There are a lot of options out there for kitchen and bathroom countertop materials — so many it can feel overwhelming. While white kitchens, and especially white marble kitchens, are having a moment there are a few things you’ll want to consider before springing for marble. For example, if you have small children you might want to avoid marble because it’s not as stain-resistant as other materials — but if you’re re-doing your kitchen after becoming an empty-nester, go for it!

We’ve narrowed down the endless options to the four materials that in our professional opinion are the best. Ahead, read our guide to countertop materials, and happy remodeling!

Marble

Pros

  • A hard, durable natural stone material
  • Incredibly beautiful
  • A sign of luxury
  • Timeless

 

Cons

  • Not as scratch- or stain-resistant as other materials
  • Requires sealing
  • Needs resealing every 1-2 years
  • Expensive
  • Can be damaged by dirt and sand
  • Only certain cleaning supplies can be used

Granite

Pros

  • An incredibly durable natural stone material
  • Heat- and scratch-resistant
  • Can be used matte or polished to a high shine
  • Relatively easy to clean
  • Hold their resale value
  • Cost-effective
  • Comes in a wide variety of colors and grain patterns

Cons

  • Must be sealed properly to be non-porous
  • Requires periodic re-sealing over time

Quartz

Pros

  • Sturdy
  • Crack- and stain-resistant
  • High gloss material
  • Easy to clean with simple soap and water
  • Comes in a wide variety of colors and grain patterns

Cons

  • More expensive than granite
  • Because it is man-made, seams are unavoidable when covering large surface areas
  • Less heat-resistant than other materials, like granite
  • Won’t ever be the real thing

Quartzite

Pros

  • A hard, durable natural stone
  • Heat-, water-, and scratch-resistant
  • Very similar in appearance to marble

Cons

  • Requires sealing
  • Needs resealing every 1-2 years
  • Can be chemically-reactive, depending on the mineral makeup
  • More expensive than quartz

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