Concrete is well-known and loved by so many people for its versatility as well as its affordability. As one of the most common building materials used, it’s utilized almost everywhere you look, and it’s a great option for any home.

This being said, many people assume the basic, gray concrete slabs are the only option for their driveways, patios, porches, or sidewalks when that simply isn’t the case! There are plenty of ways to spice up a concrete slab for any size budget by using decorative concrete.

Decorative concrete is concrete that isn’t just used as a building material, but also as an aesthetic addition to a space. It’s meant to beautify the space.

There are a handful of different options that fall under the decorative concrete category.

Stained Concrete

First up is stained concrete. This is when the regular, gray concrete is poured, leveled, and cured and then a stain is added on top of it to change the color. This option can completely change the look of your concrete for an affordable price.

There are two types of concrete stains: water-based and acid.

Water-based stains provide an even distribution of color all across the concrete, and they come in a large variety of bright colors. For anyone who wants to make their concrete a statement piece, water-based stains will probably be the better option for you.

Acid stains tend to come out looking more varied and uneven, but this can provide beautifully abstract patterns on your concrete, setting it apart and adding uniqueness to your space.

Stamped Concrete

Stamped concrete is a big favorite among homeowners these days, and for good reason! This option entails pouring concrete, leveling it and waiting for it to slightly cure, and then stamping it with large, pattered molds to leave behind imprints.

This is one of the best ways to get a specific style or design that you had in mind without paying such a large price tag for it. Your simple concrete can be easily transformed into looking like a wide range of other building materials, such as:

  • Pavers
  • Brick
  • Tiles
  • Stone
  • And more!

One of the great things about this option is that you don’t have to do the entire slab, you can also use the stamped concrete as a border around plain, poured concrete for a little extra flair.

Dyed Concrete

If you’re worried about how long concrete stain would last, you can always opt to dye the actual concrete mix before it’s poured instead. Gray concrete is the default, but it’s not the only option if you’re interested in something more colorful. The color may fade slightly over time due to sun exposure, but it is definitely more permanent than concrete stain.

If you really want to branch out, stamped concrete using dyed mix is a great option. Many people do this to help the stamps look more realistic. Concrete stain can also be added on top to give the slab more definition.


Concrete is expensive, even if it’s one of the more affordable options for patios, driveways, and sidewalks. That being said, if you can’t afford to completely replace your old concrete, there’s still hope. Concrete overlays are perfect when your budget is small, as a new concrete layer is laid on top of the existing concrete, and the new layer can be dyed, stained, and stamped so you can still get the look you’re dreaming of.

Sealed Concrete

Protecting your concrete is important if you want it to last, especially if the concrete has been stained or dyed. Sealing your concrete will make it smooth, shiny, and keep it well protected over time. Concrete sealer prevents unwanted scratching and staining, and while this technique is most commonly used on indoor concrete, it can be used outdoors as well.

The best thing about decorative concrete is the ability to mix and match these techniques with regular concrete or with each other to allow for the ultimate customization experience. You can obtain the exact style and aesthetic you want with one affordable material.

If you’re looking for a contractor to repair, replace, or install concrete for you, College Station Covered Porch and Outdoor Kitchens can help. We pride ourselves on being the best of the best when it comes to concrete contracting in the Bryan-College Station, TX area.

We provide superior construction and installation, affordable and fair pricing, high quality customer service, and FREE estimates on all projects to College Station, TX and surrounding towns like Caldwell, Navasota, Brenham, Madisonville, Franklin, and Snook.

If you’re interested in our services, you can give us a call or fill out the form on our contact page for a FREE consultation today! We look forward to hearing from you.

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