Differences Between Quartz Countertops & Quartzite Countertops

Quartz countertops have been a hot trend in kitchens for the last few years but many may be unfamiliar with their similar-sounding counterpart – quartzite. The two may sound the same but are different countertop material options from which you can choose when designing your kitchen. They are both composed of natural materials but quartzite is natural and quartz is manmade. But, while they have many similarities, there are a few key differences between quartz countertops and quartzite countertops, as we explore below.

Differences Between Quartz Countertops & Quartzite Countertops

  • Quartzite is more natural than quartz.  Bob Villa explains the difference in material makeup, “Consisting of 90 to 99 percent quartz grains bound by the mineral silica, quartzite is a natural stone that appeals to the eco-conscious because it’s made by nature and contains only naturally occurring components. It’s formed beneath the earth’s surface when quartz-rich sandstone is altered through high pressure and temperature, then mined and cut into slabs. Conversely, the quartz used in countertops is an engineered stone molded and baked into slabs in a factory. Only 90 to 94 percent of it is ground quartz mined from the earth; another 6 to 10 percent is man-made polymer resins and pigments that bind the ground quartz.”
  • Quartz is easier to maintain than quartzite. Quartz is a durable material and does not ever need to be sealed to maintain its durability. Conversely, quartzite is natural and must be sealed 1-2 times per year to protect the quality of the stone and prevent damage.
  • Quartz is more durable than quartzite. Because quartzite is natural, it is slightly less hard the quartz which is engineered for durability. Quartzite is more prone to staining, chipping, and denting than quartz.