12 Different Types of Concrete Floor Finishes (Indoor & Outdoor Styles)

12 Different Types of Concrete Floor Finishes (Indoor & Outdoor Styles)

In the past, many interior designers and homeowners were limited by the concrete floors available on the market. Other than the usual gray concrete finish, there weren’t many options at the time.

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Nowadays, you can choose from different types of finishes in addition to concrete floors. With so many options, the aesthetics you want to achieve with your concrete floor are almost limitless.

If you want to change the look of your floor at home, here is a list of finishes you can use to beautify your concrete floor.

Chemical content (acid)

If you want to beautify your concrete floor with paint, you can use an acidic chemical stain. Chemical stain is one of the most popular methods of covering homes with concrete floors.

In fact, it transforms the usual cold grey concrete into something more attractive thanks to the complex and random patterns it leaves behind.


When choosing a color for your concrete floor, you can choose a neutral color that complements the style of the room or a bold color that makes it stand out. For the finish, a protective epoxy coating or mechanical polishing can be chosen.

Tip: Be sure to check the chemical stain before applying it to your concrete floor, as the reaction of the stain to the concrete is unpredictable and can create a color or pattern you don’t want.

Water-based paints

Image source: SureCrete

If the idea of using a water-based stain on a durable surface like concrete doesn’t make sense, then you’re not up to speed on the latest options for finishing cement floors.

For environmentalists, water-based stains may be the answer to their prayers, as these products are available in what manufacturers call a full range of colors, but you benefit from low organic compounds (VOCs) that are safer to use.

Don’t expect your finished concrete floors to be bright, vibrant hues created by acid dyes, but you can expect consistent color coverage from wall to wall when you choose this flooring for your home or business.

Acrylic seals

Do you have concrete floors that need to be sealed, but are or may be constantly exposed to water?

Image source: All garage floors

Acrylic sealers are a good choice if you are aware that they can wear out faster than the other products on this list.

Apply acrylic sealant evenly to create an even, matte layer that hardens when dry and gives a beautiful sheen that covers your floor with a thin protective layer.

That said, despite the hardness of the finish, contractors say acrylic sealants are somewhat flexible. So, if you choose this option, know that you don’t have to spend a fortune to get the job done.

Quick strippingTM

Who doesn’t love a DIY project associated with the word fast? For homeowners and contractors who have more work on their to-do list than hours in the day, Fast StainTM is a surface coating system that is an innovation that is also environmentally friendly and low in volatile organic compounds, so not only do you save time, but you can tell people you are helping the environment.

After being applied and dried in record time, Fast Stain takes on a spot-like appearance that can resemble that of an acid stain, so you end up with an anointed, multi-colored pattern.

If your cement floor is already polished and you just want to change the look without stripping it, you can use Fast Stains, which can also be combined with acid- or water-based stains if you decide to go for a truly unique finish.

Standard epoxy

Image source: Oklahoma City epoxy flooring

Epoxy coatings are the most common way to seal cement floors because they are durable, offer a nice variety of colors, and the glossy finish you get is a popular feature of this product.

An ideal choice for areas subject to heavy foot traffic. Standard epoxy provides an attractive, glossy finish to cement floors, but do not use this coating for exterior cement projects.

Standard epoxy is useful if you want a uniform color and/or need a durable or chemical resistant floor.

Watch for variations on this theme. Manufacturers are introducing a standard epoxy coating that is self-leveling, self-dispersing and antistatic. If you’re going crazy with too many options, contact a local flooring expert.

Terrazzo Flooring

If you grew up in Florida, you know there’s nothing better than fresh, easy-to-clean terrazzo. Terrazzo remains durable over the long term and is a favorite of homeowners.

To create a terrazzo floor, decorative colored chips are sprinkled with liquid epoxy to create unique patterns that allow for all kinds of color combinations.

With the addition of these colorful chips, you may be worried that terrazzo floors are not the ideal choice for people who like to walk barefoot, but you would be wrong.

The liquid epoxy is deep enough to cover any chipping, making your concrete floor under plaster smooth as velvet and a beautiful surface to walk on when the temperature rises.

Quartz sand Epoxy resin

Epoxy resins are so versatile that they can be mixed with stains, dyes, one-part substrates and other epoxy resins to create a wide range of designs.

When you specify epoxy silica sand when purchasing the material, you get a hard surface that is durable enough to be specified for factory and garage floors, as the surface can withstand cars, lawn mowers and heavy equipment.

Expect a good color selection to match the utilitarian nature of this surface. If you work in a manufacturing environment, epoxy silica sand can withstand frequent disinfection and constant use of chemicals.

Despite its rugged construction, this design provides a smooth, attractive floor that can save lives. When used as directed, you add slip resistance to the virtues of a cement floor.

Epoxy metal


If you don’t want anyone to notice that your floor is made of ordinary cement, and you’re looking for an elegant and expensive floor that will charm visitors, you should settle for nothing less than a metallic epoxy coating that can turn the ordinary into something extraordinary.

Restore the appearance of natural mineral plates by pouring a clear epoxy coating mix with metal additives that literally move in combination over the coating material as it cures.

When dry, this combination creates an exotic, high-gloss finish that can mimic anything from a lava flow to a pearl pattern.

In other words: Use metallic epoxy to decorate the floor of a palace or castle, or simply to create an elegant dining room or entryway that is sure to stand out.

Concrete stamps

Concrete stamping is a technique for spraying concrete walls and floors. With this method, you can make different patterns, such as. B. Tiles, bricks and slates, made on a plain concrete floor.

If you are using a mold with a specific pattern, the procedure is to press the pad onto the concrete while it is still wet. Concrete tamping is mainly used in open areas, as this method is difficult to implement indoors.

Here is a video showing how to stamp concrete the right way:

Concrete compaction

Applying sealant to any type of concrete is one of the best options for most homeowners because of its benefits. This method will give your dull concrete floor a shiny appearance and make it look more spacious thanks to the light reflection.

In addition to their aesthetic effect, concrete seals also prevent the absorption of moisture through the concrete floor. You can contact companies like TC Floors West if you want your concrete floor sealed.

Concrete assessment

Concrete grooving is a method that can be applied to newly laid or existing concrete slabs. With this method you can give your underlying concrete floor a unique and beautiful look. As with stamping concrete, you can create tiles, bricks, or any other pattern you want on the concrete floor of your home.

You can also color the patterns on the concrete floor after staining or contrast with the color of the floor to accentuate the design and improve the aesthetics.

Colour hardener

Often color hardeners are used with chemical stains to darken a concrete floor. This type of finish comes in the form of a powder that you sprinkle over the freshly poured concrete. When the powder is mixed with water in wet concrete, the moisture creates an attractive tint on the surface.

Which type of concrete floor is best for maintenance?

When you decide to paint a concrete floor, there are basically two types of products you can choose from. You can choose between an acid-based and a water-based concrete stain.

If you choose an acid-based dye, the color will be more limited, but will last longer than a water-based dye. It is very suitable for heavily trafficked areas because it does not fade, peel or flake. You can find colors in earth tones, and they can imitate wood or stone for a more natural look.

With water-based dyes, you can choose the color that suits you. There is no interaction with the concrete, so the color is constant.

Water-based stains are easier to apply and clean. They are less toxic and you can get eco-friendly products. It also takes less time to do the work.

You can assess the differences between them and choose the one that suits you best.

, which is better. Epoxy or concrete ?

The two most popular finishes for concrete floors are epoxy resin and concrete stain.

Epoxy is a resin that you apply in liquid form to concrete floors. It dries and forms a protective layer that makes your floor more durable. It is attractive and practical because it can handle a lot of traffic.

Concrete stain can be acid or water based and can have a chemical reaction with concrete. There is also an acrylic version you can use that is similar to regular paint, but penetrates deeper.

To choose the solution that best suits your project, consider the use of the space.

Epoxy is better for high traffic areas and easier to install. However, you will get better coverage of the stain. You can cover 200 square feet or more with one gallon. However, concrete staining is more expensive than epoxy.

Ultimately, you should use epoxy if you have a lot of traffic and are concerned about the appearance of the floor, and you can use concrete glaze if you are looking for a more decorative surface than a protective one.

Is it better to pave or paint concrete floors?

There are different opinions on whether staining or varnishing is preferable for concrete floors. Concrete stain is embedded in the surface and the colors are translucent, and concrete paint covers the surface, but can crack and peel if not applied properly. You can apply the stain faster and it dries faster, but it does not protect the surface.

Concrete paint is designed for concrete and can better cover and protect the surface. It can also prevent moisture, but you have to prepare it properly or it can start to peel.

You should use a degreaser to remove oil or grease stains and then use hydrochloric acid to remove the chemicals.

Concrete paints are suitable for surfaces that need to be sealed and protected, such as B. a garage or basement, while stains are good as decorative siding.

What are the disadvantages of epoxy coating?

Epoxy floors are known for their durability, attractive appearance and ability to protect your floors. However, there are a few drawbacks to consider. Take a look at the following:

  • Epoxy resin gives off strong toxic fumes
  • It takes a few days to heal.
  • It requires maintenance
  • High stresses lead to cracking and crumbling.
  • It’s slippery when wet.
  • This requires a lot of preparatory work
  • It’s hard to remove if you want to change it.
  • Maintenance can be expensive

Is a polished concrete floor expensive?

The cost of a polished concrete floor depends on where you live and the complexity of your project, but it generally ranges from $3 to $12 per square foot.

However, this depends on the amount of sanding required to achieve a smooth surface, as well as the decorative effects you wish to achieve.

You can get a simple polished concrete floor that includes a layer and color of stain, while it is ground and polished to a moderate shine. This requires minimal surface preparation.

The mid-range will have more points and a simple design element, as well as a shinier finish. This also allows you to further prepare the surface.

The most expensive polished concrete floors involve intricate designs or patterns, color matching, detailing and extensive prep work.

Are concrete floors slippery?

Stainless concrete floors can be slippery when wet. This is even more true if the floor has a shiny finish.

The most important thing is to use non-slip flour when preparing the floor. This will not change the color, but it will increase traction when the ground is wet.

Stainless concrete floors can be slippery, but they don’t have to be as long as you use a non-slip additive in the sealer.


Any home renovation should include flooring. For example, you need to think about the type of finish you want to put on your concrete floor. Nowadays, there are several types of finishes you can choose from to make your concrete floor attractive.

The use of color hardeners, stamping, sealing, staining and chemical staining are some of the best methods for finishing concrete that many homeowners prefer today. It is very important that you know them to help you with your home improvement project.

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