We all know that putting that beautiful marble countertop in your kitchen is certainly tempting, but is it worth it? Let’s be real, even though you’re probably saying you’ll be SUPER clean and careful, you’re going to eventually stain it.
On the bright side, there are several ways to prevent it and/or clean the marble. First, lets talk about using sealer. Although this is basic maintenance for any porous material, you should make sure you know what you’re doing.
Steps to Seal Countertop:
1.First make sure that your countertop is clean before sealing. A good method to clean your counter is with baking soda and water. Mix together about a quart of warm water with 3-4 tablespoons of baking soda. Then use a clean/colorless rag to wipe down the counter with this magic solution. Wherever the counter is stained, you can leave this solution over it for a few hours to absorb. After you clean the counter several times, go over it one final time with a new rag with just warm water.
- After you’ve let the counter dry for about 2 hours, you can finally start to seal! Purchase an impregnating sealer (don’t worry, your countertop won’t make babies.) “Impregnating” means the sealer really penetrates through your counter. A good sealer is called “511” by Miracle Sealants Company, which can be purchased at any Home Depot or home improvement store. This sealant is a bit pricey, but—just as its name suggests—it’s miraculous!
- Make sure to wear gloves because it can be extremely hard to clean sealant from your skin. Then, pour the sealer directly onto the counter and use a clean/colorless rag or sponge to spread evenly across the counter.
- Now, let the sealer “impregnate” your counter for about 3-4 minutes. Refer to your sealers instructions to make sure this is enough.
- Use another clean rag to remove all the excess sealant.
- This can be repeated a few times until it’s completely sealed.
Now you’re probably wondering…how often do I need to do this? Well…the real answer is: it depends. Online there are many different opinions; I’ve seen some say every 3 – 6 months, and others say every 3-5 years—that’s a pretty big difference. The way to check is by doing a “water test.” This means, you pour a small puddle of water in an area of your counter top. If the counter turns darker within a few seconds, then you need to seal your counter. If it darkens within 4-5 minutes, then you are coming close to needing sealer and could apply one layer of sealer. If it takes 15-20 minutes to darken, then you have a pretty stain resistant countertop.
Next, we should talk about acids and seasonings. Acids such as lemons, wine, or harsh cleaning products, and seasonings like cumin or turmeric all pose a serious threat to your pristine countertop. I definitely recommend investing in some nice, large cutting boards and using coasters and trays to prevent stains and condensation from reaching your counter. I’ve seen people cover their counters with plastic wrap, but that is not practical. Just make sure to not leave a cut lemon sitting on the countertop, because then you’re asking for stains. If you happen to spill wine, or some seasonings, try to clean as immediately as possible. You can try to use the baking soda solution we mentioned before, or mild soaps, mild detergents, or stone soaps.
Anyway, back to our main question, should you put marble counters in your kitchen? I think that marble is the most beautiful natural stone and even though it is replicated with other non-porous materials, it can NEVER look the same. The kitchen is a place that should be used and enjoyed without worrying too much; however, you shouldn’t stress too much about imperfections. Just try your best to keep it clean, use these preventative measures, and don’t let it stop you from the kitchen of your dreams!