Concrete finishes can be transformed into appealing works of art during the pre-curing and curing stages of application. When concrete is still wet and in the pre-curing stage, shades of colors can be added immediately after the concrete has been poured. This turns the concrete slab more colorful, resulting to some of the most beautiful solutions in concrete finishes. Since color is added while the concrete is still wet, the shades look as if they are natural parts of the concrete finish.
Pre-cured colored concrete finishes often come in soft earth tones or pastels, although more vivid colors can be achieved with the use of a dry-shake color hardener. Color materials are troweled across the wet concrete slab, producing streaks or patches of brighter colors in concrete finishes. Stamped stone, wood or tile patterns in wet concrete finishes also add interesting variations.
Staining or acid-etching is done during post-curing of concrete finishes, allowing colored chemical stains to react with lime – present in concrete — to form permanent surface colorings. To achieve intense colors, a higher cement composition is needed
Sawcutting deep grooves into cured concrete finishes is also another post-curing method. Half-inch grooves are cut into the dried surface, adding eye-catching texture to concrete finishes.