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Trying to decide between quartz and quartzite for your kitchen countertops? This primer will explain the differences, benefits, and drawbacks of each.

Quartz vs. Quartzite Summary

Looking for a quick comparison of quartz and quartzite? Look no further! There are pros and cons of each material, which we will outline below. Be aware that quartz companies will steer you toward quartz vs. quartzite, and there are reasons that quartz can outperform quartzite. There are distinct differences that should be understood before making a decision.

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Quartz Benefits

  • Available in a wide range of colors and patterns
  • No pre-sealing or annual resealing required
  • Stain resistant and durable

Quartz Drawbacks

  • Popular colors and patterns are commonly used/not very unique
  • More affordable brands may be of questionable quality

Quartzite Benefits

  • Each surface is completely unique
  • Some quartzite is translucent, allowing for unique backlighting
  • Exclusive, high-end countertop material

Quartzite Drawbacks

  • Requires pre-sealing and annual resealing with wax, poly, or acrylic sealant
  • Porous and prone to stains

Quartz or Quartzite? It Depends Who You Ask…

As you might expect, quartz companies will steer you toward quartz. Quartzite companies will steer you toward quartzite. Both have an incentive to push their products over a competing material.

The truth is, the right material for you will depend on a variety of factors. Let’s look at some of the major differences between these materials.

Quartz vs Quartzite: Physical Properties and Manufacturing

The first big difference between quartz and quartzite countertops is their manufacturing process. Quartz countertops are man-made. Quartz gets mined and pulverized into dust. Next, the manufacturing plant forms quartz dust into slabs of predetermined aesthetics. Quartz countertop styles evolve over time based on market demands.

Quartzite is a metamorphic rock made primarily from quartz crystals. Quartzite countertops are cut from naturally occurring slabs of quartzite. Each quartzite countertop is one-of-a-kind. The look will vary greatly depending on where the stone is quarried.

belgian blue quartz countertop with sink

Be wary of cheap quartz materials

Quartzite is a relatively exclusive product compared to quartz. Large-scale manufacturers of cheap quartz surfaces in China, India, Turkey, and Vietnam flooded the quartz market with low quality product. These cheap quartz products tend to use poor quality resin and cut corners in production, leading to a less durable and attractive product.

The recent flood of cheap materials even resulted in quartz tariffs to stabilize the domestic quartz market. Pricing has since stabilized. If you’re considering quartz countertops, make sure to buy from a reputable brand!

Quartz and Quartzite Colors and Patterns

Quartz surfaces may be manufactured in nearly any color, pattern, or style. Quartz can even be made to imitate common materials like marble, granite, or concrete.

Quartz is designed to match current trends. Popular patterns and designs may be found in thousands of homes across America. Customers looking for unique countertops may be turned off by the uniformity of quartz products.

As quartzite is cut from a slab rather than processed into powder like quartz, each surface is completely unique. Quartzite is usually white and/or gray. Other trace materials present in quartzite, like iron or clay, can create a wide range of hues including pinks, reds, and greens. Some quartzite is translucent, allowing for backlighting.

Quartz vs Quartzite: Sealing and Maintenance

One benefit of quartz is its durability. Quartz countertops use a resin binder that is stain resistant, durable, and does not need resealing. Quartzite must be treated with a wax, poly, or acrylic sealant prior to installation, then resealed each year to maintain its finish. It is also more prone to stains due to the microporosity of natural stone.

Other countertop materials to consider

Are you not sure if quartz or quartzite is right for you? We offer many sustainable countertop products made from recycled glass, paper, plastic, or wood. Browse our full catalog of countertop brands, or request a quote from our product experts today!

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