Polished VS Stained Concrete, Pros, And Cons

One of the trends you will need to look forward to this year is utilitarian-modern interiors and exteriors. 

This style perfectly fits today’s trending flooring application: bare, subtle, and minimal grey floorings. Achieve that with stained concrete floors St Louis and a polished concrete finish.

Long hallway interior with polished granite tile flooring


That said, concrete polishing and staining are two different applications. However, they give the same effect on the floors with a polished, glistening finish. 

Are you torn between choosing staining or polishing for the best finish in your properties’ flooring?

It would be best to identify first the factors that would influence your final decision. Here are the things you need to consider based on our concrete resurfacing experts.

Consider The Following


Think about where you want to install the application. Is it indoors or outdoors? What type of flooring function does it have. 

Do you want to enhance aesthetic appeal? Or do you need something for function?


Durability will depend on the degree of traffic that occurs on the floors. Indoor floorings may have light to moderate traffic, and stained concrete would be the most suitable flooring finish.


The lifespan of the floor is a crucial consideration. Consider, as well, how old the floors are and how much damage had already existed on the floors. 

You need an application with a restorative purpose rather than just a recoloring for heavily worn-out floors.


In terms of cost, one will be more cost-efficient, and the other is cost-effective.


Sanitary floors have more specific requirements. Choose the one that treats the flooring slabs deep into the core materials. 

How these will affect your decision will be explained next. Get to the core of the stained concrete and polished concrete, comparing their pros and cons. 

Stained And Polished Concrete: Pros And Cons 


First, have a quick overview of what is stained and what is polished concrete. Take it from the terms themselves. 

Staining concrete is simply coloring the concrete slabs with pigments that the cement materials absorbed, resulting in a rich, earthy, warm tone of the floors. 

Meanwhile, the polished finish will not use any pigment to enhance the floor. In this method, a grinder or a polishing tool runs across the surface to result in a smooth surface. 

People polishes floor indoors

The Beauty Of Stained Concrete 

Here is a list of advantages of staining.

  • Stained concrete is easy to achieve and less expensive than other floor application
  • Staining the concrete brings out the natural beauty of the concrete floor
  • It adds slip resistance to the flooring surface
  • The concrete color does not fade
  • The stains penetrate the concrete slabs sealing its pores 
  • You can choose and control how the pigments would appear
  • Achieve a marble-like effect or lustrous floor
  • The translucent effect of staining gives an appealing vibe on the floor
  • Check here for more information about the difference of acid staining and water staining

Downsides Of Stained Concrete

  • An acid-based stained concrete would be difficult to reverse once applied
  • Staining would NOT be suitable for deeply damaged concrete
  • Staining application is limited to indoors or interior floorings

Polished Concrete’s Advantages

  • Polished concrete restores the beauty of deeply damaged concrete
  • Polished concrete strengthens the surface that resists the impact of falling heavy object
  • Polishing smoothens surface for excellent cleanliness 
  • Levels the surface even after severe wear and tear
  • Polished concrete 

Downsides Of Polishing

  • Polishing uses expensive technical tools
  • The process will require a professional for handling the polishing device or the grinder
  • Polishing will require concrete sealers that will need re-application after 3 to 5 years

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