The most common
The most common and least expensive form of countertop material in use for the last 50 years or more. Laminate is available in a wide variety of colors and patterns, allowing you to have a stone like appearance, solid color, or other pattern in your countertop. Laminate is installed by gluing it to a particle board base. Although slightly tricky to install, you can do it yourself.
This is one of the newer engineered materials for countertops. Glass is crushed and mixed into a cement base, then finished to provide a smooth surface. It is available in a large variety of colors or mixed colors. Recycled glass is considered a “green” technology, because of the recycling. It also provides a highly durable and easy to clean countertop surface.
Wood is a classic material for rustic or colonial looking décor. The standard “butcher block” surface can be made to be decorative, or functional as an actual cutting surface. Other wood counters can range from the rustic to the highly elegant. One problem with wood is that it is porous, permitting the growth of bacteria and other pathogens. Because of this, wood is a higher maintenance countertop material than other choices.
Slate is a naturally occurring stone product. This sedimentary stone is readily cut into slabs which can then be finished smooth. Slate is extremely strong and not porous, providing a durable countertop that does not provide a ready growing surface to bacteria, mold and mildew. Although there is some variety of coloration available, most slate is gray or charcoal colored.
Nothing quite matches the beauty of marble, not even granite. This classic building material is the choice of maximum elegance. As such, it is priced accordingly. Unlike other stone products, marble tends to be porous, so it must be sealed to prevent the growth of bacteria and mold. If used extensively for cooking, resealing is necessary periodically (every several years).