Difference Between Glazed And Unglazed Tile

By: | May 17 , 2024

Tiles play a vital role in shaping the aesthetic appeal and functionality of our living spaces. When it comes to selecting the perfect tiles, understanding the key differences between glazed and unglazed varieties is crucial. Glazed tiles are adorned with a protective layer that adds color, texture, and sheen, while unglazed tiles showcase the raw beauty of their natural composition. In this comprehensive blog post, we will delve into the distinct characteristics, advantages, and considerations of glazed and unglazed tiles. By unraveling their unique properties, you will gain the knowledge needed to make an informed decision that aligns with your design aspirations and practical requirements, ensuring a stunning and enduring tile installation.

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Key Differences between Glazed and Unglazed Tiles

Definition and Composition:

  • Glazed Tiles:

Glazed tiles are coated with a glass-like layer, typically made of liquid glass, which is fused to the tiles surface during the firing process. This coating provides a glossy, smooth finish and adds color and design options.

  • Unglazed Tiles:

Unglazed tiles lack a protective layer on the surface, leaving the tile’s natural characteristics exposed. These tiles are typically made of clay or other natural materials and retain their original texture.

Appearance and Aesthetics:

  • Glazed Tiles:

The glazing process for an extensive array of colors, patterns, and designs. The glossy surface creates a reflective quality that can enhance the brightness and visual appeal of a space. Glazed tiles offer versatility and are available in various finishes, from high gloss to matte.

  • Unglazed Tiles:

Unglazed tiles have a more natural and earthy appearance. Their surface can showcase the inherent characteristics of the material, such as textures, grains, and color variations. They offer a rustic and authentic look that is popular in spaces where a subdued, organic ambiance is desired.

Durability and Maintenance:

  • Glazed Tiles:

The glazing layer on these tiles protects against stains, moisture, and scratches. They are relatively easy to clean and require minimal maintenance. However, the glossy surface may be susceptible to visible scratches and wear over time.

  • Unglazed Tiles:

While unglazed tiles lack a protective coating, they are generally more durable and resistant to wear and tear. They are less likely to show scratches or signs of aging. However, unglazed tiles are more prone to staining since their porous surface can absorb liquids. Regular sealing is recommended to maintain their appearance and prevent staining.

Slip Resistance and Safety:

  • Glazed Tiles:

The glazing process can affect the slip resistance of tiles. Glossy-glazed tiles tend to be more slippery, especially when wet. It is crucial to check the manufacturer’s specifications or ratings for slip resistance before installing glazed tiles in areas prone to moisture, such as bathrooms or kitchens.

  • Unglazed Tiles:

Unglazed tiles offer better traction and slip resistance due to their natural surface texture. They are a popular choice for areas where slip accidents are a concern, such as entryways or pool decks.

Benefits of Glazed and Unglazed Tiles: Distinction, Benefits, And Which One To Choose?

Glazed tiles are excellent for places like bathrooms and kitchens where there is a lot of foot traffic and water exposure since they are covered in a safe coating that improves their sheen, color, and resilience to stains. Conversely, unglazed tiles provide an excellent level of slip resistance together with a natural, matte texture, which makes them ideal for outdoor settings and spill-prone locations like pool surrounds or entryways. Make sure you select the choice that best fits your needs and design preferences by taking into account aspects like location, intended aesthetics, and maintenance requirements when choosing between the two.

Benefits Of Glazed and Unglazed Tiles:

  • Glazed tiles provide surfaces with a glossy sheen that enhances their sheen and depth.
  • Unglazed tiles look natural and matte, making them perfect for an earthy or rustic design scheme.
  • Glazed tiles have a smooth surface, making them easy to clean and maintain.
  • Unglazed tiles are more slip-resistant and are therefore appropriate for high-traffic areas.
  • A greater variety of colors and patterns are available for glazed tiles, providing greater personalization choices.
  • Over time, unglazed tiles hold up better and are less prone to wear and scratching.
  • Because of its aesthetic appeal and water resistance, glazed tiles are frequently used in kitchens and bathrooms.
  • Because they have better traction, unglazed tiles are recommended for outdoor areas and places that are exposed to dampness.
  • For a sleek, contemporary appearance and minimal care, go for glazed tiles.

What Is The Best Tile To Use?

The choice of the best tile between glazed and unglazed tile depends on diverse factors. The main factors are durability, finishing, performance, thickness, diverse applications, and many more. Below are a few essential factors jotted down:- 

  • Durability:

Unlike unglazed tiles, Glazed tiles are preeminent for their coatings (painted layers) which help in resistance to stains, moisture, and scratches. Whereas unglazed tiles are durable, however, they need extra sealings for optimal performance and protection against moisture.

  • Finishing And Thickness:

The glossy, matte, and textured finishes that glaze tiles come in offer a multitude of design and configuration possibilities. Because of the additional glaze coating, they are usually thinner than unglazed tiles. Unglazed tiles are thicker and have a matte, natural texture that makes them more robust, sturdy and long-lasting.

  • Performance And Form:

Glazed tiles are renowned for their adaptability, performance, and visual appeal, making them ideal for a comprehensive range of applications and design motifs. Since they are simple to keep and clean, they are well-liked for both home and business use. Better at resisting slippage, unglazed tiles are perfect for high-traffic locations such as outdoor spaces and commercial kitchens where safety is a top priority.

  • Commercial And Residential Applications:

Both glazed and unglazed tiles are comprehensively used across residential and commercial spaces. However, the choice depends on the specific project needs and requirements, design preferences, and interests. Glazed tiles are extensively used in living spaces such as residential kitchens and bathrooms to enhance the aesthetic appearance. Whereas unglazed tiles are commonly used in places such as restaurants, and retail spaces such as shopping malls, shops, etc.

These are a few essential factors that play an important role in choosing the right tile for your specific requirements between the Glazed and unglazed ones. The simple answer to this question is “It is all about your interests, your requirements, and preferences to choose the tile between glazed and unglazed” so what are you yet waiting for? Understand the benefits, salient features, and applications of both of the tiles to choose the one that best suits your needs within budget and on time.

Suitable Applications:

  • Glazed Tiles:

The wide range of colors, patterns, and finishes makes glazed tiles a popular choice for decorative purposes. They are commonly used in kitchens, bathrooms, and other areas where aesthetics and design are essential.

  • Unglazed Tiles:

Unglazed tiles are versatile and well-suited for high-traffic areas and spaces that require durability, such as hallways, commercial spaces, and outdoor areas. They are also preferred for their natural and organic appearance in rustic or traditional design styles.


The choice between glazed and unglazed tiles depends on various factors, including aesthetics, durability, maintenance requirements, and intended applications. Glazed tiles offer a vast array of design options and a glossy finish, while unglazed tiles provide natural beauty, durability, and slip resistance. By considering these distinctions, you can make an informed decision and select the most suitable tile type for your specific needs, ensuring a visually pleasing and functional result.
Remember, whether you’re chasing the shine of glazing or embracing the authenticity of unglazed surfaces, the choice is yours to make. Consult industry experts, suppliers, and design professionals to curate the perfect tile experience for your unique vision.


Q-1. Glazed or unglazed tiles? Which One is more expensive?
A-1. Glazed ones are considered to be more expensive due to the additional fabrication process and steps, unlike unglazed ones.

Q-2. What Is The Life Of The Glazed Tiles? 
A-2. Glazed tiles are one of the most preeminent tile choices renowned for their robustness, durability, and sturdiness. However, the life of glazed tiles may vary because of certain factors such as the quality of the material, maintenance, installation procedures, regular sealing, and more.

Q-3. Which one is better? Glazed vs Unglazed tile?
A-3. The choice of glazed and unglazed tiles may vary based on your specific requirements such as desired aesthetics, versatility, design preferences, and interests.

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