Soapstone Countertops (Ultimate Guide)

Welcome to our ultimate guide on beautiful soapstone countertops including a variety of kitchen design ideas.

L shaped kitchen with black soapstone countertops, wood countertop island and white cabinets

So you may be wondering exactly what are soapstone countertops? Soapstone has become an increasingly popular material of choice for kitchen counters due to its beauty and ease of use.

Soapstone’s name is derived from its soap-like surface texture. Similar to granite or marble, it is a natural material and, when used for kitchen countertops, contains higher concentrations of quartz to help make it more durable for day-to-day use.

This stone naturally contains talc, so compared to other stones like quartz or granite, it is a softer material, which is why soapstone with high talc content is a popular material for sculptors. For countertops, materials with lower talc content are recommended as they are more suitable for interior & architectural applications. [toc]

Due to its natural beauty and durability soapstone is often used for applications such as countertops in the kitchen & bathroom, sinks, and fireplace surrounds. Unlike many other counter types, the stone does not need to be sealed or stained; however, many homeowners apply oil or wax to the surface at least twice a year to help keep it looking new.

Soapstone Countertops Pros and Cons

Kitchen with luxury finishes, black soapstone countertop island and white cabinets with white shiplap ceilingPROS:

  • Soapstone is non-porous, meaning unlike granite or other porous stones, you don’t need to seal this material constantly to keep it in shape.
  • Because this material is so dense and non-porous, it doesn’t hold bacteria, doesn’t stain, and is very easy to clean.
  • Unlike other materials with strict lists of cleaning agents that can be used, its surface can easily be cleaned with soap and water or any all-purpose cleaner. Acids from lemons and other fruits won’t really affect the material.
  • You don’t need to seal this material. For maintenance, a layer food-grade mineral oil is enough to maintain its sheen.
  • Easy to resand in case of chips or scratches.
  • Because it is soft, you can easily carve in or fabricate features such as a drainboard or even make an integrated sink using a piece of material.
  • Easy to DIY since you can cut it using diamond-tipped circular saw.
  • Heat-resistant – so there is no worry cracking its surface when you put a hot pan on top of it.
  • It can be used both indoors and outdoors.

Kitchen with slab soapstone and marble countertops and brown island

The combination of white cabinets, white marble and black soapstone, gold metal handles and raw wood perfectly creates this simple and relaxed mid-century modern kitchen look.


  • Price – soapstone can cost as much as premium-grade granite  countertops, which is a harder material
  • Its softness means it is prone to scratches and chipping (which can easily be remedied by sanding)
  • It only comes in 7′ or 84″ lengths, so this means you’ll have to have more seams on your counter if you have a long run.
  • It changes color over time – for some, it can be a pro instead of a con, but do keep it mind that soapstone naturally darkens over time. Adding mineral oil will help speed up this darkening process as well
  • Colors are limited

Soapstone Slab Countertop Cost

Depending on where your stone is sourced and its talc content, it can range from $45 to $85 per square foot. This cost will be affected depending on your location, installation cost (if you’re using professional installers), thickness of your slab, configuration and other special fabrication needs (adding drain-boards, openings for built-ins, etc.

Installed, soapstone can cost around $60 on up to $105 per square foot. They are comparable to the cost of high end granite.

Kitchen with veined soapstone counter island and white cabinetry, subway tile backsplash

A thick slab of soapstone was used to achieve this floating kitchen island look. The bold white streaks on the surface seem to mimic the antiqued finish of the support legs/columns of the kitchen island.

Soapstone Counter Colors

Soapstone naturally comes in very limited colors, mostly in shades of gray. The veining varies from quarry to quarry an can vary from small to large. Although some might contain hints of blue or green, the dominant colors are usually white, gray, or black. Always keep in mind that the stone naturally darkens over time, so take note of that when selecting your color.

Black Soapstone

Soapstones are commonly found in black color with varying vein sizes and patterns, depending on the quarry or source. Most dark gray soapstones will darken to black over time, so do keep that in mind.

Country kitchen with white shaker cabinets, shiplap board walls and black countertops

Unique dark veins adds a subtle pattern and detail to this black soapstone countertop. The dark surface easily complements the all white kitchen cabinets and white wall siding.

Kitchen with white shaker cabinets black counter and marble backsplash

Need softer edges? Soapstone is the way to go! Because the material is soft, it is easier to buff and soften its hard edges and corners. Rounding of edges and corners not only gives a different vibe it also makes your kitchen safer for children and adults alike because there are fewer sharp points to hit accidentally.

Kitchen with dark surface, butcher block island

This French-style kitchen features a unique combination of white kitchen cabinetry paired with black stone and butcher’s block countertops. The matte finish of the countertops aids in toning down the intricacy of the details of the cabinets, giving the kitchen a more contemporary feel.

Kitchen with closed design and soapstone peninsula

Some soapstone counters, like this kitchen peninsula design, have very little/subtle grain patterns. In time, or when applied with layers of mineral oil, it could become dark enough to almost look all-black.

White Soapstone

Don’t expect a pristine white like quartz on soapstones. Most white-background soapstones will have varying amounts of gray veins scattered along, so it would appear more light-gray overall than white. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to find a slab that has more white than gray.

Kitchen with travertine flooring and soapstone top

This kitchen island has a gorgeous white countertop with light gray veining.

Modern kitchen with white solid soapstone tops and gray cabinets

This modern kitchen design features gray cabinetry paired with all-white soapstone counters.

Green Soapstone

Finland green soapstones are famous for this green talc color that gives that green tint to the stone. They come in varying shades of green as well.

Kitchen with green soapstone and wood cabinets

While most soapstone comes in various shades of gray, white, and black, you can also find slabs with hints of green undertones like this Finland green soapstone counter. It has unique and striking white vein patterns that make the countertop surface pop out a little better against the wooden cabinetry.

Kitchen with dark green soapstone with veins for counters

This French-inspired kitchen definitely maximized the use of space and storage for this kitchen design. The bold white streaks on the dark green stone countertop add a striking accent to the large slab used on the kitchen island.

Gray Soapstone

Gray soapstone often has striking white veins that look impressive and can provide a lighter backdrop. They can be used for island countertops, waterfall countertops and backsplash with great results.

Contemporary kitchen with darker hued soapstone backsplash and countertop

This kitchen uses gorgeous gray slabs of stone on the kitchen island, countertop, and even the backsplash. The gorgeous white vein details against the gray countertop surface adds a more modern feel to the traditional style kitchen.

Contemporary kitchen with peninsula, stone counters, exposed beams and shaker style cabinets

Dark gray surfaces perfectly match with the the white and gray marble subway tiles and also stands-out well against the all-white kitchen cabinets.

Kitchen with large island, white barn door style cabinets

White farmhouse style kitchen cabinets combined with dark gray counters and backsplash create a very bold contemporary look that is both avant-garde and timeless.

Faux Soapstone Counters

If you like the look of soapstone but don’t want to deal with the constant dents and scratches, then making a faux counter might be the best solution. First off, you can also consider soapstone-mix, which was already combined with quartz. This alternative makes the surface harder and, therefore, more suitable for kitchen counter use.

Otherwise, if you’re on a tight budget, you can just make a faux stone counter. There are different possible materials to do this, but among the popular ones are laminates (which can look obvious), using paint or epoxy. If you’re DIY’ing, choose the method that best matches your current equipment and skill set!

There are also many types of quartz countertops that can provide a similar appearance to soapstone.

Caring for Soapstone Surfaces

Beautiful open kitchen with wraparound countertops, white marble island and glass cabinets

The non-porous quality of soapstone makes it easy to clean as it does not hold stains. Any minor nicks or scratches can also be rectified by light sanding and a layer of food-grade mineral oil. Since this material doesn’t need to be sealed, occasional sanding and mineral oil are all that is needed to maintain this material.

DIY Soapstone Slab Countertops

As soapstone is a soft material, it’s easier to cut than most other countertop surface materials, so it will save you costs if you have basic DIY knowledge.

Here’s our simple recommended DIY method for cutting soapstone:

  1. Use a thin sheet of plywood to serve as a cut-out template. This way, any measurement mistakes will be minimized (and will be less costly!). Once you get the plywood cut-outs finished, you can use these measurements as the cutting guide for the surface.
  2. Use a knife to score/mark the edges on the material, using your plywood template as guide.
  3. Prepare your cutting table/surface. Make sure it is level to avoid chipping and damage to your stone.
  4. Use a circular saw or a jigsaw and attach diamond-tipped blades. Don’t forget to cover the sides of the saw blade with tape to avoid damaging the stone.
  5. Wear your safety gear and proceed cutting at half the thickness of the stone, the cut the remaining depth after. Both wet and dry cutting is possible.
  6. Sand the edges of the sandstone, starting with an 80-grit, increasing the grit gradually to smooth the surface.
  7. Optional: Add a layer of mineral oil to add sheen and darken the surface.

Where to Buy Soapstone

Depending on your location, slab availability and types would vary. Most builder supply & hardware stores with other stones, such as granite, would also probably have soapstone.

You can also search for natural stone stores/specialists in your area for more selections, detailed recommendations, and installation guides. Many stone suppliers can also deliver and accept orders online, so if time and convenience are an issue, a simple internet search will give you a list of suppliers around your area.

Soapstone Kitchen Countertop Ideas

Kitchen with slab backsplash in soapstone and white marble island

This stunning kitchen design features black soapstone countertops and backsplash contrasting with a white marble island with gray base cabinet. The main kitchen cabinets are all in white with a rich wood flooring throughout the layout.

Kitchen with brown quartz counter, soapstone and textured backsplash

The soft sheen of the black slabs used on the main countertop contrasts nicely with the shiny surface of the beige quartz used on the kitchen island top. The black also adds a nice depth and color contrast since most of the space uses white or light shades of brown/beige.

Kitchen with black and white soapstone, recessed panel cabinets and arabesque tile backsplash

This kitchen walks the line between light and dark with a black cabinet top, paired with a white soapstone countertop island. The island itself has a dark gray base cabinet, while the main kitchen cabinets are white. A white Arabesque tile backsplash helps to add cohesiveness and keep things looking bright.

Country kitchen with green island

Rustic sage green definitely adds a cool and funky pop to this all-white kitchen set-up, with the addition of black countertops to complete the simple yet bold look of this kitchen space.

Kitchen with wood grain cabinetry and two tone soapstone

Can’t decide between soapstone and marble? Why not use both? This stone combination has that softer look and looks good in any space, whether in more traditional or more modern spaces!

Contemporary design kitchen with solid slab surfaces

This white kitchen features black countertops all throughout, paired with a mosaic marble backsplash to add a little pattern and texture to the walls.

Kitchen with quartz countertops and soapstone with distressed wood island

Since the majority of the kitchen uses weathered wood and other variations of wood finishes, the dark and solid color of the black surface on the kitchen island is a welcome contrast to the otherwise muted palette of the space.

Kitchen with brick accent wall and natural stone matte countertops

It’s just lovely to see how the old architectural elements/finishes are kept intact in this kitchen design, giving it more personality. The old bricks and wood help add a rustic element to the simple white and black theme of the kitchen that uses white cabinetry and a black counter surface.

Kitchen with rustic beams, barstools and distressed floors

Old and weathered hardwood floors and wooden beams look grungy and bold, but are toned down with the combination of white cabinets and dark stone counters. The addition of natural oak barstools helps add a little warmth to the space.

Kitchen with quartz thick slab and thinner soapstone

Soapstone counters are definitely one of the best go-to materials if you’re going for that clean Scandinavian look. The signature matte white cabinets definitely works well with the subtle sheen of the black countertop.

Kitchen with grey Italian soapstone and flat door cabinets

Since the kitchen flooring of this design already uses black slate, the gray-soapstone slabs used for the countertops are light gray instead of the usual darker shades. The subtle gradation of colors gives a more balanced and more dynamic feel to the minimalist design of the space.

Kitchen with honed soapstone and stainless steel appliances and finishes

The slab used in this kitchen has a very unique swirly pattern that by itself serves as the focal point of the whole kitchen-living space.

Kitchen with gray soapstone breakfast bar island and countertops

This kitchen features a lovely gray-soapstone breakfast bar island with a two-tiered design for meal preparation and bar stool height seating.

Kitchen with pretty soapstone apron sink, counter and backsplash

One of the additional advantages of this stone is that you can make a sink using the same material as well as carve a drainboard on it. This example shows a kitchen sink made out of the same material as the counters, as well as a carved drainboard by the sink to help maintain a neat and dry counter.

U shaped kitchen with u-shape, soapstone and small marble counter

Complementing the small, well-planned white kitchen space are black soapstone countertops. The counters and cabinets were custom-built to fit perfectly in the small space while still providing ample space and storage for functional use. See more gray and white kitchen designs here.

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One Comment

  1. There’s no such thing as white soapstone, according to the M. Teixiera Soapstone website. This is a different type of stone marketed as “soapstone” to unsuspecting customers. Other stones are also falsely labeled as soapstone and do not have the same properties, so people need to do their research.

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