Stainless steel, copper, zinc, pewter and bronze stainless steel have sleek, contemporary, professional styles, but when it comes to metal countertops, stainless is hardly the only game in the kitchen. Stainless steel casts a modern glow, but zinc, pewter, copper and even bronze countertops meld into traditional or period kitchens. Unlike stone, metal is nonporous and does not require sealing, and only soap and water are necessary to clean the surface. Metal will scratch, so keep a cutting board handy.

Polishing will help keep the copper pristine. Without polishing, burnished brown-black with green flecks will form on the surface. Polishing the zinc will help keep its silver shine. If you are very serious about your cleaning habits, these countertops may not be for you. Excessive amounts of work will be involved in keeping the metal looking pristine.