What Is a Ceramic Tile?

by Drew Henry

You've certainly heard of ceramic tiles before, but do you know what they are? 

If you're considering them for your home, it's important to know what they are and their benefits. 

In this post, we'll share all about ceramic tiles, including what they're made of, the different types, and why you might want to choose them. 

What Materials Are Ceramic Tiles Made From?

Clay serves as the primary material and provides the base for this type of tile. The type of clay used can vary, but common types include ball clay, fire clay, and kaolin – together these materials undergo a transformative journey inside the fiery furnace that eventually results in beautiful ceramic tiles.

Now one might ask what differentiates ceramic vs porcelain tile? The answer lies in the density and water absorption rate with ceramics being less dense and more absorbent than their porcelain counterparts due to their earthen-clay composition.

This quality makes them more amenable to intricate artistic designs but less resistant to moisture. However, they still provide excellent service as bathroom ceramic floor tile or as kitchen ceramic tile where the beauty of design outweighs excessive moisture exposure.

The process initiates with these raw materials being grounded into a fine powder before adding water to create a pliable paste. This paste is then shaped into desired forms before entering kilns heated at extremely high temperatures.
These extreme conditions instigate a process called vitrification where silica present in clay reacts with heat to form glass-like structures giving strength and rigidity to the tiles. 

However, while ceramic tiles are durable, they’re prone to a natural crackle and frost effect that takes place as the glaze cools down, resulting in fine lines or cracks on the surface. While the crackle effect can add depth to a tile to create a vintage look, this aesthetic may often be unwanted and makes them unsuitable for flooring. 

Getting a Look at Ceramic Tile: What Is It Like?

Ceramic tiles come in many colors, sizes, and styles. You'll find them in two varieties – glossy tiles with a thin-glass-like glaze on top and textured matte finishes with a duller glaze and heavier texture. 

Many homeowners choose ceramic since it provides a similar design aesthetic to natural stone without the high price tag. Some of the most common looks include: 

  • Solid colors: Many tiles come in most solid colors, ranging from neutrals like white and beige to vibrant shades like blue, red, and green. 
  • Designs and patterns: They feature an array of designs and patterns, including geometric shapes, abstract art, floral motifs, and intrinsic mosaics.
  • Textures: Some feature textured surfaces mimicking natural materials like wood or stone. These textured options can add depth and dimension to a space. 

They make exceptional choices for both indoor use — such as kitchen backsplashes —and outdoor applications due to their frost-resistant properties. Explore our stunning range of ceramic glaze tiles at LiLi Tile. We offer a robust selection of glazed tile options that can be used as decorative accents or full design statements. 

What Are the Different Types of Ceramic Tiles?

There are three primary types of ceramic tiles to choose from: glazed, unglazed, and porcelain. We'll discuss each so you can determine the best option for you. 


Glazed tiles are coated with a protective finish, usually enamel or liquid glass. The finish can either be matte, semi-gloss, or high-gloss. The hard protective top layer makes them impervious to water and most stains, making them the preferred option for bathrooms and kitchens.

Glossy options offer a polished look, and are recommended for wall installations. Matte finishes are best for natural designs and can be used for most applications. 

Unglazed or Terra Clay

Unglazed tiles are ultra hard and dense and are available in many different surface treatments or textures. They can be used on floors and come with an added anti-slip benefit due to their rougher texture. 


Porcelain is the hardest and densest ceramic type tile and is also non-porous, scratch resistant, and highly tolerant of temperature extremes. 

What Are the Benefits of Using Ceramic Tile?

Ceramic tiles are a favored choice in homes and commercial spaces. Here are some of the key benefits of using them:


Many homeowners are drawn to their ease of maintenance. They’re typically glazed, creating a protective layer resistant to stains. All you have to do is regularly wipe down surfaces to ensure their longevity and keep your space fresh. 


Ceramic tiles are ideal for bathroom and kitchen walls and floors. They stand up to stains, won't absorb odors or bacteria, offer versatility, and are impervious to moisture in residential and commercial spaces. 

Furthermore, they don't attract dirt, pollen, dust, or allergens, which can be a healthier option.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Considered Ceramic Tile?

A ceramic tile is typically made from clay and is shaped, glazed, and fired at high temperatures to create a durable material that can be used in just about any room. It's commonly found on walls, backsplashes, and countertops. 

Interested in Ceramic Tiles? Browse LiLi Tile!

You really can't go wrong with ceramic tiles. They're versatile, durable, affordable, and easy to maintain. They fit within most applications for your home or commercial spaces. 

That said, finding the right tiles can be difficult. 

Let LiLi Tile's selection of glazed tiles help you make the perfect choice for your project. We've got everything you need, from ceramic tiles with natural elements to a variety of colors. Shop today to transform your space with LiLi Tile.

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