9 Popular Pool Surfaces for Gunite, Concrete, Fiberglass & Vinyl Swimming Pools


Let’s face it, when it comes to pools, appearance matters. Some people love the look of a bright blue pool; others like the mystery of a seemingly black watered pool. How do you achieve all these effects? It’s simple: change the surface color of your pool.

Al Curtis from Ask the Pool Guy has some tips regarding pool colors to compliment your specific home. “There are many products to choose from when it comes to surface colors, it all depends on the style of your home and your surrounding landscape. For example, a lighter color like a white tile works really well with contemporary, modern homes. And a subtle color might look better with a traditional style home- it all depends on the feel you want to go for.”

“Even though there are tons of options for coloring, it seems like the majority of home owners still tend to prefer a blue tone for their pool. This makes sure the pool will always look blue and inviting, even on cloudy days. The blue tones work well with both classic and contemporary style homes.”

The color and texture of your pool interior is key. It needs to match the style of your home and the type of landscaping you have to get a complete look for your backyard.

We will discuss a few of the key materials for pool interiors here: tiling, plaster, pebble, quartz, aggregate, fiberglass, glass, paint, eco-finish and vinyl liners:

All TILE POOL Presidential and Blue Square Visit March 2012 (33)Tile:

The great thing about tile is that it lasts for a long time. They do take quite a while to install, but they can be worth the investment because they can easily handle wear and tear. There are plain tiles, classic Greek-style, diamond patters, or even mosaics for a unique look.


This is the most economical interior for your pool. While it’s less expensive, it does require more maintenance. White is the most popular color for plaster interiors because it reflects the blue of the sky and can create different moods in your pool water depending on the daily weather. Constant exposure to the elements and pool chemicals may cause discoloration. It could potentially need to be repainted or re-plastered periodically.

Gunite Pool {BEA} Legendary Escapes (4)Pebble:

This look is great if you are looking for something more on the natural looking side. They work well with the lagoon style of pool that is surrounded by greenery. Pebble is durable, stain and chemical resistant, and they do not require grout.

Quartz FinishQuartz:

Quartz is definitely on the high-end of pool finishes, but for good reasons. It has vibrant and long-lasting color.  It has a silky smooth feel and appears to be glittering when seashells or other additives are added to refract and reflect light.  Swimmers love Quartz finishes in pools because it has a silky smooth finish and it is kinder to feet and bathing suits. It also makes the pool very simple to clean.

Fiberglass PoolFiberglass:

This is a beautifully smooth finish that often comes pre-installed in a typical or standard fiberglass pool. There are also some options for using fiberglass over concrete and are popular in certain parts of the country.

Beaded SurfaceGlass Beading:

Glass beads can provide an extraordinary finish for your pool. they are a recent addition to the interior lining options. They are seamless and come in a wide variety of colors. They are extremely durable and give a brilliant light.

painted stepPaint:

For paint interiors, a two-pack epoxy paint is used. It is specifically formulated for use in swimming pools. The main advantage of paint is a smooth coating and a wide variety of colors to choose from. A disadvantage is a short life expectancy, once a pool is  painted it will need to be re-painted every year or two. Also, the application is subject to weather conditions that can also affect the longevity of the surface.

Eco FinishEco-Finish

aquaBright™ is a revolutionary pool finish that virtually eliminates all of traditional plaster and paint coating shortcomings. It is resistant to chipping, peeling and scratching. It cures in seconds and is extremely durable. aquaBright is very eco-friendly because it greatly reduces the use of chemicals to balance pH. Also, the amount of fossil fuels needed to mine, transport and apply plaster are no longer used. So, whether you are renovating or building a new swimming pool, aquaBright is the wave of the future when seeking a plaster or paint alternative.

vinyl liner and sun ledgeVinyl Liner

Vinyl Liner Swimming Pools are a popular option for pools. Typically constructed with steel walls and vermiculite or sand bottoms, the liner pool is constructed where weather changes seasonally and water tables can be an issue. There are many different liner patterns available, and newer patterns mimic natural looks of stone and pebble very well. With the ability to put real ceramic tile lines into vinyl liner pools, they are a popular choice for custom swimming pool designs.