November 2017 

Brick Staining News

by Masonry Cosmetics: "The Brick Matching Experts"

If a stain company says they have a Proven Masonry Stain System, what does that mean?  Masonry Cosmetics says you better have plenty of jobs to show that it has lasted the test of time. It shouldn’t just include impressive names on a list hoping no one would go see, but jobs showing what it looked like before and after it was stained and proof that it still looks like that today.  Masonry Cosmetics starts with the “Still the Best Series” that you can find at will bring you a new story every month as part of our newsletter, showing you project after project of jobs that have lasted the test of time.


When Masonry Cosmetics looks at projects that they have stained over the years, they are reporting the history and performance in the field of their product and process.  Masonry Cosmetics' process cannot be bought at a paint store and then get slightly altered and renamed as something else.  A paint like stain is still semi translucent to opaque, creates a layer and can peel, fade, blister and flake over time.  We are not saying it is a horrible product, many people paint brick, our company, however, would not recommend it.  Paint and paint like stains can hurt brick. Masonry Cosmetics’ process will never hurt a brick or mortar joint it is applied to.


Here are a few differences between us and all the other stain companies:

When a situation arises that only a percentage of the brick need stained, it is hard for the paint like stain companies to do. Many times their product leaves a sheen, which is very noticeable when it rains or the sun is at a certain angle.  This is not natural looking, in our humble opinion.  These same companies must feel the same way, because of the sheen, the stain company would recommend sealing the entire building after the staining is completed, which would be an additional cost. The sealing of the brick levels off the wall so the entire wall now has a sealed look and you do not see the stained areas anymore when it rains. What can be worse is that the sealing over the staining would waves any 25-year warranty that was given.  We’ve always believed that this type of “surgery staining”, where only certain percentages of the brick are stained, is our strong area of expertise. Our product is applied by brush, which allows us to be surgical in a placement kind of way.  We can stain brick that look completely natural.  Our stained brick will get wet just like an unstained brick next to it. We do not ever recommend to seal the brick after we stain it.  No added cost and a wall the looks natural wet or dry.  We simply have a great proven masonry stain.

We are not saying these other stain companies are bad, but that they are not like us. They use a completely different process than us. We will ask architects not to put us in the same specification with these other stain companies simply because we have different processes.    

Enough of all that, now to a few stories.  It is fun to look at the large, highly visible commercial projects we have color enhanced over the years.  But what about the small projects from car impacts to garage door fill-ins where the brick are no longer made?  What if the mason found what he could to get the job done, only to find that it was not a good match?  Those projects were important to those homeowners. It greatly affected their property value.  Those projects are just as important to us and the trust they had in us, not only to make a close match but that it would last like we said it would. Let’s look at two of those projects:

Project one is a residence which had a car drive into the front corner.  The mason was able to find a brick that was close in size and texture that also had a close base color.  After the brick were cleaned and time passed by, Masonry Cosmetics was called in to color enhance the mismatched brick.  For this project, the mortar color was also off, so Masonry Cosmetics stained the mortar first then stained the brick to closely match the original brick on the residence.  The building still looks great and the staining match looks as good as the day it was stained.

Project two was of a garage door fill in.  Here is an example where they did not get close in color. Again, the mortar also needed stained and it was done first.  Mortar can make up to 18% to 20% of the wall area on a project like this, but will have a 100% effect on what we do.  To truly match brick to the correct color by staining, it is important to have a level playing field with the mortar all being the same.  Also, care must be taken to have the new brick match the same size and texture, as well as being laid in the same pattern as the wall you are matching. Down to the last detail, the mortar joint should be struck the same.  It is never a good situation to try and match a wall with a raked mortar joint to a new addition that was laid with a flush or concave mortar joint.  This job took time, care and attention to detail.  Placement and patterns of the different colors that were developed were key in this close match.  

We have opened a new training center for certifying contractors throughout the country and will soon open it up worldwide.  These two jobs are local jobs that we take the trainees to, so they can see the wall up close.  We took a class there this week and both projects look as good today as when we stained them over 10 years ago.  This is just two more projects that have lasted the test in time.  


We hope you enjoy these short stories, we want to get to know you and for you to get to know us better.  Please feel free to send thoughts and comments or even questions, we get stronger and better as we learn from you too.  We would love for you to like us on facebook or follow us on twitter.  Send us your information and we will like your Facebook and also follow you if you have a twitter account, and yes we would love to sign up for your newsletters.  Thanks for taking time to read this, Don