What Type of Light Will Make the Countertop Quartz Shimmer?

Quartz countertops can add beautiful, shimmering accents to any kitchen or bathroom. The key is using the right type of lighting to make that quartz sparkle. Here’s an in-depth look at how to light quartz countertops to maximize their radiance.

How Quartz Countertops Reflect Light

Quartz is an engineered stone made from crushed quartz crystals combined with resins and pigments. The quartz crystals have a sparkly, shimmering quality, while the resins allow bright colors and patterns to be incorporated into the material.

When illuminated, the embedded quartz crystals act like mini prisms, refracting and reflecting light. This creates an eye-catching gleam or shimmer on the surface of the countertop. The more exposed quartz crystals in the material’s composition, the more dramatic the shine.

Factors That Impact Quartz Shimmer

Several factors influence how brilliantly quartz countertops shine:

  • Quartz Content – As mentioned, higher quartz content means more shimmer potential. Most quartz is composed of 90-94% crushed quartz, but some premium options have up to 97% quartz crystals.
  • Finish – Polished finishes better reflect light than matte or brushed finishes, producing maximum radiance. However, a honed or leathered finish provides soft shimmer.
  • Color – Light and bright quartz colors like white and pale grays tend to gleam more noticeably than darker hues like black or brown. Vivid medium tones like azure blue also shine well.
  • Pattern – Busy stone-like patterns can diminish shimmer. Solid colors or subtle veins show off shine.
  • Light Source – The intensity, angle, and color temperature of lighting impacts quartz radiance.

Optimal Lighting for Quartz Shimmer

To make quartz countertops shimmer and shine to their full potential, pay attention to lighting design.

Light Intensity

Bright overhead lighting positioned directly above quartz surfaces best highlights shimmer. For maximum sparkle, install over cabinet lighting on dimmers to control illumination intensity. Recessed ceiling lights also supply direct, adjustable lighting.

Under-cabinet lights, like LED strip lighting, are another excellent option for focusing abundant light right on the countertop.

Avoid relying solely on natural light from windows, as it shifts throughout the day and night. Supplement with adjustable artificial lighting.

Light Direction

Angling light to bounce and reflect off the quartz, versus flat overhead lighting, boosts shimmer. Position adjustable pendant lights or track lighting to cast light on the stone from multiple flattering angles.

Also, under-cabinet lighting strips installed along the underside front edge of upper cabinets provide directional light. Place the strips to beam down and across the countertop to create shine.

Light Color Temperature

Look for lighting in the bright, cool-blue range of 5000-6500K color temperature. This crisp, clear light makes quartz gleam its brightest compared to warm yellow light. LED lights are ideal for delivering optimal color temperatures for quartz radiance.

Layered Lighting

Use a combination of lighting strategies in the same space to create the perfect shimmer scenario. Good options include overhead ceiling lights plus under-cabinet lighting plus pendant lights. This dynamic, multi-dimensional lighting maximizes shine potential.

7 Tips for Making Quartz Shimmer

Follow these tips for show-stopping shimmer from quartz countertops:

  • Choose quartz with the highest percentage of actual crushed quartz crystals.
  • Opt for a polished, glossy finish rather than honed or matte.
  • Select lighter quartz colors like creamy whites and grays rather than darker hues.
  • Look for quartz with minimal veining and patterns.
  • Install bright overhead lights on dimmers directly above the countertop.
  • Add LED under-cabinet strip lighting to supply directional illumination.
  • Layer on adjustable pendant or track lights to bounce light around the counters.

Seeing Quartz Sparkle in Your Space

The right lighting can make quartz countertops shimmer and shine like diamonds. To make your quartz surfaces dazzle:

  • Analyze the existing lighting and determine if upgrades are needed.
  • Increase wattage of overhead lights and add dimmers for control.
  • Add directional under-cabinet LED strips and pendant lights.
  • Adjust new lighting to optimal angles and intensity.

With the right illumination, your kitchen or bath quartz will shimmer, sparkle, and steal the show. Maximize this expensive material’s beauty by investing in quality lighting designed to showcase its brilliance. Beaming light on those crystals is the key to making quartz surfaces shimmer their brightest.

Frequently Asked Questions About Lighting for Quartz Countertops

What is the best light bulb for quartz countertops?

LED bulbs that produce a bright, cool light in the 5000K-6500K color range are ideal for making quartz shimmer. Opt for high lumen bulbs positioned close to the surface.

Should quartz countertops be illuminated from above or below?

Installing lighting both above and below quartz counters creates maximum shimmer. Overhead ceiling lights shine down, while under-cabinet lighting beams up to meet in the middle.

How do you accentuate the shimmer in quartz?

Choose a quartz material with high quartz content and a polished finish. Install bright, cool-toned LED lighting above and below the counters at optimal angles. Reflective pendants also bounce light around.

Does quartz shine more than granite?

Quartz has a more consistent shimmer across the entire surface than granite. Granite shines in flecks rather than all over. The right lighting makes quartz gleam brilliantly.

Does white quartz shine more than black?

Yes, white and light quartz colors reflect more light, resulting in greater shine. Darker colors absorb more light, muting the shimmer effect.

Do matte quartz countertops shine?

Matte or honed quartz finishes have less shine than polished quartz. They reflect some soft, subdued shimmer rather than bright gleam. Backlighting enhances luster on matte quartz.

Should you polish quartz countertops?

Most quartz comes pre-polished with a glossy finish to maximize shine. Honing the surface reduces shimmer. Periodic professional polishing can restore luster if glossiness fades over time.


The key to making quartz countertops shimmer is all in the lighting. To maximize quartz radiance, install bright overhead lighting on dimmers. Add under-cabinet LEDs for directional beaming. Use cool 5000K-6500K bulbs to create sparkling clarity. With proper illumination, your kitchen or bath quartz will dazzle and shine every time you turn on the lights.