• Painted Concrete Floors & Stained Concrete Floor Ideas


    Painted concrete floors can look stunning if you do a little preparation, use a specialty concrete floor paint, add a great design and a concrete floor sealer. And its easier than you think. These stunning designer looks use little more than a combination of paint, or stain, a stencil and a sealer that will cost you so much less than paying a professional.

    use a stencil

    Source: Pinterest

    I wrote about painted concrete floor ideas early in 2014 but this versatile trend is definitely worth revisiting as a floor treatment either in your home, garage, basement, patio or balcony. Below is a stained floor, also a great look for concrete, layering more than one color to get an aged effect.


    Source: She Can Do It All

    You could go for a solid color but often this can look like one dense solid block – dense and flat. If time is an issue, add a simple border. Your design doesn’t have to be perfect!


    Source: Houzz

    Watch the short video below. This floor design is less than perfect, created with simple painter’s tape, but you don’t notice on your first glance – and its certainly a huge improvement on the flat, original flooring.

    Painted Concrete Floor Designs

    Using paint on a concrete floor to create rug, carpet, floorboards or granite looks is fairly straight forward. There are so many stencils, borders, checkerboard and even freehand designs you can use to create amazing looks. Your design should consider the size of your room, the natural light, and your existing decor.


    Source: Pinterest

    And getting these unique looks on your concrete floor is not particularly expensive if you do it yourself; hiring equipment, using concrete floor paint or an etching solution, for stained concrete floors, and a sealer. Designs can be done free hand, using a stencil or painter’s tape. Click here to find painting and staining products to get started.

    d654924240bdf5a6ab644a1003d7560f pin

    This checkerboard floor design above is a complete classic; but there are so many other designs you can use for an all over effect or simply use stencils to create a carpet or rug look.

    Choosing concrete floor colors is similar to choosing carpet or rug colors. Consider the natural light of your room, your current decor and what color will hide dirt. Simple. Having said that, finding good concrete paint colors is not always easy. Ask your paint supplier if you can add pigment or colors to your concrete paint to get the color you really want – using a wall paint chart may help you to find paint colors that will suit your rooms more.

    How To Paint Concrete Floors

    No matter what you choose, make sure your design is in keeping with your color scheme and decorating theme. The white floor below is covered in a large dark coffee design, and much cheaper than carpeting or other flooring solutions. Further below is a smaller stencil print. Big or small designs will depend on the size of your room and how much furniture you have to put in it. Think of choosing your design, as if your were choosing a carpet or rug design for the same space.

    Painted Concrete Floors - Source - thesistersophisticate.blogspot.com.au


    concrete floor paint

    Source: Pinterest

    The stenciled concrete floor above reverses the color palette; using a  very dark coffee or black floor with a white stencil on the top resembling carpet or tiles.

    Painted Concrete Floor – The Healthy Option

    It’s not only the cost of painting a concrete floor that is appealing; and doing it yourself is the best way to save big dollars. For others its adding the look of texture, even making your own stencils, to rejuvenate painted floors that gets some people really excited. Concrete floors have the added bonus of being the perfect anti-slip flooring solution for most families; no matter the age group, being anti-slip means safety first.

    muted painted concrete

    Source: My Paradissi

    For others simple painted floors is a great way of eliminating or managing allergies. If this is you, it could be time to rip up your carpets and get the creative juices going because there are so many amazing things you can do with painted floors.

    While this article focuses on a total DIY approach to painting concrete floors, you can easily find a local decorative concrete contractor to help prepare your floors if the job is too big or you don’t have time and want the job done quickly.

    Source - apartment therapy.com

    Concrete Floor Preparation

    1. If you are doing it yourself, first, remove old carpets or vinyl to reveal the state of your floor. You’ll be surprised at how much dirt is under your carpets – years of accumulated dust, allergens and dirt that need a quick sweep. You might want to wear a mask or use a vacuum if you are sensitive!
    2. Remove nails slowly with a crowbar or nail puller so you don’t remove chunks of concrete.
    3. Fill holes with concrete patch or leave them. This will depend on the look you want to create; silky smooth, rustic or industrial.
    4. Vacuum or sweep, again.
    5. Mop your floor with a cleanser to remove residue, dirt, and loose particles.
    6. Decide whether your concrete floors need a hydrochloric acid solution, diluted with 4 parts water to remove stubborn residues of carpet glue or dirt. Use a solution like Clean-N-Etch 64 oz. cleaning solution or Rust-Oleum 238475 EPOXYShield Concrete Etch. Great to prepare your floors and no fumes or odor. Don’t forget to use protective eye wear and gloves and make sure the room is ventilated.
    7. If your floor is in very poor condition use a stronger more powerful cleaner and a special floor cleaner/buffer to remove additional layers of residue.These are often big machines and relative expensive to hire but much cheaper than hiring someone to do it for you. If it looks like something you really need help with, get help from a professional decorative concrete contractor. Here’s a video using a concrete buffer to remove old paint from concrete floors.
    8. Paint for concrete floors is more expensive, durable and long lasting than wall paints. Buy a specific concrete paint product to get the best results. Sometimes its best to use a spray gun; they are faster and use less paint. There are a few different options when it comes to spray guns. Some consider an HLVP spray gun, the best hvlp spray gun option. That’s because the result is a much softer finish, because the pressure is lower, it is easier for beginners to use and they minimize overspray paint waste.
    9. You can find more painting and staining products here.

    Painting Concrete Floors Finishes

    This is where the fun begins! Concrete is you canvas. Solid colors, borders or stencils are great for painted floors. Or use an acid etching solution and stain your concrete floors to transform them completely. Etching solutions react with the concrete to create patterns. If are staining or dying your concrete, make sure your concrete will absorb the stain or dye by placing some water on it. If it absorbs quickly, your concrete will most likely absorb all the stain or dye. If the water beads on top… you might have to reconsider and watch this first.

    Dark stain produces a stone look. Apply stain with a garden sprayer and leave to dry. The sealer is applied with a brush or roller on stained concrete.

    3603a9315575a34855c00aa04e2e8211 granite look

    Source: Pinterest and Lake Girl Paints

    The short video below shows how to use epoxy paint for concrete floors to create a decorative concrete floor to achieve this look.

    Patterns and borders can be created by taping the floor before applying the stain. Looks fabulous and very classic! Use a trustworthy, high quality product like Valspar 1534 Porch and Floor Latex for a wonderful dark gray or see more concrete paints and stains here.


    Stain concrete a second time, with the tape removed. The look below is painted concrete with a stencil over the top.

    stencilled floor - source - thesistersophisticate.blogspot.com.au
    What about creating your own floorboard look, like these painted floor boards below?


    Painting Concrete – Concrete Floor Rugs

    Of course, you don’t have to paint the entire floor. Painting in a concrete floor ‘rug’ can be as big, small and intricate as you want. And if you don’t want to buy a stencil, here’s a tutorial to make your own stencils.


    Source: Pinterest

    This look is perfect for wet areas like kitchens and bathrooms; the painted rugs really stand out, as a contrast, take less time and cost less than an entire floor. They add color, the look of texture and a design!


    Source: Pinterest

    Paint a complete work of art like the rug above or a simple outline like the rug below.


    Source: Pinterest

    10 Tips for Painting Concrete Floors

    1. Use concrete floor paint, nothing else. Paint for concrete can be more expensive, but it is harder wearing and will last longer. There are lots of reliable brands including those listed here. Time spent reading reviews or at your local hardware store will not go to waste.
    2. Remove glue, nails and any concrete bumps. Sandpaper removes glue easily. 
    3. Concrete must completely clean and dry. A humidifier removes excess moisture within 1-5 days.
    4. Apply two coats concrete primer to your painted concrete floors – this binds to the concrete, allowing the topcoat to stick.
    5. Allow 24 hours for the primer to dry. Apply the epoxy. Use a paint small brush, starting around the perimeter.
    6. Continue painting. Start away from the entrance using a  lambswool roller on a poll.
    7. Your first coat of  concrete floor paint takes minimum 12 hours to dry.
    8. Apply your second coat of concrete floor paint.
    9. Wait 7 days before walking on painted concrete floors with shoes or adding furniture. The primer adds time to the drying process no matter what your paint can says. You risk scratching your floors.
    10. If your painted concrete floors scratch, touch up with concrete floor paint and epoxy paint for concrete floors.

    How to Stain Concrete Floors

    What about this spectacular looking stained concrete floor? It looks like a tiled or ceramic floor! The floor stays cool in summer and easy to mop clean.

    tywkiwdbi blogpsot

    Source: Pinterest

    It is spectacular but staining concrete floors not for the faint-hearted. The cost of painted concrete floors is hugely expensive. The material cost for the floor above was around $500, but it was labor intensive. You can see more photos here.

    Concrete stained floors need stains instead of paints. The effects you get depend on whether you use full strength or dilute the stains, and if you use more than one concrete floor stain to produce a marbling, granite or stone effect. At all times, follow the instructions.

    Some notes on this floor:

    • This floor will last a lifetime. It’s easily cared for by mopping on wax every 6 months in high traffic spots.
    • To create the lines, use 1/2″ masking tape, then spray the stain over. The natural concrete color comes through when the painters tape is removed.
    • This is an acid stain and reacts directly with the concrete.
    • Once stained, a urethane sealer followed by a coat of wax are applied. There are many concrete dyes, stains, and pigments available in many shades and colors. 
    • The look above used one brown stain color. The dark areas are full strength. Lighter areas are diluted with water 1:1.

    Whether you create a painted concrete floor rug, stain or use an etching solution, do it yourself or bring in a decorative concrete contractor, the final results of painted concrete or stained concrete can be spectacular – giving your home a truly unique feel and look. Leave a comment below if you have found a concrete floor product or painting technique but if you are ready to dive in here are some products to make your DIY job look professional and tough enough to last for years.



27 Responsesso far.

  1. Hey there! I’ve been reading your blog for some time now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from Austin Texas! Just wanted to tell you keep up the good job!

    • Christine says:

      Thanks for the shout out! Glad you like the blog.. keep visiting and love to see your comments. Christine

  2. web page says:

    It is important that you wash it, That strong musty odor is
    usually caused by improperly stretched carpets. An LCD brings its own backlight to the party, meaning you can see that many customers requires the services of NYC duct
    carpet cleaning. This means the wool is stain
    resistant not stain proof.

  3. Great post! Been reading around for info on this kind of paint job. Thanks for sharing!

  4. […] This geometric print is so pretty.  Decorated Life […]

  5. Morgan says:

    Have you tried painting over stain? We are staining all the floors in our house and I would love to stencil our bathroom and closets with something cool! Thanks!

    • Christine says:

      Hi Morgan
      Thanks for the email. You can easily stencil over stained floors as long as they are not heavily varnished. Apply a seal over the final job to protect your work!

      Hope it turns out beautifully!


  6. I really like the idea of painting concrete. Looking at all of the images you have provided, it looks great. I especially like the painted rugs. However, if I could have my way I would want to get stamped concrete so that it would have more texture to it. Unfortunately it is not something you can do with existing concrete. I’ll have to stick to painting. Thanks for the tips.

  7. Bethany M says:

    I think you mean a “dehumidifier” in the tips section not a “humidifier.”

  8. Rosemary Jones says:

    Great video and ideas!! I love the Australian guy with how to paint a concrete floor – very user friendly. THANK YOU!!

  9. Amanda says:

    The first picture in the post; the “Moroccan-esque” stencil on the concrete floor, do you have a source for where that stencil can be purchased? Or a good source in general for floor stencils?


    • Christine says:

      Hi Amanda
      thank you so much for emailing. I hope I can help you.
      There are a few different places you can get these.
      Here’s a link to Amazon with different floor stencils. http://amzn.to/2m14nKG

      I think that’s a good place to start because there are so many different styles and prices to choose from.

      Good luck!


  10. Arlene says:

    Hi! Love your blog! I was considering painting my basement concrete floor. Right now we have pulled up the old carpet and found stick on wood flooring that is very ugly and old. I have been peeling some of it up. How do I get ride of all the adhesive that was left by those stick on wood pieces? I was going to paint it and then do a some kind of stencil pattern over it. Do you think my idea is doable? Thanks so much!

  11. Glynis says:

    Hi. Great info…thx. I have a few questions : we just poured a concrete floor in our new home. The concrete was coloured -triple black – so it is quite dark. I wanted to have a cedar branch design in a few select areas of the house, and thought I could use a real cedar branch as a sort of stencil. If I did this, and sprayed muriatic acid around the edges of the branch, would the outline be lighter than the untouched area? Or would it be the same colour and simply etched? What if I used a dyed acid – would it show up on the dark concrete? Any other suggestions for how I could use the branch as a stencil?

    • Christine says:

      Hi Gynis
      sorry for the late reply. I wanted to see if I could find specific information for you using muriatic acid (or hydrochloric acid) and its not that easy… and probably why professionals charge so much! Its like a secret society!
      Hope some of this information helps!

      I understand that Muriatic acid can also brighten concrete but that is not the same as lightening it.

      This is one of the hardest issues to deal with. Because integral color is such a durable and “integral” part of the concrete, it’s very difficult to change the color. Going from a light to a dark color can be achieved with tinted sealers and colored coatings. But to go from dark to light, without making the surface look like it has been painted, often requires application of a micro-thin colored overlay. However, this is a costly fix and will not work over exposed aggregate.

      To reduce the color intensity and tone down the darkness from black to gray, and efflorescence can help you do that. For this to work, the concrete must be free of all sealers and curing compounds. Use a garden hose or pressure washer, and saturate the concrete surface with lots of water. Then let Mother Nature take effect. Multiple water-soaking cycles may be needed, and there is no guarantee that the color will lighten to the desired shade, if at all.

      I’m not sure you can achieve that with using a branch as a stencil. So you can etch it but not lighten it – I hope that is what you want!

      I’ve also found a site with a video on how to stencil concrete floors here using an acid etching gel which will give a lighter result. You may want to work out how to create a stencil from your branch because over time it will destroyed so the first few times you might get a reasonable result but by the end of it… well, there may not be enough branch to give the same result.

      BUT I did find the name of someone that makes templates – they sell them too, but I didn’t see anything like a branch.
      Hope that helps!

      Here are some steps to etching with acid that might also help.

      All concrete, both new and old, must be acid etched in the following manner:
      1. Etch with a mixture of 1 part (32%) Commercial Hydrochloric (Muriatic) Acid and 2 parts clean water. Add acid to
      water when mixing. Do not add water to acid as reaction may be violent. Apply about 1 litre of this mixture to 3
      square metres of concrete. Thoroughly wet the entire concrete surface area directly from a plastic watering can (or
      other suitable method). Before scrubbing, ensure that entire surface is wet with acid mixture. The wet area should
      then be scrubbed to ensure penetration of acid into concrete. Do not rely on scrubbing to distribute acid mixture to
      dry areas as this acid will already be partly reacted and thus be ineffective on dry concrete areas.
      2. CAUTION: Hydrochloric acid is corrosive and needs to be handled with care. Avoid contact with the skin and eyes.
      Wear impervious gloves and protective goggles. If skin contact occurs remove contaminated clothing and wash skin
      thoroughly. If splashed in eyes wash out with large quantities of clean water and obtain medical attention. If
      swallowed do not induce vomiting. Drink plenty of water or milk and obtain medial attention.
      3. The concrete must be well wet with acid. It should bubble for 3-5 minutes. Allow 10-15 minutes for the etching
      action to be complete.
      4. If acid does not react with concrete it is an indication that the surface of the concrete was not free of oil or grease,
      and further cleaning treatment is required. Repeat acid etching until the reaction occurs. If necessary increase
      concentration of acid.
      5. When etching is complete, wash the surface down with plenty of fresh water. Brush during washing with a stiff brush
      to remove concrete salts.
      6. When the surface is properly etched it will appear slightly granular and free from any glaze.
      7. On very dense machine-trowelled surfaces, repeat applications of acid may be necessary to get a properly etched
      8. Allow the surface to dry thoroughly. A moist surface will not allow proper adhesion of the paint. 7 days should be
      considered a normal drying time. Before painting, the presence of moisture can be detected by laying a piece of
      clear plastic on the surface to be coated. Tape all round the edges, ensuring a good seal and leave for two (2) hours
      during daylight. If moisture condenses under the plastic, do not coat, but leave surface to dry and test again.
      9. Before painting sweep thoroughly or vacuum to remove dust and grit left by the etching process.

  12. Rebecca says:

    Hi christine- i have carpet directly over cement floor in living room. I dont want wall to wall carpeting anymore but im worried about how cold the floor may get in winter….any suggestions?

    • Christine says:

      Hi Rebecca
      So good to hear from you!

      We had wall to wall carpets and when we replaced them with wooden flooring we found our health improved dramatically. No matter how clean you keep your carpets, dust mites etc have a way of settling in.

      On the other hand, concrete is pretty tough to live with in colder months.

      My main suggestion is area rugs. You can choose different sizes for different zones – and even layer them.

      Sisal is a good natural option and moderately priced.

      Depending on the size of your rooms you can get jute or sisal in large area rugs, so you have a buffer between you and the cold concrete floor.
      Have a look at this collection from Amazon for pricing and you can see they are not particularly expensive –

      If you are polishing your concrete floors, then smaller rugs with runners, could solve your problem so you can show off your concrete floors in the summer months and cover up in the winter.

      Here are some runners to get some ideas and that won’t break the bank, and many are washable. http://amzn.to/2tORJpB

      Remember to choose one with a non-slip backing, especially if you are polishing your concrete.

      That’s my advice without knowing much more – hope it helps a little.

      Thank you again for writing in.



  13. Brooklyn Carter says:

    Thank you for this informative blog. Masonry paint (also called elastomeric paint or elastomeric wall coating) is a good choice for concrete painting because it contains binders that contract and expand with the concrete.

  14. Chris says:

    Thanks for sharing awesome tips. I must bookmark it.

  15. KUl says:

    Can I paint a mural on the concrete floor and then apply a clear coat rust oleum epoxysheild over it? We are hoping to do something like that for our coffee shop floor.

    • Christine says:

      Yes.. but you need to use industrial or garage strength for all of it because depending on the amount of traffic, it wears away.
      It will look great! I did it a while ago for a retail store and it was amazing.

      • KUl says:

        industrial strength paint? The expoxyshield is for garage floors or do you think a different stronger product? Thank you so much!
        And one more question, if the garage floor has been painted previously and it is worn off in places…should we remove the old pain, or paint over it? Thank you so much!

        • Christine says:

          I’ve used some expoxyshield paints for garages and they have come off…
          Whatever you decide on, when you are purchasing it ask about the old paint? You can paint over it but if its glossy or similar garage paint, they could bond and it may peel after a while. Ask. It may help you decide.

          Good luck. It sounds great!

  16. Steve says:

    I hav a new concrete slab in my shop so will it need much prep s far as cleaning?

    • Christine says:

      Hi Steve
      it will really depend on how much grease and dirt is on it – the less of each the better your final result.
      Good luck


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