Can You Change Color of Quartz Countertops?

Quartz countertops are an increasingly popular choice for kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects. Made from ground quartz crystals combined with resins and pigments, quartz offers an attractive, durable, and low-maintenance surface. However, one downside for some homeowners is that quartz countertops cannot easily be refinished or recolored like some other materials. So can you change the color of quartz countertops if you later want to update your kitchen or bath with a fresh look? Let’s explore the possibilities.

What Options Exist for Changing Quartz Color?

Unfortunately, the short answer is that once quartz countertops are fabricated and installed, the color is set and cannot be altered. Here are the main reasons why:

Quartz is Not a Natural Stone

Unlike granite, marble or other natural stones, quartz is an engineered composite material. The resins that bond together the quartz crystals and give the material its hardness also make it impervious to any dyes or coloring agents attempting to penetrate the surface.

Pigments Run Throughout Slabs

The pigments that tint quartz slabs are blended throughout the entire thickness of the material during manufacturing. Unlike a surface coating, this coloration cannot be scrubbed or sanded away.

Finishes Cannot Be Stripped

Quartz slabs come pre-finished with a gloss, matte, or textured surface polish that is also permanent. Attempting to strip or sand this finish will damage the material.

So in summary, the pigments and polymers that color and strengthen quartz slabs mean you cannot alter their original factory-produced color.

What If You Really Want a Color Change?

If you absolutely need to change the color of your existing quartz countertops, your only real option is a complete replacement. However, this is an expensive and labor-intensive process:

  • Quartz countertops must be carefully removed and discarded, often damaging cabinets, walls, and backsplashes in the process.
  • New slabs in the preferred color will need to be templated, fabricated, and installed.
  • Connecting seams may be visible and require extra work to blend.
  • Appliances, sinks, and faucets will likely need to be disconnected, removed, and reinstalled.

So a full replacement of quartz counters should only be considered as a last resort. Expect the project to take several days and cost thousands in labor and materials.

Alternatives to Changing the Color

Thankfully, there are some creative alternatives to refinishing that allow you to alter the look of your quartz countertops without taking on a full replacement:

Add an Accent Color

Introducing a contrasting color can transform the whole look of your counters. Glass, tile, or stone mosaic backsplashes in a bold shade complimentary to your cabinets can make the counters pop. Undermount sinks in metal finishes like copper or gold can also shift the color palette.

Change the Finish

Many manufacturers offer quartz in both glossy and matte or textured finishes. Switching from a polished to an earthy leathered finish can impart an entirely fresh feel without replacing the slabs.

Update Cabinets and Paint Colors

Adjusting wall colors and cabinetry finishes can make existing counters coordinate with a new style. Warmer paint shades, different hardware, or refinished cabinets can give the same quartz counters a brand new look.

Add New Backlighting or Accessories

Task lighting, pendant lights, mirrors, fruit bowls, soap dispensers, and other decorative accessories can help change the ambiance and feel of your space without the expense of new countertops.

FAQs About Changing Quartz Color

Some common questions about altering quartz countertop color include:

Can you stain quartz countertops?

No, stains cannot penetrate or bond to quartz surfaces. The resins cause liquids to bead up rather than absorb.

Can you etch designs or patterns into quartz?

Etching or engraving quartz is not recommended as it damages the protective finish.

Can you refinish quartz with an epoxy resin coating?

Epoxy resins only bond to the surface and will eventually peel or chip off.

Can you bleach or use chemical cleaners to lighten the color?

No harsh cleaners or chemicals will alter the color as pigments run through the full slab thickness.


While quartz offers many benefits, inherent characteristics of the engineered stone limit the ability to refinish or change its color. A full replacement of counters is the only option but comes at a high cost. For most homeowners, creative design tweaks provide attractive, lower-cost ways to give quartz counters a fresh new look. With smart lighting and décor that complements the existing counters, you can achieve a stylish updated kitchen or bath without undertaking the expense and hassle of a total remodel.