Regarding countertops, natural stones are the top choice among homeowners. Materials such as marble, granite, or quartzite are all common choices. Options such as butcher blocks, stainless steel, or laminates are also in the market. Another amazing option for countertops is soapstone. With their extreme functionality, soapstone countertops are an amazing option that you should consider.
If you are looking for a beautiful natural stone countertop that will make your kitchen look beautiful, then soapstone countertops are worth checking out. Keep reading to learn more about soapstone countertops and why they are an amazing choice.
What is Soapstone?
Also known as steatite, soapstone is a natural stone, like granite or marble. It includes dolomite, magnesite, and chlorite as well. Soapstone is known for its softness, which has made it quite popular among sculptors through the years. Soapstone countertops are made from slabs that contain less talc, which is strong enough to be used as countertops.
Soapstone scores between 1 to 5 on Moh’s scale of hardness. Possibly the most unique aspect of soapstone is that it’s pretty dense and compact. This dense structure of soapstone comes in significantly when used in countertops. Thanks to their dense and non-porous nature, soapstone countertops don’t require sealing.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of soapstone countertops.
Pros of Soapstone Countertops
All materials for countertops have their advantages and disadvantages. Soapstone countertops have a few unique features that make them ideal for kitchen and bathroom areas. Here are the pros of soapstone countertops.
- Beauty: Like all natural stones, soapstone is formed naturally in the earth. The beautiful and elegant soapstone will add aesthetic appeal to any room they are placed in. The beautiful veins and soapstone countertops patterns will help create an aesthetically pleasing space. Since soapstone is a naturally occurring material, each soapstone slab will be unique. Which means you will be getting a rare piece only for yourself.
- Durability: Soapstone is not as hard as granite but much less brittle. This means you won’t have to face cracks or chipping caused by weight or stress. The most crucial feature of soapstone that separates it from other natural stones is that it is non-porous. This means your soapstone countertops won’t require sealing. Your soapstone counters are chemically inert, which means acidic liquids will not etch them.
- Easy Maintenance: Thanks to its non-porous nature, soapstone countertops don’t require sealing or resealing, saving you time and money. The only periodic maintenance is oiling to keep your countertops looking the best. Your soapstone countertops’ dense and non-porous surface is highly resistant to stains since spills can’t slip into the stone.
- Easy to Clean: Cleaning your soapstone countertops are pretty easy. Using soap and warm water is enough to keep them looking beautiful. Just wipe with a damp cloth to clean your soapstone countertops. Thanks to its dense nature, soapstone is bacteria-resistant, making it a perfect choice for kitchens. They are the perfect option to create hygienic spaces.
- Sanitary: The non-porous quality of soapstone is naturally bacteria-resistant. Other materials like wood or marble can harbor liquids in their pores. These liquids, in turn, can become tiny breeding grounds for mold and bacteria. With soapstone countertops, you don’t have to worry about such things.
- Last a Long Time: Like all natural stones, soapstone countertops have a long lifespan. An adequately maintained soapstone counter can last up to 100 years. That is why soapstone countertops are an excellent investment for your home.
- Heat Resistant: Soapstone countertops are one of the most heat-resistant options in the market. Placing a hot pan or pot on your soapstone countertops won’t damage it. You won’t have to worry about discolorations or heat damage. This is yet another feature that makes soapstone an ideal material for kitchens.
- Easy to Repair: Soapstone countertops are naturally malleable, which means the dents or scratches can be sanded away. Even applying a light coat of mineral oil can do the trick if the scratch isn’t deep.
- Easy Installation: Since soapstone is softer than granite, it is quite easy to shape and install. Natural stone countertops are harder to install than most manufactured materials. However, soapstone is among the ones which are easy to install. This reduces the cost of installations, making it a wise choice for those on a budget.
Cons of Soapstone Countertops
While soapstone countertops have their advantages, there are also some downsides. Let’s take a look at them.
- Easy to Scratch: The soft nature of soapstone makes it easy to shape. However, this means that it can easily be scratched. Dropping heavy objects or using knives directly on your countertops will cause scratches. However, they can easily be fixed by using sandpaper to create a seamless surface. We highly recommend using a cutting board to prevent scratches.
- Few Colors to Choose from: Soapstone doesn’t have many options to choose from, unlike granite or marble. Soapstone can come in colors in a few shades of grey, black, blue, and some white. Lighter colors will have more talc in them, making them even softer.
- Oil Damage: Thanks to soapstone’s non-porous nature, your countertops will be highly resistant to stains. However, oily substances can cause darkening on soapstone surfaces. That is why curing your soapstone countertops with mineral oils is essential. This way, you will get an evenly darkened surface.
- Cost: Since soapstone is a rare natural stone, the price of soapstone countertops is slightly higher than most natural and manufactured countertop materials. Generally speaking, soapstone is priced around high-end quartz or granite.
Is soapstone more expensive than granite?
Soapstone countertops are generally pricier than most other natural stone countertops. The price varies with each slab, so it’s impossible to answer definitely. However, soapstone slabs cost around the same price as high-end granite slabs.
Is soapstone a good choice for a countertop?
With their many advantages, soapstone countertops are worth considering. Their naturally non-porous surfaces and heat resistance make them an excellent option for any kitchen.
Is soapstone expensive for countertops?
The price of natural stones gets affected by their rarity a lot. Since soapstone is rare, it is relatively more expensive than manufactured countertop materials.