When choosing a sink, the fabrication material is important in terms of performance and durability. Ceramic and vitreous china sinks are two of the most popular choices, and are quite similar in many respects.
Vitreous china is actually a type of ceramic. Both materials are made of fired clay, but china is made from a finer grade of clay and fired at higher temperatures. This results in a harder product, but this is offset by the fact that ceramic sinks are usually thicker.
Ceramic and china sinks are painted and fired, resulting in a baked-on finish. China sinks are fired at higher temperatures and use a smoother grade of paint, which results in a more uniform, glossy look.
Ceramic and china sinks can be cleaned with typical bathroom cleaners, but both may chip if struck by a heavy object. They are both non-porous and germ-resistant, and will not rust.
Ceramic sinks are more commonly found in home improvement superstores, while vitreous china is often a special-order product. Regular ceramic sinks are more affordable than china for typical standard sinks, but sculptured decorative touches are more common in china sinks.