So, you’ve decided to get natural marble or wood countertops in your kitchen. Now what?
Adding natural elements in the kitchen is a great way to make the kitchen cozy and more inviting. Natural countertops made of wood or marble are also a unique touch that most kitchens are lacking. However, if you don’t properly maintain these natural countertops, you’ll end up with more stress than they’re worth. Getting into a routine of maintenance is the best way to ensure that you get the most out of your investment in these unique kitchen elements. Read on to learn just what you need to do to keep your natural countertops gleaming like new.
How to Care for Wood Countertops
There are two types of wood countertops: finished and butcher block. Finished wood counters are sealed, which makes the surface glossy and attractive. These surfaces should not be used for cutting, since the knife will leave scratches in the surface. To maintain these countertops, be sure that you always put extremely hot or cold items on pads that keep them from directly touching the surface. If there is a water spill, be sure to clean it up right away, as moisture can damage a wood countertop. To clean these countertops, simply wipe down with a mild detergent and warm water and dry immediately.
For butcher block countertops, you’ll want to follow the same safety rules above, except for one thing: you can cut directly on butcher block countertops. Since this countertop gets more use, it requires more maintenance. If you notice any stains, you can try removing them with lemon juice. To keep the counters looking like new, you’ll need to treat them a few times a year with a food grade mineral oil. Simply drizzle a layer of oil over the countertops, rub in with a clean cotton cloth, and allow to sit for 20 minutes. Wipe up any excess oil, and your wood countertops will be looking just like new!
How to Care for Marble Countertops
Just like wood, marble is a porous material. This means that it will absorb stains and odors if spilled drinks or foods are left sitting on the marble surface for too long. But unlike wood, you can’t clean marble with lemon juice!
Marble is a calcium carbonate, meaning that it reacts to acids. Setting even a damp margarita glass on your marble countertop could result in etching, which is when a dull surface is created by contact with acids. This may seem scary, but marble is actually easy to clean.
To clean your marble countertops, simply spray with a mix of warm water and mild dish soap. Wipe down with a hot, wet dishcloth, and dry and buff with a terry cloth or towel. That’s it! As long as you clean up spills immediately and wipe your countertops regularly, your marble countertops will continue to add regal elegance to your kitchen.