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Whether you’re thinking about remodeling your entire bathroom or making a few upgrades, my guess is that the idea of replacing your bathroom countertops has crossed your mind. Homeowners not only want their bathroom counters looking great, but they want to know the durability grade, maintenance requirements and material costs of their favorite picks prior to making a final decision.
I’m not only going to dive deep into what materials are top-rated, but I’ll also cover edges, colors and design styles that are trending. It can’t hurt to just see what’s out there. Who knows? Maybe these recommendations will inspire your next bathroom upgrade!
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I'm sure you're familiar with granite because it gets talked about a lot over the years, but you might not be aware of everything it has to offer. Sure, it’s a little pricier than some of the other choices out there, but I think you’ll see why many homeowners consider this material well worth the investment.
Granite is a popular stone with luxurious qualities. You don’t have to worry about its durability or shelf-life because it’s resistant to stains, water and heat, and it’s known to last years. At the end of the day, it’s a practical countertop material that’ll add beauty and value to your home.
The only maintenance required with granite is to seal it so it will repel grease (i.e. hair products, for example). Otherwise, you’ll be glad to know it’s mostly hassle free and stands up to stains better than other materials, like marble.
Marble is a popular choice for its sheer attractiveness and elegance, although it’s quite expensive. The material is stunning when it catches your eye and is great for achieving a high-end look. You should be aware that it scratches and stains easily, so make sure you’re fully committed to giving it the proper attention. It requires gentle treatment and proper care to stay beautiful.
Experts say it pays to install granite or marble because these materials attract buyers at resale and give the vanity top a rich, sleek look.
Engineered Quartz has been given the green light time and time again, and this year is no different. The best part about the engineered stone is that it emulates the style and texture of natural stone without the maintenance. In fact, the list of benefits goes on and on.
Typically composed of more than 90% quartz particles, the nonporous surface won’t scratch, stain or crack. Even better is that it resists mold and mildew. You can buff out scratches yourself and it’s durable, low-maintenance and can handle high heat (think hair tools). There’s not too much to complain about with this one.
I’m sure you’ve admired a friend or family member’s countertops, thinking they must have spent a fortune, only to have them tell you that they’re actually reasonably priced laminate countertops. Laminate can easily pass for other materials such as granite or natural stone because of how much the look has evolved over the past few years.
These counters are excellent for updating guest bathrooms and basements on a budget. Be careful not to put hot objects directly on the countertop because they easily damage when contacted with heat. Other than that, they’re low-cost, easy to clean and come in a wide range of colors and patterns.
Shapes & Edges
Anyone installing new bathroom countertops knows they’re eventually going to have to start reviewing the nitty-gritty details, one of them being shapes and edges. Below is a short list of some of the more popular options amongst homeowners.
- Bullnose: Rounded
- Bevel: Angled
- Ogee: S-shaped
- Decorative Edges: Used for customizing a bath
Sara Ann Busby, vice president of the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) & owner of Sara Busby Design, recently dished out some tips about how they handle this dilemma.
"In a more traditional, more elegant bathroom, we'll put some detail on the front edge. We'll do a real heavy ogee to follow the theme of the moldings or something that's happening in the room. When we're dealing with clients who might want something cleaner, we'll put on a square edge and just knock it off a little bit, so it's very clear where the edge of the counter is."
Hopefully this information gives you a little more confidence when you’re faced with choosing a countertop edge detail!
Interior designers are deeming beige, gray and black as the top colors for a marble countertop. The neutral hues of beige and gray compliment the silvery tones of faucets and mirrored glass perfectly. On the other hand, black will give you a timeless and classy appearance and will absolutely shine when paired with a white vanity.
In terms of granite, brown and white take the cake. White granite produces a clean and crisp appearance, while at the same time lighting and brightening up the space. For a winning look, it’s suggested you pair dark cabinets and polished chrome fixtures (and hardware) with a white countertop. Brown granite is a preferred color because it hides dirt well and appears less heavy due to its creamy beiges and coffee-hued specks.
If you’re a DIYer, then you should also consider painted wood. It’s a project you can complete in a weekend and can transform an outdated piece of furniture into a brand new vanity without breaking the bank.
Backsplashes no longer has to be a completely separate feature from the countertop. If you love your countertop and want to extend it further, it’s acceptable to run the material up onto the wall to act as a backsplash too. This is especially handy if you’re required to purchase large slabs of countertop material and will have extra leftover. Using the same material for your counter and backsplash is becoming increasingly popular, and it looks good too!
As far as material goes, tile and marble are two materials that won’t disappoint. I love the example in the image above because of the deep countertop, matching a marble backsplash and gray marble tiles framing the mirror. If you stick with tile, feel free to get a little crazy and liven up the space with vibrant colors and patterns (you can even extend the tile pattern into the shower).
Picking out new bathroom countertops will most likely be a time-consuming project, but is also a lot of fun! The trends and information outlined in this article should make you feel fully equipped to not only get the job done, but to get it done right. Let us know how it goes. We’d love to hear your feedback and bathroom remodeling success stories in the comments section below!
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