Staining Concrete Offers Design Versatility
Time: 02:28

Stains are a great way to add color to concrete both indoors and out. However, they are most frequently used on interior concrete flooring as a way to impart rich colors (see Design Ideas for Colored Concrete Floors). Bob Harris of the Decorative Concrete Institute describes stains as producing an organic look with a rich patina and warm variegated color effects. Stains are best known for earthy colors, however in recent years the palette has begun to expand.

Acid stain colors:Acid stains provide natural color and depth to concrete floors and other surfaces. Many homeowners are attracted to the transparent, variegated finish that these stains impart. The palette for acid stains is usually limited to earthy tones, such as tans, browns, terra cottas and soft blue-greens. These sample colors from Kemiko Decorative & Industrial Floor Finishes products can give you an idea of the types of hues available:

Kemiko Stone Tone Stains:

Aqua Blue
English Red
Garden Gold
Golden Wheat
Green Lawn
Malay Tan
Vintage Umber

Learn more (PDF).

Water-based stain colors:Comparatively, water-based stains come in a much broader range of hues, including black, white and even vivid yellow or orange. According to Chris Sullivan, author of the e-book Concrete Staining Today, the introduction of new stain technology allows contractors to achieve colors and finishes that are even more unique then those previously obtained from classic acid-based stains alone.

Brickform ARTesian Water-Based Stain Colors:

Cajun Red
Olympic Bronze
Dried Thyme

See all 20 colors (PDF).

Since both acid and water based stains produce a color unique to each stained surface, it is wise to test the color or colors you select before having them applied to an entire floor or patio. Request that your contractor apply a small amount of stain in an inconspicuous place so that you can be confident in your color choice. If you are not happy with the test color, don’t feel limited to the options shown by stain manufacturers, many contractors are capable of custom blending stains to create the exact shade you desire.

Review colors offered by other stain manufacturers.


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