The Ultimate Guide to Choosing a Kitchen Countertop – Pt. 2

Good morning all!

Before we dig in, quick housekeeping alert: I have just added a new page to my blog called “Testimonials.” If I have helped you in the past, and you were satisfied or elated with my assistance, I would be ever-so-grateful if you would comment on this new page with a quick couple lines about how awesome I am, so other homeowners can see that I’m legit and not some type of scammer 🙂

So, I have been flooded with emails lately (so fun!), therefore I happily admit this has taken a couple days more than I was originally intending, but better late than never, right?

We are moving on today to The Naturals. By this I mean any earth-made surface.

It should be noted right upfront that any natural stone (this goes for tile as well) needs to be sealed once a year. Some people argue you can do it less frequently, but I argue back, why the heck would you risk it?! Stone is expensive. And pretty. Don’t gamble with it!

Anywho, let’s begin with the most cost-effective of the natural materials. I’m going to use the same $-$$$$$ scale because it worked out pretty well for me last time.

And here’s a quick link to the first half of this post in case you missed it: The Ultimate Guide to Choosing a Kitchen Countertop – Pt. 1

Here we goooooo:

Wood

PROS: You can cut up your veggies anywhere you want without a cutting board! If you scratch it, you can sand it out. If you stain it, you can stain it back out. It is wood after all.

CONS: It’s not heat-resistant.

MAINTENANCE: Treat every so often with a mineral oil.

COST: $$

Granite

PROS: About a million different species and variations to choose from. Also very durable, heat & scratch resistant. Which is nice if you don’t like using your dish towels as pot holders to protect your counter.

CONS: Not stain resistant.

MAINTENANCE: No ammonia-based cleaners since they can hurt the polish on the granite.

COST: $$$

Limestone

PROS: It’s timeless, pretty, and has that organic look to it that just never gets old. I mean, it’s got fossils in it for crying out loud. You don’t get a whole lot more organic than that.

CONS: It’s a soft material. Meaning, it can stain, chip, and scratch quite easily.

MAINTENANCE: As with pretty much all natural stones, no acidic cleaners allowed!

COST: $$$

Marble

PROS: Stupid question. It’s undoubtedly gorgeous. In every room. Always. (But I’m not biased or anything.)

CONS: Again, it’s very soft material. It’s notorious for staining and discolouring. However, over time this discoloration adds depth and visual interest to the marble and can actually be quite beautiful.

MAINTENANCE: Again, nothing acidic cleaning-wise.

COST: $$$

Soapstone

PROS: Heat and stain resistant, and pretty much no maintenance! It’s the lazy man’s countertop.

CONS: If you want it to darken evenly, treat it with mineral oil. But some people choose to leave it looking like its natural self.

MAINTENANCE: Any cleaner will work, and you can sand away any scratches.

Cost: $$$$

So there we have it folks. Your counter options laid right out in the open for you.

Have I made it more difficult to decide? Feel free to email me at tiletramp@gmail.com and I can help you sort through it all and determine which option is best for you and your lifestyle.

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