There are two main types of finishes that are common in today’s stucco projects and these are traditional type of finishes and acrylic ones. There are a few differences between the two and knowing what these are can help you choose which one is best for your project.
Typically the acrylic finishes have a more vibrant color to them, like you would expect to find in paint and a lot of different choices as well. The material is wet and a small amount of acrylic paint is added to a white base to achieve the desired color, just like paint you buy from the hardware store.
Traditional type of finishes have a much less vibrant hue to them and mimic more “earth friendly” tones. This is primarily because they are powdered color that mixes into a powdered base material so when water is added it lightens up the color quite a bit. Darker colors can be achieved by adding more color to each bag of stucco but there are limitations with this.
Appearance, Textures, Etc:
Acrylic stucco has an almost elastic type of feel to it but is not soft like you might be thinking. It does tend to stretch a bit and can help eliminate some hairline cracks from showing through, which is one of its greatest advantages over traditional types of finishes. The textures can range greatly but not as much as traditional type of finish textures. To see some acrylic textures, click here.
Traditional type of stucco finishes tend to have more depth to them because of the cement and sand mixture. Both the acrylic and traditional types of finishes come in a fine, medium and coarse type of finish, which basically determines how large the aggregate is. There are a wide range of textures that you can achieve with this type of material, like the ones here.
Which One Is Better?
This question comes up a lot and it really depends on the client’s needs. Traditional finishes are time tested and have a very strong track record but do tend to crack a bit more and will require more maintenance than an acrylic finish.