Choose countertops that fit the needs of your work zone and complement your decor. To enhance practicality and create a custom look, consider multiple countertop materials—one on the island and another on the perimeter
This renewable grass offers an eco-friendly countertop option. Make sure it’s assembled using foodsafe adhesives.
Made from laminated wood, this works well for baking areas and island tops. Seal with oil to boost moisture resistance; let knife marks create a patina, or sand the surface smooth.
Cast in place or installed as preformed slabs, sealed concrete resists burns, stains, and scratches but is labor-intensive to install. Customize it with tints, texture, or inset shells, glass, or other items.
Sleek and dramatic, tempered glass comes in clear or translucent forms with a smooth or textured surface. Recycled composite glass is also an option. Glass is waterproof and heat-tolerant. Be sure to use a cutting board to avoid scratches.
This popular stone offers a variety of colors and patterns. Shopping at a stoneyard costs more than ordering from a sample but lets you buy the exact piece you want. Reduce cost using granite tiles or remnants instead of a single slab. Granite is durable and impervious to heat but requires professional installation and periodic sealing to repel stains.
Affordable laminate comes preformed as a one-piece counter and backsplash in limited color choices. Or, if you custom-order from a home center or kitchen dealer, you’ll find hundreds of colors and patterns, some that mimic stone, metal, or wood. The material is easy to install but has visible seams. Use a cutting board for slicing and trivets for hot pans.
MARBLE AND LIMESTONE:
These stones are classic and luxurious, but they’re softer and more porous than granite so they’re more likely to scratch or stain. Marble is ideal for rolling out dough in a baking area.
Also called engineered stone, this blend of ground quartz, resins, and pigments produces consistent stonelike patterns. It is nonporous and heat- and scratch-resistant.
Soft and silky, soapstone chips more easily than granite but provides a classic look that complements traditional decors. Like other stones, it resists heat. Treat with mineral oil to help repel moisture. Choose countertops that fit the needs of your work zone and complement your decor. To enhance practicality and create a custom look, consider multiple countertop materials—one on the island and another on the perimeter.
Look for panels and veneers made of plastic resins in many colors and patterns. The nonporous material resists stains; scratches can be sanded out. Solid surfacing sinks create a seamless installation.
Sanitary and stainproof, this surface complements a stainless-steel sink and perfects a pro-style kitchen. Steel is heatproof and waterproof, but a shiny finish can show scratches and fingerprints. Ready-made sections fit standard counter sizes; custom installations fit others.
Glazed ceramic or porcelain tiles in many shapes, colors, and sizes are water and heat-resistant. If they chip, they’re easy to replace. You might need to regrout every few years.