Marble surfaces are notorious for their ability to be ruined by everyday use. Yet they are so popular! We are currently going through another phase of mega popularity of Carrara marble surfaces, in part fuelled by ‘shabby chic’ themes in interior design, that take a lot of influences from the past, when marble was used in the kitchen as a practical surface. Polished marbles have also, always been associated with luxury lifestyles.
Why are marble worktops so popular?
Marble is beautiful, simple as that!
However, in Victorian times, when refrigeration was not available, marble worktops were invaluable for keeping food cool on, and for using as a preparation surface. The Victorians weren’t precious about keeping the surface shiny; these surfaces were used as a workhorse. Today we want the look, but we are precious about the appearance of these luxury materials!
At Stoneworld where we know about stone, we have in the past, guided customers away from choosing real marble for a kitchen worktop because we know that marble surfaces are porous and can be easily damaged.
This is in part why so many quartz worktops copy the patterns in natural marble. They are much more hardwearing than the natural occurring material, but give the customer the opportunity to create the look these beautiful patterns bring to interior design.
What substances will ruin marble worktops?
Any acidic substance spilt on a marble top can create a dull mark which cannot be removed by cleaning. Everyday substances used in the kitchen and bathroom commonly contain acid, which will burn through the surface finish. By acidic substance we mean common household substances used in the kitchen every day such as milk, wine, tomato juice or lemon juice. Furthermore, in the bathroom, acidic substances mean soaps, toiletries & urine. Hardly avoidable in the bathroom! One splash on your real Carrara marble worktop or floor can etch the marble, leaving a permanent, dull scar. Plus knife cuts can easily scar the surface over time.
Prevention is the key with marble countertops.
Careful use and immediate mopping of spillage was the best advice available until recently. Previous attempts at developing surface protection have fallen short of the mark. Many of the older treatments available changed the surface appearance of the natural marble, either in colour or texture.