If you really want your kitchen to dazzle your friends then getting the countertops is a must. You may have all the latest technology to cook for your guests but a kitchen that has tacky, chipped, peeling bench tops is an eyesore. Today there are plenty of options for countertop materials to make your kitchen stand out when people visit. Here are some of the best.

Natural Stone

A proper kitchen would not look complete without a natural stone finish, and granite has always been the number one choice. It used to be an expensive addition to the cost of a kitchen refit, but now local home centers stock it, which has brought the price down from the original stonemason work. You can get many different colors and shades of granite to suit the color scheme of your kitchen. Slate and soapstone are cheaper options if you don’t wish to pay top dollar. Again, there are different colors available for each type of stone. With soapstone, you will find it is porous so will need to be treated with mineral oil to stop any staining when it is in your kitchen.

Solid Surfaces

A good option if you don’t wish to fork out for natural stone, solid surfaces have high resistance to scratching and stains. There is nothing worse than cutting a loaf of bread, only to forget you have not used a bread board and you are left with a big knife mark on your benchtop. Any scratches or burn marks are easily fixed. The great thing about a solid surface (100% acrylic, 100% polyester or mix or both) is that they are fitted seamlessly so you cannot see any joints. Then there is the option of installing ones that look like natural stone. So, when your guests see your kitchen for the first time, there is an expensive natural stone glint to it. There is also the option of composite quartz, which is cheaper to granite. Caesar stone is a very popular type.

Plastic Laminate

This is a durable material that is also hard wearing, so don’t be put off by this option. It also has a tendency to survive longer than the kitchen design. Again, there are literally hundreds of colors, patterns and looks to compliment your kitchen setup, which is why you should speak to an expert. With benchtops, you do need to make sure you have your plastic laminate finished in either matte or fine matte.


A very traditional benchtop material that is still used by many homes, with many being made from rock maple. If you get your wood right and get the construction done correctly, this type of kitchen can look stunning. Wood tops are finished with either a varnish or mineral oil, and you will need a professional to design and then create your benchtops for you.

Ceramic Tile

Once a very popular way of fitting out your kitchen countertops, this style is now on the decline. But tile can be good for your splash backs, or perhaps where you eat and entertain. You won’t be chopping on them though as they will easily crack.