One of the easiest ways to liven up a kitchen or bathroom is to update its countertops. Each of the eight most popular materials—granite, marble, cultured marble, laminate, solid surface, wood, tile, and soapstone—has benefits and drawbacks. As you search for the best countertop material for your home, remember to choose a material that meets both your durability and maintenance needs.Pros and Cons of 8 Countertop Materials

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Pros and Cons of 8 Countertop Materials

Going shopping for countertops? Pick a material that meets your durability and maintenance needs.

PROS AND CONS

  1. GRANITE
    1. Pro: Durable, stain-resistant material, with many colors and patterns
    2. Con: Should be periodically resealed if used heavily
  2. MARBLE
    1. Pro: High-end, luxurious material
    2. Con: Stains easily and is not practical for heavy use
  3. CULTURED MARBLE
    1. Pro: Economical alternative to natural marble and is easy to clean
    2. Con: Difficult to remove scratches from the surface
  4. LAMINATE
    1. Pro: Most economical countertop material available
    2. Con: Scratches and chips are permanent
  5. SOLID SURFACE
    1. Pro: Popular for stone-like appearance and decorative features
    2. Con: Fine sandpaper is needed for minor abrasions
  6. WOOD
    1. Pro: Popular for rustic charm and can be used as a cutting board
    2. Con: Susceptible to water damage and must be sealed
  7. TILE
    1. Pro: Burn and stain resistant, with many colors, sizes, and styles
    2. Con: Dirt, water, and mildew can be found in the grout
  8. SOAPSTONE
    1. Pro: Nonporous material that requires no sealing
    2. Con: Requires mineral oil application and has limited colors.

Infographic by BestPickReports.com