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Snowflakes form when water vapor traveling through the air condenses on a particle. Vapor condenses in two ways.
The first forms ‘facets.’ A flat face on a 3D shape, like a prism. The second way to grow a snowflake is to form branches, like a tree.
There’s more to it than that, so I’ll link you.
Its said no two snowflakes are alike. Similar, yes. Its not likely two flakes would experience exact conditions all the way down to the microscopic level.
Snow crystal forms usually fall into several broad categories. Note the air temperature ranges as it relates to the type.
Plates. Ice ridges divide the plate-like arms resulting in a diversity of complex shapes.
Columnar crystals grow long and thin and look like ice needles. These contain thin hollow regions. Sometimes the ends split into addtional needle branches.
Hollow columns are the main constituents of many snowfalls. Hexagonal, like a pencil, often forming conical hollow features in their ends.
Lack of moisture helps form the steallar plates. The stellar plate snowflake has six broad arms often decorated with amazingly symmetrical markings forming a star-like shape.
Dendrite means “tree-like” with a multi-branched appearance than can be symmetrical or randomly placed branches.
Whether you like snow or not, it is amazing stuff.

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