<p>The home improvement movement is alive and well, with many homeowners looking to unlikely places to increase the functionality and improve the appearance of their homes. According to the 2013 Houzz & Home Survey, 84 percent of respondents are planning a decorating or redecorating home improvement project in 2013, which is a 12 percent increase from last year.</p><p>With this growing interest in home design projects, homeowners should consider concrete decor products including stains to help elevate the look and feel of ordinary concrete surfaces around the home. These products are designed to help homeowners easily transform garage floors, foyers, laundry rooms, patios, sidewalks, pool decks and other mundane concrete surfaces into beautiful, warm focal points that give a home personality.</p><p>Stains come in a variety of styles and colors ranging from browns and reds to tans and yellows to blues that deliver warm, rich natural-looking designs to concrete surfaces. However, it is critical that homeowners select stains that are formulated to penetrate concrete surfaces and create a permanent bond, so it will not peel or wear off over time like paint or film-forming concrete stains. QUIKRETE recommends homeowners consider three types of stains that meet these desired aesthetic and performance criteria.</p><p>1. Etching stains: Transforms plain concrete into a marble-like appearance with warm earth tones and unique shading by reacting to chemicals in the concrete surface.</p><p>2. Penetrating concrete stains: Opaque appearance provides deep, rich color that is highlighted by natural variations in concrete and masonry surfaces.</p><p>3. Translucent concrete stains: Semi-transparent appearance that highlights the natural variations in concrete and masonry surfaces.</p><p>Proper surface preparation, including the use of a cleaner-etcher-degreaser with penetrating concrete stains and translucent concrete stains, is the foundation to any successfully concrete staining project. In addition, all newly decorated concrete surfaces should be protected from oil, grease and other unwanted stains with a high-gloss acrylic sealer or a silicone-based natural look sealer to form a water-tight protective barrier.</p><p>For more tips, direction and information on stains, coatings and other concrete decor products, visit <a href="http://www.quikrete.com" rel="nofollow">www.quikrete.com</a> or look for QUIKRETE on <a href="https://www.facebook.com/pages/Quikrete/182908288451153" rel="nofollow">Facebook</a>.</p>
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