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How to Stain Concrete to Look Like Wood

Tape Measures on Brown Wooden Background

Concrete is the optimal construction material, used for a variety of jobs because it’s durable and affordable, the only drawback is that it doesn’t offer the most attractive finish. That said, there are things you can do to get the best of both worlds. This month, Neil Sullivan & Sons are here to share with you some concrete beauty hacks, so you can achieve an attractive finish by painting your concrete to look like wood. 

Cleaning concrete before painting the surface:

  • Use a degreaser to lift any existing dirt 
  • Use a straw brush to remove the dirt
  • Rinse thoroughly with fresh water
  • Pour the staining solution onto the concrete 
  • Once dry, seal with a water-based sealer
  • Seal North to South then East to West


How To Clean Concrete Before Staining

What you will need:

  • Duct tape
  • Aluminium foil
  • Dish soap 
  • Degreaser
  • Chemical stripper 
  • Painter’s tape
  • Concrete primer
  • Paint roller
  • Paintbrush
  • Paint tray
  • Paint 
  • Graining comb or brush 
  • Old towels
  • Protective sealer

How to paint concrete to look like warm and organic wood:

Once your concrete has been fully cleaned and has been allowed the time to dry, it’s time to use a marker board template, this will help you to draw straight lines that will later replicate the illusion of wooden panels. 

Concrete Staining Test Area

  • Using a 6” x 4’ board as a template (or larger/smaller sized board), use a pencil to draw lines from one side of the room to the other and repeat until you’ve done the entire room.
  • Now it’s time to draw short lines, to give the illusion of wooden boards.
  • Along your pencilled-in lines, place down painter’s tape.
  • Get your paint and roller at the ready, paint in small sections using your paint roller and then use a handheld broom to create wood grain marks. Start at the back of the room and work your way to the front, make sure you don’t step in the fresh paint and use a paintbrush to neatly cover the edges of the room.
  • Before the paint dries, remove the painter’s tape.
  • Allow the first paint 24 hours to dry.
  • Using a clean sweeping brush, sweep the newly painted floor to remove any dust that may have settled. 


 How To Stain Concrete Floors

  • Now you’re ready to apply a darker brown paint, do this using a paintbrush and in one slow sweep. This technique will encourage a more natural, wooden look to your floorboards.
  • Leave to dry for 24 hours.
  •  Again, sweep to remove dust.
  • Using a natural look sealer, apply in small sections and allow the first coat to dry.
  •  Apply a second sealer coat, allow to dry and wipe down with a dry clean cloth.


For inspiration or comprehensive concrete services, get in touch with Neil Sullivan today. We’re Essex’s number one concrete and aggregate supplier who have a ‘only pay for what you use’ policy, provide same or next day delivery and allow for customers to pay on delivery. For a quote or advice, get in touch with our friendly team – we’re more than happy to assist.