Happy day, friends! Today I’ve got a fun DIY project comin’ at ya! If you follow me over on Instagram (and if you’ve recently checked out my previous Fall 2018 One Room Challenge Post), you’ll know that sadly, not every DIY project goes well. I had painted our master bathroom countertops, and then sealed them with an Epoxy called Glaze Coat. They looked GREAT! Fast forward about 4 months – YELLOW. Yes, I had yellow counters. Why? Because the epoxy was not UV resistant (and because I didn’t do my own research and instant blindly trusted another DIY blogger – do seriously, no matter what you read here, you should always ALWAYS research yourself as well). Seriously a sad day. But that’s where Instant Granite saved me! And today, I’ll show you exactly how to install Instant Granite in your own home!
**Instant Granite generously sent me their product free of charge in exchange for my honest review; you can read more information about this in my Disclosure policy as well.**
We eventually plan to replace our master bath counters and sinks, mostly because they’re just old and in need of replacement. But I couldn’t stand to live with (or have guests see) our ugly yellow counters. I needed a fix, and fast! I had seen Instant Granite popping up all over Instagram, and I thought it looked amazing. And guess what? It does!
The process to install Instant Granite is fairly easy, though if you have two people, I think it would be even better. I installed it myself, and only really have one boo boo area. Otherwise it looks amazing. I also recommend using this product specifically if you have OVER MOUNT sinks. This way, you can disguise the cut you make against the sink with caulk – we have under mount sinks, so you can see a bit of the more jagged cut areas. That said, no one is looking that closely, and we have had no issues at all with water seepage or anything like that.
We chose the white Italian marble, but Instant Granite will send out free samples if you request them, so you can be sure you’re choosing the right color for your home. I also recommend subjecting the samples to your everyday routine (i.e. Turmeric in your kitchen? Throw that on there! Always setting down hot pans? Try that out!) For me, I’ve noticed my hair straightener does distort the material a bit, so I just leave it in my sink instead of on the counter. For me, that was a super easy change in my routine in order to have pretty counters!
But let’s get to it shall we – how exactly do you install Instant Granite?
What You’ll Need:
- Instant Granite of your choice (be sure you account for at least 10% extra on top of the square footage of your space in material when ordering)
- utility knife
- hair dryer
- silicone and/or gloss white caulking
- measuring tape
Be sure you are working on a smooth and CLEAN surface, and that all hardware (i.e. faucets) are removed. (Instant Granite has some great suggestions if you are starting with a rough or painted surface.) Measure out your space, and use your scissors to cut about 6-8″ longer than you think you’ll need. For us, the width of the sheet covered our counter perfectly, I just needed to account for the length of the counter.
Pull back about 6″ of the backing, and line your Instant Granite sheet up with the back of your counter – be sure to leave a little extra hanging off to wrap underneath – you can always cut this off at the end if it’s too much.
Smooth down this 6″ section with the smoothing tool that comes in your Instant Granite kit, or with a soft cloth. Continue pulling the backing sheet out from under the sheet as you smooth the Instant Granite down, making sure it is taut along the surface of your counter.
Work from the center outwards, pushing air bubbles out toward the edges. If you find you have a large air bubble, pull the material back (not up), and reapply. Pulling up can stretch the material. However, you can utilize a blow dryer or heat gun on low to get the material back to it’s original shape if you do end up stretching it out. That said, if you heat the material, allow it to cool BEFORE you pull on it again, or you may get a boo boo like I did, where I REALLY overstretched things and couldn’t get them back to normal! Oops! You win some you lose some, right? 😛
PRO TIP: If you have under mount sinks, you can lay your Instant Granite straight over top of your counter and sinks, as if the sinks and faucet holes didn’t exist. Then you can cut them out at the end. As you can see above, I used a needle to poke holes where the faucet hole was, and then used my utility knife to cut the holes out fully. If you have an over mount sink, you’ll need to carefully cut around the sink AS YOU GO.
Continue until the entire surface of your counter is laid. Cut out your sink and faucet holes. If you have a backsplash area, as we do, repeat the above steps for those parts of the counter – do your best to keep the seem straight (and be sure to slightly overlap the seem as well). Caulk can help disguise any imperfections at the end.
Wrap your corners. Truthfully, I didn’t do the best job on this one. But basically, be sure you have 1/2″ of overlap around your countertop edges. Using your utility knife, cut along the edge and lightly rub the cut with your finger nail.
And now, from Instant Granite themselves: “If you prefer to apply around an edge, carefully wrap the film around pressing lightly while warming the material with a heat gun or hair dryer. The heat releases the tension and the Instant Granite adheres firmly to the edge.You can either trim along the bottom edge of the counter, or wrap it under the counter if the surface is smooth. If the underside of the counter is rough (like particle board), you can use caulk or liquid nails to keep it in place.” (Like I said, I wasn’t super good at installing the one corner we have, so I’ll let the pro’s tell you how to do it! You can also watch video how-tos on Instant Granite’s website.
Use a small needle to poke through any air bubbles. Even a tiny hole can go a LONG way to pushing that air out and allowing the material to lay flat. Pass over the entire surface with a hair dryer in order to encourage a tighter fit.
Use caulk along your sinks if you have over mount sinks. I tried to apply silicone caulking to the edges of ours, but didn’t have much luck. We haven’t had issues with water or moisture as of yet (they’ve been installed over 2 months now), but if you are able to seal those edges, do so! You can also caulk where your counters meet the backsplash, and where any of the Instant Granite meets a wall or tile. Reinstall your faucets and any other hardware you removed.
If you ever want to remove it, the Instant Granite will peel right off without ruining your old counters! How great is that?
And there you have it! A new look on your counters for a fraction of the cost of new ones! While we do plan to replace our counters and sinks entirely, I am certain our Instant Granite would hold up for as long as we needed. We’ve had absolutely no issues with it thus far, and I am so thrilled the yellow counters are a thing of the past!
Hope you enjoyed this fun tutorial, friends! And let me know if you decide to install Instant Granite in your homes – I would love to see!