Featured Image: Bertoli Quartz Slab from Arizona Tile
With the recent popularity of quartz countertops, chances are you’ve heard of them by now. If you’re considering this unique and stunning material for a surface in your home, maybe you’d like to learn a bit more about it. Where does quartz come from? What are quartz countertops made of? How does quartz compare to other options like granite and marble? Let’s take a look!
What is quartz?
Quartz countertops are unique in that they’re considered an “engineered stone.” Unlike marble, granite, quartzite and other natural stones, quartz is not mined from the earth in large blocks that are then cut into slabs. Quartz slabs are actually man-made, by combining crushed crystals of quartz (a common mineral) with added resins and pigments to create the look and feel of a natural stone slab.
Quartz is one of the most common minerals found on Earth. It forms in crystalline clusters that are mined all over the world, from the U.S. and Canada to Brazil, China, Germany, South Africa and more.
Once mined, quartz crystals are then crushed into small pieces and combined with resin and pigments. Under extreme pressure, this combination is compacted together and then cured at high temperatures. Finally, a permanent seal is applied to protect the surface for years to come. The final product is a slab that’s durable and water-resistant.
Image: Palmeri Quartz Slab from Arizona Tile
What does quartz look like?
Quartz can be engineered with a huge range of colors and patterns, including varieties that look like marble, granite, concrete and more. Marble-look options with veined patterns, such as Bertoli or Palmeri, are popular and on-trend. Some quartz slab features subtle flecks or grains of ground quartz to add shine and visual texture. Seashell-N looks similar to granite while Hail Grey Honed resembles concrete with a matte finish. Overall, when you choose quartz for your home, you certainly aren’t limited to just a few styles and colors.
Image: Seashell-N Quartz Slab from Arizona Tile
What types of stone are similar to quartz?
Quartz countertops are a top competitor of popular stone countertop materials like granite and marble. Due to its strong composition, quartz is comparable to granite in terms of strength. It’s also an excellent “lookalike” to natural stone, with patterns and colors that beautifully mimic timeless favorites such as Carrara marble.
Image: Hail Grey Honed Quartz Slab from Arizona Tile
Where can quartz be used in the home?
Quartz is versatile, durable, practical and gorgeous. Whether you want to use it in the kitchen or bathroom, it’s an excellent choice for countertops. Its dense composition makes it resistant to moisture, stains, chips and scratches, so it’s perfect for those high-traffic areas of your home. If you’re looking for a long-lasting, smart yet still-stylish alternative to natural stone, quartz could be just the thing for your space.
Stop into one of our Arizona Tile locations today and get to know the various style and design possibilities of quartz.