By Caryn Colgan, Networx

Make a dramatic flooring statement by staining drab gray concrete. Because concrete's natural color is neutral and the material is porous, concrete can easily be transformed into a unique and custom design element. Stained concrete, also called colored concrete, is the result of either acid stains or natural stains.

Suitable for interior and exterior applications, concrete stains can be applied to driveways, patios and sidewalks, as well as any floor inside a home, such as in kitchens and bathrooms.

Acid stain has some limitations. It may not work well on damaged or heavily worn concrete or concrete that has been previously stained. Rather than acting like paint or other coating material, acid stains work by causing a chemical reaction with the concrete. Stain creates a long-lasting effect if it is properly protected with a sealer.