The combination of crushed natural stone and a resin binder. The binder holds the stone aggregate together. Through this combination the stone has been “engineered” to enhance it's properties, and form it into a product more workable and usable. Engineered stone countertops are made in relatively thin slabs. The marriage between stone and resin is completed under intense heat and pressure. Pigments are added during the process to give the product its color. The resulting slab is then polished to a high gloss or honed to a more matte finish.
Strong, durable, and attractive, engineered stone is very consistent in look and pattern. It is also heat-resistant and does not accumulate bacteria or mold. The surfaces are easy to maintain, too. They can be specified with bacteria-resistant surfaces, but since they are non-absorptive and resistant to heat anyway, they should not be collecting bacteria in the first place.
Quartz has the same durability as concrete and granite, but is quite a bit more forgiving, so it won't chip or crack as easily. Like other hard surface countertop materials, quartz is non-porous so it resists staining much better than granite, marble and concrete.
Although quartz is very scratch resistant, we do recommend using a cutting board on your quartz countertop. A hot pot or pan can potentially lead to discoloration, we suggest using a trivet to maintain the quality of your countertop.
Quartz Scratches Easier Than Granite. The same resin that makes quartz susceptible to damage from heat also makes it more likely to scratch. While it's not easily scratched under normal use, it's definitely more likely than granite to see scratches from dropped pans or slipping knives.