8 Things You Should Know About Marble Tile Before You Shop for It

Marble is a beautiful natural stone that has been prized for thousands of years, but it’s also one of the most misunderstood materials in the home decor world. If you’re shopping for marble tile or countertops, there are some important things to know about this material before making your purchase.

Marble is a metamorphic stone that’s formed when heat and pressure change the appearance of an existing rock.

In geology, marble is a metamorphic stone that’s formed when heat and pressure change the appearance of an existing rock. Marble is created by the recrystallization of calcite or dolomite, both of which are sedimentary rocks. The process occurs in areas called marble belts, where there is significant tectonic activity and high temperatures such as those found near volcanic activity. As limestone is subjected to heat and pressure over time (millions of years), it recrystallizes into marble. This can occur naturally or artificially in factories.

There are different types of marble.

Marble is a metamorphic stone that’s formed when heat and pressure change the appearance of an existing rock. It’s available in a wide range of colors, but it typically takes on hues ranging from white to pink to orange—and even black.

Marble can vary dramatically in its level of porosity and softness depending on where it was mined and how long ago it was quarried. If you’re shopping for marble tile, make sure you know what type of marble you want before making your purchase so that you can find something close to what feels right for your space.

All marble is porous and soft, but it can vary dramatically in its level of porosity and softness.

When shopping for marble tile, you will often see the word “porous” used to describe the stone. Pore size varies from 1/8″ on up to 1″. The amount of pores in a stone are measured by how much water is absorbed by it. A low porosity marble absorbs very little water while a high porosity marble absorbs large amounts of water.

The depth of absorption refers to how deep into the marble surface the moisture penetrates, which depends on how dense or hard it is. If your need is for an extremely durable flooring material that resists scuffs and scratches, then consider choosing a stone with low pore content such as Carrara White Marble or Statuario Limestone.

White Carrara marble is not actually what you think it is.

This isn’t a mistake on the part of your tile seller. Instead, it’s just one example of how people use language differently depending on their geographic location and background. While many people believe that “white” Carrara marble describes a beautiful white stone from the city of Carrara in Italy (which is where most high-quality marble comes from), that city actually gets its name from the color of its local stone: white marbled limestone.

The stones commonly called “white” by buyers are actually greyish-brown flecks within a larger matrix of darker stone that can range from tan to light brown or even black—the latter being known as “black” Carrara marble because they’re often used to create accents within kitchens and baths (think backsplashes). When looking for this type of product it’s important to know what you’re getting yourself into so you don’t end up with something completely different than what was advertised!

Blue Celeste marble is also known as Sylacauga marble.

It’s a type of white marble that is found in Italy and has been used in architecture since the 17th century. Its blue-ish hue comes from the amount of iron present in its composition, which gives the stone its pale blue coloring and makes it easy to work with on site. Blue celeste can be polished to a high gloss or left rough for added texture.

If you have purchased a tile that was identified as Carrara or Calacatta, but the piece you received has red or grey veining, then you were probably sold Bardiglio Marble instead.

Bardiglio marble is one of the most common marbles used in kitchen countertops and bathroom vanities. It is often called “Bardiglio” which means “the color of steel” in Italian, because it has a greyish-red hue with white veining.

The hardness rating for Carrara marble is 7 on the Mohs scale (which measures how easily your stone can be scratched), while Bardiglio marble only rates 5 on this scale. So if you are looking for something that will last for many years on your kitchen countertop or bathroom vanity, then you should choose another type of stone besides Bardiglio marble!

Before making a purchase of any marble product, always request a sample so you can see the exact color and veining in person before buying.

A good retailer will happily provide you with a sample for free or almost free.

It’s important to know that it’s nearly impossible to determine the true color of marble without seeing it in person. All photographs online are taken by professionals using specialized equipment and lighting to show off their products at their best. Although this is helpful, it doesn’t replicate how light will play off your actual piece during use or day-to-day living conditions at home.

You also need to make sure that the marble you choose is suitable for its intended function; if you’re buying tiles for floors or countertops, ensure they are tough enough to withstand heavy foot traffic while still being elegant enough not to look cheap; on walls, consider how often they’ll be seen up close (like next to a shower) versus from further away (like living room walls).

Marble countertops may not be best for heavy use kitchens with children around or busy bathrooms with lots of traffic.

Marble is not a good choice for kitchens with children or busy bathrooms with lots of traffic. Marble is soft and porous, so it can be damaged by heat and scratches. When you’re considering whether or not to buy marble, think about how much wear and tear your kitchen will get on average. If you have kids or pets running around the house, maybe marble isn’t the best option for your countertops.

You can’t rely on what a sample looks like online when shopping for marble!

Marble tilesIt is virtually impossible to accurately see the veining, color and texture of a marble tile without seeing it in person. There are some things that you simply cannot see in images online, especially if they are zoomed out too far from the screen:

  • You can’t tell if there is a flaw or defect on an individual stone. A picture may make a tile look perfect, but when you get it at home (or worse yet after installation), you might find out that there was a small defect that shows up when viewed up close. In fact, most marble stones have imperfections like this!
  • You can’t tell if a color looks exactly like what you want based on an image; your computer monitor may display them differently than how they will appear in real life! Also, different monitors display colors differently so even if you do get someone else’s opinion about how it looks in their monitor before purchasing your own piece of marble tile… Well good luck finding another person with exactly the same monitor as yours…
  • The true texture and surface quality of stone can only be seen by touching it yourself while sitting down at someone’s kitchen countertop (or wherever) so unless they let you take one home before making your purchase decision then don’t expect much help either way with this one


We hope this post is helpful in your quest to purchase the perfect marble tile for your home. If it wasn’t clear, we really don’t recommend buying any marble from online vendors unless you have seen a sample first. Marble can be an incredible investment if you know what you’re doing, but if not… well… let’s just say that it would be better for your wallet if you stuck with granite or quartz instead!