Skip to main content

Concrete stained to look like wood is super trendy — but Reddit has thoughts

Are you feeling uninspired by your concrete patio this summer season, wishing you could update the look? Concrete is a super functional option for patios — affordable and easy to maintain, too — but wouldn’t it be nice if your patio furniture, barbecue, and fire pit sat on another material… say, wood?

Well, what about concrete stained to look like wood? In a recent Reddit post, user Thick_Number5077 posted concrete flooring that’s made to look like wood and the results were stunning.


Redditor whogivesahart noted, “I’m not usually a fan of materials pretending to be something other than what they are, but this looks amazing.”

Others agreed, calling the project gorgeous and incredible. User Captcha_Imagination pointed out that the work being done with concrete these days is impressive. “Instead of paving stones, I did a hard landscaping job where they used stamps to create a stone look and it looks amazing,” they said.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Pros of concrete stained to look like wood

While there are a few different methods for achieving a wood-look patio, stamped concrete is one of the most popular. (You can also stamp your concrete to look like natural stone or brick, among others.) There are plenty of advantages to wood-stamped concrete:

  • Concrete is an affordable option (and even more so if you have an existing concrete patio)
  • Stamped concrete increases your curb appeal, adding visual interest to your landscape design
  • There’s a variety of options and patterns out there for you to choose from
  • It’s easy to maintain when sealed
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Cons of concrete stained to look like wood

Redditors were quick to point out some of the cons of this type of concrete.

It’s slippery

Wudrow noted, “You have to put sand in the sealer because it becomes like ice when it’s wet so in high-traffic areas when the grit gets worn off it’s insanely slick.”

According to The Concrete Network, stamped concrete can be slip-resistant if it’s treated with a non-skid additive. If you choose to update your patio, walkways, or porch with wood-stamped concrete, this is definitely a must-have.

It’s not DIY friendly

Redditor Competitive_Travel16 noted that achieving this sort of look requires staining. “The staining is difficult, requires some artistic talent, and can look terrible if done poorly,” they noted.

If you do plan to invest in concrete stained to look like wood, it’s best to consult a professional who can make sure the job is done right.

There are several other cons to wood-stamped concrete:

  • Stamped concrete, like all concrete projects, can sometimes crack. If you’re lucky, the wood-grain pattern you choose could hide some of these cracks, however.
  • Stamped concrete needs to be resealed. SealGreen, a concrete resealing company, says you should anticipate resealing every 18 to 24 months.
  • If you live in a cold climate, you need to think about how to deice your walkways. Salt can damage concrete, so you’re better off using something like sand.
  • Repairs can be difficult.

Make sure you choose the right contractor for your wood-stamped concrete

Wood-stamped concrete is an investment for years to come, and one that’s not terribly DIY friendly. It’s important to choose the right contractor for this project.

Shop around

Get estimates and make sure to check their references. If you have a friend or neighbor who can recommend someone, even better.

Make sure the company specializes in stamped concrete

You want to make sure anyone you choose is comfortable with this method. Ask for a portfolio of their prior work as well as samples. (They might also have a showroom with decorative concrete on display or the ability to let you check out a previous install.)

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Other wood-stamped concrete options: The wall

Many of the potential issues with wood-look concrete have to do with high-traffic areas — so why not take foot traffic out of it?

Redditor Competitive_Travel16 believes “the texture won’t last, and will wear off along footpaths and below water runoff. The wear will take the stain and sealant with it, and look even worse than a bad stain job.”

PCCoatings’ suggestion? “It’s better to do this on a wall.”

We definitely think that could look pretty gorgeous, too.

Concrete stained to look like wood can be stunning — but there are also downsides. If you’re considering the investment, do your research and make sure it fits your lifestyle. (While stamped concrete could work on your patio, you might not want it surrounding your pool.) Talk to specialists in your area and do your due diligence to ensure you’re hiring the right team for the job.

Editors' Recommendations

Nicole Carlino
How to level a yard (and 3 reasons why you really should)
Reasons to level your yard and how to do it
Home with manicured lawn

Homeowners spend countless hours manicuring, improving, and decorating their lawns to make them pristine and gorgeous, but many fall short when it comes to knowing how to level a yard.

The home's lawn is crucial to maintaining the overall aesthetic of the property. Fertilizing, replacing sod, and regularly watering your lawn all go a long way in making it lush and vibrant. However, all that work on an uneven or bumpy lawn can still result in a yard that appears imperfect and unkept.

Read more
6 easy ways to update your home for under $500
Update your home with these inexpensive, easy projects
Couple painting white walls

When most homeowners think of renovations, they think of time-consuming projects that always run over budget. And often, they’re right. But updating your home doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Tearing down cabinets and installing brand-new hardwood floors aren’t the only ways to up your home design game.

With a bit of planning and elbow grease, you can refresh your space with inexpensive home remodeling projects that will have a considerable impact. Here are six DIY home projects that you can easily complete for less than $500.

Read more
11 bad ideas for your front yard that will kill your curb appeal
Avoid these mistakes for your front yard
A front yard with xeriscape landscaping

You may be thinking about all the projects you want to tackle outdoors thanks to the warmer weather. While you may have grand plans to improve your curb appeal, taking the time and patience to properly land on a front yard design is important. If you want to ensure you're staying on trend and not dating your home, there are some common mistakes to avoid. These will help with the resale value of your home and leave you the envy of all your neighbors.
Landscaping mistakes
These are some common mistakes you'll want to avoid when thinking about landscaping your front yard.
Not having a game plan
One of the biggest mistakes is not having a plan when it comes to the design and layout of your landscaping. This can leave your yard feeling disjointed and your plants at risk of looking overgrown and out of place. Meet with a local garden expert or map out your front yard, including where all plants, trees, rocks, water features, and flowers will live. This will help ensure things don't look too busy or sparse, and it will make your yard feel well thought out.
Using the wrong plants
Understand which plants work for your exact yard. If they need full sun or partial shade, or require a lot of maintenance, it may be a disaster waiting to happen. Not only do you need to consider placement in terms of sunlight, but different flowers and plants have varying schedules of watering, so you want to know exactly what's expected before you plant them.
Too many decorations
Everyone loves a yard that changes with the season in terms of decor, but you can overdo it. You want to avoid garden decor that makes your front yard look tacky or cheap (we're talking to you, plastic deer), so keep decorations to a minimum.

Color pitfalls
We love color, but you need to be careful how and where you use it.
Choosing all one color
We love a monochromatic look as much as the next person, but your home should be welcoming and warm from the first glance. If you prefer having your house the same color as outdoor furniture and plants/flowers, use it as a backdrop. Add one or two pops of color with chair pillows or your front door to breathe a little life into your home.
Choosing too many colors
While it's good to have a little variety, you don't want to overwhelm the outside of your home. Bright colors may work in some parts of the country, but go easy on the rest of your choices. Picking one primary color and one contrasting color that complements it is the safest approach, especially if you're planning to sell your home.

Read more