Capitol Granite Design Center

Which Countertop Material is Right for Me?

Comparing & Contrasting Options for Your Home

Natural Stones vs. Engineered Stones:

Quartz is an engineered stone, meaning it is not naturally occurring like granite and marble. While both are extremely stylish, the main difference is that natural stones require sealing whereas engineered stones don’t, and you can put hot items on natural stones without damage occurring.

Granite vs. Marble:

Granite and marble are all natural stones, so they last long and look great without requiring a lot of maintenance and are also resistant to heat and water damage. Granite does need to be sealed, though it’s fairly stain-resistant. Marble also needs to be sealed, but tends to stain easier, and may be susceptible to oil, red wines, and dark sauces. In general, marble is better if you want a lighter color countertop, though its brighter tone also makes it more likely to scorch or stain.

Quartz vs. Quartzite:

Quartz and quartzite are extremely similar, but there are a few key differences. While quartz is an engineered stone, meaning that it was manufactured for color and texture, quartzite is a natural stone made from the same mineral that’s the base for quartz countertops. Both are sleek and modern-looking, though quartzite tends to be softer. Their main difference is that like all natural stones, quartzite is porous, and must be sealed, whereas quartz is non-porous, and requires no sealing. While people love that quartz is clean and antibacterial, it is worth noting that you should not put hot objects down on it, as they can leave a mark.

Solid Surface vs. Quartz:

Solid surface countertops are man-made, using mineral dust and plastic resins and pigments. While both solid surface countertops and quartz countertops are manufactured, quartz countertops use a higher percentage of stone. Neither do extremely well with heat, though quartz is more scratch-resistant, while solid surface countertops have fewer seams. Both surfaces are non-porous, so sealing is never required.


Natural stone is impervious to water and heat, along with many other benefits, this countertop option is incredibly durable, low maintenance, repairable, virtually seamless, distinctive, and affordable.


Butcher block countertops are made out of thick strips of hardwood glued together to form a solid surface. Almost any species of wood can be made into a butcher block, and exotic varieties can be ordered to suit your preferences. Generally speaking, however, the harder the species of wood the countertop is made out of, the better it will hold up. Although butcher blocks may require more maintenance than other countertops, they are generally easier to repair and tend to last for an extremely long time. This feature, coupled with the warm aesthetic make butcher block countertops a timeless classic.


Solid surface products are a great choice if you are looking for a completely seamless countertop or surface. Like quartz, Solid surface does not require periodic sealing because it is an inherently non-porous product.


Recycled surface countertops are a great product for the environmentally conscious consumer. While natural stone is a green product, Recycled surfaces, meanwhile, are a great way to go green with your countertop as they are made from recycled glass, paper, and porcelain that would typically clutter up the landfill. They can stain, but usually don’t, and are mostly heat-resistant. Recycled surface countertops require similar maintenance as natural stone countertops because they do require periodic sealing.


Quartz countertops are a non-porous, scratch resistant material that is incredibly easy to maintain over years of use. This is why it has surpassed granite as the preferred surfacing material for kitchens & bathrooms. With quartz countertops, you can also have greater consistency in color and pattern across slabs.

Need Help Picking New Countertops?

Ultimately, figuring out the right countertop is a completely personal choice, and entirely dependent on what you’re looking for in your home. Luckily, all Capitol Granite showrooms have the professionals to help guide you through all of the options to find the countertop that best suits your family's needs.

Contact us today to schedule a visit to your nearest showroom!

Reviews from
Happy customers

  • It looks fantastic and we appreciate everyone’s hard work.

    “It looks fantastic and we appreciate everyone’s hard work.”

    Dana M.

  • You have found a return customer in me!

    “Every aspect of my dealings with Capitol Granite were excellent. Ashley was friendly and informative. David came to the house to conduct the final measure and was also helpful and provided guidance on how to prepare for the install. And finally, our absolutely stunning quartz counters were delivered and expertly installed by Dan and his assistant Craig. You have found a return customer in me! Happy New Year!”

    Pam M.

  • They did an excellent job installing the counter tops!

    “They arrived when they said they would and did an excellent job installing the countertops.”

    Craig Buchbinder

  • No pressure environment and would do business with them again!

    “No pressure environment and would do business with them again. I dealt with polite and competent people through all three phases of the process; selection, site visit for measuring, and installation.”

    Harry C.

  • Excellent service and quality products and craftsmanship.

    “Excellent service and quality products and craftsmanship.”

    Craig Myers

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