Selecting the best countertop is an essential part of any kitchen or bathroom remodel. But in order to choose the right style or material, it’s important to know what’s available. Beyond that, you’ll want to make sure that the countertop that resonates most with you also fits with your overall bathroom or kitchen remodel design.
Today, we’re going to walk you through what defines the best countertop for your home renovation project. Then, we’ll take a closer look at what countertop materials are available and some of the pros and cons of each. Once you know what the best countertop means and what it should be made out of, we’ll show you where to get it so you end up with a quality countertop that’s both functional and aesthetically pleasing.
What makes the best countertop?
You might be surprised at the many different countertop materials that are on the market today. From marble and granite to quartz, concrete, and more, how will you ever choose which one is best for YOU?
Well, the best place to start is to look at what you need as well as the appearance you like. The best countertop for your bathroom or kitchen remodel will be one that simultaneously meets your wants and needs. To find out what that looks like, you can ask yourself the following questions:
- Will you be using the countertop for meal preparation?
- How long do you expect or want this countertop to last?
- What is the overall design style of your kitchen or bathroom?
- Do you prefer a completely smooth surface?
- Is ease of cleaning important to you?
- Would a countertop stain or crack be bothersome?
- Are you okay with doing yearly maintenance on your countertop?
- How much of your remodeling budget can be used for countertops?
Your answers to these questions can help you choose the best countertop for your specific needs and style preferences. For example, if you’re planning to sell your home in the next couple of years, you’ll want a countertop that looks nice and is budget-friendly but you may not be as concerned about longevity. On the other hand, if this is your forever home, you may be willing to spend more for the countertop that looks luxurious, is durable, and is easy to clean.
Best countertop materials for your bathroom or kitchen remodel
Once you’ve answered the questions above, it’s time to look at what countertop materials are available as well as the benefits and disadvantages of each. Below, we’ve listed some of the most common countertop types. We’ve also included some of their pros and cons so you can choose the best countertop for your situation.
- Marble countertops look luxurious and are ideal for contemporary or upscale designs.
- Multiple colors and patterns are available so creating a unique design is easy.
- The surface is smooth, a favorite for home chefs who love to bake.
- Marble is softer than some stones and can scratch easily.
- Marble is porous so be sure to clean up spills quickly to prevent permanent staining.
- Quartz is very durable, made to last, and doesn’t scratch or chip easily.
- Since quartz is non-porous, it’s easy to clean and doesn’t need to be re-sealed.
- Create an elegant, sleek design with options for customization.
- With all of its positive qualities, quartz comes at a higher price than some countertop materials and may not be as budget-friendly.
- While quartz can mimic the look of stone, it’s not quite as good as the real thing in terms of appearance.
- Quartz may not be suitable for an outdoor kitchen as it’s prone to discoloration when continuously exposed to direct sunlight.
- Get the natural look of stone with durability included.
- Granite countertops can have a variety of edges including half or full bullnose, square, beveled, or even S-shaped.
- This countertop material is heat-resistant so hot dishes can be placed directly on it without requiring a hot mat.
- Granite is so hard it can dull your kitchen knives if you cut directly on it – use a cutting board instead.
- For kitchen or bathroom remodels on a small budget, granite may not be the best choice as it’s more expensive than some other countertop materials.
- Although granite doesn’t damage easily, it can be expensive or difficult to repair if it does become damaged.
- Concrete can offer a unique, bold look to your kitchen or bathroom design and can be tinted to match cabinets, flooring, or other design elements.
- This material is very durable, made to last, and is resistant to chipping and scratching.
- Concrete is heat resistant so can be utilized in both bathrooms and kitchens where heated elements (hair dryers, curling irons, hot pans, etc.) are used.
- Concrete can crack as it settles but the good news is that cracks are relatively easy to repair.
- A concrete countertop requires some maintenance, including re-sealing the surface every few years.
Butcher Block Countertops
- This can be the best countertop option if you like the natural wood look.
- A butcher block countertop is perfect for food prep as it allows for cutting directly on the surface.
- Your countertop can be made to match the wood of your cabinets or can be used as a contrasting element.
- Sealed butcher block countertops cannot be used for food prep without a cutting board.
- The wood is porous so it can stain easily.
- Unsealed butcher block surfaces require maintenance – specifically, oiling twice per year.
Stainless Steel Countertops
- This countertop material is easy to clean and disinfect, making it the perfect choice for commercial kitchens.
- For industrial styled kitchens, a stainless steel countertop fits in perfectly and also matches well with stainless steel appliances.
- The material is non-porous and very durable.
- Stainless steel easily shows water stains and fingerprints so it may not be the best countertop material if you have hard water or small children.
- This material also dents and scratches easily.
While this list of countertop materials certainly isn’t exhaustive, it does give you an idea of the many choices available to you as you begin to plan your kitchen remodel or bathroom renovation. Ultimately, the best countertop will be one that looks great AND functions well with your specific needs!
Get the best bathroom or kitchen design in Orange County
It’s important to remember that while knowing how to select the best countertop is important, the entire process can be made easier by first choosing the best remodeling company to do the job. That’s because a professional design team knows how to incorporate different countertop materials with different remodeling styles. They also have their eyes on the market and know what’s readily available and what may be difficult to get due to supply chain challenges.
At Sea Pointe Design & Remodel, we’ve been helping Orange County homeowners get the best kitchen and bathroom designs for almost four decades. So, if you’re looking for an Orange County home remodeling company to meet your remodeling needs, let us know! We’ve completed remodeling projects in Irvine, Huntington Beach, Lake Forest, Laguna Beach, Mission Viejo, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, and more.
For remodeling ideas and design inspiration, feel free to browse through our online portfolio of completed kitchen and bath projects. Or, register for one of our upcoming remodeling webinars where you can get helpful remodeling tips from the pros.
Then, when you’re ready to start planning your own remodel, simply give us a call at (949) 861-3400 or fill out the form below to schedule your complimentary design consultation.