How to stain concrete countertops with 4 steps

How to stain concrete countertops with 4 steps

Have you contemplated updating your kitchen but are hesitant to replace your old cabinets and countertops because they are still in good shape? Or are you curious about creating your own stained cement countertops?

If so, you’ve come to the right place. With my short guide, you can learn how to make stained concrete kitchen countertops that are affordable and give your kitchen a fresh new look.

And if you’re skilled enough, you can achieve results that look like they came straight out of a magazine. However, it’s important to note that this technique requires some practice to achieve the desired outcome.

You can peruse the guide and purchase a concrete pad to practice on before diving into the process.

Can you stain concrete countertops?

Concrete countertops are becoming increasingly popular nationwide due to their versatility, durability, and unique aesthetic appeal. They offer several advantages over granite countertops, including options for thickness, edging, and color choices that cannot be achieved with granite. 

Concrete countertops are porous, like granite, and require sealing and maintenance to prevent staining. However, unlike granite and many other countertop options, concrete countertops are custom-made, allowing for unique and personalized finishes. Each project is unique, and no two countertops will look the same, even though the same materials are used.

Custom-made concrete countertops allow various customization options, including color, finish size, shape, and edge detail. They also provide a natural, organic look and texture that synthetic materials cannot replicate. 

One of the most significant advantages of concrete countertops is their ability to be stained. Staining can enhance the concrete’s color and texture, creating a unique and personalized finish. Concrete countertops can be stained using acid, concrete countertop dye, or other products. 

The only disadvantage of concrete countertops is the time required to fabricate them. Creating a concrete countertop can take 2 to 3 weeks due to the time of cure needed. However, most people who choose concrete countertops are looking for a unique and personalized finish and are willing to wait for the result. 

In conclusion, concrete countertops are an excellent choice for those looking for a unique, durable, and versatile countertop option. With their many customization options and ability to be stained, concrete countertops offer endless possibilities for creating a functional and stylish one-of-a-kind finish.

Staining concrete countertop

Stained concrete countertops have become increasingly popular as an excellent way to enhance the appearance and texture of concrete countertops. The process involves applying a specialized stain that provides a rich, full color to the countertop surface, making it look reminiscent of exquisite stone or marble. 

The acid-based concrete stain used in the process is available in various earth tones, including shades of brown, green, and dark red. This makes it easy to find a color that perfectly complements the theme of your room. 

The best part about stained concrete countertops is their durability. They require very little maintenance, and the colors won’t fade or need to be reapplied. The only upkeep required is to re-seal them periodically. 

Not only is this method cost-effective, but it is also a time-efficient way of producing beautiful-looking countertops that will leave your guests in awe. Their elegant and expensive appearance will impress everyone who sees them, and you won’t have to reveal how affordable they are. 

Staining concrete countertops is straightforward and similar to what we outlined in our guide on how to stain concrete floors. It will just be done on a smaller scale.

How to stain concrete countertops to look like marble

Staining process for countertop

Step 1: Prepare the concrete. Before staining your concrete countertops, you must ensure they are clean and ready to be spoiled. If your countertops are new, you will only need to do a little prep work.

However, they are dirty or have any stains. In that case, you should clean them thoroughly with a mixture of TSP and water before applying the stain. This will ensure the acid stain will adhere well to the countertop’s surface.

To prevent the stain from spilling or dripping onto surfaces where it shouldn’t seal off the surrounding area with plastic and tape. This will help you to work more efficiently and safely.

Step 2: Apply the stain with proper protection. Staining concrete countertops involves working with mild acid, which can be harmful if it comes into contact with your skin or eyes. Therefore, you must wear all the necessary protective gear, including rubber gloves, eye protection, a face mask, and a long-sleeved shirt.

Dilute the stain with water at a 1:1 ratio, but follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. You must apply the stain to the countertop using a sponge, working from one side to the other in a circular motion.

This will help you to apply the stain evenly and avoid leaving any streaks. Be sure to work the stain into the concrete countertop and go back over any areas with any streaks.

Once you have completely covered the area, let it sit long enough for the chemical reaction to complete. This will vary depending on what brand of acid concrete stain you use.

It is essential to read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully to ensure you leave the stain on for the appropriate time.

Step 3: Clean excess residue and repeat if needed. After the appropriate time has passed, use baking soda and water to neutralize the reaction and clean off any leftover residue. Clean the area twice for best results to ensure all the residue is removed.

Let the area dry for 24 hours, and make sure nothing touches it during this time.

If you want a deeper look, repeat the staining process as before. This will help you to achieve a more vibrant and intense color for your concrete countertops. However, follow the instructions carefully and avoid leaving the stain on for too long, as this can cause damage to the countertop.

Step 4: Apply the sealer. Once the stained concrete countertop is fully dry, it is time to apply the sealer. Apply the sealer your stain manufacturer recommends with a paint tray and a small roller. Be sure to avoid leaving any streaks, as these will be visible once the sealer dries.

Allow the first coat to dry for a few hours before applying at least two more coats. Consider using a few coats of an acrylic wax finisher for extra protection. This will help protect the colors and make the countertops easy to clean.

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully when applying the sealer and finisher to ensure the best results.


Now you know how to stain concrete countertops. Acid staining your concrete countertops is an easy and affordable way to increase the character of your home. With this DIY project’s ease, there is no longer a reason to settle for dull gray concrete countertops.

Changing the color of concrete countertops is something that I think should be done as a default. It’s the second step in having a custom countertop after pouring one.

If you want to color concrete countertops yourself, as stated at the beginning, I advise getting a practicing pad. If you want to be sure the stain is the same, you can make some 2-foot wide and tall concrete pads to practice on.

So before you start making the kitchen countertop, you can practice different techniques on those. If you’re using acid stains, you get to see how the acid reacts with the minerals and what colors will come from it. It’s still okay to back off if it’s something you don’t like.