Kitchens define a lot about the character of your home. They are the home’s central hub where we cook, get together, and catch up with family and friends over a cup of coffee or tea. Therefore, a beautiful and useful kitchen certainly increases the quality of our lives.
Countertops take center stage when designing a beautiful kitchen. That is why deciding on the right kitchen countertop material is extremely important. From seamless surfaces of quartz to stunning and unique looks of granite, there are a lot of options to pick from.
What to Look for When Purchasing Kitchen Countertops?
There are several factors to take into consideration when purchasing kitchen countertops. Appearance and beauty probably matter most. After all, kitchens are where we spend a lot of time, right? Depending on your style and the looks you are going for, there are many options to choose from. For example, if you are interested in a unique look, granite countertops may be just the one for you. Or, if you are going for a sleek and modern look, quartz countertops have much to offer.
Another consideration is the durability and resistance of the material. n this regard, stain, heat, UV, bacterial growth, scratch, or chip resistance comes into play. Remember that even properly sealed natural stones are stain-resistant but not %100 stain-proof. Sharp knives can easily scratch most countertops or their sealants. You should always use a cutting board to protect your countertop surface.
Ease of maintenance is another crucial factor that should be taken into consideration. Depending on the material, your countertops may require various degrees of care. Some kitchen countertop materials need more effort, while some require less.
Last but not least, price is another essential factor when picking the suitable countertop material for your kitchen. While some countertop materials are more costly than others, they may also save you money in the long run, thanks to their longevity.
Popular Kitchen Countertop Materials
As you can see, various factors can affect your kitchen countertop decision. It is important to know what each material brings to the table. If you are in the market for the best kitchen countertops, take a look at our countertop options listed below:
Granite is a natural stone formed deep underground, prized for its unique patterns. The mineral impurities settle into each beautifully unique slab so that every granite countertop can be considered an original work of art. Besides the good looks, granite is known for its extreme durability. For this reason, they are very cost-effective in the long run. They are resistant to stains, heat, and scratches and can be cleaned easily. Like many other natural stones, granite countertops require regular maintenance by annual sealing to keep the surface protected from damage, like stains, scratches, bacterial growth, and more.
Marble is a classic when it comes to kitchen countertops. Especially white marble is pretty universal. Just like granite, each marble slab is unique, meaning no two marble slabs are the same. Marble countertops are recognized for their beauty and elegance. There are various colors and veining when it comes to marble, which makes it quite versatile. Marble countertops are durable but not as much as granite ones. They can chip or scratch more easily than granite. Moreover, marble is a porous material, so sealing is a requirement. It is a high-maintenance natural stone, so following your manufacturer’s instructions for daily care and cleaning is the best thing to do.
Quartz countertops are made from engineered stone, mainly composed of quartz mixed with resin. The result is a resilient, non-porous material, making it a low-maintenance countertop option. Quartz is versatile, meaning it can come in any color or style. Even they can mimic the look of natural stones, like marble and granite. Maintaining and cleaning quartz countertops is one of the easiest among other options. Almost all the time, soap and water should do the trick.
Quartz and quartzite countertops often get mistaken because of their similar names. Quartz is a manufactured countertop material, while quartzite is a natural stone. Quartzite kitchen countertops are known for their durability and have been quite popular among interior designers. Quartzite kitchen countertops require sealing, but they are more stain and scratch resistant than many other natural stone countertop options because they are less porous. Using warm water and soap is generally enough for cleaning, but specialized cleaners might also be a good idea. Besides, quartzite is UV-resistant, making it an excellent option for outdoor applications.
Porcelain countertops are one of the most durable countertop materials. Their non-porous surfaces are easy to maintain and don’t require sealing. Also, the non-porous surfaces of porcelain countertops are hygienic and resistant to staining. Since they are made from materials exposed to extremely high temperatures and pressure, porcelain countertops are generally considered a step up from quartz in terms of strength, meaning they are resistant to scratching and high temperatures. They come in a wide range of color and pattern options, making them easy to design. Another essential feature of porcelain is that it is made of raw and clay-based materials, making it suitable for recycling.
How to Plan Your Kitchen Countertop Update?
- The first step should always be setting your budget. After all, kitchen countertops are only part of your total kitchen remodeling project.
- Next, design your new kitchen layout. Getting a linear foot measurement from your designer to compare kitchen countertop materials cost is vital.
- Now is the time to focus on the material. After narrowing down the options, you may wonder what the most durable kitchen countertop material is. Since kitchen countertops are your workspaces, you should consider your daily practices when deciding your ideal countertop material.
- The final step is to think about the style of your kitchen countertops. After narrowing down the material options, picking the one that fits your overall kitchen style perfectly is important. Bringing home some material samples to see how they look can significantly help you.
It is easy to say that kitchen countertops are the most hardworking element of any kitchen. They help us with food preparation, consumption, and guest entertaining. So it is natural to expect them to be durable, easy to clean and maintain, and resistant. On top of all this, our kitchen countertops have to look beautiful, right?
As you can see, selecting the right material for your kitchen countertops is extremely important because of all the choices and factors to consider.