In 2022, I installed Ikea’s Kasker White Stone Effect white quartz countertops in my kitchen. Here’s what I wish I’d known before I purchased and installed white Ikea countertops.
In this post, I share:
- 7 things I love about my white countertops
- 5 reality-check downers I didn’t expect when I picked out my counters in the showroom
- Plus three cleaning hacks for cleaning white quartz countertops.
Rather than stark solid white quartz, which I find a bit clinical, I went for a more earthy look by choosing Ikea’s Kasker White Stone Effect countertops (billed, slightly differently, as “Ceasarstone White Stone Marble Effect/Cosmopolitan White” on Ikea’s contractor’s invoice, though I confirmed a few times they were the identical product).
All in all, if I started my Ikea kitchen remodel all over again today, knowing what I know now, I still would buy countertops through Ikea, I definitely would use quartz again, but I might choose a different pattern from the Ceasarstone White Stone Marble Effect. Here’s why:
Things I love about my Ikea White Quartz Countertops
✅ Quartz is Easier to Disinfect
If you’re researching countertops already, much of my list of things I love about my white quartz countertops won’t be new news. But here’s something that might be: researchers say that quartz harbors fewer bacteria than porous alternatives like marble and granite.
✅ White Counters Make my Kitchen Look Brighter
White surfaces reflect light, creating a sense of brightness and luminosity. Compared to dark granite, white counters seemingly magnify the light coming into my kitchen through the windows. Smooth white counters (even when they have a little texture) are a soothing alternative to the strong patterns of dark granite, which can be chaotic. My white countertops make my kitchen feel bright, modern, and more fun to cook in.
I haven’t had my white quartz countertops for long, but I love knowing that they’ll last for many years. They have so far resisted all scratches and stains. Quartz countertops are known for outliving all its cheaper alternatives. With regular everyday use, the surfaces remain in excellent shape for years to come.
White quartz countertops do not stain easily, which is why it is the choice of so many homeowners. Unlike granite and marble, it’s resistant to stains from acids like coffee, tomato sauce, and hot chocolate are just some of them. I love that on my counters, stains are not there to stay. All food spills are removed easily.
✅ Little Maintainance
Most things white are a headache, but white quartz countertops are actually really low maintenance – because there are no microscopic holes that hold the dirt, you can wipe it with a cloth, and you are done. As long as crumbs are wiped away and counters are cleared of food and utensils, my Ikea white countertops make my kitchen look fresh and clean.
✅ It Fits Every Taste
If you are a lover of classic styles, like me, white works! The same goes for owners of modern homes. White is so versatile, and it is always trendy- especially if it has some earthy hues or texture to help ground it and make it look less ultra-modern.
White countertops work in a variety of bathroom or kitchen styles and are not demanding. And if you require ideas – there are thousands of kitchen catalogs using white countertops. A simple search on Pinterest will take you headfirst into the myriad of possible combinations of the versatile white quartz countertop.
✅ Pristine Whiteness or Trendy Veins
I love that my white quartz countertops have veins of grey to help tie them to the grey-toned flooring and help anchor the kitchen in my 110-year-old home. White countertops also have a wide variety of veinings and features that can add some glamour to the whiteness of your countertop. You can choose the style and theme that is the best for your interior design.
✅ Creates the Illusion of Space
My kitchen is borderline tiny (living in 280 square feet for 4 years definitely changed my definition of a “tiny kitchen” but my cottage’s 9×12 kitchen is small by most designers’ standards). I think my Ikea white quartz countertops make the space seem significantly larger. The light refracted by the countertops creates the illusion of a bigger space and is quite the opposite of dark countertops, which can make a kitchen feel smaller.
Reality Check: Reasons Not to get White Quartz Countertops
❌ Quartz isn’t Cheap – Even from Ikea
Quartz is a mid-high cost option for countertops. Although it is not the most expensive material (granite and marble countertops are number one on that list list), quartz does often have installation costs that are higher than usual. However, the costs level out when you consider durability. I considered buying quartz countertops as an investment in a product that would last longer and require less maintence.
❌ Ikea’s White Stone Effect Quartz Countertop Has a Repetitive Pattern
Quartz is man-made to look natural. In my opinion, the veining on Ikea’s white stone effect (aka Ceasarstone cosmopolitan white) is a bit too evenly repetitive for my taste. This pattern repetition was not shown in the in-store sample (which was a small, portable slab). When Ikea’s installers came to put in my countertops, I was surprised by the regularity of the pattern on a material that was expected to look very organic. This is the main reason I might choose another pattern if I started my remodel all over again today.
❌It Shows Crumbs.
Dark, busy countertops- for all their drawbacks- are great at camouflaging some spaghetti sauce droplets or breadcrumbs. But my white quartz countertops definitely highlight any and all spills!
On a white countertop, every little piece of food, drop of oil, or coffee stain will scream for attention until you wipe it off.
💡 If I’m honest, the way my white countertops show dirt and crumbs is kind of a plus for me: when something in my home shows dirt, I’m much better at regularly cleaning it!
❌ White Countertops can be Intimidating.
For those who love to host family meals and share cooking duties, guests might be uncomfortable with clean white countertops at first.
Do you know that feeling of walking into someone’s home that has completely pristine white carpeting? Imagine that feeling in a kitchen if you didn’t know how easy it is to clean quartz!
These countertops can be quite intimidating for your guests, who might refrain from making themselves comfortable or preparing food on your countertop to avoid making a mess.
❌ Quartz is only Sorta Heat-Resistant
Quartz countertops have a heat resistance that is better than cheaper options but not equal to premium countertops. A hot cup of coffee won`t damage my counter, but a burning pan out of the oven would undoubtedly leave a scorch mark!
❌ Challengings Installation
Professionals must install the slabs of quartz countertops, it’s not a DIY upgrade for new homeowners. Quartz counters are heavier than other countertops, so they may need reinforcement, especially if you have an overhang or bar. If you try to install quartz countertops on your own and have no experience, you can make very expensive mistakes.
Cleaning my white quartz countertops is super easy. You can use any mild cleaner you have. Bleach and abrasive cleaners are off-limits and, according to Ikea’s countertop installers, Windex should only be used very occasionally to pop the shine factor up.
If you’re anything like me, before diving into countertop research, you thought “quartz” was the pretty crystal sold in tourist shops and new age giftshops. I didn’t really understand how quartz could be made into countertops until I learned that quartz countertops are a manmade material that is made of 90 percent quartz (a crushed mineral that is not, in fact, always a crystal!), and bound with 10 percent acrylic or epoxy (Pinkus, 2017).
Knowing this helps me better understand how to clean my counters. The epoxy in the structure of the quartz countertop could react to strong chemical cleaners, and you can ruin or scratch the countertop.
Instead, I clean my counters by using a soft cloth to wipe all the residues after cooking. I tackle stubborn stains with a tiny amount of liquid glass cleaner. This article shows that even permanent marker stains can be removed from quartz countertops by soaking the colors with rubbing alcohol. Because the surface of quartz countertops is non-porous, there is no place for the ink or dirt to stick and it’s thankfully fairly easy to remove.
Why are White Quartz Countertops So Popular?
For people in the business of countertops, quartz is one of the preferred materials. It’s been trending for several years now, and even Ikea has multiple options for white quartz countertops (say what you will, but Ikea spends millions of dollars on research to stay ahead of trends and ruthlessly cuts lines when a style begins to wane from favor)
White quartz is very popular for countertops because it fits the needs of different people. It provides an excellent choice for both minimalists and people attracted to traditional interior design. It creates a classy atmosphere of pristine cleanliness.
When you are planning your kitchen or your bathroom, there is a variety of countertops that you might choose. The number of choices can be just mind-boggling. White quartz countertops stand out with their simplicity and class among these options. But just like any material, my white quartz countertops have their pros and cons.
Maynard, Nigel F. “Rock on: should you spec granite in your next kitchen or counter with quartz?.” Residential Architect 9.8 (2005): 101-103.
Pinkus, R. A. (2017). New and Affordable Surface Options for Housing. ARCHITECTURAL RECORD, 205(12), 148-149.