What is quartzite really?

What is quartzite really?

It’s stone, it’s marble, it’s… quartzite?!

Oh Quartzite, you sneaky little stone. You have managed to confuse even the savviest of natural stone enthusiasts. The internet is riddled with conflicting reports about your properties. Does it etch? Is it a hybrid between granite and marble? Is it harder than granite? What’s the deal, Quartzite?

Hold on to your hats, because we’re about to drop some geology knowledge on ya. Brace yourself: the truth is that quartzite is often mislabeled. Yep, you heard me right! Some stones that are marketed as quartzite are actually marble or dolomitic marble. And because these imposters behave differently, people get all sorts of mixed signals about the true nature of quartzite. But fear not, dear reader – once you know the truth, you’ll never be fooled by variable labeling again.

Quartzite is basically the metamorphic rock version of a glow-up.

It starts out as some measly sand grains, but over time, these grains get compressed, and boom – sandstone is born. If buried deep enough, it gets hotter and more compressed until it transforms into quartzite – a strong, beautiful rock made almost entirely of the mineral quartz. It’s like the sand grains went to a boot camp and came back as a chiseled, tough rock. And don’t even get me started on the colors. It usually rocks a white or light-colored look because of its quartz sand origins. But with some added mineral goodness from groundwater, it can turn into a green, blue, or ion-red masterpiece. But no matter the hue, one thing’s for sure: it’s all about that quartz, baby. (Note: I’m talking about the mineral quartz here, not the countertop material that steals the same name. Those are just posers.)

It’s super easy to spot the fakes because quartzite is hard as a rock (literally). 

With a rating of 7 on the Mohs hardness scale, it’s harder than your mom’s best lasagna recipe. Don’t fall for the silly term “soft quartzite”. There’s only one kind of quartzite and it’s as hard as it gets. So, if you come across a “soft quartzite” being sold, it’s probably just trying to be like the cool kids and is just a fancy marble wannabe. And if you thought quartzite could get all weak-kneed and etched from lemon juice or vinegar, think again! True quartzite won’t bat an eye (or whatever rocks have) when faced with acidic foes from food, juice, etc.

Feeling unsure about whether your quartzite is the real deal or an imposter? No problemo! Just shoot us a message or send some pics our way and we’ll play detective to help you crack the case. We may not have Sherlock Holmes-level skills, but rest assured, we’ll do our best to give you the 411. Or, if you’re feeling like a DIY detective, grab our Stone ID Kit – your ticket to easy peasy sleuthing.