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Surfaces That Help You Keep Your Home Clean

by Rachel Lyon, Editorial Director for The House Designers®

With renewed focus on keeping homes safe and clean, you may be wondering what you can do to make it easier on yourself. Experts recommend frequently disinfecting high-touch surfaces to reduce the spread of germs, so countertops are a great place to start. The material you choose affects how and how well you can clean the surface, so be sure to choose wisely!

Wilsonart Quartz Ascent

With a design similar to marble, the Ascent pattern of Wilsonart® Quartz delivers gorgeous looks without the porosity of natural stone. It’s also available in jumbo slabs so you can install a counter with fewer seams! See how one of our customers used quartz in their new home here.

Quartz Countertops

You’ll find all sorts of patterns available in the quartz section, including many that mimic the natural slabs that contractors and homeowners covet. If you want a natural stone look, these countertops can deliver it in a simpler and all-around more convenient package. One of the main draws of quartz is that it’s nonporous; that means it requires much less care than granite and marble, and it resists stains, mold, bacteria, and chemicals that would damage natural stone. You can learn more in our article Durable and Sustainable Quartz Countertops.

The inherent durability of quartz is an asset when it comes to cleaning. As an extremely dense material, it prevents messes from absorbing, so simply wiping down the surface will keep it looking great. You can use soap and water or an all-purpose household cleaner (Formula 409®, Green Works®, Windex®, etc.) and a soft cloth to disinfect the countertop. Just steer clear of abrasive substances/sponges and caustic cleaners like bleach that could damage the finish, because the finish is what keeps the countertop looking and performing well through the years.

Wilsonart Solid Surface Arctic Dune

For a crisp white countertop with subtle lineal movement, consider Arctic Dune. This Wilsonart® Solid Surface provides a bright and clean look that matches practically any kitchen or bathroom.

Solid Surface Countertops

Also nonporous, solid surface countertops have been favored for homes, businesses, and even medical facilities for decades. This category is unique in that it is completely renewable; the slab consists of powdered minerals, binders, and other colorants/accents and is homogenous all the way through. So, if you happen to damage it, it can be restored!

Treat solid surface the same as quartz for everyday cleaning. If you encounter stubborn residue or scratches, an abrasive cleaner (Ajax®, Bon-ami®, Comet®, Soft Scrub®, etc.) can be used to buff out the blemish. Because installers finish solid surface in a variety of ways (matte, satin, semi-gloss, etc.), you should follow the specific instructions to maintain your finish best. A professional can make it like new again when necessary.

Wilsonart Laminate Antique Bourbon Pine

Wood is difficult to truly sanitize without damaging, so if a butcher-block countertop calls you, look into laminate instead. This Antique Bourbon Pine pattern is available in regular residential High Pressure Laminate and in Chemsurf® Laminate made specifically to withstand the harshest cleaning agents.

Laminate Countertops

Quality laminates come in a plethora of patterns and really open the possibilities, so whatever the aesthetic you want, you’ll probably find it! This budget-friendly product is composed of a decorative layer under a wear-resistant overlay that can stand up to the challenges of residential use, but there are also laminates engineered to withstand chemical abuse in laboratories and hospitals. This would be overkill for households, but it goes to show just how hardy humble laminate can be when needed.

In addition to patterns, laminate gives you a number of texture options. This is what you should consider if you’re primarily concerned with keeping the surface clean. A smoother finish (matte, gloss, silk, etc.) will wipe up more easily than a textured one (rustic, grain, antique, etc.), so you won’t drive yourself crazy thinking about any nooks and crannies, however minute they may be. Laminate can be cleaned with soap and water as well as with household cleaners, but it’s imperative to rinse and dry at the end to prevent damaging the protective overlay. Damaged laminate cannot be restored, so make sure to rinse it well!

If you’re in the market for a countertop, check out the huge variety available from Wilsonart to find the perfect solution. You will not be lost for lack of options! Be sure to connect with a local dealer who can help you choose and install the right countertops for your design and performance needs!