can you add decorative flakes to 1 part epoxy

Can You Add Decorative Flakes To One-Part Epoxy?

Decorating your concrete floor makes it more attractive and can help with traction, making it safer to walk on. With a range of colors and styles of decorative flakes to work with, you can embellish your epoxy floor to your exact specifications.

But can you add decorative flakes to a one-part epoxy floor? Keep reading to learn more about epoxy floors and decorative flakes from our experts.

The Challenges of One-Part Epoxy

At EMC Concrete Coatings, we have tried one-part epoxy over our ten years in business, and we’ve seen that these floors just don’t hold up. The thin epoxy paint is tricky to work with, comes in limited colors, and doesn’t create an even distribution of flakes.

In a professional two-part base coat and top coat epoxy floor, you add decorative flakes on the base coat, then pour the top coat to create an even, non-slip surface. If you’re going for a durable epoxy floor with colorful decorative flakes, choose a two-part epoxy flake system.

How a Two-Part Epoxy Flake System Works

The orange peel texture of an epoxy flake system prevents slipping, giving you a stable work environment for all your needs. The process of applying an epoxy flake floor requires:

  • Starting with an even concrete base
  • Applying a polyurea base coat
  • Adding decorative flakes
  • Pouring a polyaspartic or rapid cure epoxy top coat

The materials you need will depend on the specifics of your project. You can choose between custom color or standard color chips in different flake sizes. Speaking to a professional will help you understand your project’s needs.


The substrate, typically concrete, is the base of your epoxy flake system. Thoroughly clean and dust the substrate before applying epoxy to maintain a solid grip.

To clean the substrate, follow these steps:

  • Strip any previous coating off by sanding and applying a paint-stripping solution.
  • Fill in any cracks or damage for an even base.
  • Thoroughly clean the concrete by sweeping, mopping, and using a stain remover.

Once all old paint, dust, and grime have been cleared and the concrete is completely dry, you can move on to the next layer in the epoxy flake system.

Base Coat

The base coat is the first layer of epoxy or polyurea. Epoxy dries relatively quickly; you must add the color chip layer while wet. It’s generally best to apply a small section of base coat and add the flakes, then move on to a different substrate area to repeat the process.

Stable pigments color both the base coat and the flakes to maintain their color for years. Sanding your epoxy in between coats helps the resin stick to the previous layer, forcing them to bond.

Decorative Flake Coat

While the base coat is still wet, cast the decorative flakes in sections. You can either put down a base coat and immediately cast the chips before moving to a different area of concrete or spread the flakes in one layer after the entire base coat is applied. If using this method, wear spiked shoes to eliminate the risk of ruining your previous layers.

Handtossing is the standard process for applying flakes, but a hopper blower gun or a shaker can also work. Inspect each section before moving on to the next to ensure an even coating.

You can distribute varying amounts of decorative flakes for different appearances, from a light sprinkling to completely saturating the base coat. Once the flakes are down, you cannot remove them during the process. You must be careful to spread them evenly the first time.

Top Coat

The top coat is a clear resin coat used to seal the decorative flakes in their place and maintain the overall look while adding shine. While applying a top coat is not strictly necessary, it’s hugely beneficial to the overall appearance and durability of the epoxy flake system.

Contact EMC Concrete Coatings for Durable Epoxy Floors with Decorative Flakes

If you want an even and attractive epoxy floor without the hassle of doing it yourself, call us at EMC Concrete Coatings. When you hire us, you hire an efficient and capable team to create your ideal concrete floor. We have been in business for ten years as an owner-operated company, and our experts can usually finish your epoxy floor in one day. We offer a two-year warranty on epoxy flake systems that covers peeling, bubbling, lifting, and general defects.

Don’t settle for low-quality work. Coatings with decorative flakes last for decades with proper maintenance, so have it done right the first time. For the floor you want, call EMC Concrete Coatings today at (210) 430-4181.

What are the benefits of coating my garage or patio floor?

There are a multitude of benefits to coating your concrete surface. Our prep phase will eliminate high spots or surface deficiencies through diamond grinding or shotblasting. In addition, our trained technicians will fill in any cracks, holes, or spalls on your concrete surface prior to any coating being placed. This ensures a smooth and uniform appearance throughout your slab. Concrete is very porous and can make stain removal difficult. With a high-performance coating installed, you will be able to remove otherwise tough stains with a spray of your water hose. And lastly, our floors look amazing! The garage is often overlooked when it comes to renovation/upgrades, but a professionally installed resinous coating will add $$$ to the value of your home.

How long does a typical installation take?
In most cases, our highly trained technicians can wrap up your residential project in as little as 2 days. We do offer a state of the art 1 day system, where you can walk on your new floor the next day, but we do not recommend these rapid cure systems during the summer months. Commercial projects and larger residential projects (1K sq. feet or more) can certainly take more time to complete. As always, our sales team will visit your site to take accurate measurements and offer a realistic timeframe.
Do you offer free on-site quotes?
Yes, we do. EMC Concrete Coatings always prefers to visit you at your project site to take
measurements and go over your coatings/color options. Our quotes are valid for 90 days and there is never any pressure. We are not here to make you feel uncomfortable or pressured. Our process is smooth and easy for everyone involved.
Can you give me a “ball-park” price over the phone?
Yes. However, this is not the way we prefer to quote jobs. Each project is unique and a
“standard 2 car garage” is going to be different for every homebuilder in town. Square footage’s, linear walls, garage aprons, and condition of the slab all play a very important role in providing you with an accurate quote. This simply cannot be done in a matter of seconds via a phone call or messenger.
How much does it cost to install a decorative coating on my garage floor?
A typical 2 car garage coatings installation in the greater San Antonio area will cost between $2’400 and $3’000. Our pricing is based on square footages and other aspects of the project, including the linear footage of any stem walls, aprons, or repair work.

Oversized or multi-car garages, patios, or other areas will result in higher priced estimates.

Do you use epoxy or polyurea for garage coatings?
We use all the above. Resinous coatings do not come in a one size fits all application. The
details and specs of each project will help our trained technicians determine what coating is best for your project. Typically, we use polyurea coatings for our garages and patio installations. However, shop floors and other commercia/residential spaces will call for epoxies, urethanes, or water-based materials. Rest assured, no matter which products we use, they are from reputable coatings manufacturers and TDS sheets are always available to our customers upon
Is this service affordable?
We are not the lowest priced team in town. We are also, certainly not the most expensive outfit on the block. Our pricing is determined by the costs of materials, inflation, demand, labor, and level of service. When choosing EMC Concrete Coatings, you have done yourself a great favor by hiring the best in the business. EMC does run specials throughout the calendar year for discounted floors and we always honor first responders, military, and front-line workers discounts.

Our team is always mindful of our customer’s budget. We are a locally owned and operated
small business, and we know the value of our hard-earned dollars and how much they mean to each one of us. We strive to provide our customers with the best possible pricing throughout the year. EMC honors our warranties, we show up on time, every time, and will go above and beyond to ensure you are 100% satisfied at the end of each project. If we miss the mark, we will rectify it. Simple as that.

Does my new floor come with a warranty?
Yes! We offer an excellent written warranty with all our floor coatings installations. Depending on which option you choose (stain, seal, epoxy/flake, solid color, or polish) the length of time will vary from 5 years to a limited lifetime homeowners’ warranty. We HONOR our warranties.
Who am I hiring if I choose EMC Concrete Coatings?
The best crew in town. From our brand-new trucks, wrapped-trailers, uniformed employees, and state of the art equipment – we are the best. Our technicians are certified and experienced installers. EMC is bonded, commercially insured, and experienced. Multiple professional references are available for commercial projects at any given time and our online reviews speak for themselves when it comes to our residential portfolio. You have made the right choice by calling the team at EMC Concrete Coatings. Most importantly, the owner of the company, Eric Calderon is personally involved in every project that comes through our door. Generally, Eric and his sales team will be the person you meet with at your project walk thru. You will then see Eric and his crew upon the day of installation. We never sub out our projects, our employees are in-house guys and Eric is there each step of the way to ensure maximum customer satisfaction!
(210) 430-4181