When you've got a brand new soapstone countertop, it's worth rubbing it down a day after installation. Before doing so, allow your counter to settle for a day so the silicon can set and dry. After that, you should plan to oil your stone once every month or when your counters start to get too light.
We recommend oiling the countertops as soon as the previous coat of mineral oil has started fading. Once you oil the countertop for the first time you will see the stone will become much darker. A few days from the first oiling, most soapstone will lighten. You can re-treat your countertops every time this happens.
The initial oiling will bring out the natural beauty of your soapstone countertops. Dry wax: You need to apply dry wax once a week for three weeks and then as frequent as needed.
Mineral oil is recommended for coating Soapstone sinks and counter-tops.
Sealing soapstone is the best way to protect it long term, especially if it is outdoors. To preserve the color of your soapstone, it should be resealed every three or four years.
Since soapstone countertops do not crack easily, they are more durable than other countertops made of natural stone. Its non-porosity feature also means that your soapstone countertops can serve you for a long period without requiring sealing.
Believe it or not, bleach will not harm it either. However, Bleach is not needed, since the soapstone's natural high density will not harbor bacteria of any kind. Simple soapstone and water or vinegar and water. Will work wonderfully well and clean any surface bacteria just as well as bleach or harsh cleaners.
You can clean your soapstone after the mineral oil treatment using any household cleanser such as Ajax or Comet. Usually just wiping the soapstone with soap and water works just fine.
Walnut oil is one of these. Despite increased popularity, it does not optimize the look and feel of soapstone, and it's allergenic. Additionally, do not use the common household olive oils: they will go rancid and start to smell.
Darkening With Oil or Wax
To care for soapstone, we recommend applying dry-wax, mineral or baby oil to the surface of your soapstone 24 hours after it is installed. We do not automatically apply anything because all the silicone and caulks used during installation need to cure for 24 hours after installation.
Using a soft cloth, wipe on a light coat of boiled linseed oil. Tung oil or Danish oil can also be used. Do not apply heavy coats or the oil will become gummy and hard to polish. Wipe off the excess oil and allow to dry.
Because it requires no sealing, soapstone is relatively low-maintenance. With minimum care, your new countertop can retain its good looks for many years. Enhance your counter's natural darkening progression by applying mineral oil to the surface every week or two and rubbing it in thoroughly.
Cleaning soapstone countertops is extremely simple, using mild soap and water. If you decide to use mineral oil on the surface, you'll want to avoid cleaners with harsh chemicals as they tend to undo that process.
Soapstone is functional, durable and beautiful. Even after 100 years of hard use, soapstone can be refinished to a looks-like-it-was-just-installed state.
Designer Anissa Zajac used Polycor's Alberene Dry Wax to help her soapstone countertops turn dark, and stay dark. (Polycor's Bedrock Blog:) Use mild dish soap and water to clean then apply the wax by rubbing it into the stone with a dry towel, or even your hands.
Avoid using vinegar, citrus, or harsh chemical cleaners on soapstone. Cleaning products containing strong acids are a particularly big no-no. These can actually eat away at the soft stone over time, robbing it of its luster and leaving it vulnerable to serious damage like etching, pitting, or breaking.
Unlike other mineral stones, soapstone comes in limited color options. Its typical color options are green, black, white, bluish gray, and gray. The veining of this stone is less compared to granite and marble.
Natural soapstone colors come in a selection of hues. Typically, the color options range from a palette gray, green, black, or blue-ish gray. Additionally, there some options may have swirls of quartz and white.
Scratch the surface of the stone with your fingernail. Soapstone is very soft; it is assigned a rating of 2 on the Mohs Hardness Scale. This means that simply by drawing your fingernail across the surface of the stone you should be able to mark it.
Polishing Soapstone with oil
Using a soft cloth, wipe on a light coat of boiled linseed oil. Tung oil or Danish oil can also be used. Do not apply heavy coats or the oil will become gummy and hard to polish. Wipe off the excess oil and allow drying.
Soapstone may chip if struck hard enough, creating a small area that you must replace. For this repair, you will need a small piece of similar soapstone and a clear, two-part epoxy available at any full-service hardware store or home center. Break the loose piece of soapstone into fine chips and mix with the epoxy.
Do you need to seal soapstone? We do not recommend sealing soapstone. Sealers are intended to seal porous stone like marble and granite which can stain. Soapstone is a very dense, nonporous stone which does not need to be sealed.