How to Color Concrete Countertops

Coloring concrete countertops is a fast way to rejuvenate any living space. Simply coloring your countertops with paint not only creates a completely new atmosphere but it also allows you to add your own personal touches with ease. In addition, old or cracked concrete can easily be made to look brand new, if colored.

Sponge the concrete countertops with dish soap and water. Standard dish soap contains detergents that easily remove any dirt and grime. It's important that the entire surface you'll be coloring is clean. Scrub the countertops with soapy water, making sure you remove any debris. Once you have successfully cleaned the countertops, rinse away all of the soap. Let the countertops dry completely for 10 to 24 hours.

Fill in any cracks in the concrete with sealant. The paint should have a smooth surface to attach to. Not only will the outcome have a better appearance, but the paint will also last substantially longer. To do this, use concrete sealant that comes in a caulking tube. Squeeze sealant into the cracks, allowing the sealant to overflow. Once you have filled all of the cracks on the countertop, use a metal paint scraper to remove the excess sealant. Drag a flat end of the scraper over the concrete in one even motion from one end of the surface to the other. This will pick up any sealant overflowing from the cracks and drag it along the countertops to create a flat surface between the cracks and the countertop. Allow it to dry for 24 hours.

Create an even texture. When coloring concrete countertops with paint, the slightest imperfections will show, so it is important to create the smoothest surface possible before you start the coloring process. To do this, sand down the countertop surface with 120-grit sandpaper. Apply moderate pressure while using a circular motion to sand down the countertop. Make sure to sand down any obvious bumps, as well as the rest of the counter. Use a hand-held broom to wipe away the dust.

Prime the entire surface that you will be coloring. Priming concrete before you paint is necessary to ensure a satisfactory outcome. Primer creates a surface that paint can properly adhere to. If you were to paint color directly onto concrete, the paint would chip within a few weeks. Use a small paint roller to apply concrete primer. A roller or foam brush is a better choice than a standard bristle brush when painting concrete countertops. Apply an even coat of primer across the entire surface that you'll be painting. Allow the primer to dry for approximately five hours.

Color the concrete countertops with the paint color of your choice. Use paint specifically for concrete. Consider a waterproof paint, depending on the location of your countertops. Apply a thick and even coat of paint across the entire surface of your countertop, using a small paint roller. Don't worry if the color isn't as dark as you'd like or if primer still shows through the paint. Let the paint dry for three hours before applying another layer. Repeat until you have applied at least three coats of paint. Allow the paint to dry for 24 hours.

Apply a protective clear coat. You can use a high-gloss clear coat for shine or an unnoticeable clear coat. A clear coat acts as a sealant to ensure the paint doesn't chip. Use a paint roller to apply the clear coat in the same way as you did in earlier steps. Apply two or three coats and allow the countertops to dry for 24 hours before using them.

Things You Will Need

  • Sponge
  • Dish soap
  • Concrete sealant
  • Caulking tube
  • Metal paint scraper
  • 120-grit sandpaper
  • Hand-held broom
  • Concrete primer
  • Small paint roller
  • Concrete paint color
  • Protective clear coat

About the Author

H.C. Hisel has worked for the past nine years as a professional writer, dancer, musician, painter and photographer. Hisel had her own weekly newspaper column in the Banana 411, a newspaper for kids. Her articles have been published in various print markets and online, including Trails.com and Golflink.com.