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Marble Types & Identification (Part II)

Yesterday, we talked about different kinds of marble and how you’d probably need to be a geologist to know and identify them all, but the good news is you don’t need an advanced degree to tell what’s marble and what’s not.

All you need is a 10 percent solution of muriatic acid and an eye dropper. Kidding! Fortunately, there are easier ways to test marble. 

The Knife Trick

Marble is a “soft” metamorphic rock primarily composed of calcite or dolomite, which means you can scratch it pretty easily (and is something you should think about when considering real marble).

The “trick” in the knife trick is to not scratch the marble you want in a spot you don’t want, because if it’s real then you just put a scratch on your new marble. So, when you conduct your test, pick an out-of-the-way spot and don’t use too much pressure.

The Shine Trick

This will require a) marble polish, b) a clean rag and c) a familiarity with how truly shiny real marble gets when you polish it. Granite gets shiny, and even synthetics can hold their glow, but nothing shines like real marble, which is one of the reasons why people love it so much.

So, give the piece you’re eyeing a little polish and measure its luster. If it really pops, then you know you’ve got a winner.

The Color Trick

Pure marble is white as the driven snow and impurities can cause slight variation in color, but there’s only so much variation true marble can have – and we’re not talking about the veins.

If you spot a really stark color in your marble, there’s a great chance it’s not marble.  

The Vein Trick

This is a tough one. If you have a keen eye, you may be able to tell the difference between real and “cultured” marble by looking at the veins. Marble veins are created by impurities in the calcite substrate, and when they occur naturally they have depth and richness that’s hard to replicate.

But, stone manufacturers are getting better at it every day, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. To get more help in that area, you can find a stone pro at Porch for an even better understanding of marble types and tests. 

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