Home Improvements

What Are The Best Natural Stone Countertops?

Whether you’re remodeling your kitchen or simply looking for new countertop options, natural stones are a top choice buyers go for. What exactly are they? You might already know that granite countertops are natural stone, but what are the other types of natural stone countertops? Here is everything you need to know about them.

Natural Stone Countertops

Natural stones are resourced from the ground. They’re essentially molten rocks that are formed deep inside the Earth under the influence of high temperatures and pressures. This allows the rocks and magma to melt and then as temperatures get colder, this mixture of sediments, rocks, and minerals hardens and thus forms natural stones.

Natural stones have a very mesmerizing look and they’re extremely beautiful. They’re randomly speckled with mica, which glitters in different lights and the veining on the rocks is sporadic and varies in line weight. The appearance of natural stones is to die for and it’s one of the primary reasons why people love these materials so much.

On the flipside, however, natural stones are extremely maintenance-heavy, because they need sealing. Why, you ask? Well, a very common characteristic of natural stones is high porosity. Natural stones are rock-hard sponges that have pores all over the surface and these passages allow water or any fluid, for that matter, to penetrate the material. Sealing helps to fill these pesky pores up, which also makes these stones waterproof, but it’s not a one-time job and it needs to be reapplied over and over.

Additionally, natural stone countertops are the most expensive stones out there. Because they’re limited in quantity and are quarried from the ground, with the help of explosives, it’s a hard task to extract these rocks in manageable sizes and then fabricate them in manufacturing sites. However, the popularity of natural stone countertops is so unwavering, that even the hefty price tag can’t stop people from making these materials theirs.

If price is the issue, you can also find low-cost natural stone countertops as well. However, some of them may be inferior in quality.

Best Types Of Natural Stone Countertops

Natural stones have a handful of variety and they’re all used in kitchens, as well as in other places that call for beautiful countertops. Here are some types of natural stone countertops:


First in line is stunning and alluring; granite. Granite is a material that needs no introduction. Its rich and dark colors, its characteristic thick and thin veining, and its slightly shimmery surface, all fused in a single slab, make people weak in the knees.

Granite is a wonderful choice for kitchen countertops because it’s heat resistant, doesn’t crack or chip easily, has a lot of variety (whether it’s in color, patterns, texture, or edges) and it has great selling value for the house. Granite countertops will surely attract a flock, all because of its sheer, unparalleled beauty.


If granite is the beautiful black swan of natural stones, then marble is the elegant, poised, and oh-so-desirable white swan of the lot. This material is a blend of beauty and strength. The light and neutral colors of marble countertops Durham NC, with the contrasting medium-to-dark veining on the top, make these slabs a perfect choice for someone who wants artwork for countertops in the kitchen.

Marble, however, has a couple of downsides as well. Firstly, it is not heat resistant, so heat stains can be an issue. Marble also tends to get scratched, especially if you’re not using a cutting board to protect the surface of the countertops from sharp knives.

Furthermore, marble countertops are softer and more fragile, so they can break or chip from weak points. Even though marble is not as strong as granite, that doesn’t mean that it’s not up there in popularity. People love this light stone regardless.


Another very stunning variety of natural stone is soapstone. Like its name, soapstone is a slippery and soft material with a lustrous surface that will make you want to look at it all day long. With lots of variety and coupled with a reasonable price tag, soapstone countertops are a great option for people who want natural stone countertops on a budget.


Quartzite is a material that holds its own. It’s probably one of the very few natural stones that have built-in UV protection, so these countertops are safe from the damage of the sun.

Quartzite has remarkable strength, so much so, that it needs diamond blades to be cut into slabs and fabricated into your desired design and shape. This is also the reason why quartzite countertops are super expensive, so it’s out of reach for most people, which is highly unfortunate.


If you’re looking for a natural stone that’s equal parts beautiful and rich in history, then limestone is the one for you. Limestone is a versatile material that can be used either as countertops or flooring, and it’s also another reasonable option for people.

This stone is primarily made up of calcium carbonate as well as pulverized bones of dead animals, so it’s highly likely that there might be a speck of historical fossils in your very own countertops. Even though limestone is durable, it can’t endure the vigorous effects of bleach and acids, and the countertops need something milder for cleaning.


Onyx is a very interesting natural stone that has a somewhat opalescent appearance. Because of the swooshes of patterns and waves of hues on the surface, onyx resembles the sky in the most mesmerizing way.

Onyx is also a very durable countertop material and its appeal lies in the fact that it’s reasonably durable and doesn’t make your wallet scream in agony. Onyx is versatile when it comes to fabrication and you can get just about any design made out of this surprising stone. It’s also a breeze to maintain.


Travertine is another limestone variant, but it’s much more warmer and welcoming. There are a lot of warm and neutral color choices that you can go for. The most viral colors among buyers are creamy whites, earthy beiges, light taupe, and different variations of brown.

The texture of travertine is very rustic and has a certain appeal to it that makes people fall in love with it. It’s not the strongest material out there, but there are ways to fix any nicks on the surface, and can be done either by yourself or you can call in the big guys.


Slate is the darker cousin of granite that has a layer of mysteriousness about it. Essentially, slate is a slippery material that’s made out of foliated metamorphic rocks. Slate was associated with chalkboards in the past, but the countertops are the epitome of a classy artwork.

Dark and shimmery, slate is a durable and heat-resistant material, so it’s very similar in properties to granite. Another quality that makes slate more popular among people is the fact that it’s affordable. However, the seemingly perfect slate can lack in variety and is only available in darker colors, which can be an off-putting situation for people.


Natural stones have a chokehold on people that no other stone can loosen. These countertops are the pièce de résistance of a magnificent kitchen. So, which natural stone would you pick for your countertop replacement Raleigh NC?