Types of Stone Finishes Offered at Academy Marble & Granite
Before choosing your countertop surface, our Design team will help you select what finish will best complement your countertop. Marble, granite, quartzite, and engineered quartz deliver the durability and beauty that that every household deserves, offering varying degrees of resistance to heat, stains, etching, scratching, cracking, and chipping. We will go over the benefits of stone finish, including if the finish will fit in your aesthetic goals and preferences.
Polished Stone Finish
This traditional, high-shine finish is easily the most common one used today, and it’s no surprise when you consider the elegance and allure it imparts. The reflective surface of polished stone bounces light within your space, helping any kitchen or bathroom seem brighter. It also acts as a major focal point in the middle plane of a room.
It’s not that natural stone itself isn’t enough to grab attention, especially when it features an incredible array of colors and patterns that draw the eye. However, the glossy finish of polished stone makes nature’s perfection even more dazzling, serving as the show-stopping centerpiece in any design.
Adding a sealant to natural stone surfaces will prevent staining and other potential harm. With polished stone, you can expect a smooth surface that makes food prep and clean-up a breeze. A wipe-down with a damp microfiber cloth is usually enough to remove spills and you can easily attend to grease and splatter with a simple mixture of warm water and dish soap.
Polished stone will show water spots, though, and soap can leave behind a film that clouds a glassy surface. You just need to make sure to rinse away soapy water thoroughly and follow up with a dry, microfiber cloth to prevent spotting and preserve a mirror-like shine.
Honed Stone Finish
This is the most common type of matte finish, although there are several to choose from if you’re not keen on the shine of a polished surface. Recently, modern homeowners have turned away from the traditional elegance and formal appeal of polished stone, instead choosing the more casual grace of matte surfaces.
In terms of production, a polished surface is exposed to intensive grinding and buffing to create the glossy finish you’re likely familiar with. Matte surfaces are also buffed, but to a lesser degree, stopping well short of a glassy shine. This doesn’t mean that you’ll end up with a rough surface, but you will enjoy a more subtle texture, rather than a completely smooth stone.
There are a couple of things you should know about honed natural stone. First, it creates a more laidback vibe that many homeowners prefer in their intimate kitchen and personal bathroom spaces. It also dulls the color and pattern of stone, creating a subtler appeal that doesn’t shout for attention or compete as much with other materials in your space. If you’re looking for a balanced interior design, this is a great option.
When it comes to maintenance, approximately the same amount of upkeep is required for honed marble, granite, or quartzite. As a side note, this type of finish is also available in engineered quartz, although it is sometimes referred to as glace when used in this context.
Unfortunately, the slightly textured surface of honed natural stone is more prone to showing fingerprints, dust, and food splatter even more than a polished surface. This just means you’ll have to be more diligent about wiping up spots and spills if you want to keep counters looking pristine.
Leathered Stone Finish
If what you want is a happy medium between polished and honed counter surfaces, a leathered finish may be a good option. This finish has a textured appeal, giving it more visual interest and dimension than other shinier surfaces.
Leathered granite is created through a complex and extensive brushing process that smooths away imperfections, but leaves some of the natural texture behind. The result is a product that is less porous than honed granite, one that shows more of the natural features of the stone (color, pattern, etc.).
It’s not as easy to maintain as polished stone, but it is slightly easier than honed. Because of its textured surface, it may be trickier to clean. Unlike polished stone that features a glass smooth surface, leathered stone may be more likely to hide crumbs and liquids in its grooves. Many homeowners find that brushing their leathered granite with a small hand broom is the easiest way to remove debris.
Part of the appeal of leathered stone is the fact that it contains small edges and grooves that create a more visually interesting surface. The downside of this is that these imperfections can make the surface easier to scratch and become damaged more easily. If you are considering a leather finish, it is important to remain diligent on sealing the stone as recommended to mitigate the risk of damage.
When you’re ready to choose the right stone slab and finish for your home upgrades, Academy Marble & Granite has everything you’re looking for. Call or stop in at one of our conveniently located showrooms in Bethel, CT or Rye, NY today to get started. View our large selection of natural and engineered stone products here.