4 Most Popular Benchtop Materials and What You Need To Know About Them
No kitchen renovation is complete without a perfectly up to the minute kitchen bench. It’s one of the most important features. It’s vital from a practical and aesthetic point of view, and it adds value to your property. It’s worth investing in your kitchen benchtop, and renovators should expect it to be one of the more expensive items of a kitchen fit out. But how do you know which material to choose?
For many, natural stone is the holy grail of kitchen materials. From beautiful travertine and edgy granite to luxurious marble in all its rich variations, it imparts style to the kitchen. Offering more than just good looks, stone is also a durable, practical solution for the kitchen, ideal for preparing meals, washing up or even just sitting with a glass of wine. Stone is well known for its beauty. Smooth to the touch, it offers a spectacular mixture of colors, swirling light and dark shades together in a staggering array of patterned finishes, from large chunky chips to blended monochromatic natural tones. Stone typically comes in more neutral tones, blending perfectly with any kitchen’s color scheme. It also comes in various thicknesses to suit your individual needs.
A timber bench top can prove to be a truly beautiful addition to any kitchen – it’s got a classic, natural feel that is impossible to find among the many, many other material options you have out there. it’s all about the look. You have dozens of varieties of timber out there to choose from, and you’ll likely be able to find a color of wood that provides a beautiful complement to the look of your kitchen. There are plenty of native and imported trees to select from – you’ll find one with a color that boosts the home. Timber benchtops are also incredibly durable. They’re softer than other benchtop materials, but timber is also able to be sanded back and refinished. You’ll also be able to recycle the timber once it’s outlived its purpose. Timber is also low-maintenance and if you’re going to use recycled timber it’s actually very cost effective.
Stainless steel is the bench top of choice in busy restaurants for a number of reasons - it's easy to clean, hygienic and hard-wearing. But while it can provide a contemporary, minimalist look, stainless steel bench tops may not be ideal for the average domestic kitchen.
To begin with, it isn't scratch resistant, so you'll either have to be extremely careful your knife doesn't slip off the chopping board or get used to the marks. Fingerprints also show up on its shiny surface, although brushed and textured finishes can camouflage marks to some extent.
Stainless steel is typically applied to a plywood base to add strength and deaden its sound, but it can still be noisy.
Many people see it as a very hygienic option for their kitchen, and rightly so. It's non-porous, which limits the growth of bacteria, and the sheets of steel can be formed to include a sink, draining boards and splashback, so there are few joints.
Where joints are necessary, the two pieces of steel can be welded and polished to give an almost invisible seam, minimizing the number of food crumbs and grime that can collect in these areas. You can also put hot pans straight onto it without leaving a mark.
Becoming a popular choice of material for architects, interior designers and homeowners, cast concrete elements have become the unique and modern alternative material for interiors everywhere.
Cast concrete’s versatility, distinctive look, and natural qualities make it an extremely practical material while retaining a custom, artistic, and personal appeal. In order to maintain the look of any natural stone, it’s imperative that homeowners regularly apply a sealer. That’s especially true with concrete, as its porous nature and lighter color can easily show blemishes.