Pros and Cons of Soapstone Countertops

December 13, 2022

As you design your custom home, you’ve probably encountered lots of decisions. Flooring, paint, and countertops are all things that come in many options. If you’re deciding on countertops, you might have come across soapstone. Here’s what soapstone is and the pros and cons of soapstone countertops.

What is a Soapstone Countertop?

Soapstone is a naturally occurring material that is made from a steatite stone that includes dolomite, chlorite, and magnesite. It is quarried stone that is naturally dense and compact and is often finished to create soapstone countertops.

Although it’s not quite as common as other types of countertops, it’s still one of the popular kitchen countertop materials. Soapstone offers a rustic yet elegant look to your home.

4 Pros of Soapstone Countertops

Soapstone offers some advantages over other materials. Here are a few pros of soapstone countertops:

1. Soapstone Countertops Are Environmentally Friendly

Soapstone isn’t made with synthetic chemicals which means it’s an environmentally friendly countertop option for your home. It also isn’t harmful to the earth when extracted and it can be recycled. Soapstone is also easily salvageable, which keeps this material out of landfills.

2. They Are Durable

One of the benefits of solid surface countertops is durability and soapstone is similar. Even though it’s a bit softer than some other materials, a soapstone countertop still holds up pretty well. Soapstone countertops can last for 20 years, and usually more with good maintenance and care, which makes them a good investment for your home.

Soapstone is also resistant to stains since it is a non-porous material. This means you don’t need to worry about bacteria growing on your countertops as you might with a different type of material like granite. It is also resistant to acid, which causes stains on other countertop materials. And since it’s non-porous, it’s very easy to simply wash your countertops with soap and water. This makes it one of the best bathroom countertops and a good fit for kitchens too.

3. Soapstone Countertops Are Low Maintenance

While other natural stone countertops require resealing and other treatments, soapstone is fairly low maintenance. It does require some regular oiling but with some mineral oil, it’s a fairly easy job.

Soapstone may need some refinishing to smooth out some dents or fix chipping but that can be done with a sander or sandpaper if the scratch or chip isn’t too deep. Being easy to repair is one of the reasons soapstone countertops can last for so long before they need to be replaced.

4. They Are Unique And Beautiful

Because soapstone is a naturally occurring material, the pattern is always quite different. You can find soapstone in various shades of pearl, gray, and off-white. Most slabs have a marble effect, adding beauty and class to any room. Using soapstone is a great option if you are going for a farmhouse kitchen look.

4 Cons of Soapstone Countertops

As there is with anything, soapstone countertops do come with some potential drawbacks. Here are just a few potential cons of soapstone countertops:

1. Soapstone Countertops Scratch Easily

While other materials may be much more scratch-resistant, soapstone is unfortunately a softer stone, which means soapstone countertops tend to scratch easily. However, you can avoid scratches by always using a cutting board and making sure you do not drop heavy objects on your countertops.

Thankfully, soapstone countertops do not crack easily and they are easy to repair and maintain. Fixing minimal scratches and chips is fairly easy with some sandpaper to smooth them out. Finish with some mineral oil and your countertop will be back in shape.

2. They Can Be Costly

Soapstone is an expensive material, but this can depend on the thickness and grade of the stone. Large sections of soapstone are fairly difficult to find, so you will need to fit pieces together. However, soapstone does not require cutting, which makes for a slightly easier installation.

3. Soapstone Countertops Can Wear Unevenly

Since soapstone is a softer material, heavier used areas of your countertops can show color fading faster than others. Oily substances can also cause dark patches. This can mean your countertops will look uneven after extended use.

4. There Can Be a Lack of Variety

Soapstone only comes in just a few different colors, mainly shades of white and gray. Although this can feel limiting design-wise, especially compared to other materials with several options, every soapstone countertop is still unique.

And, because soapstone is so soft, it can be shaped into whatever design your home needs. If you are looking to incorporate black in your kitchen, choosing a black soapstone countertop is an easy way to incorporate this color.

These are just a few of the pros and cons of soapstone countertops. This beautiful stone adds beauty and elegance to your home and will be a lovely focal point. When you’re ready to make your dream home a reality, contact Custom Home Group at 717-284-4090!