CARING FOR NATURAL STONE
Natural stones, especially calcite-based stones such as marble, travertine, limestone, and many slates & have a delicate chemical composition that may interact in 'strange' (damaging) ways with the cleaning solutions that were not specifically formulated for the task. Once you know WHAT to use, all you have to do is follow some basic guidelines and your natural stone installation will give you years and years of beautiful service.
ROUTINE PREVENTIVE MEASURES
Use coasters under drinking glasses, particularly those containing alcohol or citrus juices to avoid etching.
Do not place hot items directly on the stone surface. Use trivets or mats under hot dishes.
Use place mats under china, silver or other objects that can scratch the surface.
Avoid cleaning products unless the label specifies it is safe for natural stone. This includes glass cleaners to clean mirrors over a marble vanity top or a liquid toilet bowl cleaner when the toilet sets on a marble floor.
Some spills will turn out to be detrimental to stone if unattended. Orange juice, lemonade, wine, vinegar, liquors, tomato sauce, yogurt, salad dressing, perfume, after shave, the wrong cleaning products and so on, through a long list, most likely won't damage 'granite' and 'green marble' surfaces (at least in the short run), but will ETCH polished marble, travertine, limestone, onyx, alabaster and many a slate.
DO pick up any spills as quickly as possible.
DON'T rub the spill, only blot it.
DON'T use cleaning products on or near your natural stone unless the label specifies that it is safe on natural marble (cultured marble is man-made, and it's basically a plastic material). This includes glass cleaner to clean the mirror over a marble vanity top, or a liquid toilet bowl cleaner when the toilet is set on a marble floor.
CLEANING AND MAINTENANCE VANITY TOPS
DO clean your bathroom vanity tops regularly with a stone-safe, soap free product. Considering the light-duty cleaning that is typically necessary on a vanity top, you can generally dilute the product in a proportion of 1:1 with tap water and it will still perform flawlessly.
DON'T take chances with cleaning your mirrors over your marble vanity tops with a regular glass cleaner. The over-spray could spill onto the marble surface and may damage it.
DO clean your vanity mirror with the same solution of water and stone safe spray cleaner. Even if you over-spray it, nothing bad is going to happen to your marble. TIP Rubbing alcohol works wonders for safely cleaning mirrors and won't harm marble.
DON'T use any powder cleanser, or (worse yet) any cream cleanser.
DON'T do your nails on your marble vanity top, or color or perm your hair nearby it.
DON'T put any wet bottle onto it (perfume, after-shave, etc.). Keep your cosmetics and fragrances in one of those pretty mirror trays (be sure that the legs of the tray have felts tips) or other appropriate container.
DO use a stone polish if you want to add some extra shine to your polished stone countertop surface and help prevent soiling.
If a cleaning product was not specifically formulated to clean while NOT interacting with the chemical makeup of the stone, it is not safe to be used, period.
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