UPDATED: Finishes for natural stone

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When purchasing natural stone for countertops or other uses, there are several different finishes available to choose from. These finishes can make or break the design of your residential or commercial design. 

As one of the leading natural stone wholesalers in the Midwest, our team is very knowledgeable about all things natural stone. In this blog post, we go over the different natural stone finishes available and the benefits of each!

Polished

Polished stone is one of the most popular finishes when it comes to natural stone countertops. This is typically what you picture when you think of granite, marble or other natural stone countertops. A polished finish is achieved by using industrial diamonds with a high grit. This will create a shiny, polished finish to the stone. Other than countertops, polished stone is also used for walls and floor dressings. 

Honed

A honed finish basically consists of a smooth matte or satin finish. It is not as popular as a polished natural stone finish, but it can create a beautiful look. Oftentimes this type of finish is done on flooring. It is a great choice if you don’t want to have that full polished look and want your space to feel a bit contemporary. 

Flamed or thermal

The stone finish that has received a lot of attention lately is flamed! Also known as thermal, a flamed finish is achieved by torching the stone with a hot flame, which creates a thin roughness across the surface of the stone. Flamed stone is the perfect choice for those installing countertops in outdoor kitchens!

Brushed

Another popular stone finish is a brushed stone. Brushed stone is similar to honed stone, as it gives a matte or satin finished look, however, includes more texture than honed. This finish is accomplished by using a steel comb to brush the surface and enhance the natural color all while adding texture. Instead of a contemporary look that you get with honed, this will give you more of a natural, authentic look. It is great for a smoother stone that you want to give a bit of a rustic feel to. 

Sandblasted

Sandblasting is similar to the bush hammer effect. This finish is created by blasting silica sand against the stone through an air gun. It will create very small craters that highlight the color of the stone.

Bush hammered

Lastly, there is bush hammered stone. This look is created by hitting the material manually or mechanically with a masonry tool called a bush hammer. Bush hammering will give uniformly distributed craters of different sizes over the surface of the stone. It is ideal for non-slip or high-trafficked areas.

Narrowing down your countertop material can be hard, but choosing the right stone finish for your design can be even more challenging. When purchasing stone slabs from natural stone wholesalers, keep this stone finishing guide in mind!


Firenze International is one of the best natural stone wholesalers located in the Midwest. To learn more about what we do, or to view our current inventory of stone slabs, visit our website!

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