Updated: Apr 6, 2020
Many Stone Types
Natural stone has many uses in construction and the application of the stone should sometimes guide the determination of which type of natural stone to use.
There are many types of natural stones such as marble, granite, sandstone, quartz, limestone, quartzite, volcanic and soapstone among others.
Marbleand Granite are the most popular choices and each are beautiful natural stones that come in many natural variations of color, pattern, and veining.
Marble and Granite have slightly diffrerent characteristics which may influence selection based on application.
Choosing Natural Stone Based on Application Natural stone can be used for walls, floors, interiors, exteriors, fireplaces, countertops, wet areas and more. Marble and granite are not equal in strength or durability, and even within each category the vast variation differs in technical specification and characteristic, however it possible to make some broad statements regarding the differences between Marble and Granite.
Marble Marble been used in art and buildings since ancient times for sculptures and structure and it is very durable in decorative applications such walls tiles and marble flooring.
Marble can be used for countertops however Marble easy to scratch and the minerals in marble countertops are reactive to acids in vinegar and citrus which causes "etching" on the surface. Stains can be mitigated through sealing, and there are protective coatings available to stop etching such as "anti-etch".
For professionals, Marble is generally quick and easy to re-polish should it become scratched, stained or etched.
Granite Granite is one the most durable and strongest of natural stones and it is suitable for just about any application whether interior or exterior.
Granite is a good choice for kitchen countertops because granite handles heat better than marble and is more natural more stain resistant (although it is still recommended to seal) and the minerals do not react as strongly to acids that cause "etching". Granite is also lower maintenance than marble and generally cost less per square meter.
Granite can also be re-polished and restored in the event of scratches, stains or etching - although granite usually takes more time and will cost a little more to have professionally refinished compared with similar work undertaken on Marble.
Your preferred natural stone aesthetic Once you narrow your selection down to a certain stone type based on application and your view towards future and ongoing maintenance of the stone, the next step is to choose a color or pattern that meets your design intent. Marble has a sophisticated and elegant look to it, often with more natural veining and variation than that of granite. Many owners and designers may choose marble for certain applications based on its natural beauty.
Granite is also found in a variety of colors such as whites, reds, browns, grays, and more. The patterns and veining can vary widely from stone to stone however if uniformity is required granite often provides more options when going for a homogenous aesthetic.