Marble countertops are well-known for being a timeless and luxurious addition to any kitchen or bathroom. But that doesn’t mean it’s all sunshine and roses. Marble is somewhat high maintenance for a natural stone and may be susceptible to scratching and staining. Learning to care for marble can take time, but it’s well worth the effort.
Marble isn’t as carefree as granite and quartz, but it has plenty of benefits that may outweigh the drawbacks. Here’s a look at five things nobody tells you about marble counters.
1. Each Marble Slab Is Unique
Marble is a metamorphic stone that’s found in mountain ranges all across the world. It takes millions of years for marble to form. It starts as limestone, and then over time, intense heat and pressure chemically change the stone into something much more rigid and denser. This process is known as recrystallization.
Since it’s a natural stone, no two marble slabs are exactly alike. Each slab has its unique pattern and hues. This uniqueness is one of the reasons marble countertops are so desirable – you’ll never have to worry about someone else choosing the same countertop as the one you’ve chosen.
2. Marble Is Available in a Large Variety of Colors
Most people picture kitchen marble counters in white and gray. That’s because white marble countertops are very popular in kitchens. But did you know that marble comes in a wide variety of colors? Marble can be found in hues of pink, green, yellow, gray, white, and black. Within these color families, there can be significant variations in the depth of the color. For example, dark veins may run through lighter-colored slabs and vice versa.
Even though there are plenty of color options for marble counters, many people choose white marble countertops or other light colors because they blend well with different color choices. This makes it easier to change the colors of cabinets, walls, and flooring surrounding the countertops. Light-colored marble also works well with other materials like wood, brick, stainless steel, and tile.
3. Marble Countertops Leave a History
Despite the recrystallization process, marble is still a very porous natural stone. That means that sealing marble counters is an absolute must. However, even with a sealer applied, marble is known for soaking up stains from cooking and other kitchen activities. Bathroom countertops may absorb stains from heat or makeup as well.
Some people may see this as a drawback, but others choose to see it as a beautiful patina that shows a history of the life being lived around these kitchen marble counters. Of course, this history might not be for you if you’re a perfectionist. But plenty of people consider it a benefit of marble.
Resealing your countertops properly and frequently may help fight against staining. Two different types of sealant are commonly used for marble counters:
- Topical sealant is a surface coating that completely covers the stone. This helps prevent etching and staining, but it may alter the physical appearance of the marble. The topical sealant doesn’t do much to avoid scratches or heat damage and needs to be reapplied more frequently.
- Most marble slab suppliers recommend penetrating sealants. This sealant penetrates deep into the surface of the marble and helps prevent liquids from seeping into the stone. This makes the countertops remain water– and stain-resistant. Unfortunately, they don’t do much to fight against etching from acidic liquids like lemon juice.
4. Careful Maintenance Will Keep Marble in Good Shape
Maintaining kitchen marble counters might sound like a lot of work, but if you follow a few simple steps, you’ll be a professional marble caretaker in no time. Here are a few tips to keep your marble looking better for longer:
- Wipe up spills right away. Coffee, oil, and tomato sauce spills should not be allowed to sit on marble for more than a few seconds, especially on white marble countertops. Removing the spill immediately will stop the stain from penetrating and allow the marble to keep its natural color.
- Use a mild soap for cleanup. Harsh cleaners have no business being near marble. Avoid anything with chemicals or abrasive materials inside. Opt for a mild soap, like dishwashing detergent, and gently clean your countertops with a soft cloth.
- Protect the countertops during food prep. Using a cutting board is a must when you have marble counters. Always place something underneath hot pans and hair tools. If you have marble in your bathroom, don’t place your makeup directly on the countertops. Preventing spills from reaching the countertop surface is the key!
- Reseal your countertops every year. Sealing once a year is usually enough if you use a penetrating sealant. Topical sealants may need to be applied more frequently. Be sure to follow your supplier’s recommendations for sealing your marble counters.
5. Marble Can Be Affordable
Marble slabs can vary significantly in cost depending on how rare they are and where the stone originates from. Carrara marble, mined in Cararra, Italy, is plentiful. Its availability makes it one of the lowest-cost natural stone countertop materials. This type of marble is typically light gray with gentle veining throughout the stone.
Rarer marble types, like Calacatta marble, are a luxury choice and will cost significantly more than Cararra marble. The good news is that marble counter options are available for nearly every price point and budget.
Intermountain Stone & Marble Offers the Best in Marble Countertops
Marble countertops offer a beautiful and luxurious feel to any home or business. So if you’re ready to upgrade to stunning and long-lasting countertops today, call Intermountain Stone & Marble. Our countertop experts offer the best selection of marble and other natural stone countertops at a budget-friendly price.
Our knowledgeable crew can help you find the best countertop materials for your home in Salt Lake City, Park City, or a neighboring city in Utah. We proudly offer top-quality granite, marble, quartz, and porcelain counters at a price that fits your specific budget. Contact Intermountain Stone & Marble to view our extensive color and style options and get your quote today.