new-mobile-logo2

Countertops 101

There is a lot of chatter about which countertop is best for you! There are a variety of choices to make when choosing the right countertop for your home and lifestyle. Learn about the materials, finishes, and edge profiles to make the right decisions on which tops are good for your home.

Materials

Although there are more countertops materials available to purchase, below are our top 3 recommendations due to their long-lasting qualities. We are confident in the following material choices to recommend to any of our customers.

  • Quartz is a man-made composite of 95% quartzite and 5% polymer resin. By combining the two materials, this is a very strong material that is nonporous making it scratch and stain-resistant. It has a higher resistance to heat, but we still recommend using trivets to protect your countertop. Quartz countertops require no maintenance except for regular cleaning. This means you don’t have to worry about sealing, polishing, or reconditioning the surface to maintain the natural luster. From a design perspective, there are many colors of quartz, but the look is generally consistent but can have movement. This is a popular choice among our customers since it is stylish and great for a busy lifestyle with no maintenance.
  • Solid Surface by Corian is also a man-made product that is seamless. You can seamlessly integrate your sink and/or backsplash into your design. It is hygienically sound and you will oftentimes see this product in hotels, restaurants, and hospitals. It is also nonporous and stain-resistant. If you do happen to damage this countertop, it easy to repair, unlike other materials. One of the characteristics of solid surface is being able to form mold to create custom shapes. It is a go-to material to use in various applications including countertops and showers. To top it off it is sustainably made and has a GreenGuard Indoor Air Quality Certification.
  • Granite is a naturally occurring stone from the earth that is harvested in rock quarries throughout the world. Since it is stone from the earth it is more porous which means it can be stained. It is best to clean your countertop promptly after any spills, especially from wine. It is also best practice to seal your granite once a year, especially around high use areas like the stove and sink. It is tolerable to heat, but we still recommend using trivets to protect the countertop. This countertop material is known for the wonderous unique movement in each individual slabs. This stone, along with quartz are slabs you can pick out from the manufacturer with your designer, making quite a unique experience… you get to pick the exact slab for your countertops from slabs available across the globe!

Finishes

Once you decide what countertop material is right for you, you still have a few more decisions to make, including your finish!

  • Polished– this is the standard high-gloss finish that is most popular in homes today. It is reflective and can add a glamorous feel to your space. Be sure to keep this surface clean since stains will be more noticeable.
  • Honed– this is a matte finish that is accomplished by sanding the manufacturer’s polished surface. It is smooth to the touch and still offers a lesser degree of reflection to the top that is soft. This style is becoming more popular in the industry.
  • Leathered– this finish offers a rustic touch to your space. It is non-reflective and has a textured characteristic to the surface. Since it isn’t reflective, this is perfect for camouflaging stains for high use areas and a busy lifestyle, depending on the color.

Edge Profiles

Once you have the countertop material and finish you just need to figure out which edge profile you would like. Depending on the color and type of materials chosen, the edge profile can add the final touch of your design. See the image below to see the basic cuts for the edging of your countertops!

Cost

The cost of the above materials varies in each category. There are different levels of granite, quartz, and solid surface that determines the cost. For example, granite can cost more depending on where it is sourced and how far away it is. Other factors could simply be the color choice and amount of movement within the design. However, you can find these materials in any budget for a remodel.

Final Thoughts

Countertops are an integral part of your home design and we highly recommend using quartz, solid surface, or granite for the various reasons listing above. If you have an island, consider making your countertops “two-tone” by having contrasting tops in your space, or the sleek design of a waterfall look (seen in first picture above that features a double waterfall countertop).

Have fun picking out your countertops!

Design Center

Founded 38 years ago by Tom Poulin CGR, Poulin Design Remodeling, Inc., has become a mainstay of Albuquerque home renovation.

Poulin Design Center White Logo

Schedule Now!