We love everything about soapstone, and especially recommend it for renovating kitchen countertops and sinks. Explore our five top reasons why soapstone is one of the best choices for your indoor and outdoor kitchen surfaces.
1) Soapstone Resists Bacteria and Stains
The nonporous, stain-resistant properties of soapstone make it ideal for kitchen surfaces. This dense material doesn’t harbor bacteria, so you can easily wipe germs and contaminants from your countertop, sink, and backsplash. Large stone slabs allow for installation of continuous or seamless countertops for even easier cleaning.
Soapstone’s nonporous qualities also mean you don’t have to worry about countertops staining from wine, coffee, juice, or any other persistent spill or splatter—nothing is able to soak in, and if any marks do appear, a quick oil treatment can solve the problem.
Soapstone is also heat-resistant: Hot cookware can be set directly on your countertops without scorching the surface, and soapstone is not susceptible to heat-related cracking. Additionally, you can use it for outdoor kitchen surfaces without hot grill utensils or sparks ruining your countertops.
2) Soapstone Counters Are Low Maintenance
Soapstone has been used to create carvings, cookware, and household materials for centuries. This natural material has lasting power, a benefit to homeowners looking for a reliable option for their renovation project. Because of the talc in its composition, soapstone is more malleable and less brittle than other natural stones, so it does not crack or chip from temperature or pressure changes. Soapstone’s density ensures countertops hold up well in high-use kitchen and bathroom areas. If you do encounter a scratch or nick, a light sanding followed by mineral oil or wax treatment can hide the mark with little effort. This easy care routine means soapstone is an excellent choice for commercial uses, as well.
3) Soapstone Cleans Without Chemicals
Choosing soapstone for your kitchen countertops ensures that you can keep harsh chemicals and solvents out of your food prep areas. The stone does not need specialty sealants applied because it is naturally nonporous and sealed.
As for cleaning up messes and stuck-on food spills, skip the harsh cleaners: Liquid or other spills can’t penetrate the nonporous surface, so it’s as easy as wiping away the mess. Rather than coat your kitchen in heavy chemicals, choose your favorite natural or mild cleaner to clean and freshen your soapstone countertops without introducing unnecessary toxins into your kitchen.
4) Soapstone Surfaces Radiate Heat
Soapstone’s thermal properties allow it to absorb, hold, and radiate heat from its environment. This is one reason why soapstone is an ideal material for high temperature applications, including tile floors and firebricks. In fact, soapstone improves your fireplace efficiency by absorbing heat and releasing it into the room slowly for hours, keeping your space more comfortable, longer.
This same absorption and release applies to many areas of your kitchen, including keeping dish water warmer, longer in a soapstone kitchen sink versus in an average stainless steel basin. Soapstone’s temperature absorption also creates a natural warmth that helps to quickly thaw frozen foods.
5) Soapstone Ages Beautifully
Beyond the practical benefits of soapstone, this beautiful, natural stone is an attractive option in traditional and modern spaces. It develops a natural patina through daily use. Applying a mineral oil or wax is an easy way to speed up soapstone’s aging process to achieve a darker sheen more quickly. The rich coloring means your soapstone surfaces get even better as they age—unlike other surfaces that show wear and tear and need resurfacing or replacement.
These are some of our top reasons for choosing soapstone for your countertops and sinks. Remember, the benefits of soapstone countertops and sinks don’t just apply to your indoor kitchen; soapstone is also a great material for outdoor kitchens for its durability and thermal properties. Check out our other articles about soapstone, its uses, history, and how to transform your space, or explore a Forbes article, written by Sheri Koones, for a great overview of the benefits of using soapstone for indoor or outdoor countertops.