The Pros and Cons of Marble Tables

Updated on November 10, 2016

Are you considering purchasing a marble table for its classic beauty and timeless elegance? There are a few things you need to take into consideration before making that big purchase. Marble is a soft stone, so although it is very dense, it is also rather vulnerable to staining and scratching. If you take the time to maintain it properly, your marble top table can be enjoyed for many years to come and could be passed down to future generations.

Advantages of a Marble Table Top

  1. Beauty is definitely at the top of the list of advantages of marble. Nothing can really compare. A marble dining table or end table will compliment just about any décor and become a conversation piece with your guests.
  2. Marble is durable if it is cared for properly and consistently. With proper care, It just may outlast every other piece of furniture in your home!
  3. It will never really go out of style. It is an additional to your home that you won’t need to change or replace and it is unlikely that you would ever want to!
  4. Marble table tops are available in an array of beautiful natural colors, and tables are designed for a contemporary, modern look as well as traditional, ornate and antique. You will easily find a table to compliment your home.
  5. If it is not maintained properly, marble can be restored by a professional with good results.

Marble coffee table and end tables by Achillea
Marble coffee table and end tables by Achillea

Disadvantages of Marble Top Tables

It is important to consider how the table will be used in your home. For example, a marble coffee table would work great in a formal living room, serving primarily as a show piece and not as a coloring table for children or a spot to rest your laptop! If you are meticulous about the use of coasters, you can rest drinks on it, but if there is a spill it needs to be wiped up immediately.

Here are a few more things to think about before buying a marble table:

  • Marble requires careful cleaning and maintenance.
  • It scratches and etches easily. Sealing will not prevent this.
  • When in use, a marble top table would need to be sealed regularly. Once a year is the standard recommendation to protect your marble and keep it looking new.
  • In comparison to other stones, such as granite, marble is rather sensitive to commonly used substances. Wine, coffee, colas and many household cleaners can stain or dull the finish of a marble table top.
  • You will need to use coasters all the time. Even a plain old glass of water will leave a ring.
  • Avoid placing anything sticky, hot or icy cold directly on the marble table top.
  • If your marble gets stained or scratched it can be resurfaced by a professional. The cost of this service is significant enough that you wouldn’t want to do it every year.

Marble dining table by Cross
Marble dining table by Cross

Caring for a Marble Table

How much effort is required to properly care for a marble table? Generally, you just have to be careful!

  • Use coasters consistently.
  • If there is a spill, especially something acidic, wipe it up immediately.
  • If you own a marble dining table set, you will likely want to get a top quality table pad to cover the surface when serving meals.
  • Only use cleaners recommended for marble. Traditional household cleaners that contain chemicals and are acidic can damage the surface of your marble or cause a dulling of the finish.
  • If you choose white marble, do not use wax. It could cause serious discoloration, possibly turning your beautiful white to a dull yellow.
  • Remember to seal your marble as recommended. Not all marbles need sealing. Be sure to ask if it needs to be sealed before you buy a specific piece of marble furniture. Sealing is relatively easy to do as long as you use a top quality sealer.
  • Using a mild soap a few times a year is okay, but very warm water and a soft sponge will work just fine for daily cleanings. You can then buff with a soft cotton or micro-fiber cloth.

Is the beauty of owning a marble table worth the effort of maintaining it? Absolutely! An elegant marble table can be the centerpiece of a room. You will likely find that it is your favorite piece of furniture in your home. Luckily, it will last forever, so you won’t have to replace it!

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