Choosing the perfect counter top for your bathroom vanity can be tough, especially when you have to balance the aesthetic, durablity, and pricing of each top. Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of the popular counter tops and weighed the costs and benefits of each one.
Typically found in apartments and renters homes, laminate counter tops are the economical alternative to getting an actual counter top. Laminate counter tops are made of thin plastic surfaces glued to a wooden base. It’s waterproof and relatively stain proof, however, it will burn, dull and dent. While this may be the most economical option, laminate tops will not endure, leading to more time and resources spent.
A porous limestone with a distinct look to it, travertine popularity has seen an upsurge in recent years. They go exceptionally well with darker, traditional vanities. However, due to the porous nature of the stone, they can be a bit more brittle and require sealing. Furthermore, the pores are often covered with a filler, giving the stone brown and white streaks. Compared to some of the other natural stones, travertine is little less expensive, but not by much.
Granite typically come in a multitude of designs, and is sure to make your bathroom stand out. However, it is also the same reason that granite has seen a decrease in popularity. With consumer demand shifting to a more modern, muted look on bathroom cabinets, granite tops come off a little too flashy. Often coming in various shades and colors, granite top designs tend to clash with the surrounding environment. Therefore, it will take some coordination to pick out a granite top that will go well everything else in the bathroom. Lower grade granite is also more affordable nowadays, and can fit most budgets. It is worth noting that granite is hard and scratch resistant, and will require minimal maintenance after sealing. Although it is tougher than most natural stone, proper handling is necessary to prevent damage during installation.
Even tougher than granite is quartz. On top of that quartz is resistant to bacteria, stains, and moisture. Quartz also comes with various unique designs, so finding the right one will not be difficult. However quartz tends to look a bit more artificial than natural stone because…well, it is. Quartz is manufactured artificially with added pigments and resins. The pricing for quartz is rather similar to that of granite and marble.
For this section, I am referring to white marble, the most popular option of all the marbles. White marble often carries with it an air of class and wealth. However, with current advancements in technology, it has become much more widespread. White with grey streaks, white marble tends to look good in every bathroom, or rather, makes every bathroom look good. White marble is the MVP of stone counters, as it elevates everything around it. Although it does require periodic resealing, white marble is rather resistant to chips and dents. The only downside is the relatively steep price tag.
Although acrylic is relatively durable, it is still prone to damage from heat and impact. Similar to quartz, acrylic is water, bacteria, and stain resistant. Aesthetically, acrylic is sleek but plain. However, with the rise in popularity of white and grey cabinets, acrylic has proven to be a solid match. In addition to all of this, acrylic is the least expensive of all the options (minus laminate). In terms of pricing, durability and aesthetic, acrylic takes the cake.
With all that being accounted for, the decision ultimately comes down to preference. Hopefully with the information provided, you can make an educated decision in finding something that will match your bathroom and your budget.