Paver sealers come in several different types of finishes. Sealer finishes can range from a matte or semi gloss to a high gloss or wet look appearance. In this article we want to address shiny paver sealers and how they differ from other finishes such as a wet look sealer, and yes there is a difference.
All paver sealers are used to help solidify sand joints between pavers, lock out unwanted moisture, reduce weed growth, reduce freeze and thaw damage, and of course to create a beautiful long lasting finish. In terms of the final finish of a sealer, a matte finish will not alter the appearance of the pavers while a shiny paver sealer will leave a glossy appearance. A wet look sealer will leave the pavers looking wet even after the sealer has dried but is not designed to add a shine.
Most shiny paver sealers are solvent based but contain a high percentage of solids. Normally these solids are of an acrylic nature. The higher the percentage of solids, the shinier the overall finish. As an example a paver sealer containing 25% solids would be considered a semi gloss, meaning it will give a slightly shiny appearance. Moreover, a higher percentage like 30% solids will result in a high gloss finish. This shiny finish is not for everyone but many people do prefer the shiny look.
One down side to a shiny paver sealer is that is can be slightly slippery at first. We have found however that after several weeks of curing and weathering the slippery condition does diminish quite significantly. Shiny paver sealers are very thick and are normally best applied with a large brush, stain pad, or roller. Most are too thick to apply using a pump up or airless sprayer. Also, they do not cover as much square footage per gallon as a thinner sealer might. But as long as you know what to expect, shiny paver sealers can be an excellent choice. They can enhance the natural beauty of your pavers while providing a long lasting shiny appearance.