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Dye, Stain or Pigment…What is what?


A dye colours a material and imparts a particular hue to a surface. This is a great way to colour existing concrete slabs and offers a wide variety of colours.

The dye comes in the form of a very fine powder that can be dispersed in a solvent or water – this is manufacturer dependent.


These come in three categories, namely: penetrating, film-forming or acid stains. All three of these categories come in a variety of colours, tints, shades and textures – each gives a unique look.

The film forming stain is a paint like application on the surface of the concrete, however this solution tends to peel and fade over time and we do not recommend this application.

A longer lasting and better alternative is a penetrative stain, this category is designed to penetrate into the concrete and form bonds. This technology relies on a chemical bond that is sealed and bonded with polymers resulting in a finish that not only retains its colour and integrity but also comes in an infinite assortment of tints and shades. This introduces a unique appearance every time.

The last category is acid stains, these require slightly more skill and of course owing to the nature of the acid require more precautions. The acid reacts with the minerals in the concrete to generate a natural looking marble appearance.


Pigments impart a colour into a material. These typically come in a powdered form that is mixed into a liquid in which these pigments are relatively insoluble. The most commonly used pigments in concrete are oxides which allow for a range of colours depending on the oxide used.

Preparation is a very important part of the process that we take very seriously as the presence of contaminants can influence the functioning of the various components resulting in an undesired colouration.

You choose a colour we'll do the science!

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