There’s nothing like the look of a marble shower in a bathroom or a marble countertop in a kitchen—unless, of course, it’s marred by a dark stain. While marble and other natural stone continue to be among the most popular options for bathroom showers and kitchen countertops, their porous nature makes them susceptible to stains from spilled wine, coffee, soap dyes, and even cooking oil. The good news is there’s a relatively easy and cost-effective way to protect these surfaces.
Marble sealers are easy to apply, and they create a protective barrier that prevents liquids from absorbing into the stone. Many of these products work not only on marble but also on granite, travertine, concrete, and even tile. With so many types of sealers on the market, it can be difficult to choose the one that will provide the optimal protection for your particular marble surface.
This guide will examine several important factors to consider when shopping for the best marble sealers and then review some of the top products on the market.
- BEST OVERALL: Tuff Duck Granite, Grout and Marble Sealer
- RUNNER-UP: Miracle Sealants 511QT6 511 Impregnator Sealer
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Tenax Granite Sealer, Marble Sealer
- BEST UPGRADE: StoneTech BulletProof Sealer
- BEST FOR KITCHENS: Aqua Mix Sealer’s Choice Gold
- BEST EASY TO USE: Black Diamond Stoneworks Granite Sealer
- BEST FINISH: TriNova Granite Sealer & Protector
- BEST FOR ETCHES & MARKS: Granite Gold Sealer Spray
- BEST VERSATILE: SimpleCoat Natural Stone and Stainless Steel Sealer
- BEST FOR SMALL JOBS: Lustro Italiano Ultra Premium Stone Sealer
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Marble Sealers
The surfaces with which a sealer is compatible, and its ease of application, durability, and environmental friendliness are all important factors to consider when shopping for the best marble sealer. Below, learn more about these crucial characteristics.
Marble sealers penetrate directly into the marble, creating a protective seal that prevents water and other liquids from soaking into the porous stone. This prevents stains from coffee, wine, and cooking oil, or, in the case of outdoor stone, rainwater. Some sealers even include additives that inhibit the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew, making these products ideal for treating kitchen and bathroom countertops, bathroom showers, and outdoor kitchens.
However, marble sealers protect more than just marble surfaces. Many also work with other natural stones, such as granite, travertine, limestone, slate, and concrete. Some can even provide a protective layer for tile and grout.
Since kitchen counters are one of the most popular applications for natural stone, most sealers are nontoxic and biodegradable, ensuring they are food safe.
Application and Surface Coverage
Application is usually a simple process with a marble sealer. It involves wiping the sealer on a clean surface with a sponge or a cloth or spraying it on with a spray bottle. After waiting about 20 minutes for the sealer to soak into the stone, simply wipe off the excess and repeat two or three times to ensure the stone is properly sealed. The sealer takes about 24 hours to fully cure, after which it should provide a protective barrier against water.
Most sealers have a surface coverage of about 800 square feet per gallon; however, coverage can vary widely from product to product. Make sure to check the sealer’s label for the approximate coverage. Also, keep in mind that the level of coverage can also depend on the porousness of the material. A more porous stone needs to soak up more liquid before it is properly sealed, which results in less coverage.
Once applied, most marble sealers will last for about 5 years for indoor applications and 3 years for outdoor applications. Some products that clean and shine the stone in addition to sealing it require reapplication as often as once a month. Note that longer-lasting products are usually more expensive.
Once opened, most sealers have a shelf life of about 1 year, after which they lose effectiveness. Given that sealers can be a bit pricey, purchase only enough to cover the number of marble surfaces in the home to avoid waste.
Since marble sealers can treat surfaces used for food prep, nearly all of them are designed to be safe for contact with food. Many use a water base and produce low VOCs and little odor. Most marble sealers are biodegradable, making them safe for the environment and nontoxic to humans and pets.
Our Top Picks
The top picks include some of the best marble sealers on the market. These products are easy to apply, long lasting, and well suited for a variety of natural stone. Any of the products on this list will seal and protect marble from stains.
A marble sealer should first do no harm, and that’s a big part of what makes Tuff Duck Granite, Grout and Marble Sealer one of the top marble sealers on this list. It uses an acid-free formula that won’t affect the marble’s natural appearance. This sealer also provides a higher concentration of the active ingredient than many other sealers, making it longer lasting. Tuff Duck sealer will protect interior marble surfaces for up to 5 years and exterior marble surfaces for up to 3 years.
Tuff Duck sealer is also versatile. It will work with granite, grout, travertine, limestone, slate, and concrete, as well as marble. The sealer comes in a 22-ounce spray bottle.
This product’s ability to create a watertight seal that protects against stains makes it ideal for kitchens. Miracle Sealants 511 Impregnator Sealer forms a transparent layer on the surface of the marble that resists moisture, preventing that spilled glass of red wine from ruining the countertop. It also won’t yellow or alter the look of the marble when applied.
This versatile sealer is compatible with virtually all stone and ceramic, including granite, travertine, quartz, and most glazed tiles. However, the sealer is particularly well suited for tile and slate interior and exterior floors as it makes surfaces less slippery after the drying and curing process. It is available in pint, quart, and gallon sizes, with coverage up to 4,000 square feet per gallon.
Although marble sealers last for years, they can still be a rather expensive investment up front. This product from Tenax is a more affordable option at about half the cost of other sealers. Still, like other sealers, Tenax won’t change the color of marble or other natural stone and protects the surface from stains by creating a water-repellent seal.
The sealer is available in a 1-quart size, enough to cover up to 180 square feet. Keep in mind that Tenax is less expensive when buying multiple quarts at a time, with a 4-quart pack just a little over double the cost of 1 quart. The application of this sealer is simple and fast. Wipe it on with a clean cloth and allow for 15 minutes of drying time before reapplication. This mineral-based sealer is suitable for granite, marble, and other natural stones.
StoneTech BulletProof Sealer may be more of an investment than other sealers, especially when one factors in the coverage area, but this product’s stain-blocking ability makes it well worth the cost. This sealer uses fluoropolymers that provide outstanding resistance to liquids, equating to stain-free marble regardless of what is spilled on it.
Since this formula is water based, it’s safer for use in food prep areas than chemical-based sealers. StoneTech comes in a 1-quart size, which is enough to cover about 250 square feet and protects interior surfaces for up to 5 years. It is easy to apply with a clean cloth and cures in 24 hours. In addition to marble, StoneTech is also compatible with granite, slate, travertine, and limestone.
The kitchen is one of the most popular locations in the home for marble. Given that the kitchen is also the base for food prep, it’s crucial that the sealer applied to that marble is safe. Aqua Mix Sealer’s Choice Gold uses a water-based formula to ensure the product provides excellent protection from stains while not compromising the health of the people using it.
Aqua Mix is also one of the few sealers that incorporates Microban technology into its formula. This means that the sealer helps to inhibit the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew, making it ideal not just for use in the kitchen but also for bathrooms. In addition to marble, Aqua Mix is also compatible with granite, limestone, slate, travertine, porcelain, cement, and masonry. It comes in a 32-ounce bottle and is applied with a sponge or a mop.
While most sealers require users to wipe on the product with an applicator, Black Diamond Stoneworks Granite Sealer makes the process easier by packing it in a spray bottle. Simply clean the marble, spray the sealer, allow it to penetrate the stone, and wipe off with a clean rag. Wait 15 minutes before applying a second coat.
Couple Black Diamond’s easy application with the low-odor formula, and it’s one of the best granite sealers for those who want to protect their stone countertops without exerting much effort. This water-based sealer is safe for food contact and is also compatible with concrete, slate, brick, sandstone, and grout.
Black Diamond is available in a wide range of sizes, including pint, quart, and gallon containers. One gallon covers up to 1,200 square feet.
Not all sealers are just about protecting marble and other stone from spilled glasses of wine, coffee rings, and drips of olive oil. Some sealers, such as TriNova Granite Sealer & Protector, also beautify. In addition to penetrating the marble to create a protective barrier, this sealer also leaves a shiny coating that rejuvenates dull, hazy stone.
Application is easy. Spray the sealer, allow it to soak in, and wipe off any residue. Unlike other sealers that usually last 5 years, TriNova is meant to clean and beautify on a more regular basis—about once a year. Repeated use helps maintain a continuous protective barrier against stains while ensuring marble, granite, and other natural stone retains its luster.
Stains from coffee, hard water, cooking oil, and wine aren’t the only threats to a marble countertop. Etching and dirt buildup also seek to mar its beauty. Granite Gold Sealer Spray provides a comprehensive protective solution. Not only does this sealer protect against stains, but it also prevents etches and soil buildup. And, it’s safe for use in the kitchen, thanks to a nonacidic formula that’s biodegradable.
Granite Gold is also easy to apply. Simply spray the product liberally over the surface, allow 20 minutes for it to soak in, and wipe clean. In addition to granite and marble, this sealer is also compatible with travertine, limestone, grout, and other natural stone. It comes in a 24-ounce spray bottle.
Those looking for a solution that beautifies and protects not just kitchen counters but also stainless steel appliances might consider SimpleCoat Natural Stone and Stainless Steel Sealer. More diverse than other sealers limited to stone and masonry, this product will add a protective layer to stainless steel and stone, preventing fingerprints, stains, and dirt from sullying their appearance. It also leaves a glossy shine, bringing out the beauty of those stainless steel appliances while also returning dull granite and marble to a lustrous gleam.
This sealer contains no hard chemicals or solvents, making it safe for use on food preparation surfaces. It is easy to apply: Simply wipe on the counter or appliance with a soft cloth, allow it to soak in for 15 minutes, and wipe clean. While the product requires application about once a month, it also offers excellent coverage. An 8-ounce bottle is enough to treat 3,000 square feet of stone or 7,000 square feet of stainless steel.
Homes with less countertop space don’t require gallon-size jugs of sealer that cover 800 square feet or more of natural stone surfaces. That doesn’t make sense when most sealers only have a 1-year shelf life. For those with less expansive natural stone surfaces, this 8.5-ounce can from Lustro Italiano will do the job while eliminating waste (and saving money).
Like other products, Lustro Italiano sealer creates a protective barrier that resists liquids, ensuring accidental spills don’t become permanent stains. It also doesn’t require regular reapplication. A single treatment will protect granite, marble, travertine, and other natural stone for up to 5 years, without discoloring the stone or leaving a film. Simply apply it to the surface using a brush and allow 2 to 4 hours to dry and cure to a protective seal.
FAQs About Marble Sealers
Applying a new sealer to one’s precious marble shower or countertops can be a scary proposition. If you’re concerned about the safety of a sealer for your marble, if the sealer is working, or even if you need a sealer at all, then read on for answers.
Q. How can you tell if marble is sealed?
The best way to determine if marble is sealed is to use the water test. Take a few spoonfuls of water and pour it onto the marble. Wait about 10 or 15 minutes, then wipe up the water with a paper towel. If the marble where you poured the water is darker than the surrounding marble, then some of the water was able to soak into the stone. This means you need to seal the marble. If not, then the marble is already protected.
Q. Does polished marble need to be sealed?
When marble is polished to a high gloss, the process reduces the porousness, making it less susceptible to stains. Since polished marble doesn’t absorb liquids easily, it doesn’t need to be sealed and may not even accept the sealer.
Q. Does sealing marble change the color?
The sealer will not change the color of the marble when it soaks into the pores, nor should it add shine unless the product includes an additive that creates a glossy finish.
Q. How often does marble need to be sealed?
This depends on the product. Many sealers will protect marble for as long as 5 years. Others require more frequent applications. Check the directions on the product’s label for guidance.
Q. How long is the reapplication and cure time for marble sealer?
Most sealers take about 20 minutes to dry before it is safe to apply additional layers. It then takes about 24 hours for a sealer to fully cure.
Q. How long does marble sealer last?
Most marble sealers have a shelf life of about a year after being opened. Since the majority of marble requires sealing about once every 5 years, purchase only the amount you need to avoid waste.