How to Tell if Quartz Countertop is Real

Quartz countertops have become increasingly popular in recent years due to their durability, low maintenance, and stylish appearance. However, with the rise in popularity comes an increase in low-quality or fake quartz being sold as the real deal. Here is an in-depth guide on how to tell if a quartz countertop is real or fake.

Examine the Appearance and Texture

Genuine quartz countertops have a very distinctive look and feel. Here’s what to check:

  • Consistency in pattern/color: High-quality quartz has a consistent pattern and coloring throughout the slab with minimal variation. Fakes may have blotchy or uneven sections.
  • Shine/sheen: Real quartz has a glossy appearance while lower-grade quartz can look dull.
  • Hardness: Authentic quartz feels very solid and dense. Try tapping on it with your knuckles – it should feel like stone.
  • Scratch resistance: It’s very difficult to scratch high-quality quartz. Run your fingers over the surface – there should be no marks.
  • Edges: The edges on real quartz slabs feel smooth and polished. Irregular or rough edges indicate a fake.
  • Seams: Seams between quartz slabs should be tightly fitted and barely noticeable. Large, uneven gaps point to low quality.

Learn the Different Quartz Brands and Grades

It pays to learn about the major brands of quartz and recognize quality levels:

  • High-end: Silestone, Caesarstone, Cambria – Made from 90-94% natural quartz.
  • Middle: Vicostone, Avanza, Santa Margherita – Contains 80-90% real quartz.
  • Lower-end: Faux quartz contains only 10-30% real quartz and more fillers/resins.

Higher amounts of natural quartz mean greater durability and a more realistic stone-like look. Lower percentage mixes tend to be less resilient and more artificial looking.

Ask About Certifications

Many reputable quartz manufacturers get their products certified:

  • NSF Certification – Ensures safety/health standards.
  • Greenguard Gold – Tests for emissions of VOCs.
  • Bretonstone Technology – Validates high-quality quartz processing.

Don’t be afraid to ask the seller if their quartz is certified. Uncertified products can be prone to defects and indicate fake quartz.

Look for Warranties

Top quartz suppliers offer lengthy warranties:

  • Caesarstone – Up to 30 years
  • Silestone – Up to 25 years
  • Cambria – Up to 10 years

Longer warranties give you assurance that the materials used are high-quality and built to last. Be wary of sellers unwilling to back up their quartz.

Ask About Thickness

Higher priced, real quartz is generally thicker:

  • 1.2-1.5 cm slabs are lower grade
  • 2-3 cm is standard for mid-range quartz
  • 3 cm+ is found on high-end materials

Thinner quartz is more likely to crack or stain. Check that your countertop is at least 2 cm thick.

Beware of Dramatically Low Pricing

While deals can happen, prices far below market rates should raise suspicions. Allow $40-100 per square foot for quality quartz. If the price seems too good to be true, the quartz may be fake.

Purchase from Reputable Dealers

Buying directly from an authorized quartz manufacturer or licensed distributor gives you the best assurance of getting authentic, high-grade materials. Be cautious when buying from unknown sellers online or at discount warehouses.

With this knowledge of the visual cues, brands, certifications, warranties, thickness, pricing, and sources – you can feel confident determining if a quartz countertop is the real McCoy or just a convincing imposter. Scrutinize closely and don’t be afraid to ask questions to ensure you get durable, luxurious quartz that will last for decades.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can you tell just by looking at quartz if it is real?

Some visual signs that indicate real quartz is the consistent patterning and color, hardness and scratch-resistance, high gloss sheen, smooth polished edges, and tight seams between slabs. Fake quartz has telltale signs like uneven blotchiness, dull surfaces that scratch easily, rough edges, and large gaps between pieces.

What are quartz countertops made of?

Authentic quartz countertops contain a minimum of 90% ground natural quartz mined from quarries. This quartz powder is combined with a small amount (10% or less) of polyester resins and pigments that bind the material together and tint the color. High percentages of real quartz crystals make the countertop harder and more durable.

How thick should quartz countertops be?

Good quality quartz countertops range from 2 cm to 3 cm thick (about 0.75-1.25 inches). Very high-end quartz can be 3 cm or more. Avoid extremely thin 1 cm thickness as that often indicates fake or poor quality quartz. Standard kitchen counters should be a minimum 2 cm thick to prevent cracking or damage over time.

What is the difference between quartz and granite countertops?

Granite is a natural stone made of actual granite rock, while quartz is an engineered composite material made mostly of quartz mineral bound with resin. Granite can have more variation while quartz offers uniform patterning. Granite requires periodic sealing but quartz does not. Both offer comparable durability and visual appeal.

How can you tell if discounted quartz is good quality?

It’s wise to be wary of quartz being sold at abnormally cheap prices. Scrutinize it carefully for signs of low quality like uneven texture, lack of gloss, thinness, large seams, poor warranty, and no certifications. Price alone doesn’t indicate a quartz fake, but dramatic discounts (more than 10-20% off typical costs) should make you cautious about quality.


Making sure your quartz countertops are authentic gives you peace of mind that this major investment will last for years. Look for indicators of quality quartz like durability, high-end gloss, brand certifications, warranties, suitable thickness, and purchase from reputable sources. Avoiding cheap fakes or flimsy formulations ensures your quartz countertops will maintain their beauty and function. With careful selection, you can enjoy stunning, worry-free quartz surfaces that capture the look of natural stone.