Should I Apply Mineral Oil on Quartz Countertops?


Quartz countertops are extremely popular in modern kitchens and bathrooms due to their durability, stylish appearance, and low maintenance. However, some homeowners wonder if applying mineral oil is recommended for quartz counters. Here is a comprehensive guide on whether or not to use mineral oil on quartz countertops.

What is Mineral Oil?

Mineral oil is a liquid byproduct of petroleum distillation. It is colorless and odorless. Mineral oil is commonly used for various industrial and consumer products like laxatives, lotions, and wood finishing. Some people also use food-grade mineral oil for moisturizing wood cutting boards and butcher blocks.

Benefits of Using Mineral Oil on Quartz

There are some perceived benefits of applying mineral oil on quartz countertops:

  • Enhances shine – The oil can give the countertop a temporary shine and luster. This may help improve the look of older, duller quartz surfaces.
  • Minor scratch removal – Mineral oil helps fill in micro-abrasions and very fine scratches, making them less noticeable. It does not repair deep scratches.
  • Food protection – The oil forms a barrier that can prevent stains from foods with strong pigments like turmeric, berries, and beetroot.
  • Water resistance – Applying mineral oil can make the surface more repellent to water and liquids.

Disadvantages and Risks

However, there are some significant disadvantages and risks to using mineral oil on quartz:

  • Residue buildup – Mineral oil can leave behind oily residues that attract dirt and grime over time. This leads to the countertop looking unclean.
  • Penetration prevention – The oil barrier also blocks proper penetration of quartz sealers and cleaning solutions into the surface.
  • Damage risk – Excess oil that seeps into countertop seams and cracks can potentially cause long term damage.
  • Unsafe for food prep – Mineral oil is not approved as food-safe. There are concerns about contamination during food preparation.
  • Void warranty – Most quartz manufacturer warranties prohibit the use of mineral oil. Applying it can void the warranty.

Expert Recommendations

The majority of quartz countertop experts and manufacturers advise against using mineral oil on these surfaces:

  • Quartz is highly stain-resistant and does not require mineral oil for protection.
  • Using the oil can lead to more harm than good. The cons outweigh the temporary benefits.
  • Instead of mineral oil, use specially formulated quartz cleaners and sealers. These are designed for safe, effective maintenance.
  • For food prep surfaces, stick to a simple mild soap and water for cleaning.

Best Practices for Care and Maintenance

Here are the top recommendations for properly caring for quartz countertops without mineral oil:

  • Blot spills quickly – Immediately wipe up oils, wines, vinegars, and other stains to prevent deep penetration.
  • pH-balanced cleaner – Use a non-abrasive cleaner with a neutral pH level to safely clean without etching or dulling.
  • Avoid abrasives – Do not use abrasive pads, scrubbing brushes, strong chemicals, etc. as they can damage the surface.
  • Cutting boards – Always use cutting boards for food prep instead of chopping directly on the counter.
  • Seal regularly – Reapply a penetrating quartz sealer every 1-2 years for optimal stain protection.
  • Professional help – Have difficult stains, damages, and routine maintenance handled by qualified stone restoration experts.

FAQs Related to Mineral Oil on Quartz

Should I use mineral oil for quartz countertop maintenance?

No, mineral oil is not recommended for use on quartz counters. It can lead to buildup, prevent proper maintenance, and even void warranties. Quartz-specific cleaners and sealers are better options.

What are food-safe options to make my quartz counters shinier?

Using a PH-neutral quartz polish or shine enhancer formulated for safety and effectiveness is the best way to add lustre to your counters. Avoid DIY options like mineral oil or olive oil.

I applied mineral oil on my quartz counters. How can I remove the oily residue buildup?

Use a degreasing quartz cleaner multiple times following label directions to try and dissolve the oil residue. You may need help from a professional stone restoration company for thorough removal.

Can I apply mineral oil to the quartz backsplash in my kitchen?

It’s not recommended. The cons of using mineral oil on vertical surfaces are the same as on horizontal counters. Opt for regular cleaning and occasional resealing instead.

What home remedy gives results similar to mineral oil without the risks?

There is no comparable safe, effective home remedy to substitute mineral oil. Stick to pH-neutral cleaners and mineral oil-free quartz sealers for best results without risks.


Quartz manufacturer warranties, care guidelines, and most experts discourage the use of mineral oil on quartz countertops. The perceived benefits are minor and short-lived, while serious drawbacks like residue buildup and damage can develop over time. Instead of mineral oil, proper cleaning with pH-balanced quartz cleaners and sealing with approved sealants at manufacturer recommended intervals is the safest, most effective way to care for quartz surfaces. This helps maintain their durability, appearance, and integrity for many years while avoiding any risks from improper products and treatments.