Onyx countertops PROS and CONS

Onyx is a natural stone well known for its translucent quality that allows light to pass through. When it is lit from the back, it gives a surface a glowing and ethereal appearance, a mesmerizing effect that is hypnotic to look at.

Due to its distinctive appearance, onyx is often used in high-end residential and commercial applications, such as luxury hotels, restaurants, and spas, where its unique beauty can be fully appreciated. As with any other material, Onyx has its own pros and cons. 

Pros and cons of Onyx countertops

Pros of Onyx countertops:

Unique and beautiful appearance: Onyx is a rare and exotic stone with natural color variations and translucence, making it a unique and striking choice for countertops.

Can be backlit: The translucent nature of onyx allows it to be backlit, creating a beautiful and dramatic effect in any kitchen or bathroom.

Adds value to a home: Onyx is a high-end material that can add value and aesthetic appeal to a home, making it a good investment for homeowners who want to upgrade their kitchen or bathroom.

Available in a wide range of colors: The availability of Onyx in various colors ranging from white to green allows for an effortless selection of a color that complements any decor.

Cons of Onyx countertops:

Soft and porous: Onyx is a softer and more porous stone than granite or quartz, which makes it more susceptible to scratches, chips, and stains. It is important to exercise caution to prevent any harm to the surface.

Requires regular maintenance: Onyx surface require regular sealing and cleaning to maintain their appearance and prevent damage from spills or moisture.

High price: Onyx is a rare and exotic material, making it more expensive than other natural stone countertops. The cost can vary based on the rarity of the onyx and the size and complexity of the countertop installation.

Difficult to repair: If an onyx countertop is damaged, it can be difficult and expensive to repair due to the unique nature of the stone.

onyx structure

Onyx countertop patterns and colors

Some of the most popular onyx countertop colors and practices include:

White Onyx: This is a classic choice for onyx countertops, with a creamy white or ivory base and subtle veins of color running through it.

Black Onyx: This dramatic stone features a solid black base with white or gold veins, making it a striking choice for modern or contemporary kitchens.

Green Onyx: This stone has a rich, deep green color with white or brown veining that gives it a natural, earthy feel.

Blue Onyx: This stone is known for its stunning blue hues, ranging from light turquoise to deep navy, with white or gold veins.

Pink Onyx: This unique stone has a soft pink base with striking veins of white, gold, or green that create a romantic and feminine look.

No two onyx slabs are exactly alike, which makes each onyx countertop a unique work of art.

Onyx vs. granite countertops

Onyx and granite are popular choices for countertops, but they differ significantly. Here are some key factors to consider when comparing onyx vs. granite countertops:

Durability: Granite is much harder and more durable than onyx, a relatively soft and porous stone. Granite slabs are resistant to scratches, heat, and staining, while onyx is more prone to damage.

Appearance: Both are natural stones, however, Onyx is known for its translucent, colorful, and exotic appearance, with unique natural patterns and veining that make each slab one-of-a-kind. Granite, on the other hand, typically has a speckled or mottled appearance and is available in a wide range of colors.

Maintenance: Both onyx and granite require regular maintenance, such as sealing and cleaning, to prevent damage and preserve their appearance. However, onyx is more susceptible to damage from acidic substances and can be more challenging to maintain.

Cost: Onyx is generally more expensive than granite due to its rarity, unique beauty, and softness, which makes it more challenging to quarry and work with.

Overall, the choice between onyx and granite comes from personal preference, budget, and practical considerations.

If your priority is durability and low maintenance, granite might be the more suitable option.

Onyx could be a great option if you are looking for a show-stopping centerpiece for your kitchen or bathroom and don't mind the higher cost and maintenance requirements.

Onyx backlit

Onyx countertop for outdoor use

While onyx is a beautiful and unique material for indoor countertops, it is not typically recommended for outdoor use.

Onyx is a relatively soft and delicate stone susceptible to damage from exposure to the elements, including direct sunlight, moisture, and extreme temperatures. Outdoor use could cause the onyx to fade, crack, or even dissolve over time.

If you are looking for a natural stone countertop for your outdoor space, choosing a more durable and weather-resistant option, such as granite or quartzite, is best.

Onyx countertop cost per square foot

The cost of onyx countertops can vary widely based on several factors, such as the rarity and quality of the onyx, the installation's complexity, and the supplier's location.

On average, onyx countertops can range from $75 to $250 per square foot, with some high-end varieties of onyx costing even more.

Onyx countertop maintenance tips

Clean up spills immediately: Onyx is a porous stone that can be prone to stains to prevent staining.

Use a pH-neutral cleaner: Avoid harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners on your onyx countertops. Instead, use a pH-neutral cleaner designed explicitly on natural stone surfaces.

Use a cutting board: Due to its relatively soft texture, Onyx is susceptible to scratches. To avoid damage to your countertops, it is recommended to use a cutting board to protect the surface from scratches.

Seal your countertops: Onyx is a porous stone and should be sealed regularly to prevent stains and damage. The frequency of sealing will depend on the specific type of onyx you have and how frequently the countertops are used.

Onyx Decor Bathroom


In conclusion, onyx countertops are a popular choice for many homeowners and commercial buildings alike, thanks to their unique and exotic beauty.

With a wide variety of varying colors, onyx can easily complement any decor, making it a perfect fit for luxury homes.

While it may not be as durable as quartz or as versatile as marble, onyx countertops are still a valuable investment for those who want to add a touch of sophistication and elegance to their living space.