If you’re thinking about getting a new countertop and are considering soapstone you’re probably wondering what type of care it will need. Every type of surface requires its own type of maintenance it’s no exception to this rule.
With this counter, however, you do have some options regarding the amount of maintenance that you want to put into it and this will determine what your worktop will ultimately look like.
The stone is harvested from a quarry as a single slab or large block and its original color is a light gray. If you have ever seen pictures of a kitchen countertop made of it you may have noticed that it was more of a charcoal color.
This richer gray comes about from oiling the stone to help it oxidize. For many, this brings out its’ natural beauty while others believe that the gray color is more natural and should be retained.
You have options
Whether or not you want to oil your countertop is up to you. Since the stone is naturally non-porous, it is not required nor does it keep the counter protected.
Over time, it will naturally darken. The oil only hastens and enhances the darkening process. If you choose to leave your countertop a light gray you’ll be able to watch it darken gradually over the years. If you apply oil right away, the countertop will immediately transform into a deep, rich charcoal color.
How often is oiling required?
The frequency of oiling applications will depend on the home owner. Many people do it just once a month while others wait for 2 to 3 months. You’ll know that your work surface needs additional oiling when water spills leave a noticeable mark behind once they are wiped off.
Keeping your countertop clean and shiny is easy. Simply use mild dish soap and never use any harsh cleaners on it. If you should ever happen to scratch the counter by mistake, you can apply more to handle surface scratches. For any deeper scratches, they can be sanded out with fine sandpaper and then the oil can be reapplied.
Remember, you do have options. Some people prefer never to lube up the counter and consider the scratches and natural darkening as a beautiful patina. It’s all up to you when it comes to your counter and you’ll have the flexibility to choose what type of effect you want to create in your kitchen.
But ease of maintenance isn’t the only fantastic thing about this natural stone. Here are some more benefits of using it in your kitchen.
Updated: March 12, 2014