Marble vs Soapstone Countertops
Marble and soapstone are often used in luxury home design. Both stones are suitable for kitchen, bath or bar countertops. While they both offer class and elegance, the color and style of the stones are likely to be the deciding factor for most consumers.
Marble is generally white or grey with darker gray veins. While there are some black marble products on the market, they are less common than traditional marble, and often not available locally. Traditional marble is known for its brightness, and shiny finish.
Soapstone is darker than most marble, and it often darkens further with age. Color choices are limited to the gray/charcoal family. The surface is far more muted, and it doesn’t have the same glossy feel of marble. While soapstone fits well into modern and elegant designs, it is much more rustic and worn in appearance. Soapstone is not used as frequently for countertops as marble or granite, so it tends to give rooms a very unique feel.
Neither of the stones are ideal for heavy abuse. While they are both fairly durable, they are usually selected for their visual impact and style over durability. For high traffic areas, consider granite or quartz.
Marble and Soapstone Comparison
- About $50 to $150 per square foot installed
- Softer than marble, more susceptible to chips and cracks
- Darker appearance with more of a muted tone
- Requires less maintenance than marble
- Requires regular cleaning and mineral oil application
- Nonporous, doesn’t absorb spills or stain as easily
- Resistant to acids and alkalis
- High heat tolerance
- Ages well, natural patina
- About $60 to $300 per square foot installed
- Brighter appearance than soapstone
- Requires sealing about twice per year
- Porous, can stain/etch if acidic foods or harsh substances are absorbed
- Sensitive to many chemicals
- Requires more vigilant cleanup, more maintenance than soapstone
- Stays cool, great for baking
- Unmatched elegance
So which will you choose? If you’re going for a more natural look, and like a darker, flatter finish, you’ll probably prefer soapstone. If you design calls for a brighter, more traditional elegance, marble might be the way to go. If you’re in the process of choosing between marble and soapstone, visit our Wichita showroom to browse some samples. Or feel free call us at to learn more about which countertop material might be right for your project.
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