A fancy Silestone countertop

Kitchen Remodeling For Dummies has released a list of the top countertop manufacturers. After analyzing available research from various investigative organizations this list was compiled. The following top countertop manufacturers have been given high marks for durability, cost effectiveness, cleanability, and style.

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A kitchen countertop

Where to Shop for Countertops

Ah, another perplexing problem in the kitchen-remodel project. My basic advice is to look for countertops where you purchase your cabinets. You probably enjoyed working with your cabinet salesperson and she should be just as knowledgeable and helpful with your countertop shopping as she was with your cabinets.

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A concrete countertop


Who wants a gray kitchen? Probably not too many people. And you won’t have to have one, either, even if you go with another new material that’s making its way into the kitchen. Concrete countertops are actually becoming quite popular. Okay, a very small percentage of people have them. But only because most homeowners aren’t aware that they’re available and don’t realize how versatile they are.

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A granite kitchen countertop


If you absolutely want to have real stone in your kitchen, then granite is the way to go.

Take a look at granite’s good points:

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Considering Marble Countertops

February 12, 2012
Marble countertops


All those veins and streaks that you see in marble tabletops may look beautiful, but they actually weaken the marble. And the last thing you want for a kitchen countertop is weak material. In addition to being a weak material, marble stains easily, scratches easily, and is very, very expensive. If your heart is set on having marble in the kitchen, consider using marble tiles or marble-looking laminate. Either one will be more durable, yet still give you the look of marble.

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A solid surface kitchen countertop

Solid surface materials

This category of building materials is really gaining popularity. Solid surface countertops are made of polyester or acrylic resins, or a combination of both- they don’t have a substrate base. These countertops give the appearance of stone. They’re sold under such brand names as Corian, Cambria, Avonite, Gibralter, and Surrell. They come in solid colors and patterns that really do look a lot like stone. See the color insert for examples of these elegant looking countertops.

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A butcher block with wood surface


Yes, you can still actually use real wood in the kitchen. And not just for small cutting boards. Butcher-block countertops are made of thin strips of hardwood that are glued together. Hard maple is the best wood for a butcher-block counter. Its tight, fine grain makes it very durable. Red and white oak as well as beech are also suitable countertop woods. The most common use of a wood or butcher-block surface is as a cutting-board insert or as the surface of a center island. The warm richness of the wood can be paired with other countertop materials to enhance a kitchen’s visual appeal.

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Tile kitchen countertops

Ceramic tile

Another extremely popular material for kitchen countertops is ceramic tile. Why? Because you can do so much with it, especially when you incorporate different colors and textures in the design. You can make your kitchen look rustic or urban, traditional or contemporary. Just don’t make the colors or patterns too busy design-wise. A few colored tiles used wisely on the counter surface or the backsplash is usually all that’s needed to add zip and zest to a ceramic tile countertop. You can also add color by using colored or lightly shaded grout between the tiles.

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A plastic laminate kitchen countertop

Plastic laminate

The number one material used for kitchen countertops is plastic laminate. You may hear some professionals refer to the countertop as Formica, but this is actually a brand name. Some folks use the word Formica generically just as some people refer to all sodas as Coke. Formica does make a nice plastic laminate countertop; Wilsonart is another popular brand name plastic laminate manufacturer.

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A kitchen with granite countertops


Apart from the kitchen cabinets, countertops have the most influence and effect on the overall appearance of your kitchen, especially if you have a large area of counter space. A wide variety and selection of countertops is available in an array of materials, colors, and even textures. Each one has unique design and function properties.

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