How to Get Fingerprints Off Leathered Granite

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You can replace your kitchen counters with leathered granite countertops.
You can replace your kitchen counters with leathered granite countertops. (Image: Ablestock.com/AbleStock.com/Getty Images)

Specialty stone and granite shops can give a leathered finish to many different types of stones and surfaces, including granite. A leather finish gives granite a sort of river-washed appearance, since some parts of the granite looks as if they’ve been eroded naturally by water over a long period of time. Leathered granite comes only in deep colors, the most common of which is black. Leathering granite will remove a lot of its shine, making smudges and fingerprints less noticeable. You’ll still want to clean your leather granite counter tops, though. Luckily, removing fingerprints is easy if done regularly.

Things You'll Need

  • Stone-cleaning product
  • 2 soft microfiber cloths
  • Stone polish

Spray the leathered granite surface with a cleaning product that’s intended for granite.

Wipe down the surface thoroughly with a microfiber cloth. This type of cloth will help clean the granite of fingerprints without leaving behind any cloth fuzz.

Dry the granite with the second microfiber cloth that should be clean and dry.

Clean the granite counter tops daily to increase the life of the stone.

Polish granite weekly with a polish meant for stone. Polish will decrease the absorbency of the granite, making it more difficult to smudge and stain.

Tips & Warnings

  • While leathered granite will always have a matte finish, specialists can enhance the natural color of the stone to give it a bit more vibrancy.
  • Granite, including leathered granite, is practically scratch-resistant, which means your bathroom and kitchen counters will look as good as new for years to come. While leathering granite changes its texture and color, it doesn’t change its resistance to wear.
  • When leathered granite is installed, the installer may apply a granite sealer. This sealer will have a bad reaction with many household cleaners, and streaks that are called “etches” will appear. Be careful when cleaning your appliances and be sure to not get cleaner or any acidic product on the granite. Some surfaces shouldn’t need a sealer at all, so make sure to speak with a granite specialist before allowing the installer to apply a sealer. Remember that the cleaner is reacting with the sealer, not the granite, and that cleaning products intended for stone won’t ruin unsealed granite.
  • Soap and water is often recommended for cleaning granite because soap is inexpensive and every household has it. However, soap will cause soap residue to build up over time. While soap and water will get rid of fingerprints, it’s not a good cleaning agent to use on your leathered granite counter tops.
  • Don’t use any type of rough pad or cloth when cleaning a leathered granite countertop.

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