How To Choose Soapstone Countertops?

Aside from the traditional and commonly used natural stones counters like granite countertops, quartzite countertops, and marble countertops, soapstone is also making a name for itself and its steadily gaining popularity. Here is how you can choose the perfect soapstone countertops for your kitchen.

The Composition

There are two main types of composition of soapstone based on the amount of talc present in it. Firstly, there’s the artistic grade soapstone that has a high amount of talc in it. This results in a soapstone that has a very glossy and slippery feel to it and it’s also a lot softer than other stones. So, it’s a good thing to keep in mind.

On the other hand, there is an architectural grade soapstone with less talc in it that gives the stone a rougher appearance and it is harder than the artistic grade, which makes it a good choice in the kitchen as far as durability is concerned.

Types Of Soapstone

There are also several classifications of soapstone countertops based on the color. They are:

Dark Soapstone

Black soapstone is originally a darker gray color with subtle veining on the surface. The rich onyx color is owed to the oiling of the soapstone, which is necessary to maintain it. Churchill soapstone is one of the darkest stones out there that can be used in the kitchen.

Light Soapstone

This color spectrum only includes the colors that are neutral and light, but not white. In reality, there is no such thing as a white soapstone rather it’s marble. Light-colored soapstone includes colors of gray, light blue, and neutral brown colors.

The most commonly used soapstone in this category is the Barocca soapstone, which is a gray stone variant with white veining on the surface. It looks absolutely beautiful against a light-colored kitchen, so it’s a treat for the eyes. These colors will make heads turn.

Colored Soapstone

There are also other colors of soapstone available for people who want a bit more variety in their kitchen. Green soapstone sounds pretty daunting but it’s quite muted in color and appearance and you’ll fall in love with the way it transforms the kitchen.

The green color is extremely light and barely noticeable. Fantasia and Santa Rita soapstone are two of the most popular green variants of this countertop material choice and there are darker and lighter greens available as well, in soapstone. The veining is also to die for and you’ll want to look at your countertops all day long because the stone is just that beautiful and elegant.

The Hardness Of The Stone

The hardness of the stone matters too, because you want it to be decent in durability. On the Mohs hardness scale, soapstone ranks at about 2 or 3. This stone is very soft and if it has more talc in it then the higher its rank will be on the Mohs hardness scale.

If you’re looking for a material that’s unmatched in durability and won’t budge at all, then soapstone isn’t the one and you should choose granite or quartz countertops Potomac. But that’s not to say that it won’t last a decent amount of time. It just needs more care and maintenance than other stones.

The Color You’re Choosing

The next important thing to consider when buying any stone, let alone soapstone, for your kitchen countertops, is the color. With materials, there are a lot of colors that you can choose from, but that can also be a hassle because sometimes, too much choice can lead to confusion.

The best way to go about this is to select a color that compliments your décor. If you have a lighter-colored kitchen with minimal interior décor, then you can opt for a slightly darker color of soapstone and vice versa. Get some color ideas from the contractor or installer too because they have great ideas as well.

The Right Size

Dimensions and measurements are also important things to keep in mind when buying soapstone for your kitchen countertops. You need to have the right size and dimensions of your kitchen countertops, so that the soapstone can effortlessly fit onto the counter, without any problem.

A lot of the time, people can overestimate their abilities to take measurements and they trust their gut more than a measuring tape. This is certainly not a good approach, so you want to double-check things with a measuring tape as well because you’re going to end up wasting a lot of money if you don’t measure the existing countertops beforehand.

Thickness Of The Countertops

The next thing to consider is the thickness and the type of countertops you’re going for. Soapstone is available in slabs as well as tiles, but most people prefer the latter, because of its strength. Tiles are normally used in flooring, but they can also be used as countertops if you’re in a pinch and want something a bit more reasonable in price, because soapstone, believe it or not, is quite expensive.

A 1×1 ft. slab of soapstone can cost you anywhere between $80 to $130, so choosing a slab will add more to the price. Slabs are much better for use in the kitchen because they’re thick and they’re going to last you a long time.

Is It Acid Resistant?

Soapstone is quite a delicate material, but it can sustain acid damage, or at least some grades do. This is a very important characteristic that you need to know about soapstone.

Soapstone can resist the effects of acid and certain grades are better than others when it comes to protection of the stone against harsh chemicals, so you need to choose the stone wisely so that you can get the best quality soapstone for a better price.

Does It Need Sealing?

Soapstone is essentially non-porous, so there’s no need to seal the countertops to make them waterproof. Soapstone, however, does need to be oiled now and then.

Oiling with a kitchen-grade mineral oil is going to preserve the natural shine and color of the countertop and it also adds a slight tinge of tint as well. So, if you’re not too bothered by that, then soapstone is a great choice of material for kitchen countertops. Soapstone is very easy to maintain and clean and there’s not a lot that you need to do, to make it last long.

How Will You Take Care Of It?

The only thing that can damage soapstone immensely is the deepening of scratches. Since soapstone is a pretty light and delicate material, it can scratch pretty easily, even if you use a sharp knife once or twice on the surface.

This can lead to the scratches getting deeper and it can ultimately ruin the countertops from the inside, by letting water and moisture seep in easily. So, your job is to protect the countertops from scratches, which is pretty easy; just use a cutting board or plate when using a knife.

Conclusion

Soapstone is a truly wonderful material and it has a lot of qualities that can put other stones to shame. Now you know exactly how to buy the perfect countertops for your kitchen. Take help from granite contractors Rockville to choose a natural stone countertop of your choice. It can be granite, soapstone, or any other you prefer.

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