A kitchen is a place where you cook for the family, a cozy nook to have small talks on big matters. So it deserves all the extra attention that you can invest. Whether you are planning a revamp for your kitchen or having a new one designed, there are a number of design elements to consider. Perhaps, the most significant amongst these is the countertop. It is your cooking workstation, which has to be elegant as well as utilitarian. For this reason, you need to choose the right material for it. Let us list the 7 most popular options in kitchen countertop materials for you.
Marble is a good option if you are looking for a natural stone to design your kitchen countertop beautifully. You can expect a unique design finish because every marble sheet is naturally distinct. The material is heat proof and waterproof, which makes it a durable option for your cooking space. This is one option that is evergreen in style and lasts for ages without looking outdated and worn out. On the downside, it is prone to scratching and staining. Also, it comes with a hefty price tag and may not be affordable for all.
Granite is one of the top choices for luxury lovers and people with an eye for style. It brings elegance to the kitchen with its beauty and luster. At the same time, this material is strong, durable and impervious to heat. It is almost maintenance-free if sealed properly on a regular basis. Although you may find it a little expensive, this is one investment that is worth the price. The quality and installation of the piece can make all the difference to the final finish and durability. So you should get it done from a reputed seller. COUNTERTOPS – MAX GRANITE is a name you can trust for quality granite and expert design and installation.
Another popular option that homeowners can explore is soapstone, a natural stone with rich dark grey color and a silky, smooth feel. Though regarded as a historic material, it is finding way into the contemporary kitchens too. You will appreciate its strength and resistance to heat and stains. The best part is that any damage to the stone can be easily sanded out. Even if the surface gets dents and scratches over time, they actually create an antique look. However, soapstone can darken over time and needs to be treated with mineral oil.
An affordable, stylish and easy to maintain option for kitchen countertops is ceramic tile. This material is not natural like marble, granite and soapstone but is rather an inexpensive alternative for designer kitchens. The best thing in tiles is the variety they offer, with styles that can replicate natural materials like wood and marble. Not only does this material cost less but also serves as an inexpensive option because DIY enthusiasts can install them on their own. Tiles are easy to clean and are usually heat resistant, provided that you invest in good quality. On the other hand, they are brittle and can crack on impact. Moreover, it is hard to get a luxurious finish unless you invest in very high quality.
Quartz is an engineered stone product containing a high percentage of quartz particles along with other minerals, bound together with resins and shaped into slabs. These are not the natural quartz slabs obtained by quarrying. This is a versatile material that is as solid as marble and granite but offers a wide array of colors. The fact that they do not need annual sealing makes them easier to maintain as compared to stone surfaces. You can have them custom-fabricated in any shape or size to match your kitchen design. Moreover, quartz is a stain-resistant material and is also impervious to heat and acidic substances. The only con of this material is its high price.
If you are looking for a material that is inexpensive and easy to maintain, you can pick laminates for the kitchen countertop styling. Laminate countertops are fabricated by bonding sheets of laminate to a particleboard core for a fine, smooth finish. These countertops are available as pre-formed segments or can be customized according to the design specifications. The variety in colors, styles and patterns have made laminates a popular kitchen styling option. Additionally, the DIY installation of laminate countertops is simple and easy. Despite the benefits of this material, it has some downsides too. The surface gets damaged, scratched or chipped easily. It is almost impossible to repair and replacement is the only option in case of extensive damage.
Wood is a countertop material that gives a warm ambience to your kitchen. A rustic design with wooden flooring is best matched with this material. You can find a wide range of wood colors and finishes in the market. Oak and maple are the most popular wood types used for crafting sturdy countertops in kitchens. This material is very durable and lasts for years if you maintain it well. It is easy to clean and can be resealed and sanded as a regular care routine. The biggest flaw, however, is that it can be stained and damaged when exposed to water for a prolonged period. It can get cracked and scratched if not maintained well. Wooden countertops are also relatively expensive.
Whether you are a new homeowner or planning a renovation for your kitchen, you should choose the countertop material with care. It is best to avail the services of a professional to help you ideate a design that looks good and is functional too. An expert understands your requirements and suggests the best possible choice based on your budget. Pay attention to the key factors like durability, heat and stain resistance, maintenance requirements and fine finish while picking a countertop material for your kitchen. After all, you would want it to look beautiful and last long without having to spend on its maintenance and care on a regular basis.