Can Quartz Countertops be Not Shiny?

Quartz countertops are an increasingly popular option for home kitchens and bathrooms due to their durability, ease of maintenance, and stylish appearance. However, some homeowners may be disappointed if their new quartz countertops look less glossy and reflective than they expected. The good news is that there are ways to restore or enhance the shine if desired. Here is an in-depth look at why quartz may not look as shiny as other materials, and what can be done about it.

What Makes Countertops Shiny?

The shine or glossiness of any countertop material is determined by two main factors:

Surface Finish

  • Countertop materials like granite and marble are often polished to a glossy finish during fabrication. This exposes the crystalline structure of the stone, allowing light to reflect brightly off the surface.
  • Engineered stones like quartz have less visible crystalline patterns. While a polished finish is still applied, the end result is often a more matte or subtly reflective surface.

Sealers and Top Coats

  • Natural stone countertops require regular sealing to prevent stains and etching. Sealers fill microscopic pores, resulting in a smooth glossy finish.
  • Quartz is non-porous so does not require sealing. Some manufacturers apply top coat finishes for extra protection and sheen. But most quartz has only a light polymer coating.

Why Might Quartz Look Less Shiny?

There are a few reasons why quartz countertops may not look as reflective as expected:

Matte Finish

  • Many popular quartz styles mimick natural stone but have a deliberately subdued matte finish. This more muted look is attractive but less shiny.
  • A honed or leathered finish will look even less glossy compared to a polished quartz surface. This is a design choice.

Loss of Gloss Over Time

  • Quartz is very durable, but the top coat can gradually erode with regular use and cleaning. This causes a gradual loss of gloss.
  • Exposure to sunlight can also degrade the polymer finish resulting in a flatter appearance over years of use.

Etching and Scratches

  • While quartz resists most damage, improper cleaning or accidents can damage the surface. Etching from acidic spills or scratches from cutting directly on the counter will make it look worn and dull.

Variation Between Slabs

  • Since quartz slabs are man-made, there can be natural variation between pieces. So two slabs from the same manufacturer may have slightly different surface gloss.

How to Make Quartz Countertops Shinier

If your quartz countertops are looking a little lackluster, there are DIY and professional options to restore the gloss:

Clean Thoroughly

  • Use a stone-safe cleaner to remove any dirt, grime, or wax buildup that may be dulling the surface shine.
  • For stubborn spots, try a mild scrub with baking soda and water. Rinse well and dry completely.

Apply Surface Sealant

  • Applying a UV-resistant stone sealer formulated for quartz every 1-2 years will enhance the gloss while protecting the finish.
  • Opt for a no-sheen or low-sheen sealer to avoid a artificial plastic-like luster.

Professional Refinishing

  • Quartz countertop professionals can meticulously polish out scratches and etch marks then apply new glossy top coat layers to badly dulled quartz.
  • Refinishing restores like-new shine and protection. Results last 2-5 years before needing a reapplication.

Accept the Matte Look

  • Keep in mind, quartz will never look as glassy as polished granite or marble. If you learn to appreciate the understated matte finish, rejuvenation may not be necessary.
  • A flat sheen better hides fingerprints and watermarks day-to-day.

Maintaining the Shine

Regular care is needed to keep quartz counters looking their best:

  • Wipe up spills immediately to prevent etching.
  • Avoid abrasive cleaners and scouring pads.
  • Use a cutting board instead of cutting directly on the quartz.
  • Reapply sealer every 1-2 years.
  • Consider professional refinishing every 3-5 years to restore gloss.
  • Rotate extremely hot pots and pans on the surface to prevent localized dulling.

With proper care and occasional refinishing, quartz countertops can maintain their shine and gorgeous good looks for years before needing replacement. Don’t hesitate to reach out to a professional if your quartz ever appears cloudy, scratched, or just lacks the beautiful luster you desire.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I make my matte quartz counters shiny?

Yes, while a matte finish is inherent to certain quartz styles and colors, you can enhance the gloss by sealing, polishing and refinishing the surface. Professional application of a glossy top coat can make a big improvement.

How often should I seal my quartz countertops?

Though sealing isn’t essential for non-porous quartz, applying a stone sealer every 1-2 years will help retain maximum shine and prevent staining. Reapply anytime the surface seems to lose its luster.

What is the most shiny quartz material?

Quartz containing a higher ratio of clear quartz crystals will reflect more light for a brighter gloss. Caesarstone, Cambria, and Silestone make very shiny and lustrous quartz options. But even the shiniest quartz has less shine than polished granite or marble.

Can I make a scratched quartz countertop shiny again?

Yes, light scratches and scuffs can be buffed out by a professional quartz fabricator. Damaged areas are re-polished and recoated with glossy sealant. For deep scratches, the damaged section may need replacing if refinishing doesn’t fully remove the flaw.

Should I avoid matte quartz if I want a shiny counter?

A matte finish will never look highly glossy. Stick with polished, brilliant, or luminescent quartz finishes if you want a countertop with maximum radiance and shine. Matte works best for a more modern, concrete-like look.


While quartz countertops may not look as glassy and wet as other natural stone surfaces, there are techniques to enhance their shine if desired. Thorough cleaning, resealing, polishing, and refinishing can all help restore a like-new glossy appearance over time. With proper care and maintenance, quartz can retain its luminous shine for many years of daily use.