In our first house we installed a very practical, reasonably priced laminate countertop. I was happy with it because it because I liked the cobalt blue colour and its durability. It turns out though, that it’s not as scratch resistant as I would have liked…we found out the hard way when my husband decided that cutting a piece of cardboard on it with an Exacto knife would be okay. It wasn’t, and there was a 10 inch legacy left reminding me everyday that even Laminates have their limits!

Our current house has luxurious and oh-so-high-maintenance marble countertops. I love the look, but since I’m not very good at remembering to seal them on a regular basis, they’ve taken quite a beating in the last year. An architect friend of mine suggested that to keep them looking new, I get them professionally finished and sealed annually. Fortunately, in HomeStars’ countertops category we have plenty of resurfacing companies to choose from. For anyone thinking of getting marble countertops a word of advice: marble does NOT like lemon juice!

Below are three lower maintenance, and yet still elegant looking, countertop materials and the stores in Toronto that carry them.

Concrete Elegance: Concrete counter tops have long been popular in Europe, but just seem to be on the rise in Canada. They can provide an industrial, sleek modern or a classic look that blends well with traditional cabinetry. Concrete is a versatile product and can be used for countertops, sinks, fireplace mantels or floors. While concrete can chip just like a natural stone, it does have the advantage of its being sanded out and repaired.
For more information go to:
Lattitude carries a product called “Silestone” a quartz based product that is resistant to stains, including soy sauce and red wine. The advantage with the Silestone is that it is virtually maintenance free. It is scratch, chip and stain resistant (quartz is the fourth hardest substance on earth). Available in a variety of colours from more neutral to bright reds, greens and blues, visit the website for more information.
PaperStone: A product recommended for countertops, widowsills and thresholds, and furniture (tables), PaperStone is made from post consumer waste, recycled paper — yes, paper — and non-petroleum based phenolic resins. It is durable and stain resistant, and available in a variety of colours. The cost of the product is similar to that of granite or other stone, however, as it says on the website:

As a result of the ease of workmanship and finish of PaperStone, the
installed prices are often lower.

Available in Toronto through Uniform Custom Countertops and, following their Grand Opening on July 13th, through Green Design Studio Inc. For a full list of dealers go to their website.

Posted by Team HomeStars

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