If you shop for new kitchen appliances, you’ll find two new finish options, and one option will cost more than do the usual finishes.
Slate, which made its debut on GE kitchen appliances in September 2012, is a matte metallic finish that’s marketed as an alternative to stainless steel, but costs just as much.
Whirlpool’s Ice, which arrived in July 2012, is a twist on white and black finishes. It costs $30–$50 more than the regular white or black finish.
Slate is slightly darker than stainless steel is, and is applied to a metal substrate.
GE says the finish can resist fingerprint smudges, and although the experts with whom Consumers Digest spoke haven’t evaluated Slate products, they believe that Slate will smudge less than stainless steel does. Slate also will be easier to keep clean because, unlike stainless steel, it can be cleaned with soap and water, says Mariska Krause, who is an appliance expert at Chicago-area appliance retailer Abt.
Ice tweaks the traditional white and black finishes by adding stainless steel handles, Krause says.
Whirlpool also says Ice uses a high-gloss paint that creates a shiny surface. But we looked at appliances that are in the Ice collection, and they didn’t seem any shinier than models that have a traditional smooth white or black finish.
– K. Fanuko