A marble countertop is clean, classic, and has nearly universal appeal. So it’s no wonder that kitchen designers and homeowners alike request it on a regular basis.
But real marble countertops don’t keep their good looks for long. In fact, in many old world countries where marble has been in use for centuries, it’s expected to have a countertop that has a patina after years of use. A marble countertop that is yellowed, stained, and worn is a sign of a well-used kitchen.
In other areas of the world, however, a countertop that appears that way is a serious detriment to the rest of the design. That’s why those that really want the look of a marble countertop would actually be better off with quartz.
Marble in the Kitchen
Marble is made of calcite. It’s a metamorphic stone that was made when limestone, a sedimentary stone formed from shells and nearby minerals, became extremely heated and compressed over a long period of time. Marble is harder and denser than limestone, but it’s still made up of the same material.
Whether the marble in question is white, beige, red, or black, it’s still made primarily of calcite, a mineral that doesn’t react well with certain substances such as acids. In the kitchen, where many fruits and vegetables contain some level of acid, the top surface particles of the marble may be removed or etched from the stone on contact. So a slice of lemon that falls from someone’s drink can leave a permanent dull mark on the surface of the countertop.
And like many types of stone, marble is porous. Its surface is covered with thousands of microscopic holes, all of which can absorb spills. This means that if some tomato juice was spilled on the marble, it would not only dull the surface, it could also cause a stain.
Sealers can help impede these stains by helping to fill the pores and keep liquids on the surface. But sealers can break down over time, particularly when they have come in contact with cleaners and detergents. If you aren’t aware that it’s time to reseal, a stain can occur. Sealers only give you time to wipe up a spill, they don’t permanently stop the liquid from seeping in.
All of this means that over the course of a few months your marble is likely to begin to dull and discolor with normal daily use. To maintain your marble would be a daily chore, requiring hypervigilance over the counter at all times. In a busy kitchen, a marble counter may not stand a chance.
Quartz in the Kitchen
Quartz countertops that look like marble can give you the same classic appearance without these worries. Quartz countertops are made of more than 90% natural quartz, one of the strongest natural materials used in the home. They’re non-porous and are less affected by spills or falling foods. They are resistant to scratches, etching, or discoloration no matter how busy your kitchen is. They also don’t require sealing, special cleansers, or extra care to maintain their good looks. So, you can relax and enjoy your kitchen, rather than worrying about it.
Quartz vs Marble Style
Marble is a natural stone, so the amount of minerals that it contains will vary from piece to piece. This is what gives marble its variation, which is why you can find so many different colors and patterns.
Quartz is also available in a range of colors and patterns, but with more control over the variation. While marble has beautiful marks and veins, sometimes it will also contain odd mineral deposits that can cause a strangely colored streak in the stone. It may also contain minerals that interact badly with its surroundings, such as Bianco Carrara, which contains high amounts of iron. If it gets wet for a prolonged period of time, it may rust.
Quartz countertops are made with control and precision, so while they have beautiful, natural-looking veins, they don’t have surprises. You won’t have to worry about an odd color or an unexpected reaction. You’ll just have to decide which of the many beautiful colors and styles will work best in your home.
Make the Right Choice for Your Home
Both quartz and marble can provide you with a beautiful classic look and style. But only quartz can maintain that beauty and style throughout years of use without extra maintenance and care. Choose any marble-look quartz for your home to get the beauty and interest of marble with none of the drawbacks or upkeep.