Granite’s name comes from the Latin word “granum,” or grain. When you look closely at a piece of granite, it’s easy to see why: its crystalline structure is made up of small grains of many different materials. This lends itself to a wide variety of granite types.
That’s one of the many reasons granite countertops are so popular: you can easily choose the type that suits your home best. There’s more to it than just white and black granite rock!
Wondering which types of granite you can choose between? Keep reading to find out about some of your options!
Why Are There Different Types of Granite?
First, you might be wondering why granite comes in different varieties in the first place. Isn’t it just a type of rock?
It is — but it’s a certain type of rock that allows for lots of variation in color and design. The grains within granite are actually made up of minerals. Depending on which minerals compose a piece of granite, you can have many different colors and patterns in the rock.
Granite almost always contains a percentage of quartz and mica, giving it a shimmering finish. In fact, it needs to have a certain percentage of quartz to be defined as granite. But the other minerals in the stone determine its overall color, as well as the other accent colors that you’ll find inside.
The Most Popular Granite Types
When you start shopping for granite countertops, you might quickly become overwhelmed by all the choices out there. But you’re almost certain to run into some of these popular types — here’s what you should know about each one.
Pearl is a type of granite that has a pearlescent finish. This effect comes from a high amount of shimmering mica. However, pearl doesn’t refer to the color of the stone: this type of granite comes in a range of shades from lilac to black.
No matter what color it is, pearl granite tends to be a fairly uniform shade, with small pieces of minerals that have minimal color variation.
If you want to get a marble-like effect from your granite, you might want to opt for a Himalayan White countertop. This stone is white or light gray, with veins of darker gray running throughout it, giving it an appearance that’s similar to marble.
If you want a more traditional white granite stone, White River is a good choice. Although it has veins of darker gray as well, it also has a flecked look that people often associate with granite.
From far away, White River countertops might look pure white. But on closer inspection, you can see not only the gray veins but also flecks of red minerals in the stone.
If you want to go to the darker side of the color spectrum, you might try the popular Uba Tuba stone. It’s a beloved countertop material thanks to its near-black color, although it’s actually dark green if you look closely.
Within the dark stone, you’ll find minerals in shades of gold or cream, and sometimes even vibrant blue. People love that the stone looks neutral from far away, but holds more interest as you get closer. You can also pick a slab with flecks that match the current color scheme of your kitchen.
The Coffee Brown type of granite offers another choice for those who want darker shades. It’s a deep reddish brown that looks chic in an earthy way. Within this stone, you might find flecks in shades of black, cream, or blue.
Colors of the Different Types of Granite
While these are a few granite types you’ll probably find in your search, there are countless more to choose from. If you’re having a hard time narrowing it down, you might try choosing your color first, and then choose a type from within that color range.
Here are the main colors that you can find granite for countertops in.
White granite never looks boring, because it’s always flecked with other colors. The minerals quartz and feldspar give white granite its overall color (and the high concentration of quartz gives it extra shimmer). But many other minerals can change up the overall look.
For example, the Delicatus White type of granite has contrasting black biotite flecks inside, giving it an interesting look.
Potassium feldspar lends pink granite its rosy blush. However, it will also be flecked with white grains of quartz, as well as other flecks in darker shades of brown and black. Although it’s not the most neutral color choice, it can add a touch of bold style to certain kitchens.
If you want something softer than white and more neutral than pink, you could choose a beige or light brown granite. These stones are usually mottled with gray, brown, and black. They can also have touches of other colors, like the red in the Venetian Gold granite type.
You can go a step further with a rich, warm brown granite, like the Coffee Brown type listed above. These shades often have a rustic appeal, and they look nice in a kitchen with touches of wood.
You can also find granite in many vibrant colors if you want a specific, bright look. Choose from shades of red, green, blue, and more. Just remember that you’ll need to be happy with that color in your kitchen for years to come.
This is a trick answer — there’s actually no such thing as black granite rock. Granite needs to be made of at least 20 percent quartz. If it appears as true black, it can’t have enough quartz to be labeled granite.
However, you can still find granite-like black stone sold for countertops: these are actually made of a stone called gabbro.
Which Granite Type Will You Choose?
With so many different granite types and colors on the market, you can easily find something that works for your kitchen. And the best part is that all granite countertops are completely unique because no two stones are the same.
Ready to upgrade your kitchen counters? Make sure to read this guide before you take the plunge!