"Marble has its ups and then a slippery slope to destitution."
I remember this phrase that best quantifies the soft underbelly "Marble wears the past like a favorite coat remembering every scalding cook pot, knife nick, and salsa mishap".
There is an ugly downside that seriously compromises the desire you have when you first sight a marble countertop, unlike the "brick wall" granite, marble is perceptible to scratches and stains.
Mildest acidic mishaps; from a knocked over glass of wine to a misplaced spray of vinegar, risks eating away the polish. A process called etching.
For a product you would have to break both legs and arms to get, the maintenance demand is a little overkill.
So away from the glam, You will want to consider these marble countertops alternatives.
Natural Stone Alternative.
If marble were Sirius in a cloudless August night granite would be the sun by day. Hard enough to take a beating but bright enough to stay posh.
Less porous than marble, this unglazed alternative is ideal for counters & vanity tops especially if rough go atop.
With granite, there is little less etching to worry about and considerable headroom when dealing with stains.
With over 20 shades, granite easily makes the centerpiece and blends appropriately with an array of interiors. Its aesthetics blend gives a finish akin to marble decor, even when your desire is the glowing white finish you thought of only in marble, white granite will suffice.
Additionally, granite has impressive heat resistance ideal for cooktops.
So if you are looking to reduce cost granite retails at between $75-$250 per square foot, which is reasonable pricing (compared to marble at least) for all that brute and luxury.
On the flipside though, granite is stubbornly inflexible, there is only so many designing options.
To cut granite you would need a diamond-impregnated blade fixed on a circular saw, table saw or a grinder.
Granite is also slightly porous, a little less than marble, but enough to harbor deep colored stains and bacteria.
Quartzite has a smooth glassy aesthetic appearance that mimics the exotic lush of marble finishes. Most popular, quartzite super white is similar in appearance to heavily veined grey or white marble.
Quartzite equally compares to granite, with hard & tough exteriors that handle scratches and chips quite well.
, Unlike marble, quartzite doesn't etch: it is natural stone with no calcium (pure quartzite is 99% Silica), which doesn't react with acidic substances.
This stone is quickly causing ripples in designers circles; between granite being cliche and marble's high maintenance. Moving into the future quartzite will defiantly grow in popularity, justifiably so.
Quartzite is not only an alternative to marble but almost all natural stone countertops. Quartzite averages at $75 per square foot, slightly cheaper than granite and a whole lot cheaper than marble.
Unfortunately, all that tough comes with poor heat resistance capability.
Quartzite is not ideal for cooktops or hot surfaces around the kitchen.
Soapstone adorn the dark beauty of granite and light veining of marble.
Its quaint aesthetic creates a classic demeanor tacked somewhere between the elegance of marble and the subtlety of limestone.
Liken it to the allure of a properly aged bottle of scotch, not too glaring, just noticeably silent.
Soapstone is amply magnesium, mildly porous and handles well with lemon, vinegar or wine spills.
Although quarried soapstone is soft mineral talc, countertops soapstone has high quartz content which is harder.
Soapstone used in countertops has impressive longevity: less durable than granite but does measure up to scratches & chips.
Same way quartzite would probably replace every marble countertop so is soapstone, fairly as a marble replacement but a lot for granite countertops.
Soapstone is perfect for cooktops, it does take a great amount of heat, coming unscathed from a hotpot off the fire.
On average soapstone retails at $75per square foot. Almost as much as granite.
Limestone has lackluster reviews, most fabricators argue its not the most durable option in the market. Like marble, limestone scandalously reacts to acidic food stains.
Just can't make lemonade out of all that lemon, Its havoc, kitchens disasters all day.
That notwithstanding, there are instances where it's frequently an alternative to marble.
When there is a need to make natural, earthy and subtle statements.
Honestly walk into any home 70% is granite countertops.
With the need for a distinct look away from granite, limestone can be used, wholesomely or for a detailed mix.
Limestone has a soft creamy look which allows it to blend with other stones. But limestone is never a part-time job, with high porosity and a creamy look stains remain prominent on countertops.
To reduce the cleaning and maintenance burden reseal your limestone countertops every once a while.
If limestone is your desire be sure to keep spills and kitchen mishaps at a minimal.
With Limestone countertops fairly popular in Europe something must be of the giving for such appeal, despite the dented reputation.
Priced at between $61-$80 limestone its a cheaper alternative to marble, granite, and quartzite.
Limestone has reliable heat resistance, can be used for cooktops but can get unpredictable at times.
Blend limestone with other stones to get the best of its aesthetics.
Slate is the epitome of natural earthy feels. These countertops finishes are welcoming with calm sprawling the whole length of the kitchen.
With slate ( brown or grey ) you can create some harmony with earth & nature.
Rich tones, natural ridging, and bold looks give slate the most sturdy feel of all stones.
Slate evoke cool vibes in a heavily accentuated kitchen. When warm to neutral walls spike powerful emotions, keep compliments subtle with cooler slate countertops.
Slate slabs come in various colors which are more uniform than slabs of granite.
The shades include pewter, black, charcoal, brown and grey. Some slabs are red, green and blue.
Slate is subtle than granite which makes countertops more consistent and well put together.
The texture feels and looks tough and so it is.
Scratches and chips are minimal.
Spills, grit, and heat never pose great hazards, slate handles well with cooktops and is almost as bulletproof as granite.
Slate, unlike marble are nonporous with lesser maintenance needs.
The low porosity makes cleaning and stain removal process fairly easy.
The best selling point is the pricing.
At $50-$65 per square foot, it's cheaper than most natural stone options.
Engineered Marble vs Cultured Marble
Marble has an elegant and classic reputation but that comes with a heavy price burden.
To get the aesthetics minus the cons, engineered marble is in the offing.
Rest it be confused with cultured marble, Engineered marble is made from recycled natural stone and small quantities of resin.
Cultured marble, on the other hand, is made of marble dust and fairly more additives.
In fact, cultured marble has a more solid surface look than marble beauty.
Given a choice engineered marble is the better option and whats closer to natural marble than the cultured sibling.
Engineered marble looks exquisite but handles stains and scratches awesomely.
Engineered marble is practically nonporous with a reduced risk for dampness or bacteria.
Not to be confused with quartzite, quartz is a versatile manufactured countertop option.
Its 93% natural material and 7% resin & pigments that make tough granite like slabs.
Quartz comes in an array of colors from red to apple green, black, brown and cream.
Quartz can be manufactured with a sparkle and veining that mimic granite and marble countertops.
Resin added in quartz makes the slabs nonporous, stain and scratch resistant.
Quartz is so versatile there is a pattern that evokes any feel or theme.
From warm flares to subtle waves and earthy slate like shades.
Quartz is almost glaring as marble, tough as granite but way more flexible.
Quartz is better priced than its natural competition and serve as a perfect replacement to mostly granite and marble too.
Sintered stone is most likely the newest product in countertop tiling solution.
Dramatic durable large-format sintered panels beautifully point to the future in countertops design.
Sintered stone is made from a combination of different materials from varying locations all selected based on their ability to provide various desires.
Sand minerals such as silica, quartz & feldspar are used to provide hardness, clay is added to provide elasticity while natural mineral pigments are used to create chromatic properties.
Sintered stone offers large size slabs up to 4 feet by 12 feets panels.
This size significantly reduces joints and grout lines along the surface resulting in cleaner uniform finishes.
Coming in a number of colors sintered stone easily creates uniformly finish natural stone appearance.
It has superior hardness compared to natural stone solutions including granite and marble.
Manufacturers engineer a sturdy product to withstand etch, stains, scratches, and chips.
Sintered stone maintenance needs are at a minimal and the hardy quality ensures this stone can be used in all areas including cooktops.
When your need is a unique product for dramatic solutions that make a statement consider this new kid on the block coz he definitely will get the job done.
Countertop solutions alternative to marble are plentiful.
Endgame is what works perfectly.
For the longest time marble has held the helm of glamour in counter and vanity tops but with an ever-changing world in design, newer solutions are looking to tone down the shortcomings of marble but retain the pleasing aesthetics.
If you desire marble feel in a hardy alternative considers quartzite.
When looking for subtle elegant aesthetics soapstone and slate works.
When you need to stand out sintered stone is the latest solution engineered with a modern trendy vibe.
Limestone gives earthy feels inspired by European designs.