Top 10 Benchtop Materials For Your Next Kitchen

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Image source: Keighran, M., Wong, A. M., & @. (2021, December 3). 16 Modern Kitchen Ideas – Contemporary Colors And Moods | Livingetc |. livingetc.com. https://www.livingetc.com/modern-kitchen-ideas.

The surface of your kitchen benchtop is important to the type of lifestyle you lead. Beauty does not have to be compromised. You can have a practical working space that you love. There are many to choose from in 2022. Here you will learn about the properties of different benchtop materials and where they stand out and fall short.

Coastal Living – Image by magno kitchens – https://magnokitchens.com.au/showcasegallery/coastal-living

  1. Engineered stone benchtops

By far the most popular benchtop application in Australia. These artificial stone slabs are made with 95% natural quartz aggregates that are bound together with polymer resins and pigments. There are literally hundreds of colors and styles to choose from. What makes them so attractive is their durability. The slabs are resistant to cracking and heat and are easy to work with. The vividness in the colour of the slab generally lasts a long time and they are super easy to keep clean. Although the surfaces are stain-resistant, they are not stain proof. Food coloring, turmeric, and permanent marker were the most likely substances to leave lasting stains. If you look after your engineered stone, it could look as good as when you first had it installed after 20 years.

2. Laminate benchtops

Laminates have come a long way in recent years, and are no longer the laminate benchtops of your youth. If you’re renovating your kitchen on a budget, laminate is the way to go. There are many high-quality laminate options available in a wide range of colors and styles, so there’s a good chance you’ll fall in love with something that matches your desired aesthetic. Although easy to maintain, they are vulnerable to scratching, etching and burning, so it warrants extra care. They tend to get worn in areas of high use. While quality laminate benchtops are water-resistant, they can be damage by water seeping into cracks or joins. They are without a doubt the most cost-effective benchtop choice. That means you can obtain the look you want within your budget.

Black Beauty – Image by magno kitchens – https://magnokitchens.com.au/showcasegallery/black-beauty

Image Source: New And Recycled Timber Bench Tops | Timber Revival | Melbourne. (2021, June 24). Timber Revival. https://www.timberrevival.com.au/products/benchtops-and-counters/.

3. Timber benchtops

Timber has definitely made a strong comeback over the past year. It adds warmth and character only found in natures products. There is a wide range of species available in Australia. You can go with light and fresh Oak tones or contrast with warmer walnuts and darker tones. Timber can also be stained. This means, if you find a species that you love but wish it were a shade darker, it can be done. To protect the wood, its best treated with either a natural clear based oil seal or polyurethane. Its best practice to seal the timber once every year or two, depending on how much you use it. A polyurethane seal will last much longer.

4. Porcelain benchtops

A growing trend in Australia are porcelain benchtops, but what are they and how do they vary from other materials? Because of their durability, adaptability, and affordability, porcelain benchtops are becoming increasingly popular. Porcelain benchtops are made of powdered clay and colored pigments bound together by high heat and pressure. Available in 6mm or 12mm thickness’, this ultra-thin surface is extremely durable.

As they can tolerate high temperatures, scratches, and stains, they’re known for their strength, durability, and beauty, and their low porosity makes them a very hygienic option.

Image Source : Slimtop Porcelain Panels – Melbourne Kitchen And Bathroom Design. (2019, May 6). Melbourne Kitchen and Bathroom Design. https://melbourne.kitchenandbathroomdesign.com.au/slimtop/.

Image Source: Kitchen Gallery – Roundhouse. (2021, June 24). Roundhouse https://roundhousedesign.com/design-collection/roundhouse-gallery/.

5. Stainless steel benchtops

Stainless steel is extremely durable and hygienic, which is why it is commonly used in commercial kitchens. Splash backs and sinks can be completely integrated, leaving no cracks for nasties to hide in, and high-grade, thicker stainless-steel benches can be re-polished every five to ten years, giving you the appearance of a brand-new benchtop.

6. Concrete benchtops

If you want an industrial look, a polished concrete benchtop is the way to go, but this option can be pricey. Many factors, such as cement, aggregate, and sand, will influence the final color of your concrete benchtop, ensuring a one-of-a-kind product. Because raw concrete is porous, it must be polish to prevent staining and surface damage. Concrete benchtops are formed and poured on-site, and due to their weight, additional subfloor structural work may be require for support. They do, however, have a fantastic raw finish (which is now being imitated by other materials) and can even have heating built into them.

Image Source: Architecture and design By Architecture news & editorial desk https://www.architectureanddesign.com.au/features/list/the-attractions-of-concrete-benchtops#

Image Source: Stone Vigo lena by artedomus – https://www.artedomus.com/products/vigo-lena

7. Marble benchtops

Real marble benchtops add a touch of luxury to any new kitchen or bathroom. With its veining and patterning, the beauty of marble is that it is a one-of-a-kind surface. The fact that no two pieces of marble are ever exactly alike creates for a stunning and breath-taking surface. This results in a timeless elegance and beauty that is highly sought after. Marble is available in a variety of colors. As a result, you are certain to find a benchtop that perfectly complements your style and taste. It’s a natural stone, similar to granite, and suitable for a high-end kitchen where cost isn’t an issue. Keep in mind that it is delicate and handled with care.

8. Granite benchtops

Granite is an exquisite and long-lasting surface for your kitchen benchtop. It is stain and bacteria resistant, as well as heat and scratch resistant. It can also be polish to a high shine and is unaffect by acidic products like lemon juice and red wine. Being a natural stone, granite is on the higher end of the market. On the plus side, it comes in a stunning array of styles and colors and can withstand anything you throw at it. To keep the shine on granite, clean it with warm water and soap.

Image Source: @. (2022, February 4). How To Make Granite Shine In 2022: What Steps Can You Take? | Marble.com. Marble.com. https://marble.com/articles/how-to-make-granite-shine.

Image Source: Dolce Vita – Slabs | Ciot. (n.d.). Dolce Vita – Slabs | Ciot. https://ciot.com/en/slabs/line-dolcevita-sxx.

9. Quartzite benchtops

Quartzite is an undervalued benchtop material. Many homeowners overlook this stunning stone.

They come in a variety of sleek and  forms and are from natural resources. As a result, Quartzite Countertop color options are premium and restricted. The purest Quartzite is white to gray; any other color, like orange Quartzite, is due to the presence of other minerals or chemicals. So, it’s like owning a huge gemstone in the middle of your kitchen.

It’s usually white or gray, or a combination, like marble slabs. Global color palettes are also accessible. Quartzite comes in various shades of blue, violet, emerald, and brown.

10. Acrylic benchtops

Acrylic benchtops have the look and feel of stone or marble, but with a distinctive warmth from natural minerals mixed with high-performance acrylic. This implies that there are no joints , making it more easier to clean.

 They are similar to commercial-grade benchtops and found in pubs, restaurants, shops, etc. but are a terrific alternative for any kitchen remodel.

Image Source: Our Buyer’s Guide To “Solid Surface” Acrylic Benchtop Materials. (n.d.). Our Buyer’s Guide to “Solid Surface” Acrylic Benchtop Materials. https://www.compasskitchens.com.au/material-description.aspx?our-buyers-guide-to-solid-surface-acrylic-benchtops.

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