Marble and quartz are both gorgeous, luxurious countertops materials, and if you’re trying to choose between them, the choice can be extremely difficult. Which is better? It’s hard to say. Here’s our take on quartz vs. marble… it depends. Though we generally recommend quartz as a countertop material in most instances, it depends on your application, your aesthetic, price point, availability, and the performance characteristics that matter to you.
In general, quartz is the more durable of the two materials: it better resists scratches and bacteria and requires less care and maintenance. However, marble does outperform quartz in heat resistance. As an engineered stone created with resin, quartz is not very heat-resistant. Marble is not a conductor and therefore provides a cool work surface.
Where your countertop will be located can also affect your decision. Quartz, since it is non-porous and does not harbor bacteria, can be a great option for the kitchen or bath. Bakers swear by marble as an incomparable work surface since it does not conduct heat, which makes it great for working with dough. It is prone to etching if exposed to acidic substances, and more prone to breakage or damage than quartz, so the amount of use (or abuse) your countertops will face in their prospective location can also factor in.
In terms of color, movement, and style, quartz and marble fare very similarly. As a natural stone, though, marble has more unique veining features. For those who favor traditional or classic looks, marble is preferred, though there are quartz styles that are comparable in appearance to some traditional marbles, such as Carrara marble. For a more contemporary, modern look, quartz is also better suited.
Generally speaking, quartz is more widely available than marble and is more likely to be available in the color and style that you want. This is because, unlike marble, which is a natural stone and therefore must be extracted from quarries and exists on the Earth in limited quantities, quartz is a manufactured stone. It is made from mineral quartz, which is one of the most abundant minerals on Earth, and the manufacturing process can ensure consistency of color and style.
Due in part to its availability, quartz generally runs at a lower price point than marble, which can be an important consideration if your budget is limited. While quartz averages $100 to $185 per square foot, marble averages $125 to $250 per square foot. Remnant or orphan pieces of either of these materials, should it suit your application, could bring down that cost, however.
When it comes down to it, both marble and quartz are both gorgeous materials, but unless you’re a baker in need of a work surface that is heat resistant and naturally cool, quartz is probably your best option, as it can achieve a similar look to marble and is much more resistant to scratching, etching, and wear.
Kowalski Granite and Quartz has a large selection of marble and quartz to meet your needs. Set up an appointment to check out our large selection of quartz and marble slabs. If you are in the area and would like to view our selection without an appointment, our showroom is always open to the public during regular business hours, so please feel free to drop in.