Selecting Your Benchtops
Selecting the benchtop for your brand new kitchen can sometimes send couples into a dilemma as there is such an array of benchtop materials on the market these days each offering their own pros and cons. From laminate to stone, timber, stainless steel and even concrete, there will be plenty of things to consider when making the right choice for your new kitchen. Your new kitchen benchtop is also one of the key elements in bringing your new kitchen to life and giving it that wow factor or making a statement about your home.
Before making this decision, it’s important to understand the differences between each kitchen benchtop material available and decide which one will best suit your circumstances. Things to consider when selecting your kitchen benchtop material are obviously you want something that is aesthetically pleasing and practical but you will also need to consider your budget when making this choice, keeping in mind that stone, stainless steel and timber are considerably more expensive than laminate.
Let’s firstly take a look at laminate. There are a lot of positives for this material although it is often overlooked. Many people think “old fashioned” when they think about laminate, but the colour and pattern choices available today are amazing and many replicate the look of stone. Also, it is an affordable product due to the inexpensive manufacturing costs, it’s quite durable and versatile.
Contemporary New Kitchen with Stunning Laminate Benchtop
There is natural stone such as granite and marble. These stone materials can be porous meaning that they may stain easily. There is a reasonably large selection of colours and patterns to choose from, as well as selecting a polished or matt honed finish to the stone. These benchtops are solid, easily maintained and great for food hygiene as they are smooth and impervious.
Man Made Stone
Man made stone such as Caesarstone® and Quantum Quartz and also another great option. They have similar traits as natural stone but are manufactured to be more stain resistant, scratch resistant and heat resistant than their natural counterparts and laminate. These benchtops also come in a vast assortment of colours and patterns and definitely make a statement in your new kitchen.
Another stone option is Corian®, this product is another solid surface which blends acrylic and natural minerals to make the stone. Like the other man made stone materials it is non porous and scratch and heat resistant. Unlike other benchtop materials this product can be moulded into your sink and seamlessly continued with invisible joins.
Corian Benchtop with Moulded Sink
And if you’re after an edgier industrial feel and look, you can’t go past stainless steel, highly durable and versatile, don’t be fooled though, it still requires regular maintenance just like any other benchtop. Stainless Steel comes in an array of different finishes and looks fantastic when paired with another benchtop type.
Modern Kitchen with Stainless Steel Benchtop
And finally, there is timber, once a traditional style of benchtop, it is becoming quite popular as a feature benchtop in modern kitchens. One drawback to using timber benchtops in the kitchen, you may have water problems when using it near the sink and must be sealed correctly to prevent rotting. Timber is one of those things that never seem to date, it’s reinvented and renewed and timeless.
White Vinyl Kitchen with Timber and Stainless Steel Benchtop
To help you choose the most appropriate kitchen benchtop you need to consider your own family circumstances, taste and budget. If you’d like some expert advice on what really works best for you, talk to a designer at Creative Design Kitchens who can help you to decide which option may best suit you.
|Price bracket||Scratch resistant||Fragile (chip resistant)||Heat resistant||Water resistant||Stain resistant|
|Laminate||Laminate ost effective option is made up of several layers. It’s affordable, durable and versatile, coming in a variety of colours and styles that even emulate a particular natural look like granite||low||good||good||medium||medium to bad||good|
|Natural stone granite / marble||Go back to basics and back to nature with these classic surfaces that come in a highly polished or matt honed finish. It’s visually spectacular, ultra smooth and cool on the fingers||medium to high||bad||bad||medium||good||medium|
|Manmade stone caesarstone||This ever-popular man-made stone is low maintenance, as well as stain and scratch resistant. It’s non-porous, waterproof and heat resistant, and best of all looks fantastic.||medium to high||bad||bad||medium||good||medium|
|Corian||This beautiful solid surface is a patented blend of acrylic and natural minerals. It’s non-porous and stain resistant and comes in many colours, both matt and gloss. It can also be welded together to form seamless joints.||high||medium||good||medium||good||good|
|Stainless steel||Great for that cutting edge industrial look and feel, it is highly durable. However you must maintain it regularly, as scratching can occur quite easily.||high||bad||good||good||good||good|
|Concrete||There has been a surge in popularity overseas of concrete, in particular concrete benchtops.||high||good||medium||good||good||bad|
|Timber||Sleek, smooth, stylish timber has always given endless scope for individual expressions of design. There is warmth and richness to wood that is unique and will always compliment and enhance any interior.||medium to high||medium||good||medium||medium to bad||good|