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Granite and marble are two of the most popular stone kitchen countertop materials. They offer the perfect balance of durability and beauty that can make any kitchen stand out. But if you’re looking for a different natural stone option that can offer the same level of durability and beauty, soapstone might be the right material for you.
Of course, just like any other countertop material, soapstone comes with its own set of pros and cons that you should know before making a decision. In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the advantages and disadvantages of soapstone countertops so you can decide if they’re the right fit for your kitchen.
What is a Soapstone?
Soapstone is a metamorphic rock that’s quarried all over the world, with some of the largest deposits being found in Brazil, India, and Finland. It’s primarily composed of talc, but it also contains small amounts of quartz, chlorite, amphiboles, and other minerals.
Soapstone has been used for centuries in a variety of applications, including sculptures, fireplaces, and of course, countertops. Its name was derived from its soap-like feel when it was first quarried. When polished, soapstone takes on a smooth, silky texture that can add a luxurious look and feel to any kitchen.
Advantages of Soapstone Countertops
With any natural stone countertop, there are going to be some advantages and disadvantages. Soapstone is no different. Let’s start by taking a look at the advantages of soapstone countertops:
Natural stone countertops like soapstone have a unique aesthetic that can’t be replicated with man-made materials. The rustic look of soapstone can add character and charm to any kitchen. And because it’s a natural stone, each soapstone slab is unique and will have its own distinctive veins and patterns. This rarity is one of the reasons why soapstone counters have become so popular in recent years.
Soapstone is a completely natural product that’s quarried from the ground. That means it doesn’t require any harmful chemicals or processes to produce. The fear of having unfriendly chemicals in your kitchen is one of the reasons why many people are choosing soapstone over man-made materials like laminate or concrete. And if you’re looking to reduce your carbon footprint, soapstone is one of the most sustainable countertop materials available.
Soapstone is a very low-maintenance material. It’s non-porous, so it doesn’t need to be sealed like granite or quartz countertops. And it’s also resistant to stains and heat. That means you won’t have to worry about putting your hot pans on the counter or spilling red wine. Just a little soap and water is all you need to keep your soapstone countertops looking like new.
Cracking, chipping, and breaking are all concerns you might have with a kitchen countertop. But soapstone is a durable countertop material. It’s heat-resistant and it won’t chip or crack easily. You can feel confident that your soapstone countertops will stand up to the wear and tear of everyday use.
If you’re planning on selling your home in the future, soapstone countertops can actually increase the value of your property. They offer a high return on investment and can make your kitchen more appealing to potential buyers.
Easy to Install
As a relatively soft stone, it’s not too hard to install soapstone countertops. In fact, it’s often easier to install than other natural stone options like granite countertops. It can be cut and shaped to fit any kitchen, so you don’t have to worry about finding the perfect slab.
Disadvantages of Soapstone Countertops
Now that we’ve looked at some of the advantages of soapstone countertops, let’s take a look at some of the potential disadvantages:
As with any natural stone countertop, soapstone can be a bit on the expensive side. The cost will vary depending on the quality of the stone and where it’s being sourced from. And because it’s a natural stone, the price can fluctuate based on availability. If you’re on a tight budget, soapstone might not be the best option for your kitchen countertops. It’s important to get a few quotes before you make a decision so you can find the best price for your budget.
Due to its unique composition, soapstone is only available in a limited range of patterns and colors. Gray, blue, and black are the most common colors you’ll find. And while some people love the rustic look of soapstone, others might prefer a brighter countertop. So, if you’re looking for a countertop that comes in a wide range of colors, soapstone might not be the best option.
Talc is the main mineral found in soapstone, and it’s a fairly soft material. This makes soapstone susceptible to scratches and etching. If you’re not careful, your soapstone countertop can start to look dull and worn over time. A simple throwing of a spoon can cause scratching to the surface. And while this can be sanded out, it’s something you’ll have to keep in mind when choosing soapstone for your kitchen.
With any countertop material, there are advantages and disadvantages to consider. Soapstone is a beautiful, natural product that comes with a range of benefits. But it’s also important to be aware of the potential drawbacks before you make a decision. Weigh all your options and choose the countertop material that’s right for your kitchen.