Isn’t the beauty of the marble that it grows with you and is from the earth?
I just read the reply to my post about the water marks (not stains or etching) on my honed marble. Sometimes people have shiny polished marble and want to have a more rustic look.

Honed Calacatta Gold Kitchen

The installer never sealed it before he grouted it with light grey grout. Like any product marble cleaners are not all created equal.

You state these drops are not “etching” but they are dull spots. They do add a level of water and stain resistance (buying you time to clean away stain-causing materials) but don’t make the surface waterproof.

Honed Calacatta Marble Kitchen Bring the luxury of natural stone to your home. by installing natural stone it will add elegance and value

If that is not sufficient, then go with a more coarse 400 or even 200 grit metal sandpaper and finish with the steel wool. And if it is the water you are wiping up and it is acidic, then you could get etching in the shape of the paper towel pattern. Etch marks are less visible on honed marble than on polished marble, but honed marble etches exactly the same as a polished marble surface.

The finish type does make a difference regarding sealing and for specific repairs (see below). On honed marble, you can try sanding the etch drops with 0000-grade steel wool. Vinegar will etch (corrode) marble which is very noticeable with polished marble because it creates a dull spot, but on honed marble you don’t notice it as much or at all. Acidic foods, drinks, personal products, and harsh cleaners can cause etching on marble. However, a few marble cleaning products are engineered to dry very quickly when in use, so you have to do minimal wiping to clean and dry the countertop, thus eliminating streaks. I’m ok with this in general and actually like the idea that my counter tops will develop a patina over time. And being black, even the lint from the paper towels shows on it! Stunning kitchen with dark stained kitchen island topped with a honed calacatta gold marble counter with decorative edge highlighted by white shaker front pantry cabinets framing a dark stained glass front cabinet with x-front detail. I did not know the difference between staining and etching. I like the lived in look too, so for me it isn’t a big deal. If you love the organic and ever changing look of a honed marble counter, and can deal with a little etching here and there, then jump on the band wagon and get marble for your kitchen too. If you, or your spouse/partner, want a “perfect” surface then you might what to rethink marble. Stains happen when substances have been allowed to soak into the surface.

Then something as simple as a greasy spoon stained it immediately. On the plus side, marble is heat resistant, strong, and generally doesn’t chip or dent. A “tumbled” marble finish can stand up to abrasive scrubbers a little better since the finish is already very rough. Roberts’s tricks for creating a clean look on a budget. I know this seems to contradict what you often read about marble, however, there is a massive misunderstanding that exists in the marketplace about marble “stains” which we’ll discuss below. So, it depends on what you want to achieve, but washing with vinegar will even out the look of your honed marble by blending in the etch spots. Marble will last a long time, so it was a good utilitarian choice for countertops.

People label any spot (including etch marks) on marble as a “stain”. Any cleaner safe for use on marble can be used on any finish type. This test will give you a specific answer for your specific marble. The spots you have a probably etch marks (from acidic products, foods, drinks) and not hard water spots. If just in a couple places then you may be able to remove these “stains”. One of the attractions of marble is that it’s available in a wide variety of natural colorations. I recently bought and had white honed marble tile installed on my master bathroom floor.

Natural stone is like living with an appreciation of geology. I’ve learned my soapstone also thaws anything really quickly. Gorgeous kitchen boasts white shaker cabinets adorned with polished nickel knobs paired with honed white marble countertops. She had the shiny finish sanded off, essentially leaving the marble honed and it has eliminated the staining problem.

Here are some photos of examples of “etching” on my marble island. You did your homework and decided the cost (mean mom) wasn’t worth it to you. Calacatta stands out among most marbles because of its clean, white to cream backgrounds, with the very distinguished veins. I do agree that if you are the type of person that needs perfect counters then marble will only cause angst. There are slight differences in the care and maintenance between the different finishes. We did full overlay shaker style cabinets in a dark-ish gray. Marbles are quarried all over the world, and vary in density and porosity, which effect how they wear, and how stain resistant they will be. Notice how the etching rings and dots that were on the marble then are no longer visible on the photo of the island now (above). But hearing about the patina that it develops, the imperfections, the etching that happens from living, that all appeals to me very much. They all said the polished granite showed way more than the honed, and the honed had its own problems, etc. I love it and put burning hot skillets and pans directly on that awesome stone!

Her kids are grown, so she doesn’t have sticky hands, but she has been amazed at the stains. Black reeded kitchen island doors accented with polished nickel knobs are positioned beneath a honed white marble countertop fitted with a round prep sink. Perhaps instead of removing your granite, have someone come in and hone it for you and see if you like it. Now the little scratches have become ‘patina’, and the big scratches are masked by all of the little ones that have happened since. I have a feeling though no one else would notice the etching, staining on your beloved marble but you. Fantastic kitchen features white shaker cabinets paired with honed white marble countertops and a white subway tile backsplash. I think its important (especially if both people cook;) that everyone is in agreement on materials. Applying the same thought process to a marble countertop can have a similar effect, resulting in a natural countertop material that will age with beauty. Beautiful kitchen features light gray shaker cabinets adorned with bronze hardware paired with honed white marble countertops and a white square tiles backsplash. When my marble island was installed it was sealed by the company that installed it. Carrara marble on the other hand will have more veins, but the veins will appear softer, and blend into the stone better. I have butcher block on my island, and want to put marble around the perimeter, needs to look old in my old house.

They will either be polished, honed, or leather (irregular surface). Walking into patisseries and restaurants and seeing marble floors and counters that had been there for a hundred years or more was such a beautiful sight. We are being told how evil marble is; how it is not appropriate for kitchen use etc etc. However, we now have a salesperson who loves marble and although she told us about the etching etc, she’s been so helpful and supportive. Here are 6 great alternatives to carrara marble that will give your kitchen a bright, modern-farmhouse look….. You might be better off with an ugly granite that keeps its “perfect” look over marble that doesn’t if it’s going to cause you so much anxiety. Right now we have a laminate counter that tries to look like marble (sad, but that’s what was here when we bought the house). I would not hesitate to get marble for a kitchen, especially for an old house. Marble is softer and more porous than the nearly indestructible granite, and so it can etch (scratch) and stain in a way that granite usually won’t. The application technique is also really helpful information. One way transition the look from one room to the next is to find a creative way to incorporate the natural stone or tile remnants in another room of the house. Carrara is a marble that is widely used as bathroom applications, as well as floor applications. Granite is commonly used for kitchen countertops, bathroom vanity tops, fireplace surrounds, tub surrounds and more. I went with granite, and find that that stains (tomato sauce, in particular) so nothing’s bulletproof.

Don’t forget to factor the therapy visits in to your marble purchase. So don’t give up on marble if it is what you really want. It makes a little dull spot that is duller than the honed finish. Look for “dry treat” sealers with smaller molecules that penetrate deeper and offer more protection than traditional sealers. Rather than a glossy, polished marble, honed marble has more of a smooth matte finish. This classic pattern neatly ties together the white shaker cabinets with the marble countertops. I was thinking of calacatta, but now i am really interested in a more graphic marble like yours. Calacatta is a distinguished marble known for being exotic and containing wild veins and beautiful structure. Different white marbles have different tones (pure white, gold, gray,etc.), so perhaps one with light gray undertones would work well with your kitchen. Same surface, but see how the light and the angle cause you to see it more than the other?
And, good information that a polished surface can be honed “on-site”. You don’t walk into the kitchen and immediately see the etching- you really have to look for it to notice it. It took me six months and many discussions with fabricators to find the right slabs. Marble is commonly produced in “honed” or “polished” finishes. Patina and antiques are not for everyone, but for anyone who appreciates the look it does take time, knowledge and patience to research. I can’t be neurotic about the counters when 4 kids, 3 spouses and 3 grandchildren are visiting. Because of this matte finish, scratches are far less likely to be noticed, making honed marble a wonderful option for a busy and family-friendly kitchen. Now, to find those perfect creamy slabs and to convince my husband. Due to the natural conductivity of marble it remains cool to the touch and is a favorite surface for bakers to roll pastry or pizza dough.

My job was to give information, and to help my client make decisions, and avoid expensive mistakes. Even the marble-looking granite just doesn’t do my dream justice! Calacatta production however is limited and well-controlled from this quarry. Marble appeals to those who like the unique character that comes as the counters wear and age gracefully over time. Notice how you don’t see or notice a single one of the etch rings or dots in the photos above! I do like the manner in which you have framed this particular problem plus it really does provide us some fodder for consideration. You may not get an even or super-smooth finish like you would with professional honing, but it will work to do this. If the tile looks darker around the edges (like a picture frame) then the grout did absorb into and stain the marble. It looks really good, but of course that doesn’t last long. Honed marble countertop cleaning and maintenance does present some mysteries, misconceptions, and frustrations, but all it takes is learning the key details presented above to wipe away the messy confusion and begin protecting and cleaning your marble with ease. Acidic foods like vinegar will etch the polish and create a bunch of dull spots that look like stains on polished marble. However, you could have a straight stain where something has absorbed into your marble. That is impossible if you put marble (especially polished marble) in the kitchen.

Sealers do not prevent etching, which is physical corrosive damage to the marble surface. Applying a sealer in such cases can result in a semi-permanent streaky haze. Consult with the marble fabricator about the recommended sealant for your marble to ensure that it’s nontoxic, food-safe, and the best sealer for your particular stone. It may also make the surface a bit more rough and rustic-looking. Nothting wrong with that, but this perspective presents a problem when you want to install marble for a kitchen countertop. I have soapstone in other parts of the kitchen and use mineral oil on them, so took to using mineral oil to smooth out the marble. Etching is not a big problem on marble bathroom countertops. It is not imperative to seal marble tiles prior to grouting. This constantly amazes me just how blog owners such as your self can find the time as well as the dedication to keep on crafting superb blog posts. I knew we’d made the right choice when about a week after it was installed i noticed my youngest boy coloring in the kitchen.

Soapstone will be on the island, now just need to decide on the perimeter countertops. I’m convinced my marble will be seen but never touched. To remove or repair etch marks on honed marble you need to use more abrasive sandpaper. We know people’s tastes can change over time, and we like to make the fixed elements, such as countertops, look timeless. Certain spots can seem impossible to remove and what caused them anyway?

Don’t use it in a kitchen where spills can’t be cleaned up quickly,” he warns. While not as hard as its metamorphic cousin granite (which comes from deeper in the earth where it’s exposed to more heat), marble is not as soft as soapstone. They tried sanding the entire slab and told me to use an acetone on it but it’s still the same and every subsequent drop of water leaves an imprint. I am thinking about using lemon and or rubbing alcohol to remove the stains. It can occur, but exposure to damaging substances is so much less than on kitchen countertops. Today, people want marble as a showpiece and desire to keep their marble countertoptops in near perfect condition. It would take several years to show, but it is one consequence of repeated polishing on a relatively soft surface like a marble. Whether you are simply cleaning down the whole countertop or working out a stain, marble cleaning is easy. I’ve had my new marble counter tops for about three weeks now. I used polished marble tile on the counters of my last house not realizing that lemon juice would etch them. Kitchen features stacked floating shelving filled with cookbooks, pottery and glasses on white subway tile backsplash over honed carrera marble countertops. Warm water and dish soap sprayed onto the counter works perfectly and, for stains, mixing baking soda and water into a paste and leaving overnight lifts many stains out. We are about to choose our kitchen counters (butcher block island and marble perimeter). Polished slabs are slicker, and usually have a reflective, mirror-like shine to them. Do you pick up after yourself each time you use after the kitchen? You may also want to consider our old marble countertops – they’re less porous, but still 100% natural. You must either accept that along with the beauty and durability of marble comes etching (think rose/thorn;), or you’ll make yourself and your family a nervous wreck. I also felt the honed surface was more in keeping with the character of my 1894 farmhouse with its soft, subtle glow. We once lived in a house with a marble entrance hall – now that had patina! As you very well know, that leaves just about everything else with a big fat question mark, including the counters. I was going to use marble on the island with the sink, but worried again after hearing your review and seeing your water stains. Knowing what you can live with and/or not will ensure that you will be happy with the hefty investment in new countertops! Marble counters are bright, elegant, add character and are wonderful to cook on, particularly if you’re baking. I soon will be installing white calcatta marble kitchen counters. And that was the habit of the “old-world” cooks to wash with vinegar to both clean and maintain their marble countertops.

Such a shame to have all that lovely counter space and be afraid to use it. Use a sanding block/sponge to smooth out any nicks and dents it’s ok! A honed surface is still smooth and really isn’t any different to clean than a polished countertop. Created by sanding the marble so that is has a satiny-smooth, almost soft feel, a honed surface doesn’t show as many scratches and flaws as a polished finish, and it also mutes the color of the stone.

Simple drops of water leave a dullness as does using a dry paper towel (you can see the webbed imprint of the paper when you lift it up). The techniques in the manual should do the trick for you, but if the etching is severe, then you may have to hire a pro to re-hone the area so it “blends” with the rest of the surface. It is nonporous, heat and scratch resistant, and easy to clean. This is a shot of that water stains right by the kitchen sink. I’ve never attempted sanding out a scratch because #1. This is not accurate, but since marble etches easily it leads to the mistaken idea that it “stains” easily.

But if all over on most tiles, then ripping out is the only real cure. Finish affects the look and performance of marble countertops; here’s what to know about each. What is this obsession with wanting things to look always new?

Unless you’re willing to buy sight unseen (not recommended), or drive considerable distances, marble purchases are limited to what’s on hand at your local stone supplier’s warehouse. New marble owners are often confused about how to clean marble and properly protect it from stains and other damage. But as we learned above, marble is dense, does not stain easy and does not require a sealer in many cases.

Cranberry juice, markers and sloppy joe’s haven’t made one lasting mark. I highly recommend before you purchase any stone you test a sample piece!
I’m a breath away from having to pull the trigger on countertop options for our kitchen remodel. Again, sealers will help prevent stains, but not etch marks. Certainly, marble can stain and honed marble stains more readily than a polished marble, but the risk is lower than with granite countertops.

So, if it truly is water, then the most likely reason is because your water is acidic. Buy some 0000 grade steel wool pads and lightly sand the area. Some people like a surface that reflects their cooking history, others don’t.

Carrara Marble Honed And Polished Stained And Etched

They just used the countertop and let it age and naturally whatever patina developed. I am having honed marble countertops installed in a couple of days. If you like the polished look, go for one of the harder marbles, because they are inclined to wear less. As marble can also scratch and etch, honed finishes provide comfort in that scratches or etches may better blend into the stone, as opposed to on polished finishes. Polishing works to remove etch marks by removing a thin layer of stone. In the kitchen, we did a natural stain 2″ red oak only because we had original flooring in adjacent rooms. I then let the mixture sit on the etch for 10-15 minutes, and then wipe clean several times using clean water and buff to dry. Polished surfaces are shiny and bright, but they will be worn down in time. I also felt the soft patina of honed marble was more in keeping with my 150 year old farmhouse as opposed to polished (shiny) marble. Or are you a busy on-the-go homeowner, where the kitchen counters won’t necessarily get wiped down until the next morning? Scratches can be distinguished more easily than on a honed slab, and while the polish may add protection against staining, its reflective surface can sometimes take away from the natural look exotic marbles are known for. Are you the type of person that needs a product to look exactly as it did the day you purchased it? We did the countertops in the kitchen and three baths. I will say that the seams are not invisible (mine is white, so harder to hide than darker colors of quartz) so if that kind of thing bothers you, take note. I couldn’t even tell it was honed if you hadn’t said it. If you prefer the worn look, go right for honed and skip the polished. The feel of honed marble would similarly compare to the feel of a chalkboard – dry and soft. It dries streak-free, makes the countertop super-shiny, mild pleasant odor and very inexpensive for professional quality product. I have honed carrera marble and have water spots all over the place! I would be delighted to have an old world look, but the rings and spots make this counter impossible!

Marble is one of the more porous of the metamorphic stones, which is why it’s prone to staining. Marble is prone to etching, so be especially careful with acids—that means pour orange juice carefully and don’t wipe down the counters with vinegar. Rust stains are uniquely difficult and require a more specific formula / method than for coffee or oil or other common marble stains. I’m just not sure how to protect them from stains and water spots or what cleaners to use. There are a lot of choices; entering the warehouse with an idea of the color and the amount of patterning you’re after will make the process faster and more focused. Marble is dense, but soft and abrasive pads will scratch the surface. Suffice it to say that most polished marble does not require a sealer simply because it has such a low rate of absorption that it is naturally stain-resistant.

He applied a generous amount of wax to the spot and used a worn down, previously used 240 grit sanding disc in the direction of the veins, gently rubbing so as not to make the honed finish shiny. Honed marble countertops are a wonderful option if you are worried about reflections and scratches that occur in high traffic areas. I have been debating between the marble and quartz that looks like marble, but my heart keeps going back to the marble. It’s a little more detailed than the ones you show above but it worked out and we are happy. It took two or three times before the spots and etches totally disappeared — along with my angst about permanent spots. I would love to take a sledgehammer to the darned countertop to get rid of myself! We’ve left blueberry’s on the countertop for the day and there has been no problem. Beside white shaker upper cabinets a stainless steel hood is mounted on a honed white marble backsplash positioned over a stainless steel oven range flanked by honed white marble countertops sat atop navy blue shaker cabinets fitted with long brass pulls as a kitchen peninsula is lit by two gold pendants in this stunning white and navy blue kitchen. Gray kitchen features light gray shaker cabinets adorned with bronze hardware paired with honed white marble countertops and a white square tiles backsplash. I’ve literally just printed this post to put in the file for the kitchen make-over. It is the easiest wearing because it won’t show scratches as much, and the dull spots of etching are less noticeable than they are in a polished finish. I could usually tell, after a few conversations, and several pointed questions, who was relaxed enough for these countertop options and who was not. The common (but mistaken) wisdom is that “marble stains easy” so it must always be sealed and often. So, if the liquid sat there overnight say, then you can still get a stain. The cooking school had beautiful honed marble counters and the only thing that they ever cleaned them with was vinegar and water. In fact, if any product or liquid is left in sufficient quantity on the surface it will leave streaks after drying. Some soapstones can look really chalky depending on the level of talc. It will scratch it on a microscopic level which is what you want. In bathrooms, marble countertops are usually not a problem. Etch marks are physical damage to the marble itself so a sealer cannot prevent that in the same way that car wax cannot prevent scratches to your car paint.

Etching is a dull spot that is created on the surface of a countertop when an acid such as lemon juice or vinegar reacts with the calcium carbonate in the marble. And a little etching is like a little ding on the furniture — it’s character! Acid from substances such as red wine, marinara sauce, blueberries and even lemons can tarnish marble if left to sit overnight. I did a ton of research on it, and like marble, everyone had very strong opinions about it. One of my friends just remodeled her kitchen and installed marble that had the shiny surface. Polished marble slabs reflect a mirror-like finish, and are shiny and slick. It does seem like with the use of some good sealants (one mentioned here was porous plus) that many stains and etches can be avoided.

Having a surface in your house, especially a utilitarian kitchen surface, that you are terrified of using for fear of harming is like having a beautiful sofa that no one can sit on. Actually, one could subtract “marble” and insert any other material … Being a product of nature, no two slabs are alike and depending on the type of marble and where it was quarried marbles will stain, etch, chip and scratch differently . I was thinking of covering it with some type of clear acrylic while it is rented. I actually did see a quartzite that looked very much like the grey veined marble. These folks consider marble to be the “jeans of countertops” —wearing and aging gracefully, gaining organic character and being more loved as time passes. Granite and marble are metamorphic stones, hard rocks formed when sediment crystallized under great heat or pressure. They are absolutely no trouble, though being older they already have that patina built from small scratches and polishings. I love the look of marble but as a family that cooks a lot, we have wondered if it would be a bad choice for us. Our kitchen gets lots of light all day since we have windows on the east and west walls and is very bright.

Note that stone sealers prevent staining (liquids absorbing into the surface). One final question – your thoughts on using vinegar, as is suggested old world cooks use in their kitchens? You should still test, but in most cases, sealing is best especially in the kitchen where the risk of staining is high. Note, though, that traditionally marble countertops were not fussed over. And since they are cleaning the entire countertop any etching that occurs will occur evenly and not be noticeable.

Marble has a clean, luxurious appearance, which provides the look of timeless elegance that’s been highly desired for thousands of 4K

On the flip side we did get a beautiful house in the end and we’re really enjoying living in it. It’s particularly important on a polished finish where minor scratches are plainly visible, but also on honed finishes. Some marble countertops will take a sealer even when polished, but again, many won’t need sealing. However, since this is water the other possibility is hard water.

Those counters have seriously made me need to see a therapist. I wont use anything else for countertops in another kitchen of mine again. I have noticed that if we just leave a scratch alone it’s gone within a week due to the amount of natural oils from hands, food, etc. In truth, most polished marble won’t even absorb a sealer so it is a futile exercise and potentially problematic. Polishing still closes the pores but most granite is more absorbent than marble. At least half of all cases of marble damage that we consult with clients about are caused by using the wrong cleaning products or experimenting with homemade concoctions.

After ready your description of the aging process of marble it makes me giddy to think we can get this look. I also have marble counters, walls and floors in my bathrooms and would not want anything else. Nancy (above^) used the term “living” surface, and it is such a great description. I’ve had a marble counter in our ensuite for almost 10 years and again, no problem. I’m thinking perhaps, like marble, limestone quarried from different locals has different properties. I would also like to add that the bold veining and the abundance of veining in my particular marble really helps to camouflage the etching. Calacatta will contain lesser veins, yet the veins will be striking and powerful. I adore it and couldn’t think of a finer island than that piece of marble . My dream has always been to have carrara marble in this space but…we all know it has a reputation for staining easily and requires a good amount of maintenance to keep them sealed. I’ve researched every surface, and feel that marble is the right surface for my house, in spite of the drawbacks. Over time, repeatedly polishing the same area (like your prep area) can lead to the area actually having a depression or divot when compared with the rest of your flat countertop. If you prefer to retain the pristine look of a newly completed kitchen, another countertop may be a better choice. But maintenance and wearability concerns often come up in conversations we have with clients about marble. Marble can be used in the whole kitchen, as a statement for an island top or just in an area used for baking. All of those questions are standard “industry prose” and you need to educate yourself and then stick to your guns if you want marble in your kitchen. It’s good to know what marble is so you know how it behaves. Copper is a living surface and changes daily; something we both enjoy. I almost bought this counter today for our large island, but didn’t. I once had a party and someone put down a yellow, greasy spoon on the counter.

But the beauty about it is that a scratch can heal with a little oil or light sanding.


Isn’t the beauty of the marble that it grows with you and is from the earth? I just read the reply to my post about the water marks (not stains or etching) on my honed marble. Sometimes people have shiny polished marble and want to have a more rustic look. Honed...