Kitchen Countertop Surfaces 101

The pros, cons, and all the info on different countertop options!

27 March 2017 -

Countertop surfaces have come a long way since the days of formica (a countertop founded in 1912!)

and we’re so glad it has! With all the options out there now, it can be tough to know what material is going to be best for you and your home. We’ve created a list of what you need to know, so you can pick the perfect surface for your spaces.


  • Porous surface – meaning it will stain.
  • Easily stained and etched.
  • Classic and timeless.
  • Needs to be resealed every 1-2 years.
  • Heat resistant, but not as effective as granite or options. May experience slight burn, cracking from thermal shock, or color discoloration.

Design by Distinctive Kitchens and photographed by Wynne H Earle


  • Man made surface.
  • Stain, scratch, heat, acid and impact resistant.
  • Comes in an array of colors and options.
  • Non-porous surface, it doesn’t need to be sealed.
  • Very practical, durable and easy to maintain.

From our Modern Mountain Home


  • All natural stone.
  • Needs to be sealed and resealed once a year.
  • Available in a variety of colors, tones and variances in spotting.
  • Sister surface to quartz.
  • More expensive than quartz.

From our Mountainside Remodel


  • Dense and non-porous.
  • Susceptible to scratches and nicks, but the small imperfections can typically be buffed out with sandpaper.
  • Typically found only in gray tones with varying veining patterns.
  • Develops a patina with use.
  • Recommend applying mineral oil occasionally to help disguise small surface scratches.

Design by Rafe Churchill. Photograph by Amanda Kirkpatrick

Butcher Block

  • Sanitary when properly sealed
  • Provides great work space for chopping and baking
  • Heat resistant
  • Gorgeous when mixed with other surfaces
  • Adds warmth and character

From our Robin Road Remodel


  • Stain, heat and water resistant when sealed
  • Customizable in thickness, edges, color and texture
  • Not your typical countertop surface
  • Seams can be filled so it’s one continuous surface
  • Will patina over time

Design by Joanna Gaines


  • Comes in wide range of colors and variations
  • Polished or matte
  • Spills wipe up quickly
  • Non-porous material after it’s sealed
  • Affordable

From our Midway House


  • High maintenance.
  • Potential to burn.
  • Spills need to be cleaned up quickly.
  • Etching is fairly common.
  • Variety of beautiful, natural looking options.

Design by deVOL Kitchens

Date Posted
27 March 2017