Types of Stone Flooring

Many people opt to use stone as their primary flooring in their homes.  Its durability and style both make it a great choice for nearly every room in the house.  And with varying colors and types, it can be easy to find the perfect stone for any space.

While this type of flooring is popular, there are a few limitations with certain stones.  Some might be stronger than others, or are available in more colors.  And with a few, homeowners may have to sacrifice durability for style, or vice versa.

Granite

It’s safe to say that granite is one of the most popular flooring options, and it’s easy to see why.  No matter the existing interior, anyone will be able to find granite flooring that works well with their home.  One of the strongest and most scratch-resistant, this igneous rock can be found in endless shades and colors.  It’s ideal for bathrooms, hallways and foyers or could even be used as an accent to other flooring options.  

Marble

While marble is considered by many to be the most luxurious flooring on the market, it doesn’t hold up as well as other stone floorings. Marble is susceptible to scratching and chipping so it requires regular upkeep and sealing.  However, its beauty and elegance is enough for some homeowners to use it regularly throughout their homes! 

Sandstone

Sandstone is created through a natural process that consolidates and crystalizes organic materials, like seashells.  It is rough in texture and is visibly porous.  It’s neutral and spa-like colors and appearance make it a popular choice for bathrooms and showers.

Travertine

Travertine is a type of limestone, and due to its porous cavities, is one of the ‘softest’ floorings on the market.  It can be strengthened by filling these small holes with a cement or resin and then polished.  These pores can also be left unfilled to maintain the rough and natural texture.    

Slate

Slate flooring is one type of stone that works as well outdoors as it does indoors.  It is water resistant and comes in a varying spectrum of rich and earthy tones.  It is naturally textured and provides homeowners with the classic ‘stone’ look.

Most importantly, it’s crucial that natural stones are finished and sealed to maintain their appearance and durability.  Aside from the actual type of stone chosen for flooring, the way in which it’s finished will also change the overall look.   

  • Acid-Washed: This leaves the stone with small, shiny pits on the surface.  It reduces the appearance of scratches as well as softens the shine.
  • Brushed: The surface of the stone is brushed to create a worn look that’s usually achieved over a long period of time.
  • Flamed: This involves heating the surface of the stone then quickly cooling it.  It creates a rough texture that is ideal for areas subjected to moisture, like bathrooms or pool decks.
  • Polished: One of the more popular finishes, polished stone is shiny and mirror-like.  This look is created by using a series of sanding techniques until desired glossiness is achieved.
  • Honed: This type of finish is created by skipping the last step when polishing stone.  It’s much like a matte finish and works well in informal rooms.
  • Saw-Cut Refined: This finish creates a matte look by using a process that removes the most noticeable saw marks from cutting, but doesn’t go as far to create a honed finish.
  • Split-Faced: This is a rough-textured finish, although not as noticeable as flamed stone.  It is usually achieved through hand-cutting at the quarry.  
  • Tumbled: Much like the name implies, the tumbled stone finish is acquired through tumbling the stone pieces with a machine.  Edges are rounded and smooth while preserving the natural pitting in the surface.