Granite is an ideal worktop material, whether it’s being used in the kitchen, bathroom, conservatory or outdoor barbecue area. No two pieces of natural granite are the same, so every surface is unique. Not only is there a range of colours, tones and patterns to consider, but there are also 6 different granite worktop finishes to pick from. Each type of finish offers something different with some pros and cons to consider. But what are these worktop finishes and which one is the best to choose?
Polished Granite Finish
Granite is polished by buffing, it creates a glossy finish that is very smooth to the touch. The polishing process reduces the porousness of the stone and gives it a stain-resistant surface. Cleaning up when you have a polished granite worktop is quick and easy – this is why the glossy finish is the most popular choice. You get a highly reflective surface with polished granite that bounces light into the room which is beneficial for darker areas. The gloss also adds a touch of bling to a room, a sought-after look for an elegant home. To maintain the high shine, the granite needs to be re-polished from time to time.
For matte granite worktop finishes, honed is the most common style to choose. To achieve a honed finish the granite is smoothed but the process stops before a shine appears on the surface. The final polishing normally gives granite a protective surface, so a honed finish requires the application of a separate seal. This seal will need to be regularly re-applied to stop staining. Honed granite is ideal for floors and wet area as it’s a non-slip surface.
What Is Leathered Granite?
Leathered granite is a newer type of finish that is gaining popularity. Leathered granite worktop finishes are made using a masonry brushing method that creates a textured surface. This texture adds a rustic touch to a room and it works well in high-traffic areas because marks and fingerprints are hard to see on a leathered surface. Cleaning the textured ridges, however, can be trickier than wiping down a completely smooth surface. The natural colours and characteristics of granite are highlighted with leathering showing off more of the natural beauty of the material.
A Caressed Granite Finish
A caressed granite worktop has been finished with a combination of leathered and polished processes. Caressed granite takes the best of both features – it has the textured appearance of leathering but adds a polished shine to all of the raised areas. Polishing provides a level of protection to the worktop and the glossy quality adds some elegance to this rugged style.
What Is A Flamed Finished Worktop?
This finish is achieved by heating the granite to a very high temperature. The extreme fluctuation in temperature causes the fibres of the surface to break but without losing its strength. This process alters the tone and feel of the granite, leaving it with a rough but interesting finish. A flamed granite finish is slip-resistant and tends to be used as flooring or in outdoor kitchens but could also complement an industrial-chic décor.
Bush Hammered Granite
With this finish, the granite is beaten with a metal masonry tool with teeth. The surface becomes pitted and textured, and the colour lightens during the process. It seems quite brutal treatment for such a beautiful stone but it gives the granite a weathered look, a finish that makes the piece look artistically old and worn. It’s the ideal surface to use in bathrooms or outdoors thanks to the hardwearing, non-slip quality created.
To make the right choice of finish for your granite worktops, think about the look you want to create, the way you will use the surface and how much time you want to devote to maintaining the worktop you pick. All the finishes require an element of maintenance to ensure the worktop keeps its beauty and lasts well, but some styles of worktop need more care than others.
Here at Shaw Stone, we provide top-quality granite in a huge range of shades and finishes. They can help answer any concerns you have about a finish and offer guidance to help you select the right granite worktop for your home. Get in touch today!