Why Isn't My Granite Super High Gloss Shiny

by Cheryl
(Canada)

QUESTION:

We had a granite counter top installed two years ago. I have noticed a few pits in it and it does not appear like it has a thick coating of gloss on it. Why?


Also, when should I reseal it and will that give it a shinier look? It has lots of browns and creams and golds in it.

ANSWER:

First, just to clarify the gloss on granite countertops or any stone is not "applied". There is no "coating" and it does not come from some product put on the surface.

The shine or "polish" comes from grinding and polishing using special abrasives and huge machines at the factory.

You may notice other granite countertops that appear more shiny than yours because some varieties of granite take a shine better and will get more glossy when polished.

Also, darker granite colors blues, blacks and greens can often appear more shiny.

To enhance the shine on your kitchen countertop I suggest stop using dish soap or any type of soap to clean the surface if you are doing so. Soap builds up and dulls the shine.

Instead use a good granite cleaner that conditions the stone like this Marble & Granite Countertop Cleaning spray, which contains optical brighteners and dries streak-free.

Also, you can use DAZZLE Polish, which is not permanent, but will enhance or maximize the shine on a polished surface.

Just FYI... you do not want to apply any type of permanent topical coating. Bad for the stone and many will create additional maintenance issues.

Regarding sealing... you simply need to do the test for sealing granite to determine when/if it needs re-sealing.

But sealing will not add any shine since it absorbs into the pores of the stone below the surface.

Hope this helps clarify the issue for you.

granite countertop cleanerGood Luck,
Ryan

P.S. Get all the facts and simple step-by-step solutions to any problem with our Granite & Marble Maintenance Manuals.

Find the recommended best product brands for cleaning marble, sealing, cleaning granite countertops, quartz and all natural stone.



Comments for Why Isn't My Granite Super High Gloss Shiny

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WRONG!
by: Anonymous

You are wrong when you state, "just to clarify the gloss on granite countertops or any stone is not "applied". There is no "coating" and it does not come from some product put on the surface."

I watched the installers apply a clear, thick, shiny coating to my granite countertops, which stayed shiny for about 6 months.

Now, the clear coating is broken up, and feels awful to touch - like the countertop feels dirty all the time.

I've been searching for what to do & read your comment.

==== Countertop Specialty comment:

You are correct that there are coatings that can be applied to add a gloss to granite or any surface you apply the coating too... like wood or metal.

BUT this is the very rare exception and NOT the standard method.

I've no idea why your fabricator would immediately put such a coating on a newly installed granite countertop, but usually this is only done to compensate for some fairly major defect.

The vast majority (like 99.5%) of all polished granite countertops in existence were physically polished to a shiny finish on huge industrial machines at the factory where granite slabs are cut and processed.

Thus the shine on essentially ALL granite countertops is inherent to the stone itself. And it is wrong to think that applying a "granite polish" is how you make it shinier.

If a shine came from applying a product, then pretty much every granite countertop out there would look dull, old, and worn after a year or two. But they don't.

The shine lasts for years and years. Pretty much for the entire life of the granite countertop.

Yes, there are situation and circumstances that can dull the finish (repeated use of acidic cleaners) or simply make it appear dull (soap films, hard water films). But the shine does not wear away on granite.

A finish or shine on marble can wear away because marble is soft.

Granite is so hard that it doesn't really wear down or wear out including the shiny finish. Again, that's because the shine is a physical characteristic of the stone itself.

Just like glass is processed into a super-reflective "mirror". Granite is processed into a shiny, reflective surface as well.

The reflection in the mirror does not come from applying Windex or any other product. It's part of the glass.

It's the same with granite countertops. The finish is physically created and part of the stone.

The polished slabs from the factory are then cut to match your countertop dimensions and the cut edges are polished by hand (using special diamond abrasives and power tools) during the installation at your house so the edges are shiny like the top surface.

Just FYI... granite countertops can have other types of finishes as well. Not all are a shiny "polished" finish.

You can have a non-reflective matte finish called a "honed" finish or various other types such as: leathered, flamed, hammered, brushed, etc.

Applying a coating is usually a last resort and bad news for exactly the problems you are describing. Now instead of a granite countertop you have some type of epoxy or polyester coating countertop.

These coatings need to be maintained which is different than maintaining a granite countertop. The coatings often break down, turn yellow, look plastic, and generally don't last.

We always advise against applying such coatings except to solve a problem that cannot be solved any other way.

The one situation we would recommend a coating is when a low-grade bad slab has been installed.

Sometimes these low-grade slabs cannot be polished to a shine very well and may be gritty or rough in areas. A coating can help solve this problem.

Granite and marble coatings have evolved and become much better and there are some situations where a coating makes sense, however, usually coatings should be avoided.

So, when we say that the "shine" on granite does not come from some product applied we are not meaning to say that it is never the case or impossible to do.

Only that for 99% of polished granite countertops, the shine is not from a coating or some product applied to the stone. It is a physical characteristic of the stone itself.

It is false to think that applying some simple common product is how granite is made shiny.

It is possible to apply a semi-permanent glossy coating, but this is rare, often looks bad, usually not a good idea, and absolutely not how the shiny finish on a new granite countertop is created.

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