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Apparent Concrete: Advantages and how to Use it in the Project

The exposed concrete is a constructive technique where the concrete, a component of the structure of the buildings, remains visible in the architecture of the property. This technique, when applied, avoids the use of coatings and other finishing materials on its surface. uses this technique in its houses.

The aesthetic result is incredible, and the versatility of exposed concrete is eye-popping as its application can add value and personality to both the internal and external areas of a project.

In this context, if you are a student or professional in the field of engineering or architecture or if you identify with subjects related to civil construction, pay attention to the next topics. In this post, we will address the main aesthetic and technical characteristics that make exposed concrete the “darling” of many constructions. Check out!

What is Exposed Concrete?

Concrete is one of the most used materials in civil construction, such as , and is the result of the combination of cement, sand (or other fine aggregates), crushed stone, and water. In this process, the cement, when hydrated by water, forms a resistant paste that adheres to the fragments of sand and crushed stone.

But how is exposed concrete made? From the composition mentioned above, the concrete is placed in forms for later hardening. After the hardening stages, the exposed concrete, as the name implies, is visible in the decoration of the environment and does not consider the use of coatings and other finishes to cover its surface.

apparent concrete

The concrete that we know today emerged in the mid-19th century. It came to dominate the civil construction market in the world after the 1940s and was later considered the main brand of the modernist movement. Le Corbusier, an architect, identified as a pioneer of the modernist movement, was certainly one of the first to consider concrete more than a building material. 

apparent concrete

In the following decades, concrete was left aside, returning only with the emergence of Brutalist Architecture , which made use of concrete in several projects around the world. In the 2000s, this trend returned and, today, concrete is gaining more and more prominence and being incorporated into numerous residential, commercial, rural projects, bordering both the public spheres (construction of bridges, viaducts, hospitals, schools…) and the private spheres. (corporate real estate).

apparent concrete

What is the Difference between Exposed Concrete and Burnt Cement?

Although they are similar in terms of visual characteristics, it is important to note that exposed concrete is not the same as burnt cement.

The exposed concrete, as already mentioned, is a constructive technique and, therefore, can be present in different ways in the property, being able to compose the structure of a beam, a wall, and a pillar, for example. In contrast, burnt cement is a type of coating made with a special mortar and with a more polished appearance.

Why Use Exposed Concrete?

The application of exposed concrete provides several benefits for construction. The architect Oscar Niemeyer, for example, was a great supporter of the use of exposed concrete since most of his projects relied on the presence of this material. Check below some of the advantages of applying it to your project.


The exposed concrete can be used both on the facades of houses and buildings and in the internal areas of a property. The peculiar beauty and full of personality of exposed concrete is able to connect to the most diverse styles of decoration, ranging from rustic to contemporary.


Once the exposed concrete curing process is done correctly, the material will become stronger and, therefore, will require less corrective maintenance in the future. 


The exposed concrete ends up becoming a more economical alternative in the construction since it does not need plaster and other coatings to cover its surface. In addition, its structure requires less maintenance over the years. 

Project Valuation 

Due to the style, aesthetic personality, durability, and economy generated in the application of this material, one thing can be said: the use of exposed concrete in construction ends up valuing the property. The exposed concrete block houses even have a charm on their own. 

apparent concrete

Where to Apply Exposed Concrete?

Exposed concrete is a versatile material and can be used in the structural part of different properties, ranging from residential to corporate, reflecting a modern touch to the facade. It is worth mentioning that when exposed concrete on the facade of the property or in other external areas of the land, it is recommended to use a waterproofing agent over the exposed concrete, preventing the blocks from being damaged by the weather (sun, rain, wind…).

In internal environments, exposed concrete is also very welcome and can appear mainly in the form of walls, ceiling linings, and stairs, bringing a unique style and full of personality to the room. In decoration, exposed concrete can talk to different styles (rustic, contemporary, urban, minimalist…), but among so many, one, in particular, stands out: the industrial style.

In this context, if the idea is to incorporate the industrial style in the space, try to combine exposed concrete with iron and wood furniture, exposed wiring, rail lamp, and light spots with black finish and brick coating.

For those who identify with a more traditional style, you can use apparent gray textured concrete just to even out the imperfections of the material, leaving its surface more uniform. Now, if the idea is to bring a touch of color to the space, it is possible to use exposed concrete with a colored texture, as in the example below.


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