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When it comes to refurbishing or renovating a kitchen inevitably there is a lot to think of – units, flooring, lighting, appliances, colour schemes… and then, of course, there’s a worktop to choose.

Initially this can seem quite overwhelming. As consumers, we are far more at ease choosing colours, appliances, even lighting – after all, these decisions are ones we face far more regularly than selecting a worktop. Apply the wrong colour, it can easily be re-painted. Choose the wrong lighting or appliance, costly, but it can be replaced. Choose the wrong worktop and it makes life a little harder!

Listed below are the main benefits and potential drawbacks of worktop options available, helping you select the right material to suit you, your space and your budget.


  • Widely available and very low maintenance
  • Available in many finishes, replicating the look of solid wood, tiled finishes etc
  • Quick and easy to fit even as a DIY project
  • Easy to look after only needing to be wiped down with a non-abrasive detergent
  • Can scratch easily and cannot be sanded down
  • Can warp when in contact with standing water
  • Prices start from around £30 per metre

Solid Wood:

  • Oak and walnut tend to be favoured for longevity. Beech and birch are lighter bringing contrast to darker cabinets
  • Extremely durable, natural and can be recycled
  • Can be sanded down to repair scratches
  • Oak requires oiling regularly until it matures
  • Specialist installation is advised and on-going maintenance is recommended
  • Prices start from around £150 per metre

Stainless Steel:

  • An alloy of iron that has been treated with chromium, stainless steel generally remains rust-free
  • Popular in professional kitchens, highly resistant to corrosion and heat
  • Non-porous therefore most hygienic of all worktop surfaces
  • Easy to maintain using mild non-abrasive detergent
  • Can be prone to scratches and dents
  • Surfaces can get very hot if pans are left on them
  • Prices start from around £200 per metre


  • Granite, quartz and marble most popular options each with distinctive hues and veins
  • Timeless if looked after - can last many years
  • Granite and quartz resistant to stains and scratches. Marble softer and can be prone to marking
  • Granite and quartz need to be sealed when installed and lower maintenance. Marble needs regular wiping down
  • Depending on quality of stone, granite and quartz can be very expensive
  • Prices start from around £225 per metre


  • Blend of minerals and acrylic polymers such as Corian, Dekton and Caesarstone
  • Can be easily moulded to suit bespoke shapes
  • Durable, long-lasting requiring little maintenance
  • Scratches can be easily repaired
  • Specialist installation necessary
  • One of most expensive worktop options
  • Prices start from around £350 per metre


  • Made from a mix of cement and other aggregates, can be pre-cast or poured in-situ to create bespoke surfaces
  • Hard-wearing, concrete increases in durability over time
  • Shows off stains and can crack
  • Specialist installation necessary and takes approximately 30 days to cure completely
  • Needs to be sealed and resealed every few years
  • Prices start from around £500 per metre

20th Aug 2019