Concrete Countertops Secrets of Their Historical Background, Their Pros and Cons
Concrete has been a popular material for building and construction in the times of ancient Rome. And up to present times it 
is still in high demand. Skyscrapers, dams, and lots of other building projects as well as small constructions, like houses and 
private homes are built with concrete. If inside, a lot of things in the house are made of cement too: concrete countertops for 
kitchens and bathrooms, concrete floors and concrete furniture in general.

Flashback
But let’s find out some more historical facts about concrete and furniture made of concrete countertop mix. In fact, it’s hard 
to say when and where the concrete appeared first, as its origin goes back to the depth of centuries. The obvious thing is that 
concrete was not at first the same as we got used to know it today; as the most of materials for construction, it went through 
a long time of development.
The earliest concrete, discovered by archaeologists, can be referred to 5600 BC. It was found on the bank of the Danube 
River in Yugoslavia in one of the huts of the ancient village of the Stone Age. The floor was made of the concrete and the 
layer of it was 25 cm. Concrete for this floor was made with gritting material (gravel) and local lime of reddish color, which 
was delivered there from the place that was more than 400 kilometers from the village.
The story of concrete goes hand in hand with the story of cement. The earliest and the most ancient binding materials, used 
by a human, were clay and rich soil, which after mixing with water and being dried got some strength.
The use of clay for construction took its beginning approximately in 10th century BC. On the basis of clay and rich soil 
ancient people mixes like mortars and concretes, which in those distant times were widely used in construction of different 
huts and objects, starting from the simplest mud houses and earthships to the huge churches, temples and sanctuaries. 
Ancient scientists wrote a lot about concrete. “Neither rains, nor fire can destroy them”. The walls of concrete were called 
“formed” by Pliny, because they were made by forming (temping) of the wet soil or clay with stone, put between wooden 
casing panels. With such there appeared what we call now a prototype of modern monolith concrete walls.
Without getting into details, let’s just mention the most known constructions made of concrete:
·         Egypt labyrinth and monolith arch of Nym’s pyramid
·         Most part of the Great wall of China
·         Coverings for walls in ancient Greece
So, to cut it short, we may say that formation of concrete was slow and gradual, and no one can tell exact information about 
the stages of its development. But anyway, we have what we have, and thanks to concrete there is a huge possibility to build 
durable, eye-catching, practical and functional concrete furniture.

Pros & Cons of concrete furniture
Let’s take concrete countertops as an example. They are in high-demand nowadays. Both strong and affordable in 
comparison with other popular materials, concrete countertops, at the same time, have some disadvantages to be mentioned 
here.

Pros
·         The main pro for concrete countertops is one-of-a-kind beauty and modern look. Concrete is not about being 
gray and boring. It’s a material that allows making a concrete countertop of any shape, color and texture. If adding 
elements of decoration, it’s a good chance to personalize your countertop.

·         No seams and this is a huge advantage, as there won’t be any dirt. Of course, everything depends on the design 
and size of your DIY concrete countertop.

·         Concrete countertops are easy-to-clean. If the entire process of installation and sealing was done properly, then 
you won’t have any difficulty in cleaning. The soapy water is quite enough for the concrete countertop to be cleaned 
with. If there is a necessity for more complete cleaning, you should learn carefully the contractor’s directions, buy a 
pH cleaner and avoid making any harm to the sealant. No abrasive cleansers should be used.

Cons
·         Problems with installation. Before it, you should make sure that the cabinets are strong enough to hold the weight of 
countertop plating. If you want a DIY concrete countertop to be poured in place, be prepared for a mess. As for the alternative 
variant, when concrete countertops are delivered to your home, too long and too thick of them will be a problem for moving 
around.

·         Almost all concrete countertops that were poured in place have this feature of hairline cracks. Even if this is not a DIY 
concrete countertop, and your countertop was made by an expert professional and the possibility of hairline cracks appearance 
are cut to the minimum, it won’t prevent cracks from appearing for one hundred percent. As a rule, such hairline cracks are 
barely visible. Some owners of concrete countertops say that such cracks are quite eye-catching and provide countertops with 
more comfortable look. Appropriate care and on-time maintenance will save your time and your concrete countertop from 
hairline cracks.

·         Concrete countertops are sensitive to heat. All the time when cooking and, as a rule, always in haste, it’s an ordinary 
move to put a hot pot or a pan directly on the concrete countertop. And, as a result, sealant and the working surface damaged. 
To avoid this, it’s better use trivets. As a variant, there are built-in trivets into concrete countertop. Well, frankly speaking, it’s 
not so practical, but it makes a look of the countertop not ordinary.

·         If there is any stain or a spill, it should be wiped immediately, especially those that are oily and acidic, like wine, juice or 
vinegar. Even a few minutes of such spill on the concrete countertop surface may lead to the stain appearance. All you have to 
do to avoid that is protecting a concrete countertop with sealer and renew the sealer every one or three years.

·         It’s not recommended to cut directly on the surface of a concrete countertop. The surface with a cut through sealer becomes 
a countertop with weak spots. But using cutting boards may become a real Aladdin’s lamp. Built-in cutting board is just a 
variant for a modern look and comfortable cutting.

Pros AND cons in one

You may wonder why this section exists. But, to be honest, some advantages of the countertops can become their disadvantages 
at the same time. Why? Let’s see.

Durability is all about concrete, and that is the reason why people in ancient times started to use it for building homes foundation 
and roads. If you have a concrete countertop, it means you don’t have any worries about replacing it for years. It seems to be 
good, but… If in some years you want to change a countertop or make a repair, it’s not so easy to remove concrete. An amateur 
can’t do that alone, because the team of people is needed to do that without damaging cabinets under. And then the new issue 
appears – concrete disposing.

And one more (dis)advantage of concrete is it options for styling it. But, at the same time, the more style options a concrete 
countertop has, the more it costs. So, when choosing a concrete countertop, think over everything that should be thought over.