Although there are many options to choose from when deciding on the kind of surface you want for your counters
, e.g. soapstone, stainless steel, real wood butcher block, marble, concrete, etc., the most common countertop products fall into one of four main categories – plastic laminate, solid surface, granite, and engineered quartz.
Bar - Plastic laminate
Plastic laminate: Aka “Formica” as it has been traditionally called, is one of the least expensive surfaces. Made from multi-layered paper that has been specially treated under high pressure, the end product is a very durable product with almost unlimited color/pattern options. The technology used in today's laminates makes them much more resistant to chemicals and wear than in the past. And the aesthetics are dynamic especially with the newer high definition laminates. The advantages of laminate countertops are there their beauty, ease of fabrication, and economical cost. The disadvantages are that when damaged or scratched, need to be replaced, or cannot easily be repaired. Also, in the kitchen, a hot pan can permanently burn the surface. But over-all, under normal use, plastic laminate countertops are probably your best choice given their beauty and replacement cost. Common laminates are: