Episode 36: Kitchen Design Essentials – Benchtops part 1

In this episode, part 1 of benchtops in the series, Frances welcomes her guest, Laura Neville from Cosentino to discuss three main benchtop applications – reconstituted stone, natural stone (by Cosentino), and Dekton.

They outline the differences between the 3 products and why you may choose one over the other, considering functionality, durability, budget, and aesthetics. Fabulous insight is provided on manufacturing differences, cost differences, and application.


Things to consider when choosing for benchtops

 Think about how you are going to use the kitchen 5-10 years’ time

  • Are there cooks in the family?
  • Do you have a large family?
  • Is budget a constraint?

• Durability and longevity of the product

• Budget

• Natural light in the kitchen space

• Finish preference for the benchtop

  • Polished finish
  • Matte Finish
  • Suede Finish

• Color and Design of the overall kitchen and home

• Maintenance

Reconstituted Stone

Depending on the brand, reconstituted stone is a mix of different minerals that are bound together with an acrylic resin to create a workable surface. It is guaranteed to maintain consistency in aesthetics throughout the slab, so if you are after consistency, this is a great choice.   The customization of your kitchen is stone to the look of your stone through choices of colour, texture, and composition.

Cosentino treats nearly all of their reconstituted stone slabs with a coating called N-boost. Its a technology they’ve developed to minimise the porosity of the stone, preventing the absorption of everyday kitchen liquids (including red wine and lemon).

Silestone brand reconstituted stone    

  • Minimal amount of resin which does not discolor the slab over time
  • Offered in 12-20mm slabs
  • Flexibility in the thickness
  • Has N-boost technology
  • Cosentino offers a 25-year warranty on all of their product
  • Has a beautiful suede finish option made in Spain

Other brands of reconstituted stone

  • High percentage of resin – Will discolor the slab over time
  • Not available in all finish types – particularly matte or suede finish
  • May not have as many colour options available
  • Warranty not as long

Disadvantages of reconstituted stone

  • Not able to be used outdoors
  • Can’t be used behind gas as a splashback
  • Not heat resistant
  • Can change colour over time if high quantities of resin present in the product
  • Can stain if stain in left for a period of time


A mix of different natural minerals that are liquified, compressed, and baked. It often compared to porcelain but is a different composition. Dekton is classified as an ultra-compact surface. It is more durable as it is completely solid the whole way through. It can be applied to any surface such as kitchen benchtops, stair treads, swimming pools, cabinetry fronts, floors, saunas, and facades.


  • Durability- Dekton has virtually zero porosity
  • Heat Resistant
  • No issues with discoloration when heat touches the surface
  • Low care and maintenance, perfect for cooks and families
  • Graffiti proof
  • Available in 6mm,8mm,12mm


  • More costly for a stonemason to prepare than stone.

Natural Stone

Sensa by Cosentino

Sensa by Cosentino is a natural stone that consists of granite and quartzite. It is treated with a coating developed called Senguard.


  • Virtually zero porosity
  • Heat resistant up to 300 degrees
  • Can be used in exterior applications
  • It has a Dekton finish that is durable and hard-wearing


  • Expensive- starts at the mid-range of Dekton


You can find Cosentino’s showroom in every major city in Australia. And you can find different colors and sampling across all the products i\on their website. https://www.cosentino.com/


Available services;

Overwhelmed by the amount of decisions that need to be made when creating a stylish, functional, and durable Kitchen? What materials to select, what colours will co-ordinate together, what design is going to best suit space, and your requirements.

We offer several kitchen design packages to assist with your kitchen design – be it a makeover, renovation, or new kitchen. Click the link here to find more.

Get in touch with Frances directly, by booking a chat with her.


Upcoming Event;

Gain essential insight and avoid costly mistakes at the ‘Forever Home Kitchen Masterclass’ Webinar presented by leading interior designer and author of ‘Your Forever Home’, Frances Cosway of White Pebble Interiors. It will be on Thursday, 30th July 2020 at 7:00pm- 8:00 pm AEST.

Click here to register

Related Resources;

Episode 14: Forever Home LIVE- Joinery Drawings and Why Do Them Early On

Episode 30: Kitchen Design Essentials -Kitchen Design Layouts and Location

Episode 32: Kitchen Design Essentials – The Builder’s Insight 

How to Choose the Right Bench Top

Top 5 tips for selecting benchtops

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