I know it seems an easy task but when it comes to choose the type of stone or color for your new countertops it can be overwhelming. I've been there, so I know your feelings and the multiple questions that comes to your mind before starting your kitchen remodeling project:
What type of stone should I choose? Is granite better quartz is better? How about marble, isn't beautiful? Can I place hot pots as much as I like on my new tops?
Let me start by introducing you to the most popular stones in the surfaces industry and quickly run through the pros and cons for every surface:
If you like classic or country kitchen styles, then granite is your best option. You can have a beautiful renovated countertops with a very low budget, as the most popular colors are inexpensive.
CONS: some people find granite to busy and difficult to match with cabinets and floors. Being a natural stone, it's more porous than engineered stones like quartz, so it needs more maintenance through the time (a resealing treatment is recommended every 2 years). Also, granite slabs varies a lot between bundles, so if you need a surface addition to an existing job - making a new island or sided waterfalls with the same color - it could be difficult for your fabricator to find matching slabs, so you risk to have important color discrepancies between all the kitchen surfaces.
This is beloved as a timeless and classic material and definitely adds a note of luxury to any room. Its beautiful veining, the shine....BUT, before even consider it for your kitchen - unless you eat Pollo Tropical every day - it's better to know that even lemon juice would damage it irremediably.
CONS: I personally prefer marble for sculptures but it's a personal choice. Marble is also known to absorb oils from the skin, taking on coloration from the hands of those who gather and cook in your kitchen. So if you embrace stain and etching and think of them not as imperfections but as reminders of the life lived in your house, then marble can be your choice without regrets.
This surface is called "engineered" as is a completely man-made product, where quartz powder is mixed with resins and pressed together to obtain a hard and durable stone. It became very popular in the USA in the mid 2000s, surpassing in sales the granite surfaces. Most of the quartz surfaces in the market are scratch and spot resistant but quality varies depending on brands and origin. Quartz is recommended for contemporary and minimalist look kitchens. It's low maintenance and flexibility has made it the N. 1 option for many homeowners. Slab colors are more consistent than natural stones, which means slabs selections in person are not a must.
CONS: if not treated with some care it can stain or be damaged. Stain resistant doesn't means it won't stain or scratch at all. Basic care includes not leaving wine drops seating on the top for a while or not placing hot pots for long periods on the surface, specially for light colors.
Sometimes confused by porcelain when is not, this engineered stone it's also a brand created by the group COSENTINO, the creators of the quartz surfaces. Dekton boasts excellent resistance to high temperatures and can be installed indoors and outdoors, thanks to its UV-resistance composition. Hot utensils, electrical appliances, pots, and pans can all be placed directly on the surface without causing any damage. Domestic utensils won’t scratch it.
CONS: it's a very VERY expensive product, so if you are working on a budget, you better skip it!
This is a super dense material that is nearly completely impervious to stains, heat, UV rays, scratching, chips, and cracks. Europeans have been installing porcelain countertops for quite some time now and only recently gained notice in the United States.
CONS: this is also a very high end and expensive product. It's also important to consider that fabricators regularly charge more for its fabrication and installation as it's difficult to manipulate and can easily break when being cut.
After reading this post, I hope you have a better understanding about this importance of choosing the right product for your needs, and, most of it, set the real expectations towards the surface you choose. Most of your life happens around your kitchen as a place to share experiences and joys. As a rule of thumb, comfort should win over beauty.
Let me know if you have questions or need help in choosing the right stone for your needs.
Thanks for reading us and till the next entry!