September 2018  

Brick Staining News

by Masonry Cosmetics: "The Brick Matching Experts"


"Proven because it lasts"

I personally would not recommend painting brick on the exterior of any home or building, for that matter. Not saying anything bad about paint. Paint is a great product in itself, but not for brick. Here are two very good reasons why:


#1 Q: One of brick’s advantages is that it is a maintenance-free product, right?

A: Yes, but if you paint it, that will no longer be the case.


#2 Q: Can paint damage brick?

A: Yes, it can and it does. I have seen it happen many times.


Paint changes not only the natural look of brick, but the physical properties of brick, as well. Here are some of my thoughts on this. Other types of materials that are regularly painted, need repainting because the paint surface fails. It is usually necessary to scrape the surface, removing most of the peeling paint, as well as that which hasn’t flaked off yet. Then the surface is repainted. Many people do not realize a brick surface has the property of absorption as well as a unique Pore Structure. Add to that the many different textures available in brick. Because of these unusual features of the brick surface, when paint starts failing on brick, it will fail pretty much everywhere on the exterior brick wall.


It’s not an easy fix. You can’t easily scrape the paint off brick. You can use chemicals or a pressure washer, but that causes a host of other problems, and it’s still difficult to get all the paint off. Then comes the repaint, which means applying paint over areas of failed paint. All areas on an entire building will be affected. We need to seriously consider the possibility that when we apply paint we are damaging brick.


Here is one example of how brick is harmed due to peeling paint.

As the paint peels, you can see it is taking away some of the brick surface with it. In regions of the country where freeze-thaw cycles occur, moisture trapped by a paint layer can actually cause the brick to spall. This is also visible in the picture above. We can discuss brick spalling in more detail at a later date.


Paint changes the characteristic look of brick, especially as added layers of paint are applied every 3 to 5 years. We understand that there are different paints and paint-like stains in the market. There are also times a primer is recommended to be applied to the brick first.  But the question I ask is, what effect the primer layer has on the brick over time?


The color of brick can be changed, but it needs to be changed the right way. Masonry Cosmetics has a Proprietary Proven Masonry Stain that is the best and right product in the Industry to change the color of absorptive brick. Our process is not a paint and cannot fail like paint does. Paint peels, cracks, blisters, and flakes over time. In the BIA’s Tech-note #6, it shares that most paint authorities agree that paint on exterior brick can last 3 to 5 years. We have witnessed this time and time again. Once painted, brick is no longer Maintenance free.


Our product must be hand-applied with a brush. It takes more time, but another huge advantage of this process is placement. We can select where each color change is needed in the wall by percentage, and how and where it needs to be in the wall. In the case of a building addition, for example, we can mirror a wall we are matching.


Masonry Cosmetics’ Proprietary Proven Masonry Stain will never hurt a brick. It does not create a surface like a paint does, so it will not peel, flake, crack, or blister. Paint and paint-like stains are semi-translucent to opaque, but Masonry Cosmetics stains are translucent and absorbed into the brick’s pore structure.  We use a slurry mix to stain brick. Often, using color theory, we can blend the base color of the brick with the slurry color, creating a new third color.


Our product is the longest lasting product on the market today. It allows the brick to remain completely breathable. When brick color needs to be changed, there is no doubt that our process is The Best!