Symbol of affluence adds refined beauty to any home
Marble, a natural stone formed from the process of limestone being subjected to various high temperatures and pressure changes in the earth, which causes the stone to crystallize and form marble, is becoming an increasingly popular option for flooring as the price of it decreases. Originally quarried solely in Italy, decent-quality marble is now available from Spain, Turkey, Mexico, China, India and even the Soviet Union. Reminiscent of Greek and Roman spa houses, natural marble is available in a plethora of colors and is certain to add sophisticated flare to your home.
If you're looking into marble as a flooring option, but fear its durability, then rest assured that marble is a highly durable natural product - just think about what it goes through during its formation. It has to be tough to do that!
However, like everything, there are some issues associated with marble. For example, unpolished marble is extremely porous and therefore stains easily from contact with regular household items, such as nail polish remover, juices, even water!
That's not to say that marble can't be cared for in such a way that these nasty stains can be avoided:
- Use a natural PH sealer on new marble floors to add a level of protection and avoid unsightly staining. Please note that you will need to reapply the sealer on a regular basis, approximately once a year.
- Always vacuum or dust your marble floor before mopping it.
- Use a damp mop with either clear water, an all-purpose cleaning solution mixed with warm water or a mix of one cup of fabric softener in a half gallon of water.
- Always dry your marble floor after damp-mopping as they tend to spot easily.
- You can use a self-polishing liquid wax for a quick-fix shine, but you will have to strip and re-wax it periodically.
- Never wear outdoor shoes on your marble flooring because the soles contain dirt, which acts like sandpaper on the stone floor, causing irreparable damage.
- Always try to wear slippers or socks on your marble floors - the natural oils on the bottom of your feet dirty the marble surface.
Always hand-pick the slab of stone you want in your home - color variations from one piece of marble to the next can be substantial, so you'll want to make sure you're getting what you really want.
Terrazzo flooring is a little-known alternative to marble flooring. Often called "faux marble," terrazzo flooring is made up of chips of marble, glass and other materials that are embedded in a type of tinted cement. The cement is then filed until it is smooth and polished so that it has a silky sheen, much like real marble.