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Layer Concrete Acid Stain With Multiple Colors

Use this guide to learn the basic techniques for how to add layers of acid stain color that result in gorgeous looking concrete. Applying multiple acid stain colors to concrete is the best way to create the stunning marbled look that concrete acid stain is best known for.

How To Stain Concrete Using Two or More Acid Stain Colors

Numerous Acid Stain colors may be layered, blended or applied to the same concrete slab to produce an array of effects, ranging from a dreamy “washed” appearance to a mottled psychedelic finish. The main consideration for how to blend acid stain colors is whether you apply the next color once the previous layer is dry, partially dry, or still wet—the wetter the previous layer of acid stain, the more “blended” the border between colors will look.

Blending Wet Acid Stain Colors

Applying multiple coats of your chosen acid stain color(s) while wet is the most common way to achieve the unique, aqueous finish that acid stain is known for—the same is true when using one base color at multiple dilution ratios.

One inherent factor of the wet on wet method is that there is no wait time between layers. Similar to the way watercolor paints bleed into each other, acid stains readily blend in the presence of water. A wet on wet technique produces a softer edge between contrasting colors.

To best preserve the distinction between light and dark tones, the lighter stain should be applied first, followed by each darker color stain. Be careful not to let dark stains overpower lighter areas when blending!

Marble Acid Stain Accents Using Black and Cola Acid Stains. Sealed with High Gloss Acrylic Sealer
Marble Acid Stain Accents Using Black and Cola Acid Stains Over an Azure Blue and Desert Amber Base

Blending Dry Acid Stain Colors

Depending on weather conditions, this approach generally requires a full drying period of at least 5 hours between applying each successive layer of acid stain.

If total project time is not an issue, the main advantage of applying a new layer of acid stain over a dry one is that it produces more well-defined borders between colors. While some blending still takes place between light and dark hues, the dry method is most often used to apply secondary layers of distinct color accents, where control of heavy dark hues is essential.

Since each successive layer provides a “new” dry canvass to work on, consider testing your next color in a discreet portion of the concrete to preview how the stain will react with the lighter layer beneath.

Acid Stained Concrete Floors
Azure Blue and Coffee Brown Acid Stains sealed with High Gloss Acrylic Sealer and Commercial Floor Wax

Further Reading

Discover a detailed description of What Acid Stain Colors There Are to layer and blend to create your perfect combination.

Direct Colors provides Project Consultation to many DIY’ers who use our Acid Stain for gorgeous results. Read our spotlight profile of how to Use Multiple Acid Stain Colors For Concrete Countertops

And while it is always a goal to get the job right the first time, Direct Colors offers many products that help improve or blend the results of your Acid Stain layering: Step By Step For Fixing Concrete Acid Stain.

Acid Stained Concrete Countertop
Azure Blue, English Red, Malayan Buff, Coffee Brown and Cola Acid Stains sealed with Water Based Matte Polyurethane Concrete Sealer