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As concrete gains popularity as a finished surface, you’re bound to run into questions about which coating to use for the look and function your customer wants.

Whether it’s a new pour or an existing surface, even the best concrete has imperfections, but if the concrete is in otherwise good condition, a decorative overlay is an inexpensive way to bring a boring, ugly grey slab to life. Let’s look at some choices.

Microtoppings and Skim Coats

Polished concrete floors are one of the hottest choices in decorative commercial flooring these days and are gaining popularity in high-tech and modern residential designs, as well. They cover existing flaws (spalling, cracks, patches, carpet tack holes) with a beautiful high-gloss, low-maintenance coat and offer a wide range of color and design choices.

Thin microtoppings and skim coats can be troweled or squeegeed over existing concrete floors. Cement-based toppings and skim coats are suitable for both indoor and outdoor use. They come both pre-tinted and in base colors that can be custom tinted with pigments, stains, and dyes. By layering different colors, deep marbling and other creative coatings can be achieved.

Epoxy Coatings

While they’re one of the more expensive options, epoxy coatings are the choice when durability, chemical resistance, or bright, intense color are needed. They are seamless and extremely abrasion-resistant, making them ideal for residential flooring, high-traffic commercial spaces, or garage floors.

Epoxy can be pigmented for an infinite color palette and combined with aggregates like marble or granite chips for a nearly indestructible surface that mimics terrazzo or granite flooring at a fraction of the cost. There are also formulations for garage and industrial flooring to give a wear and chemical resistant coating as well as metallic additives that replicate the look of copper, aged bronze or other metals.

Spray-Down Toppings

Looking for a way to add an attractive, rugged, and slip-resistant surface to pool decks or garage floors? Spray-down finishing products offer a versatile, easy-to-apply solution. Similar to microtoppings, spray-down coatings are thin layers, but they typically contain more sand to provide a rougher finish for extra traction and slip resistance.

Spray-down toppings are applied with a hopper-equipped air sprayer, the same sort used for wall and ceiling texturing, and can be spattered and knocked-down in the same way. They’re popular for high-traffic interior floors because of their durability, low cost, and ease of application. Spray-down coatings are often combined with paper or adhesive stencils to add design elements like borders, patterns, inlays, and medallions.

Just like the slab to which it’s applied, the key to a beautiful, long-lasting decorative coating is the quality of the surface it sets on. Ace Cutting Equipment and Supply has everything you need to insure a tight, reliable bond and a beautiful finish for your floor coating system.

We have floor grinding and scarifying equipment in 120-480-volt electrical models as well as propane-powered versions from top manufacturers like Husqvarna and Edco. For finishing touches, we offer a wide choice of polishing pads for both hand-held and walk-behind units in grits ranging from 30-grit rough finishes to 3000-grit fine polishes.

However you cut it, grinding and polishing equipment and tools from Ace Cutting Equipment are your choice for top-quality surface preparation and finishing. They’re perfect for a wide range of applications, from heavy-duty grinding to high-fashion polished floors and counters. Our people know how to match surface prep products to your project’s needs. We have over 100 years’ combined work experience at your service to help in choosing the right tools for your job. Give us a call at (888) 283-2597 or email and we will gladly help with any questions you may have.

Visit our website,, to see the many ways our American-owned family business is always on the cutting edge when it comes to equipment and supplies for the concrete and masonry cutting industry.

More questions about concrete overlayments? Check out these informative articles on, including this Q&A page.