The 5 Best Laminate or Formica Countertops
Back in the day (you know, 30 years ago), laminate countertops were the most POPULAR choice for kitchen countertops; you’d be hard-pressed to see much else. And with the popularity of quartz and granite countertops in the last 20 years or so, laminate has got a reputation of being a ‘cheap’ alternative.
Don’t get me wrong; laminate countertops ARE affordable compared to quartz and granite – drastically. However, the word CHEAP offers a passive suggestion that a product is a low price AND low quality – which just isn’t the case.
Along with being an affordable alternative, laminate countertops are pretty darn hard. Of course, they aren’t as rock solid as quartz and granite, but this doesn’t make them a bad choice for the price point. In fact, laminate can be a wise investment for those on a budget.
Nowadays, laminate countertops ‘rock’ because not only are they super durable – they look like the real thing! Quartz, granite, marble, soapstone – you name it, laminate has come a long way in its effort to look like the real thing while staying SUPER budget-friendly!
And while there are a few big names in the laminate countertop world, it’s Formica, Wilsonart and Arborite that stand out as leaders in the style dept., as shown in these photos…
(click on the underlined name to view the product on their website, but please keep in mind that those site images aren’t often great examples)
REMEMBER, countertops usually come in a VARIETY of finishes (matte, etched, honed, etc…) – check out your OPTIONS before you order!
SUMMARY OF THE MOST POPULAR LAMINATE COUNTERTOPS
Here’s a quick rundown of the best laminate countertops. Keep reading for photos and in-depth tips and ideas!
- FORMICA CARRARA BIANCO LAMINATE COUNTERTOP
- ARBORITE TYPHOON BORDEAUX LAMINATE COUNTERTOP
- FORMICA JET SEQUOIA LAMINATE COUNTERTOP
- FORMICA SOAPSTONE SEQUOIA
- FORMICA CALACATTA MARBLE LAMINATE COUNTERTOP
1. FORMICA CARRARA BIANCO LAMINATE COUNTERTOP
Carrara Bianco is my fave these days. Mimicking the LOOK of marble, Carrara Bianco laminate has a gorgeous white base with subtle gray veining. And remember, EVERY gray will have undertones, so choose yours wisely! These gray veins lean slightly into a violet undertone.
And seriously, its online image is terrible as it looks 1980s tobacco yellow – trust me, it’s not. Check it out below for a real-life view.
LAMINATE COUNTERTOPS THAT LOOK LIKE MARBLE
Wilsonart White Carrara (terrible online image)
2. ARBORITE TYPHOON BORDEAUX LAMINATE COUNTERTOP
Typhoon Bordeaux is a gorgeous product with its cool grayish-blue tones and rust-colored veining. Because it has a soft white base, it’s easy to coordinate with cabinets, flooring and backsplash. This countertop was designed to look like granite.
Sorry about the terrible photo; this was taken during my early days
In a bathroom, it’s a soft and subtle way to add some interest. In a kitchen, you won’t have to wipe the counters for days as these bad boys will hide all of your sins!
TYPHOON BORDEAUX LOOKS GOOD WITH
COUNTERTOPS WITH SIMILAR INTENTIONS
3. FORMICA JET SEQUOIA LAMINATE COUNTERTOP
Jet Sequoia is a great way to get a high-end, high-gloss look without breaking the bank. This countertop is predominantly black, with a subtle grayish-white vein running through it.
THIS BLACK MARBLE-LOOK COUNTERTOP LOOKS GOOD WITH
- cherry cabinets
- white cabinets
- painted gray cabinets
COUNTERTOPS WITH SIMILAR INTENTIONS
And while it’s a bit grayer, I also love Formica Paloma Dark Gray
4. FORMICA SOAPSTONE SEQUOIA LAMINATE COUNTERTOP
This countertop was designed to mimic soapstone, so it doesn’t have the high gloss finish that you see on some of the other popular countertops. We lived with it for two years before we moved, and I loved every minute of it – it hid so many crumbs I rarely had to wipe. It was FAR easier to keep looking nice than our quartz island countertop.
To see more, check out this blog post… Kitchen Makeover – Maple No More!
COUNTERTOPS WITH A SIMILAR LOOK
Wilsonart Potter’s Clay (looks WAY warmer online)
Formica Silver Quartzite (online image is GROSS, check it out in real-life)
5. FORMICA CALACATTA MARBLE LAMINATE COUNTERTOP
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE marble, but the maintenance part of it is a deal-breaker for me. And believe it or not, you can get the lovely look of marble without the hassle with Calacatta Marble by Formica!
Calacatta Marble is an imitation marble that almost puts the real thing to shame! And not only does it look great, but it’s also 10x easier to maintain!
To see more of this bathroom, check out this blog post… A Marble Inspired Ensuite Bathroom
CALACATTA MARBLE COUNTERTOP LOOKS GREAT WITH
So, you can spend all of your money if you want OR you can choose one of these uber-fab countertops to update your kitchen and add some serious visual value!
Check out my affordable E-Decorating and Color Consulting Services
Originally written in 2017, updated in 2022 for content and photos