Q: My wife and I are planning to install a new bathroom. We want this to be a green-style bathroom with as many natural products as possible. Can you please give us some information on popular natural-stone products that can be used in the bathroom? -- Charlie, Tennessee
A: Natural stone can be a great choice for any bathroom. However, it's always best to talk to your local floor-tile and countertop experts to match up the best stone choices for your countertops, walls and floors.
Also, in many cases the stone should be professionally sealed after installation to help control staining.
With that in mind, here are five popular natural-stone options:
Granite -- This is a hard, colorful, smooth stone that can take a high polish.
Limestone -- This is a sediment-type stone usually white and off-white in color with a honed or unpolished finish.
Travertine -- This is basically a banded and more compact version of limestone.
Marble -- A very popular bathroom stone with a huge variety of texture and color. Marble can also take a high-polish finish.
Slate -- Also another sediment-type stone with a characteristic color and uneven finish.
Bottom line: There's a lot good stuff to choose from, and that is why stone can be a "hard" choice!
Master contractor/plumber Ed Del Grande is known internationally as the author of the book "Ed Del Grande's House Call," the host of TV and Internet shows, and a LEED green associate. Visit eddelgrande.com or write email@example.com. Always consult local contractors and codes.