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2cm vs 3cm - A Guide to Countertop Thicknesses

White glossy kitchen with a large white and grey waterfall.

When deciding on countertops, a common question you will face is what thickness of stone to choose. Sometimes the decision is purely up to preference, but sometimes you may have installation specifics that might dictate which thickness you need. Let’s take a look at the differences between the two common stone thicknesses and when you might need to use one over the othe


Side profile of 2cm material with a doubled front lip. The thickness reads 1.5 inches.

2cm material is 2cm throughout with a doubled lip at the front. This makes 2cm appear to be 4cm on exposed edges.

Side profile of 3cm material. The thickness reads 1.25 inches

3cm is the same thickness throughout and does not use a doubled edge. The lack of this edge means that on Natural Stones, you will not see a seam running along the front edge.


The underside of a white 2cm countertop showing plywood

2cm requires a plywood sub top to help support and level the material. This plywood is visible under the countertop if you have seating overhangs, but is generally not visible on installations where the countertop does not hang more than 2 inches past the cabinets.

The underside of black 3cm granite showing fiberglass mesh backing.

3cm does not require sub top and only shows stone underneath. NOTE: some stone types have a mesh fiberglass backing for structure which will be visible on seating overhangs.

Cabinets Older than 10 Years

Illustration showing how plywood supports 2cm material over unlevel surfaces.

2cm’s plywood sub top can assist in leveling out older cabinets, which may have shifted over time. 2cm is recommended for installations on older cabinets.

Illustration showing how 3cm is vulnerable to cracking on unlevel surfaces.

3cm material cannot be installed on unlevel surfaces. Therefore, older cabinets may need additional leveling work before this material can be installed. 3cm material is not recommended for older cabinet installations as a result.

Farmhouse Sinks

Grey 2cm countertop is notched to accommodate the front panel of a farmhouse sink.

2cm material’s doubled front edge creates complications when installing farmhouse sinks. The lip requires a ‘step up’ on the countertop that many don’t like the look of. 2cm is not recommended for farmhouse sinks.

3cm stone sits evenly on top of a farmhouse sink's front lip.

3cm material can sit easily on top of a farmhouse sink without issue. Therefore, 3cm is recommended for farmhouse sinks.

Waterfall Edges

A large white kitchen with white and grey quartz and island waterfall edges

2cm’s doubled edge makes waterfall edges unseemly and incredibly difficult to install. Pius does not offer waterfall edges for 2cm material.

3cm is the best option for waterfall edges and the only option that Pius will install.

Full Wall Backsplash

A close up photo of full wall backsplash behind a range.

2cm material is thinner and easier to install outlet boxes in. It's also lighter because there is less material. 2cm is recommended for any stone backsplash.

3cm material is thicker and requires specialized outlet boxes as a result. It is heavy and hard to lift without subsequent damage. 3cm is not recommended for backsplash.

Garden Windowsills

Garden windowsills (windowsills that sit at the same level as the countertop) can be any thickness but may require seams due to settling of the sill over time. Garden windows have a tendency to sag outward since there is no support built in. This is subject to site verification by your installers.

Granite installed on a deep garden windowsill behind a sink.

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