Formica vs Wilsonart


Laminating countertops has come back and gain its popularity back. Being the more affordable choice of natural stone, these days laminates offer endless designs and a better quality compare to laminate in the 1960s and 1970s. The layers of laminate from top to bottom is melamine resin, overlay or wear layer, decorative layer, and kraft paper. When applying it you can do it yourself or you can ask a professional to install it for you. It is recommended to get a help from a pro, since they are more experienced in it. When talking about laminate, there are two brand which is familiar to our ears, they are Formica and Wilsonart. People are continuously talking about which one is better over the other, analyzing it from many aspects. Some might said one is better over the other and some might said they are just the same. In this article we will try to give you a brief information regarding Formica and Wilsonart countertop laminate.

Laminate Countertops

Laminate countertops are commonly made from layers of plastics which is bounded to the particleboard or kraft paper in an attempt to create a solid countertop surface. Countertops are currently available in many kind of variety, colors, texture and patterns. It may range from one that look like a marble to one with a smooth mirror finish to mimic a stainless steel. All to make the surface looks clean and will not strain your budget. Formica and Wilsonart is two of most popular laminate brand. Not only on countertop but laminate also used in many other surface such as work top, furniture, retail space, furniture, and many other applications. They are also have a wide variety of design and finish.


Formica is a laminated composite material created by Westinghouse Electric Corporation back then in the United States in 1912. The original purpose of this creation is to replace mica in electric applications, since then formica has been manufactured to be used in various applications. Formica name has become a synonym to laminate. There are even people who may call laminate with Formica. Formica can produce a laminate which is very similar to granite even when you come as close as using a magnifying glass on it. At the other hand Wilsonart comes second after Formica, it does not mean that Wilsonart have less quality than Formica but from the popularity wise Formica is more famous than Wilsonart.


Wilsonart is a manufacturer and distributor of High pressure laminates and some other type of engineered composites materials, commonly used in office, retail space, furniture, countertops, worktops, and other applications. Wilsonart was founded by Ralph Wilson Sr. back then in the 1956. The head quarter is placed in Temple, Texas.

Here is some benefit of using laminate on your countertop:
1. Compare to granite and natural stone countertop, laminate is cheaper. It is about $10 to $40 a square foot installed.
2. They can last for a pretty long time. Laminate from different manufacturers are pretty durable against stains and heat.
3. The recent design is dismissing the dark line along the laminate and replace them with a decorative edge.
4. It has lots of design and variety, you may choose on those many design or create your own. Some brand offers their customer to make their own laminate design.

Here is some tips when choosing the right laminate for your kitchen:
1. Scratch test, use a steak knife and scratch them with the knife to see if they will hold up or tear.
2. Test the laminate in your kitchen, bring home some design chips and put them over the counter for a week to analyze which one is the best.
3. Choose the matte finish one, because it will help you mask scratches.
4. Choose post formed laminate to ease the cleaning process.
5. Choose the custom edges wisely, if you have toddlers avoid the sharp edges.
6. Measure your kitchen carefully, custom made countertops are not always returnable.

- Formica have an interesting collection named Formica Authentic Collection which is made to look like a real metal. People said that the finished product does look really nice-Wilsonart develop and released HD laminates which comes in several series namely, Bella, Crystalline, Deepstar, Eclipse, Gemstone, Luna, Metallic, Passage, and Sedona
- In the matte finish Formica is slightly thicker than Wilsonart- In their matte finish laminate, wilsonart is just a bit thinner than Formica
- Formica is cheaper than Wilsonart the range price start from $89.00 to $131.50 per square feet- Wilsonart is pricier than Formica the range price start from $159.00 to $391.50 per square feet


There are not many differences between Formica and Wilsonart. You may not able to distinguish them only by looking at the laminate plate. However they are still different, aside from it was produced by different manufacturer. Formica is certainly marketed early than Wilsonart, but both of them are currently competing to be the most popular countertop laminate. Formica and Wilsonart certainly got their own unique designs, which differs them from their competitors. Many people said that their durability is not far apart, but some of them also think that Formica has a slightly better durability compared to wilsonart. From the price side, it is obvious that wilsonart is pricier than Formica. However choosing between both of them will rely on your personal taste and also your financial ability. Make sure to think things thoroughly before purchasing to avoid regretting things later.

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