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Laminate: Easy to clean and ever so affordable. The problem? It brings to mind Aunt Mildred’s 1950s ranch house. Until recently, that is—ICYMI, 2019’s take on laminate is good.

We’ve been spotting the budget-friendly material everywhere, from HGTV star Leanne Ford’s gorgy new collab with Formica to the bathrooms of our favorite designer showhouses. Laminate? Really? Yes, really! See for yourselves.

RELATED: The Newest Wall Trend Has Serious Dimension 

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Courtesy of Formica

COUNTERTOPS

This black "marble" waterfall island looks nothing like your granny’s dated digs…and everything like a fabulous design decision. Fun fact: True marble starts at $60 per square foot installed—gulp—while this Formica Nero Marquina laminate prices out at just $19.

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Courtesy of Formica

COUNTER…BOTTOMS

Here’s a fun idea: Have your contractor outfit your island lowers in a bold laminate option, then top things off with a fancier countertop material. (Psst: These cupboard fronts are paneled in a wood laminate, too!)

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Courtesy of Formica

ACCENT WALLS

The stone-effect walls flanking this fireplace look like a million bucks, no? Spoiler: They cost just $20 per square foot installed (roughly $1,000 for a project of this grand scale.) 

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Courtesy of Formica

FOR THE KIDS

Don’t want to invest in real marble when you’ve got a budding Picasso in your home? Laminate is totally non-porous and stain-resistant. While an errant doodle could be catastrophic for marble countertops, dishwashing liquid and a microfiber cloth will take it right off of "marble." And you know what? It looks pretty darn convincing if you ask us. 

RELATED: The Controversial Kitchen Trend the Design World Is Buzzing Over 

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