The kitchen is where we do all our cooking and food preparation, where lots of moisture, heat and damages can happen if we choose the wrong material for our kitchen countertops.

Read on to find out more about each of the common countertop materials used Singapore, then select the one that best suits you.

#1. Quartz

Also known as engineered stone countertops, Quartz countertops are a manufactured product made out of Quartz (obviously) which is a natural mineral composed of silicon and oxygen.

Quartz costs between $75 and $135 per square foot

Pros:

  • Due to Quartz’s hard composition, it is very scratch resistance, and is also extremely difficult to crack, chip or dent.
  • Liquids and chemicals are unable to seep through as Quartz is a non-porous material, it resists staining and doesn’t harbour any bacteria or viruses.
  • A simple wipe down with a cloth and some water will be enough to keep your quartz countertop looking as good as new

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • Quartz is heat resistant, but the resin and polymer fillers in it could melt when in direct contact with heat, causing permanent discolouration and damage.

#2. Solid Surface Top

Solid Surface is a mid-range countertop material, it is a man-made material comprising of different materials including acrylic and polyester resins. If you’re wondering what makes it different from quartz, it’s softer and a little duller with a low sheen compared to quartz’s high polished and glossy look.

Solid surface tops cost between $70 and $95 per square foot.

Pros:

  • Its low porosity helps to keep bacteria away, keeping your countertops clean and sanitary all the time. It is also water resistant as liquids won’t be able to seep through easily.
  • Easily wiped down and cleaned with just a piece of cloth and a bit of water or mild household cleaners. Any scratches can also be sanded away easily.
  • Wide range of designs and patterns you can choose from, solid surface tops can be made to mimic wood and stones, and can even be customised to fit any space.

Cons:

  • Any direct exposure to heat can cause discolouration and cracks to the surface, cutting directly on the solid surface top is also not advised as it is prone to scratches.
  • Although solid surface tops are almost non-porous, any harsh chemicals such as paint removers, nail polish, oven cleaners and thinner lacquers can cause damage, so do be careful to keep these chemicals away from your solid surface countertops.

#3. Sintered Stone

This material goes through a process called sintering that combines materials into a solid impenetrable mass using heat or pressure without melting it to a liquid, this results in a strong and durable surface suitable to be used as kitchen countertops.

Sintered stone countertops cost between $130 and $195 per square foot.

Pros:

  • Due to its manufacturing process, a sintered stone countertop almost cannot be scratched, burned or stained
  • As sintered stone is not a natural stone, it is non-porous and is highly resistant to water, chemicals and staining
  • Resistant to colour fades or discolouration
  • Sintered stone is produced with anti-microbial properties that kills E. coli and other bacteria on contact.

Cons:

  • Pricey

#4. Granite Top

A natural stone that improves the overall outlook of your kitchen with its beautiful patterns, many homeowners choose granite as it makes your home look sophisticated and elegant.

Granite tops cost between $80 and $100 per square foot.

Pros:

  • Granite has excellent strength and is resistant to scratches when sealed properly and properly cared for
  • Direct exposure to heat will not cause Granite to crack, break or melt.
  • Granite won’t fade or discolour easily when properly sealed. The surface is also easy to clean, a piece of cloth and water or mild-abrasive household cleaners would suffice.

Cons:

  • As granite is a natural stone, it is porous and if not sealed properly, could be stained or damaged by water, liquids and bacteria could even stay in the material.

#5. KompacPlus

Made from layers of kraft paper and resin and pressed at high pressure points and high heat to achieve a 6mm thin and durable material.

KompacPlus costs between $85 and $110 per square foot.

Pros:

  • Will not disintegrate when in close proximity with heat due to its manufacturing process
  • Its dense and non-porous characteristics makes the material moisture resistant, stain resistant and protects against bacteria
  • An occasional wipe down is enough to keep it clean and looking good for years
  • KompacPlus can be installed over your current countertops as well, so if you’re looking to revamp your kitchen, you can go for KompacPlus to save costs

Cons:

  • KompacPlus can withstand heat but any direct contact with hot objects may result in cracks
  • As KompacPlus is a man-made material, it will not have beautiful patterns and designs that quartz, granite and marble offer.

Still not too sure which countertop will suit you best or would like to get more advice on other materials? Schedule a quick consultation with our professional designers and they can guide you through achieving your dream home!