Porcelain is a type of ceramic. Similar to other ceramic types, such as earthenware and stoneware, porcelain is clay-based and fired in a kiln at high temperatures to create its final form. Porcelain is baked at a higher temperature than most ceramic types, resulting in a very dense, strong, and impervious material. In fact, according to the ANSI A137.1 specification, a ceramic cannot be considered a porcelain until it reaches a water absorption result of 0.5 percent or less. Porcelain can be left unglazed or finished with a glaze. Some porcelain objects, such as panels or tiles, can be printed on to create a topical design or finish.
Unlike earthenware ceramics—such as terracotta—porcelain is known for its white, fine-grained body composed of quartz, clay, and feldspar. Pigments can be added to the clay base to create a variety of colors. Porcelain can be used in a manner of ways, including for bathroom fixtures such as sinks and toilets, pottery and kitchenware, building elements such as decorative features or architectural panels, and is commonly seen in flooring and wall tiles.