Eco friendly countertops – Eco by Cosentino

Eco friendly countertops are starting to be marketed all over, plus green countertops are in the trend, so it’s a growing niche, some are using recycled glass for green countertops, Eco by Cosentino uses a wider variety of materials.
Most of you know that 
Cosentino is also the owner of the Silestone brand, and it’s main headquarters are in Macael, a small town in the South of Spain.
So what is exactly Eco by Cosentino?

It’s a solid surface with green credentials, this means that it uses mainly recycled products as it’s components, so 75% of it’s components are post consumer or post industrial waste, not any kind of waste, mainly glass, porcelain, mirror chips and stone chips, bonded together by an 
eco resin.
eco resin used has a 22% origin in vegetable source (mainly corn). The granular waste included in its composition is mainly waste that has reached the last phase in its life cycle, being the land fill its destiny.
So what arguments does this product have besides the green credentials stated?

Being Eco by 
Cosentino, a brand from the same group as Silestone, we all know how powerful their marketing is, so here goes a list of their marketing arguments to promote this product:

  • High performance: the product is noted as a high performing solid surface, which means it’s highly resistant to scratching, scorching and staining.
  • Non porous material: if the components used are mainly glass, and other non porous materials, the final product will also have these characteristics
  • Limited colour options: while with Silestone you have more than 70 colours, Eco only provide about a dozen, and two surface finishes.
  • Available in one slab size 315 cm x 159 cm and in 3 thicknesses 12 mm, 20 mm and 30 mm
  • 10 year warrantyCosentino group has used the warranty argument in the past with great success, it helps break some barriers regarding new products, with Silestone it worked really well, with Eco lets wait and see, I’ve googled for reviews and not too good things came up regarding this product, but I guess bad news runs pretty quickly.
  • Green Certificates: as expected, being a main marketing motto, they have several green certificates for this product: Green Guard, NSF, C2C (Cradle to Cradle), and LEED certification will benefit from using Eco.
  • PriceCosentino Group is known for a high priced materials, unfortunately not always accompanied by high quality, most of the time marketing fills the gap.
I can only add that, they’ve been very professional in the past, and have done their homework very well, they are using all their marketing strategies based on their Silestone success story and have wrapped it green. The true success of the product will be dictated by users, so lets wait and see the outcome.


Paperstone countertops

Do you know what paperstone is? What about paperstone countertops? Paperstone is said to be the "greenest architectural surface on the planet". I have been studying the paperstone product and evaluating it as a possible countertop option....

What is paperstone and what is it made of?

Paperstone is a paper composite, although it’s called paperstone, it has little in common with stone. It’s basically paper bonded with phenolic resins. So it’s marketing is really set on its green credentials.
It’s fabricated in the US, by a company called Paneltech Products, Inc.. They’ve been in business since 1996, and are located in Hoquiam, Washington. The manufacturing facility includes their own resin plant, as their phenolic resin is also a featured product, as it’s trademarked PetroFree phenolic resin.

How to make countertops and other cut to size pieces from paperstone?

Paperstone like all other composite materials, are sold in panels, with three different standard sizes: 5' X 12'(1524 x 3657mm), 5' X 10' (1524 x 3048mm), 5' X 8' (1524 x 2438mm). They have a wide range of thicknesses available, namely: for the 5’x12’ they have it available in 1/4” (6mm) and 3/8” (9mm) thickness; the 5’x10’ panel they have these in 1/2”(13mm) and 3/4” (19mm) thickness, the 5’x8’ panels are sold in 1”(25mm) and 1 1/4” (31mm) thickness.

It is said that paperstone is easily worked, unlike composite stones, paperstone is managed with carbide-tip woodworking tools. So it’s far from being a composite stone, as it may be solid and resistant, but not a stone like composite.

Paperstone compared to engineered stone

Green Issues: Paperstone 1 – Engineered Stone 0

Regarding green issues, paperstone is superior to engineered stone. Most engineered stones still used unsaturated polyester resin, and some of the quartz grit is actually, as some manufacturers tend to claim incorrectly, not made from quarry debris, most of the quartz is actually selected and chipped from chosen quartz.

Price: Paperstone 1 – Engineered Stone 1

In price, paperstone is very similar to engineered stone and in some cases even more expensive.

Durability and physical properties: Paperstone 1 – Engineered Stone 2

Durability and physical properties, engineered stone tops in this category, besides problems that engineered stone has, namely with heat, paperstone has it also, and other problems, like scratching. Quartz is a very durable mineral, polyester resin has great mechanical features, so in my opinion, engineered stone is superior.

Colour availability: Paperstone 1 – Engineered Stone 3

Colours available and marketed as standard. Paperstone has a limited offer of colours, far from most engineered stone producers.

Surface finishes: Paperstone 1 – Engineered Stone 4

Surface finishes, engineered stone has currently the lead in this feature, it has polished finish, honed finish and a few more standard finishes available. Paperstone, is honed finish product, and doesn’t seem to have many standard options regarding surface finishes.

Paperstone, is more of a composite paper panel, with a relatively reasonable hardness which is wrapped in a green marketing strategy. It tends to compare itself to composite stone, although it is a totally different product, it will not feel like stone and will not look like stone. Yes it is a green concept product, however I’m rather curious to know, about the quantity of resin used in it and the pigments needed for the colouring, as its colour selection is based and dark colours.