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A polished finish achieves a glossy mirror-like surface. This is the most popular type of finish for granite countertops because it makes the full structure, depth, and colour of the stone visible with a reflective, shiny surface. A polished finish can also highlight all the unique characteristics of the stone slab you select.
Polished finish is also popular because it’s easy to clean and it helps the stone resist stains. The polish finishing process seals more pores in the surface than other finishes to repel water and moisture.
A leathered finish is a new finishing style that is becoming more popular. To achieve this finish, the process first begins with a honed surface. Diamond-tipped brushes are then run over the surface to add texture in the form of subtle dimples. A leathered finish can make granite appear even more sophisticated and increase the stain resistance compared to a honed finish. It also tends to retain the natural colour of the stone that can be washed out with a honed finish.
Also known as a matte or buffed finish, honed granite has a very smooth surface with no reflection. This finish is achieved by ending the finishing process before the stone is buffed. Honed granite will have a much flatter finish than you will see with a full polish. Honed granite is most popular for floors because a polished finish can become very slippery, but it can be used for countertops as well.
Flamed granite creates a unique surface that’s especially popular for outdoor kitchens. To create this finish, the granite is heated under intense temperatures using a controlled finishing process that causes grains in the stone to burst and change color. This process creates a rougher, textured surface with a natural, faded appearance. Flamed granite usually produces muted colors.
Flamed finishes work well in areas prone to moisture, such as uncovered outdoor kitchens, but they can also be used indoors.
A bush hammer is a specialized stone-working hammer with a head that resembles a meat tenderizing hammer. Because the head of the hammer is usually small (about 1-2 inches square) it takes a long time to apply this finish to a large surface area. The result leaves the surface of the stone fairly smooth with small indentations. A bush-hammered finish can be applied to nearly all stones
In sandblasting, a high-pressure jet of siliceous sand or steel shots is applied to the area to be treated. This treatment produces a smooth abrasion, leaving the material with a slightly scratched (but not rugged) surface. The colour tones and the veins are slightly dulled
La Potra finish is a combination of matt and gloss, less reflective and has a granular worn-out but highly elegant look. The slabs are brushed, polished & again brushed for a combination of polished & honed finish.
This process entails passing a blowpipe that emits a high-temperature flame over the surface to be treated. The heat acts by blowing the crystals out as they suffer thermal shock, with an effect that is particularly evident in materials composed of minerals with various degrees of expansion, (such as the vast majority of granites). The resulting surface is rough, non-slip and generally faded in colour, thereby hiding defects and tone variations. Because of oxidation, yellow materials become orange or red.
This surface can be achieved by machines that resemble commercial washing machines for smaller items or by first flaming and then using abrasives to brush the surface of larger items. It gives a worn look to the stone and also stimulates its further aging over time. The antique finish is quite popular as it makes the stone look more attractive, while also enhancing its durability. You can find it also as vintage finishing.
A bush-hammered and brushed effect is obtained by pounding the material surface mechanically or by hand with a specific multi-pointed tool. This method creates a rugged surface full of little grazes at the impact points, giving the surface a lighter colour. The surface becomes non-slip. This technique has been replaced by flaming and pressure water finishing which is a quicker and less expensive process.
The natural finish is basically the absence of treatment. The stone is sold as extracted from the quarry, once cut into the desired format. The final look depends entirely on the characteristics of the stone and its exploitation. This finish is appropriated for cladding and cobblestones.
A high pressure jet of water is applied to the stone surface in order to wash out the softer particles. The resulting surface resembles the flamed finished one in roughness but the method does not affect the colour of the stone, unlike the heating process. Therefore, most people prefer water to flamed finish. The surface is less slippery.
The split face finish is a result of the stone being cut by a guillotine that fractures the face and turns it to a rocky finish.
This finish is created by “sawing” the stone with diamond disc teeth. It produces a somewhat rough and irregular surface with small furrows and undulations. Sawn finish makes the stone lighter and gives it a matte tone. Sawn finish is available for external paving, steps, pathways, driveways and patios.