Right now, I’m making do with an extremely tiny and ugly kitchen. I can’t open the oven and the refrigerator at the same time. I store a lot of food on top of my cabinets because there simply isn’t enough room on the shelves for dishes and groceries. Our dishwasher is half the size of a normal dishwasher. And I have so little counter space that I typically have to lay cutting boards on top of the stove just to have enough room to work with.

One day in the hopefully-not-so-far-away future, I hope to purchase a home with a big ol’ beautiful kitchen. I have big dreams for my future kitchen. It’ll have an island. Beautiful custom cabinets. Stainless steel appliances. A full-size dishwasher. A walk-in pantry. And, most importantly, counter space that stretches as far as the eye can see.

You see, I don’t want just any old counter. I’ve had just about enough of my ugly, beige, laminate countertops. I want something clean, unique, durable and gorgeous. I’m so excited for my future counter space that I’ve done a ton of digging into what the best types of counters are. That’s why I’m writing a new Zing series all about countertops, and today, I’ll be talking about concrete. If you’re considering new counters for you kitchen, here’s everything you ever wanted to know about concrete countertops.

Concrete Countertops Are Highly Customizable

If you’ve never seen concrete countertops, you might be scratching your head. You’re probably picturing an ugly, gray slab of concrete sidewalk mounted to your kitchen island. I’m sure you could get a concrete countertop that looks like that – but you probably don’t want to.

According to ConcreteNetwork.com, “concrete countertops appeal to people who want something unique, hand-crafted and personalized.” Hand-crafted concrete, you say? Whether you’re looking for a specific pigment or a unique texture, concrete’s got you covered. You can get concrete in all sorts of colors, whether you want neutrals (like black, beige or gray) or brights (like red or aqua). This robin’s-egg-blue counter looks like anything but concrete, and it really pops against the dark wood of the cabinets.

Concrete Counters - Quicken Loans Zing Blog

Click image to enlarge. Photo courtesy of Homedit.com.










Looking for even more ways to customize your concrete countertop? Techniques like veining can really take your concrete to the next level. A veined concrete countertop is similar in appearance to marble, with colored or white veins running through the slab. A terrazzo concrete countertop can also be quite beautiful, containing small glass chips or colored stones. Check out ConcreteNetwork.com for some more unique ways to customize your new concrete countertop.

You Can Put Concrete Anywhere

Concrete is beautiful for any kitchen, but if you’re lucky enough to have an outdoor kitchen, a concrete countertop may be perfect for you. Because concrete can withstand a wide range of temperatures, it’s better than most materials for use outdoors.

Concrete Counters - Quicken Loans Zing Blog

Click image to enlarge. Photo courtesy of SeattleConcretePolishing.com.











Concrete Countertops Are Durable

If you’re a busy parent, or if you’re just plain rough on your kitchen counters, concrete makes an excellent choice since it doesn’t damage easily and is relatively low-fuss.

Since concrete shrinks over time, it’s possible that your concrete countertop will develop hairline cracks. But according to Concrete-Countertops.org, these cracks are considered “inherent characteristics of the concrete,” rather than flaws. Since these tiny cracks aren’t structural, you shouldn’t worry about them; they often add character to your countertop.

So what about scratches? You shouldn’t use your concrete countertop as a cutting board since this can put scratches in the finish. But luckily, scratches can be easily fixed with a small sanding pad.

You Can Make a Concrete Countertop Yourself

Good news for the budget-savvy DIY-er: You can create a concrete countertop at home. DIY Network has a great tutorial, but be forewarned: This isn’t for novices. After looking at the nine-step instructions, which include designing and constructing a mold, I’ve come to the conclusion that building a concrete countertop is way beyond the scope of my home-improvement skills.

Concrete Countertops Can Be Economical

So how much do concrete countertops cost? ConcreteNetwork.com lists the standard cost of concrete countertops as $65–$135 per square foot for a standard 1.5’’-thick piece. The price will, of course, go up if your countertop includes irregular or curved shapes, custom edges or other design features, or if you go with a thicker slab.

Do you have a concrete countertop at home? Are you brave enough to try making and installing your own? Do you think I should install that gorgeous robin’s-egg-blue countertop in my future kitchen? Chime in with your two cents in the comments below!

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