop?
- Butcher Block
Butcher block is a less expensive option than stone countertops. It is constructed out of individual pieces of wood that have been glued together to make a larger slab. Traditional butcher block counters have been manufactured from various woods, including cherry, maple, oak, walnut, and teak. The type of finish you select depends entirely on your home and kitchen style.
Butcher block is also the only form of countertop surface that allows direct cutting and slicing. Butcher block countertops can be sealed or unsealed, but once sealed, they are no longer suitable for food preparation and must be used with a separate cutting board.
Spills must be mopped up soon because the butcher block is porous, or the wood may discolor. Unsealed butcher block countertops must be oiled biannually.
- Parting thoughts
Picking out a countertop is no easy feat. Be sure to assess the room’s overall design to ensure that the countertop you want for your home blends in with your home’s cabinets, flooring, and other design elements. Check your options carefully and opt for the one that feels right.