The holiday season is nearly upon us once again and many of us will be asking friends and family over to our homes for meals, parties and get togethers. Before we do so, now is a good time to take a long hard look at the condition of your house and try to see it through the eyes of your visitors. The kitchen is the focal point of the home and everyone seems to find their way to it, your countertops will be noticed if they are looking their best.

Shabby chic may be fashionable, but not for countertops, and there are ways to improve their appearance without spending a fortune replacing them. The usual problem is scratches, over a period of time, they will cause the counter tops to look dull and worn. If they are not too deep an easy solution is to first clean them thoroughly, then apply a good heavy duty paste wax polish, similar to ones used for cars. This will give a good shine, but it is not permanent, so you will need to re-apply the polish periodically.

For a more permanent solution, look in your local DIY store for a kit which is specially designed for restoring the surface.They usually have a primer and a top coat. First you clean up the surface and apply the primer, once it is dry, you can apply the top coat which is an acrylic enamel. Several thin coats are better than one thick coat and will give a better result. The top coat is available in a choice of colors.

Another idea if the surface is really bad and you cannot afford to replace them is to cover your countertops with self adhesive floor tiles, but remember, the surface will not be as resistant to heat as the original. Whatever method you choose refurbishing countertops for the holidays is a good idea, it will improve and brighten the appearance of the entire kitchen.