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Mexican tile: Real or Fake

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Is the Mexican tile authentic?

Searching for genuine Mexican tiles can get tricky because there are so many different types. It can become quite challenging to determine whether they are authentic or knock-offs. So how does one know? Here are a few things to look for that can help tip you off.  

handmade mexican tile
Mexican Tile is Handmade

Talavera Mexican tiles are unique, hand-painted ceramic tiles that initially came from Puebla, Mexico. The Mexican tile paints and clays are top-quality and of the finest Mexican dyes.

These tiles are expensive in the sense that they range in price from two dollars per tile for 2×2 up to six dollars per tile for 6×6. The one tried and true indication of authentic Talavera tile is to look for the keyword superior in the description.

When comparing these Mexican tiles for authenticity, look closely at the paint itself. Authentic Puebla tiles will be bright and vivid in color and appear glossy, and the clay will be firmer and look more durable. Another thing is to look at the price; if the price seems too good to be true, it is safe to assume that those tiles are reproductions.

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Traditional Saltillo & Talavera Tiles in Shower

Saltillo is another Mexican tile that can be made into a knockoff or reproduction. Authentic Saltillo tile is handmade clay Mexican tile found in only one part of the world: Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico.

With this beautiful handmade tile, there will always be imperfections. These minor flaws can come from small cracks and minor chipping. No two tiles will ever be the same in size or color variation, and its rustic charm comes specifically from these little expected blemishes.

One primary indication that you are getting authentic Saltillo tile is if you find a random paw or footprint. The Mexican tile clays are laid out to dry in a field during the drying process. Often, a coyote, dog, or chicken will run across them, leaving their prints behind on the Mexican tile.

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