Which Kitchen Countertop Is Right for Me?

Choosing kitchen countertop materials might feel as complicated as buying a car or a house. Your countertops are a significant purchase, so you want to be sure that you make the right decision. As part of that process, cleaning those countertops is as important as the one that you choose. Take a look at these five types to get a sense for which one suits your home the best.

1. Granite

If you want a countertop that is truly unique, granite is definitely one of the best choices to make. Although you may expect granite to be white and gray or black, there are huge variations. The veins of color that run through the stone mean that no granite slab countertop will ever look exactly the same as another one. Granite countertops are solid and very sturdy, but they do require some special care. Granite can absorb liquids, and oils could change the coloring. Spills should be wiped up immediately to avoid damaging the surface or making it appear different.

2. Concrete

Homeowners who long for a countertop that comes exactly according to their specifications should consider concrete for the material. Concrete countertops are poured directly into the shape, which means that they can fit any existing kitchen layout. It is great for smaller kitchen remodeling projects. You can put all kinds of things into the concrete before it dries, such as glass, tile or stone. This will give it a look that perfectly suits your sense of style. Avoid using abrasive cleansers or pads to clean the countertop because they could scratch the surface.

3. Butcher Block

A classic, traditional kitchen may call for a timeless look, and a butcher block countertop can easily achieve this goal. Butcher block is ideal for the chef who needs an extensive surface on which to work. It is easy to chop and slice foods in preparation for the meal, without worrying that the surface might damage your expensive knives. All you need to do is wipe the surface clean when you are done. Made of wood, butcher block countertops can be chipped or cut if you are not careful with them.

4. Quartz

If you crave the look of stone but you want something with more durability, quartz countertops might be the perfect option. Quartz is real stone, that has been crushed and mixed with resin to create a countertop that will resist almost anything you throw at it. It is not a solid slab, which means that you can choose varieties in colors and styles that will look much like what you see in the store. Quartz is not as heat-resistant as granite, however, and it can discolor in bright sunlight over time.

5. Laminate

The cost-conscious homeowner should seriously consider laminate countertops. Laminate countertops are made from layers of paper infused with resin to make it strong and durable. The material is coming back into vogue as a result of new designs that can mimic wood, stone or steel. Laminate is fairly easy to maintain, although you do have to protect it from scorching heat. If you don’t want to stretch your budget, laminate can often give you the look you want without the cost.

Kitchen countertops are an investment, no matter which material you choose. Different materials are popular with buyers for many different reasons, and it’s important to consider personal taste as well as resale value. By considering these five popular kitchen countertop materials, you can make a selection that will work well for your kitchen makeover.
Contributed by Preston Guyton

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