Kitchen Countertops That Look Like a Million Bucks

Perk up your kitchen without draining the bank. Countertops don't need to break your budget, after all. There are plenty of inexpensive products that'll help you achieve a high-end look, and must-see options for natural stone, too. Take a look. You might just find the perfect product for your own kitchen and lifestyle.

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November 29, 2018

Photo By: Formica Corporation, Black Shalestone

Photo By: Formica Corporation, Calacatta Marble

Photo By: 3form

Photo By: Caeserstone, Airy Concrete

Photo By: Formica Corporation, Planked Walnut and Carrara Bianco

Photo By: Wilsonart, Slice of Ice collection

Photo By: Caesarstone, Cloudburst Concrete

Photo By: Formica Corporation, Ferro Graphite and Silver Quartzite

Photo By: Shane Inman

Photo By: Lowe's

Photo By: Formica

Photo By: Lowe's

Photo By: Scott Dorrance ©Formica Corporation, Strata Olympico and Paloma Polar

Photo By: Johnson Dekton, Trillium

Photo By: Giani

Photo By: Jason de Alba ©Lars Remodel,

If You Like Natural Stone, Try Black Shalestone From Formica

Available with a PREMIUMfx or matte finish, black shalestone countertops designed for the 180fx® collection by Formica Group deliver a deep charcoal gray color, patterned with black accents in a high-resolution laminate. If you thought you wanted a dark granite with subtle variations, this finish offers the same look for considerably less.

If You Like Marble, Try Calacatta Marble From Formica

Get the look of natural marble with Calacatta Marble from 180fx® by Formica Group, and complete your kitchen remodel without draining the bank. The premium, high-resolution, stain-resistant finish and durability of the product, make it an easy alternative when compared to natural marble.

If You Like Glass, Try 3form Chroma Countertops

Glazed, tempered glass countertops can offer an almost ethereal, light feeling in a kitchen where the countertop is usually a solid mass. As a trend, they’ve become more popular recently, but as lovely as these gleaming glass-tops are, they come with a hefty price tag: some can go as high as $300 a square foot. An equally cool-looking and more eco-friendly alternative is 3form’s Chroma Countertops, which come in a variety of colors and almost seem to be lit from within.

If You Like Concrete, Try Airy Concrete From Caesarstone

Quartz concrete is more durable than actual concrete, excelling as a non-porous, non-absorbable, durable option for the home. While the rough quartz finish requires slightly more maintenance than a polished finish, you’ll never need to seal it, or worry about watermarks absorbing into the finish. Airy Concrete From Caesarstone offers the look of concrete as a long-term, low-maintenance solution for the home.

If You Like Mixed Surfaces, Try Planked Walnut and Carrera Bianco From Formica

The high-resolution finish of wide planked walnut laminate from 180fx® by Formica Group could fool anyone into thinking it's a real wooden finish, especially how it's used here, as a free-standing kitchen island countertop. Paired in the space with Carrera Bianco, this kitchen remodel delivers a high-end look on an affordable budget.

If Terrazzo Makes You Happy, Try Frozen Terra From Caesarstone

Frozen tundra or Frozen Terra? The concrete-like finish from this Caesarstone quartz countertop places itself somewhere between smooth concrete and stony terrazzo, and it looks great in a large space. Thanks to its manufacturing, quartz countertops are a non-porous, scratch-resistant, durable solution that remains more affordable than most natural stone countertops.

If You Like a Bold, Ice-Inspired Design, Try Sapphire Slice of Ice From Danny Seo and Wilsonart

The Slice of Ice collection at Wilsonart is bold, bold, bold. The design mimics the gem-like textures created by the striations in glacial ice, and while shown above is the material in Sapphire, other icy-white designs also beg for a space in a boldly designed kitchen. Wilsonart engineered the surfaces of this collection with its proprietary AEON™ Enhanced Performance Technology, making them up to 3x more scuff and scratch resistant than standard laminates.

If You Like DIY Concrete Countertops, Try Cloudburst Concrete From Caesarstone

The soft patina of Cloudburst quartz from Caesarstone will catch the eye of all concrete-countertop enthusiasts. Interior Designer Kelly Edwards is using the product in her latest project, adding "it looks like concrete, but requires less upkeep, and we didn’t have to have someone pour it in place. While quartz is a bit more in pricey than traditional concrete countertops, I love it because it’s non porous [unlike concrete], never has to be sealed, and won’t crack and chip."

If You Like Reclaimed Wood, Try Butcher Block Countertops

Reclaimed wood countertops can be astoundingly beautiful, but because of their very nature — that they’re reclaimed, and not just being manufactured at-will — they can be extremely pricey. If the look of wood is what you want, though, the classic butcher block countertop is no slouch. One of the most affordable countertop options out there, the warm surface does require some maintenance and care, but will work hard for you as long as you look out for it.

If You Like Black Granite, Try Ferro Graphite From Formica

The rich color and subtle veining of dark granite are replicated beautifully in Ferro Graphite from 180fx® by Formica Group. It comes with two standard finishes - high gloss and satin - so you can customize your look further. In fact, this is one you might want to consider as a vertical application, such as an easy-to-maintain faux-stone backsplash, or a waterfall countertop.

If You Like Light Wood, Try Maple Laminate from Formica

High quality faux wood countertops can look a lot like natural wood, but without any of the extra sealing or permeability concerns. For an inexpensive kitchen refresh, consider a laminate printed with a wood pattern, like this Amber Maple design from Formica.

If You Like Thick Countertops, Consider Quartz or Laminate

A three-inch thick white countertop is the shining star in this kitchen. Opt for a less-expensive laminate or quartz countertop material if you're looking to achieve a thick edge - rather than natural stone - and have a countertop manufactured to meet your exact expectations.

If You Like Polished Stone, Try Summit Granite From Lowe’s

Lowe’s offers a sharp black and white striated granite at a price point that isn’t out of reach. Allen + Roth’s Summit Granite is bold in its unique design, and as with other granites, it’s resistant to damage, highly heat resistant and easy to maintain (no sealing required).

If You Like Stainless Steel, Try Formica Endless Graytone Laminate Countertops

Professional kitchens use stainless steel countertops, and many serious home chefs want that look, as well. If you really want stainless steel, there really isn’t a lot that’s going to substitute for the metal itself. If you’re interested in that look, though, check out Formica’s Endless Graytone laminate.

If You Like Contemporary Design, Try a High Gloss Countertop Finish

High shine isn't hard to come by if you choose the right product, and a glossy finish is like the icing on the cake for your contemporary kitchen design, so it's worth exploring your options. Glass options, such as 3Form's Chroma, as well as high-gloss, high-end laminates, are all designed to withstand heavy-duty wear in a kitchen setting.

If You Like Budget-Friendly Stone, Try Vena Granite From Lowe’s

Heat, scratch, and stain-resistant granite can add warmth and beauty to your kitchen, and no two homes will be the same! The rich, high-contrast striated patterns of Vena Granite from Allen + Roth’s collection at Lowe’s are one of a kind. Paired with a lifetime warranty, this material checks all the boxes.

If You Like Striated Granite, Try Strata Olympico From Formica

Glossy Strata Olympico from 180fx® by Formica Group is eye-candy for homeowners looking to incorporate a high-contrast striped stone to their kitchen design. The soft gradations are printed in the highest resolution on laminate, making it a durable, easy-to-maintain surface in the kitchen.

If You Like an Oxidized, Rusted Effect, Try Trillium from Dekton USA

Composed of browns, grays, and black, the rusted effect of the Trillium countertop from Dekton USA mimics the look of oxidized steel. Its coloring is recycled, making it an eco-friendly product, while also being highly heat resistant and scratch resistant. Dekton products are also freeze- and fire-resistant, making them a great option to consider for your outdoor kitchen. Here, Lars Remodel shares how it looks installed in one of its colorful showroom spaces.

If You Like Stained Concrete, Try Giani Stone Paint for Countertops

Okay, so this isn’t a replacement, per se. But Giani stone paint is a sealant that also completely and totally overhauls the look of any countertop. It can be used on anything from laminate, butchers block, primed and painted wood. Since it is a finish itself, it should only have to be redone if the surface is ever chipped or damaged.

If You Want an On-Trend Natural Stone, Try Soapstone

Soapstone’s gained in popularity for a number of reasons, mostly because it looks great, is extremely durable, non-porous and requires no sealers. If you’re looking for a natural stone that’s consistently dark, consider a natural soapstone slab for your home. Though it might be pricier than the DIY or laminate options presented, we think it's worth your consideration in the world brimming with natural stone countertop options. Lars Remodel shows us here how they’ve used it in one of its recent showroom projects.

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