Ceramic vs Porcelain Tiles

Some people often use the words ‘porcelain’ and ‘ceramic’ interchangeably, however, there are some differences between them. Here at Walls and Floors, we appreciate the beauty and functionality of both ceramic and porcelain, so we’ve put together a handy guide to help you navigate the similarities and differences between these two materials.

How are ceramic tiles made?

Ceramic tiles are made from red, brown or white clay and are fired at a high temperature to reduce the water content, then, a glaze and a pattern are applied.

Above, Helix Sage Tiles

How are porcelain tiles made?

Porcelain tiles are made from a specific white clay which is mixed with finely ground sand and feldspar. They’re fired at a higher temperature than ceramic tiles, making them more durable and water-resistant.

Above, Trax Velvet Moon Matt Tiles

What are the benefits of ceramic tiles?

> More cost-effective
> Easier to cut and shape
> Easier to use, more DIY friendly
> Softer, less dense and brittle than porcelain

What are the benefits of porcelain tiles?

> Absorbs less water than ceramic
> Harder, more dense than ceramic
> More hardwearing than ceramic
> Less prone to cracks and stains than ceramic

Above, Muniellos Wenge Anti-Slip Wood Effect Tiles

What are the disadvantages of ceramic tiles?

> Can be prone to cracking in the cold
> Absorbs more water
> More prone to stains than porcelain
> Less hardwearing than porcelain

What are the disadvantages of porcelain tiles?

> More brittle than ceramic
> More expensive than ceramic
> Can be difficult to cut and shape
> Trickier to install than ceramic

Above, Crosshatch Moss Tiles

What areas are ceramic tiles best suited for?

Ceramic tiles are best suited for walls and areas with little moisture and light footfall inside the home. They are not suitable for exterior use as they can be prone to cracking in cold weather and are not water-resistant.

What areas are porcelain tiles best suited for?

Porcelain tiles are best suited for higher moisture areas and busy areas with heavy footfall. They are durable and hardwearing as well as being water-resistant, so they are suitable for both walls and floors, inside and outside the home. Heavy porcelain tiles should not be used on walls, so always check the weight of the tiles and the manufacturer’s recommendations before use.

Above, Largo Mist White Geo Pattern Tiles

Here are a few of our most popular ceramic and porcelain tiles:

Ceramic

Harran Antique Vintage Blue Patterned Floor Tiles

Above, Harran Antique Vintage Blue Pattern Floor Tiles – customer project by @jessicasimmons

Zebra Stripe Monochrome Tiles

Above, Whitechapel Gloss White Metro Tiles and Zebra Stripe Monochrome Tiles

Scintilla Black Star Pattern Tiles

Above, Scintilla Black Star Pattern Tiles

Mr Jones Charcoal Tiles

Above, Mr Jones Charcoal Tiles

Porcelain

Trax Velvet Moon Lappato Tiles

Above, Trax Velvet Moon Lappato Tiles

Deluxe Gold Leaf Ultra Gloss White Marble Effect Tiles

Above, Deluxe Gold Leaf Ultra Gloss White Marble Effect Tiles

Form Ivory Polished Tiles

Above, Form Ivory Polished Tiles

Parlor Sunkissed Birch Wood Effect Tiles

Above, Parlor Sunkissed Birch Wood Effect Tiles

Are you team ceramic or porcelain? Why not both?! Whatever your style, post your projects on Instagram for us to see @wallsandfloors.