Choosing a countertop for your kitchen can be overwhelming with all of the varying materials, colors, durability, and pricing that are out there. Countertops are an important design element and can often pull the focus — for better or worse — in a space. Not to mention it’s what you’ll be looking at as you prep and serve all that food!
Here at Bella Domicile, countertops are one of the main things our clients have questions about. What’s the difference between quartz and granite? What material will work best for my household? How easy are they to maintain? Below we’ve put together an overview of our most popular types of countertop materials. Read on for our take on the pros, cons, and all things countertop!
You’ve seen laminate countertops around. Remember the riot of countertop color (avocado green, mustard yellow, rust orange) from the ‘70’s? Think brands like Wilsonart and Formica. Laminate countertops are made with a high-pressure laminate adhered to a plywood substrate. Laminate surfaces have come a long way. Formica’s 180fx line, for example, features scaled high-resolution patterns that mimic natural stone.
A damp cloth with mild soap as needed. Unless you encounter a nick or scratch – then it’s time to call a professional.
Solid surface is most often found in bathrooms. It’s a good choice there as well as in kitchens since the sink can be molded in place (no seams!) and it’s the perfect material choice for water. Corian is probably the most well-known name brand of solid surface out there, though there are several others. Solid surface is made from resins colored with fillers and pigments (so, yes, it’s plastic) which is then heated at intense temperatures and cast into virtually any shape imaginable.
A cloth with soapy water or a kitchen towel to dry up splashes. The lack of seams makes this one of the easiest surfaces to clean! Though again, if you encounter a scratch, it’s best to have it looked at.
Thanks to HGTV, granite has reigned as the gold standard in kitchen countertops for the past few decades. Granite is a natural stone that is mined from the earth. Slabs are cut and it is from these large slabs that countertops are cut to a project’s specifications.
Most days a soft cloth with water and a gentle soap or granite-specific cleaner work just fine. About once a year or so the surface should be sealed with a granite sealer which is a simple DIY, and one we urge you not to forget!
Quartz is one of our most popular countertop surfaces, with brands like Cambria, Silestone, and Caesarstone at the forefront of the market. Where granite slabs are cut from stone in the ground, quartz countertops are man-made slabs. Quartz slabs are made from 90-95% ground quartz, with the remaining 5-10% made up of pigments and resins that give the slabs their color and pattern. The slabs are then cut to the specifications of each project, just like granite and other natural stones.
A soft cloth with water or mild soap is all you need.
What now? Of all the materials on this list, Dekton is probably the one you are most unfamiliar with. Dekton arrived on the scene in 2013 and has been steadily gaining popularity as a countertop choice. Its makeup consists of quartz, glass, porcelain, and pigments put under intense heat and then compacted (they call it ultracompacted) to make it really strong.
Water with a soft cloth and a mild cleanser when needed.
Still have countertop questions or want to see these materials in person? Stop by our showroom or contact Bella Domicile to meet with one of our talented designers today! Call (608) 271-8241 or fill out an appointment request form here.