Over the past several years, ‘simple’ has come back into style. This is true whether we’re talking about interior design, fashion, or landscaping. One of the places that we’ve seen this is in the increasing popularity of concrete with a matte finish. Although the word ‘matte’ is defined as “dull and flat,” a concrete matte finish is anything but dull or flat. Because of this, more and more people prefer the natural look of a matte finish to the (at times) pretentious and visually loud high gloss.
At this point, it’s important to point out that a matte finish isn’t achieved by simply leaving your concrete naked and unsealed. Sealing your concrete is an important part of any concrete installation job because it protects your slab from stains, weather damage, and everyday wear and tear. If you leave your concrete unsealed, it will deteriorate much more quickly.
So, getting a more natural look isn’t about leaving your concrete untouched. It’s about sealing it with a matte concrete sealer. But, what is a matte sealer? Are there multiple varieties? Yes, there are. And both kinds are worth considering.
Matte Concrete Sealer: Penetrating Sealer
If you’re searching for a matte concrete sealer, your first stop should be the ‘penetrating sealer.’ This kind of sealer works differently than acrylic or polyurethane sealants. Rather than leaving a layer of protection on the top of your concrete, a penetrating sealer moves into the surface of your concrete. At first glance, you likely won’t even be able to tell that the surface is sealed; however, once you see it in action, it will quickly become apparent that there’s more going on than meets the eye. As a result, the penetrating sealer acts as a powerful matte concrete sealer. As you browse for penetrating sealer, be aware that there are several different kinds on the market today…
Silicate Concrete Sealer
A silicate concrete sealer moves into your concrete’s surface and creates a calcium silicate hydrate barrier within its pores. Once applied, it has the ability to boost the density and strength of the concrete. This ensures that dusting is kept to a minimum and your concrete doesn’t quickly deteriorate from surface abrasion.
Silane-Siloxane Concrete Sealer
Unlike silicate concrete sealer, silane-siloxane concrete sealer forms a hydrophobic barrier that keeps moisture (including water and other liquids) from working its way into the surface of your concrete. This protects it from water damage and the cracks that often follow moisture freezing and thawing within a concrete slab’s porcelain.
Siliconate Concrete Sealer
Siliconate concrete sealer is similar to silane-siloxane concrete sealer in that it’s particularly effective at repelling water and moisture. If you’re concerned about the potential for water damage on your concrete space and want to retain a matte look, a siliconate sealer is definitely worth considering.
Matte Concrete Sealer: Coatings
A penetrating sealer isn’t the only kind of matte concrete sealer out there. You can also use a matte concrete coating to achieve the same natural look. Like other acrylic sealants, these matte coatings produce a visible film on the surface of your concrete. However, the coating doesn’t have a sheen or shine to it so that it will retain its natural, flat appearance. Depending on the kind of sealant, you may need to add a matte additive to achieve the desired result.
While matte coatings aren’t quite as effective as penetrating sealers, they’re another option to consider in your search for a way to effectively protect and enhance your natural-looking concrete space.