Want the Look of Marble Countertops in Your Bathroom? Here Are Durable Natural Stone Alternatives You’ll Love

Selecting countertops for your new bathroom or upgrade is exciting! The right countertop creates a beautiful focal point and elegant design feature in any space. However, in addition to choosing the right countertop color, texture and finish that complements your bathroom aesthetic, you also need to consider the right stone type for this application. Bathroom countertops must not only stand up to water and dampness but soap, cleaning products and cosmetics. This is why marble, a soft natural stone, may not be the perfect choice for a high use bathroom.

The downside of using marble for bathrooms applications    

Marble makes for a stunning and luxurious addition to any home, whether you use it for countertops, flooring, or fireplace surrounds. However, it may not be the best solution for any and every surface. While marble is somewhat soft and easy to work with, this quality means it isn’t necessarily ideal for the busiest bathrooms in your home.

Why not?

Marble is more absorbent than some other types of stone, like granite or quartzite. This means that if you use products with chemical dyes on it, you may be more likely to see permanent staining. Naturally, proper sealing can help, but choosing a different stone can alleviate some concerns. In addition, marble could be more susceptible to etching from harsh cleansers, or products containing acidic ingredients like lemon.

Even the material in the rock itself, such as iron, could result in staining when exposed to high humidity levels in bathrooms. This isn’t to say that these outcomes are certain, but they should be taken into consideration before you choose marble over other more durable options.

The good news is, there are plenty of alternatives that make for beautiful, long-lasting bathroom countertops, and some even have a look very similar to your favorite marble varieties. Here are a few great alternatives for your bathroom countertops. 

Bathroom Countertop Option #1: Granite

Although granite is still a natural stone, and therefore potentially susceptible to staining or other damage if not properly sealed and maintained, it is harder than marble, and more resistant to threats like chips and scratches, at the very least.  This makes it a good substitute for marble in your bathroom from a practical standpoint, but what about an aesthetic point of view? 

You’ll find that there are gorgeous examples of granite to choose from, many with the same characteristics you love about marble, and some offering even more depth, dimension, and movement on the surface. Consider, for example, this chic bath by KBDC in Bridgeport, CT, featuring Brown Fantasy/Ocean Beige granite countertops as the focal point. The character of the granite, with subtle striations, is just enough to pick up the lighter tones in the bathroom while still creating significant contrast for visual effect.

Looking for something closer to the Calcutta slabs you adore?

How about this mid-sized master bath with snow-white countertops featuring the soft gray veining of River-White granite. It offers a visual dynamism with the dark countertops against a white backdrop If you’re keen to design a master bath with a bold ambiance, you can’t go wrong with the clean, modern appeal of a white-on-dark motif, as with this pairing of wooden cabinets and a white, grayish countertop. The cool tones of the flooring and walls help to infuse the space with an airy feel.

A few of our favorite granite alternatives to marble include:

Alaska White Granite

Alaska White Granite

White-Ice Granite - Academy Marble, Rye NY

White-Ice Granite

River-White Granite, Academy Marble, Rye NY

River-White Granite

Bathroom Countertop Option #2: Quartzite

Quartzite is another recommended alternative to marble for use in bathrooms, and it’s actually slightly harder than granite. Again, it is a natural stone, which means it can sustain damage like staining, scratching, chipping, but as long as you seal and maintain it, it should hold up well when used for bathroom countertops.

Does it look like marble, though?  Can it provide the same air of elegance and luxury? Can it offer the same eye-catching appeal? The answer is yes on every count, and some varieties may appear even closer to marble than granite.

Just consider this traditional bathroom featuring soft, Super White quartzite stippled with pale gray striations. Like marble, it provides the perfect complement to white cabinets and gray walls, featuring hues found in both and pulling the whole look together.

Looking for a more versatile look? Grey quartzite pairs equally well with more masculine hues, as in this New York mid-size transitional bathroom featuring espresso cabinets and a beige, caramel toned wall. The pale quartzite countertop blends seamlessly with the rest of the room’s interior design style. With quartzite, you’ll get all the beauty of marble with less potential for damage.

Quartzite comes in beige, white and grey tones that closely resemble marble. A few of our favorite quartzite alternatives to marble include:

Mont Blanc Quartzite

Mont Blanc Quartzite

White Macaubas Quartzite - Academy Marble , Rye NY

White Macaubas Quartzite

White Vermont Quartzite - Academy Marble, Rye, NY

White Vermont Quartzite

Finding the right countertop for your project

Marble, granite and other natural stones can make for stunning and long-lasting countertop surfaces throughout your home. You just need to understand the potential advantages and shortcomings of different types of stone to choose the options that best suit your practical demands and aesthetic sensibilities. If you would like to check out our natural stone alternatives to marble, please visit our Bethel, CT or Rye, NY locations.