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What are the different types of stone surface finishes?

The surface of granite and marble is, typically, brought to a high polish. In the case of limestone, the finish will usually be honed, or matte.

Below are a few of the finishes you will, occasionally, see on the various materials in our showroom. However, all of the stone we receive is not available in every finish listed.

Polished

A glossy finish which is highly reflective and smooth to the touch – usually found on granite and marble. This is the least porous of the available finishes.

Honed

A smooth, matte finish which is not reflective and has a soft look and feel – is a standard finish on limestone and travertine which do not take a polish. Honing a polished material opens the pores making it more susceptible to staining. “Honing” will fade the color of the stone which can be noticed more on dark materials than lighter ones. A color enhancing sealer can be applied to restore the color (if desired).

Antiqued

A style of finishes rather than a particular finish – leathered, river washed, and tumbled finishes are all examples of an antiqued finish. Sometimes a leathered finish is called an antiqued finish.

Leathered

Adds texture to the finish, closes the pores, and retains the color better than honing. A leathered finish has a slight sheen, but is not reflective like a polished surface. Leathering starts with a honed surface and adds texture, and is a completely different process than river-washed.

River-Washed

A pre-cursor to the leather finish – a slab must be flamed before it is river-washed. Then it is blasted with various types of materials (instead of sand) creating different effects. The color will fade, “gray out”, even more so than honing. This finish is best for decorative uses.

Flamed

A very rough- textured finish applied to granite only using an extremely hot flame causing the mineral crystals to pop out – flamed finishes are best used for exterior purposes, like walkways.

Bush Hammered

A textured surface, uniform and rougher than leathering, that will fade out the color of the stone to a greater extent than honing – best for exterior use, this finish can be applied to any stone.

Sandblasted

A matte-textured, faded finish with no gloss achieved by a steady pressure wash of sand and water – the finish is very porous and hard to clean making is suitable for decorative use only.

Brushed

A term used to describe either a leather finish or a river-washed finish, although there are very distinct differences between these two finishes.