Historically, asphalt shingles have been appealing for their low cost, to the detriment of their aesthetic appeal. Today, writes senior editor Justin Fink, asphalt-shingle manufacturers are focused on making their products stronger, sturdier, and more attractive—and with a longer life span, to boot. Shingles now are made by bonding multiple layers of asphalt and fiberglass, which creates a thicker, better-performing product. Also, the materials used in today's shingles are stronger, made to do a better job of withstanding nail pops and high winds. The longest-lasting shingles on the market are laminated shingles with a lifetime warranty and fall into two categories: dimensional shingles, which have a standard architectural shingle pattern) and "luxury" shingles, which do a better job of approximating the appearance of shakes or slate shingles. This article includes a sidebar on deciphering shingle warranties.