Choosing Your Cabinet Hardware Finish

Choosing Your Cabinet Hardware Finish

By: RxRenovationXperts on August 16, 2015

One if the most important, yet overlooked part of a kitchen remodel is the cabinet hardware. When doing a remodel, you get so caught up in the type of cabinets, tile, counters, etc. However, you forget that one thing people touch and interact with constantly, is the cabinet hardware.

The main finish types of kitchen hardware usually falls into these categories: nickel, stainless steel, chrome, brass, iron and bronze. Each offers its own set of benefits and appeal to your kitchen remodel. We will go over each type to help you decide when planning your kitchen remodel.


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Nickel falls into a category called plated finish. Nickel is a silverish colored metal that is similar to chrome or stainless steel, but usually has a warmer hue to it. Nickel can darken some over time, but with some lacquers now, this may not happen. There are usually several types of nickel finishes to include but not limited to: vintage nickel, weathered nickel, polished nickel, brushed nickel, black nickel and matte nickel.


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Chrome is also a platted finish. Chrome has a very hard finish and is extremely durable compared to brass or nickel. Chrome will never tarnish and is very low maintenance. Some types of Chrome you may see are: polished chrome, brushed chrome or polished chrome.

Stainless Steel

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Stainless steel has become a mainstay in kitchen remodels, especially appliances since the early to mid 90s. Stainless steel is also a special platted finish. It has high durability and may tarnish slightly if not cared for over time. Stainless steel in the US is usually of the 304 variety. Here is a great reference on the difference between 304 and 316 Stainless.


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Brass was one of the most common finishes in kitchen and bathrooms for quite sometime. Brass requires the most maintenance out of any of the hardware fixtures. When treated properly, it can resemble gold and can be quite beautiful. Brass is usually has a Lacquered Finish. There are usually numerous types of antique and brushed brass available to people who are doing a kitchen remodel.


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Iron was used for centuries as a finish in bathrooms and kitchens. It has several varieties still in use today including antique, rustic and weathered iron. Iron can add that antique feel with no little to no maintenance if the iron has a lacquered finish.


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Bronze has come into fashion again within the last 10 years. You may hear it called by other names such as Venetian Bronze or Oil Rubbed Bronze. Bronze finishes are usually have a Lacquered Finish (although some are chemically aged now). Maintenance on bronze is much less of brass, but does require some light cleaning with water.

Whatever you are deciding on your kitchen project, don't forget to think about your hardware. Rx Renovation Xperts offers a free consultation on all kitchen remodels. Please keep us in mind when it comes time for your kitchen or bathroom remodeling project,