Polished Countertop Surfaces vs.Honed

Natural Stone: Design Ideas

Which countertop surface is better? Honed or polished? Neither surface style is superior, just different. How can you choose which one is best for your kitchen design and lifestyle? The natural stone countertop experts at Granite Imports have the information you need to select the ideal finish for your kitchen or bathroom countertop design.

Tips for Choosing Between Honed and Polished Countertop Finishes

Neither honed nor polished finishes impact a stone’s durability. However, for softer stones, the right finish can help mask wear. To make an informed decision, you have to ask yourself a few questions:

  • What’s your design personality? 

    Extend your personality to your countertop selection. Do you prefer a shiny, brand-new leather jacket, or do you seek the comfort of a well-worn favorite? When you come home, would a bright, pristine space perk you up? Or would you prefer to return to the history and comfort of a countertop with character and patina? No choice is wrong; it all depends on your preference.  

  • How will the finish impact the look of your preferred countertop?

    Glossy, polished finishes emphasize the colors and veining of natural stone countertops, putting them center stage. Because shinier surfaces reflect light better, colors will be deeper and more saturated, patterns more apparent. On the flipside, flat, honed surfaces reflect relatively little light. Colors and veining with satin surfaces appear lighter in color and the prevalence of features reduced subsequent to the degree of honing, which can vary from light to heavy.

  • Would you like to camouflage wear?

    Because polished finishes reflect so much light, the dull marks of scratches create contrast, highlighting wear. The matte surface of a honed finish camouflages scratching and etching, masking the physical manifestations of natural wear. This can be especially important if you're choosing a softer stone such as soapstone or marble countertops.  

  • Do you have crumb OCD?

    Polished surfaces showcase smudges and fingerprints. However, they are more forgiving when it comes to hiding crumbs, their reflective surface bouncing light off areas surrounding the debris. Matte countertops, on the other hand, highlight fewer smudges and fingerprints but don't do much to disguise countertop crumbs.

  • How concerned are you about stains? 

    Both honed and polished surfaces are stain-resistant, however, no counter is 100% stain-proof. If stains worry you, you may wish to choose a polished surface. The surface of polished stone adds an extra layer of security against stains, smoothing pores and making countertops less receptive to liquid. Honed surfaces, on the other hand, retain some of their natural porosity, though proper sealing can help close-in these pores and provide protection against stains. 

Countertop finish conundrums? Don't get stuck on theory. Find a countertop and finish that appeals to your senses. See a few of your favorite slabs in action at your area Granite Imports showroom today.

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