You can make your kitchen worktop look elegant and be very useful if you choose the material well.

Designing or renovating your kitchen, and looking for cool and stylish kitchen countertop materials?

There are lots of choices for you out there, each material having its own pros and cons.

To help you decide, we are publishing this guide on the 10 best materials for your kitchen countertop.

Hardwood (also known as timber)

Hardwood is an all-time home interior design classic. It has a rustic but elegant look that will actually add value to your home.

Timber countertops are on the affordable side, and should be long-lasting if maintained well.

However, they will change in look over time for example getting a richer look with oiling or fading if exposed to sunlight.

Maintenance can be a little difficult as timber is not water-resistant, which means you need to wipe away any water spill as soon as you can.

Wiping with warm water and soap – and then giving it time to dry – should be enough for cleaning.

Pro tip: Hardwood is also a popular flooring material.

Main pros

  • Lots of colour and texture options to choose from
  • If it does develop scratches, you can simply sandpaper it
  • Antibacterial if maintained well
  • Acquires a good look with age

Main cons

  • Requires oiling twice a year
  • Not very heat-resistant, will develop scorch marks
  • Can scratch

Look through our interior design portfolio for examples of how hardwood can improve your house’s look and appearance.


Granite is a naturally occurring stone that is a popular kitchen countertop material, known for giving a stylish look. 

If installed properly, it should be stain-resistant and require little maintenance.

It also doesn’t bend or crack under heat (very important in the kitchen) and doesn’t chip as it’s a strong material.

Cleaning is very easy – wiping it with warm water and mild soap should be enough.

Main pros

  • Bacteria-resistant
  • Heat-resistant
  • Low-maintenance
  • Durable and strong
  • Adds home value

Main cons

  • Expensive
  • Very heavy
  • Not DIY-friendly


Soapstone is a natural stone that has recently become popular with interior designers as a good alternative to granite.

It offers a rich look that develops as it ages. It’s heat-resistant and small pieces of damage can be sandpapered.

On the negative side, it’s not DIY-friendly and must be oiled periodically.


What is the difference between granite and quartz? Granite is naturally occurring whereas the quartz that is used in home design is an engineered material that includes both natural quartz and also some other substances (like resins).

Quartz countertops have a contemporary look, and are durable and scratch-resistant, but less heat-resistant than granite.

Like granite it is low-maintenance – simply wiping it with warm water and soap should do.

Main pros

  • Many colour choices to choose from
  • Bacteria-resistant
  • Easy to clean
  • Durable and strong

Main cons

  • Expensive
  • Somewhat less heat-resistant
  • Very heavy


A very popular luxury kitchen design material that suits both traditional and modern design preferences.

It gives your kitchen worktop a very high-end finish.

It cannot conduct heat well so it’s always cool to touch, which is essential for a kitchen worktop.

They’re a bit expensive but are quite long-lasting.

It is however high-maintenance and prone to scratching.

Also, it will react with acidic substances like lemon juice and vinegar and get a whitish look where the spill has occurred.

Fact: No two sheets of marble are exactly the same.

Pro tip: Marble is a good tip for bathroom remodelling.

Main pros

  • Elegant look
  • Long lasting
  • Heat resistant
  • There are affordable options

Main cons

  • Can stain and scratch easily
  • Expensive

Did you know? Marble can be a great material in luxury duplex house design and also penthouse design.


Ceramic is a very good alternative worktop material to marble. The hardwearing and durable surface is resistant to water, fungi and bacteria.

On the other hand, you’ll need to clear away any spills ASAP, and also it can be prione to being scratched.

Main pros

  • Antibacterial
  • Very strong and heat-resistant
  • Moisture-resistant
  • More affordable than marble

Main cons

  • Prone to being scratched
  • Can develop cracks over time


So what exactly is laminate? Essentially, laminate is several layers of synthetic interior design materials glued together. Typically it includes a fibreboard core, an image layer (which gives it its external look) and a tough clear covering on top.

They’re a very affordable kitchen countertop option, and you can even install them by yourself.

They’re also very easy to clean and won’t stain easily.

On the other hand once it scratches, there is no remedy and you may have to get a new countertop. They can also burn and melt from kitchen use (hot pans).

Main pros

  • Low-maintenance
  • You can choose how it looks
  • Antibacterial
  • Affordable
  • Somewhat heat and scratch-resistant

Main cons

  • The top layers may start to peel off
  • If it scratches it becomes unhygienic and you may need to replace
  • Can burn and melt

Pro tip: Laminate surfaces can be an effective tool in budget-friendly home decoration.

Did you know? Laminate can be an affordable material in living room design also.


Glass is a stylish kitchen worktop option in modern kitchens and houses. The glass that is typically used in most interior design works is engineered to be toughened.

It isn’t porous so it doesn’t stain and is moisture and spill resistant.

Cleaning is quite easy – wiping will do – but you’ll need to wipe it frequently to avoid marks (including oils and fingerprints).

Main pros

  • Very easy to clean
  • Hygienic
  • Durable and heat-resistant
  • Has a unique modern look

Main cons

  • Expensive
  • Prone to be scratched
  • Needs to be cleaned frequently


Specifically, stainless steel.

Stainless steel worktops are best-known for commercial and industrial uses (so for example you would find them in restaurant design).

But you can use them at home due to their hardwearing nature and being very easy to maintain and clean.

Even if they do get scratched, you can live with it as it’s an industrial vibe anyway.

Main pros

  • Heat resistant
  • Durable and strong
  • Antibacterial
  • Easy to clean and maintain

Main cons

  • Has a sterile and industrial look that doesn’t match a home atmosphere

Solid Surface Composite

What is a solid surface composite material? Solid surface materials are made by applying acrylic resins and/or polyester to a substrate of wood, with pigments added.

With its glossy surface, a solid surface composite worktop can fit into contemporary kitchen designs.

They’re well-known for having a seamless look.

Utilitywise, they’re somewhat durable and heat-resistant though not as much as quartz or granite.

Main pros

  • Stain resistant
  • Heat resistant
  • Scratch resistant
  • Hygienic

Main cons

  • Expensive
  • Impossible to repair if damaged


Concrete countertops can give your kitchen a really unique look. On the other hand, as they are quite heavy, usually concrete worktops will be cast in forms in your kitchen.

With a polished look, colour and texture added concrete can be a pretty good kitchen countertop material.

Main pros

  • Heat and scratch resistant
  • Can be tinted and textured
  • Has a unique look

Main cons

  • Not DIY-friendly
  • Can crack over time
  • Has a porous surface unless sealed correctly

Choosing the right countertop material – some tips

Here are a few things you should consider when selecting the countertop material for your kitchen.

  • How well does it complement other furniture and kitchen interior design elements?
  • Do the material and installation costs fit your budget?
  • Can you handle materials that need extensive maintenance, or would you prefer low-maintenance materials?
  • Do you put hot pots and pans straight on the countertop or will you use a plate?

Pro tip: Materials with glossy surfaces (like glass) would require more upkeep. If you can’t manage that, or if you have kids in your house (who would like to touch everything, leaving marks) you should prefer materials with a matte finish over those with glossy surfaces.

Selecting a worktop material for your kitchen – conclusion

As you can see, there are lots of materials for you to choose your kitchen worktop material from.

  • From natural materials like hardwood and granite to artificial ones like quartz and solid surface composite…
  • From those with a traditional charm like marble and hardwood to those with more modern vibes like glass…
  • From DIY-friendly ones like laminate to those that require significant effort to install like marble…

Now you should decide, based on your budget and on your capacities, which one you want for your kitchen countertop.