Pool border: 6 ideas for a stylish look at the pool

Wood and tiles are the most common materials used as pool borders. There are even more possibilities, which even make work considerably easier.

Pool border: 6 ideas for a stylish look at the pool
© Eléonore H – Fotolia.com

Lying by the pool, letting your legs dangle in the water and switching off from everyday life – there is nothing more beautiful after a strenuous working day. The perfect idyll includes soothing music, a few green plants but also the perfect pool surround. After all, the pool as a whole should fit into the complete appearance or even stand out due to its special appearance.

In the meantime there are some possibilities for the pool border. But also material which is less suitable as a pool border than others. Some require more intensive care, others require more caution. Here, everyone has to decide for himself which material is the right one according to his own conditions.

Here is an overview of the most common methods and their advantages and disadvantages.

6 ideas for the design of your pool border


Pool Surround Ideas - Tiles

The most commonly used pool border in the past was probably tiles. There are countless designs and shapes, so that everyone will surely find the right one for his taste.

Little tip: Did you know that there are already exterior tiles in wood look (seen on archiexpo.de)?

The disadvantage of tiles, however, is that they are very slippery when they become damp. And that’s essential for the pool. So fast running or romping around while having fun are taboo to avoid injuries.

There is also a lot to consider when laying the substructure. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you consult a professional. Another disadvantage is that tiles are quite susceptible to frost. So it can happen that the tiles break after a very cold winter and that even despite the hint “frost-proof”.

Natural stone:

Pool Surround Ideas - Natural Stone
© Cara Photo – Fotolia.com

A slightly better or more resistant variant is natural stone. This material is not only easy to clean, but also resilient. Natural stones with a porous surface, for example, are best suited for this purpose:

  • sandstones
  • travertine
  • limestone
  • granite
  • slate

Natural stone for outdoor use is also roughened for safety reasons. This state is achieved by various methods.

  • laser
  • flames
  • chemotechnical treatment

Most popular for the pool surround is travertine as a natural stone (seen on wohnrausch.net). This stone has open cavities in different sizes. These ensure that the heat is better stored. In addition, the stone creates a Mediterranean flair through its appearance and thus conjures up a holiday atmosphere in your own garden.


Pool border ideas - wood
© Luis Viegas – Fotolia.com

Most people prefer to integrate wood into their garden. It exudes comfort, warmth and has a natural effect – you might think it’s perfect as a pool surround. I’m afraid it’s not quite like that. Not all wood is the same. You should use wood that does not splinter and has a certain resistance to moisture and other weather conditions.

Exotic and local woods are available for the selection. The exotic woods such as teak and bangkirei are robust and resistant to pests. The disadvantage, however, is that they are not only quite difficult to get, but also require a lot of care. After all, they do not want to renew the pool perimeter again within the next few years.

Douglas fir and larch are the most popular local woods. Both varieties are resistant to fungi and insects. They do not have to be chemically treated and are therefore 100 percent biodegradable.

However, the disadvantage of both varieties is that the wood loses its reddish-brown colour the longer it is exposed to the weather. But after some time a noble silver grey develops. Whether you like it or not is, of course, a matter of taste.

“My tip: Who would like to fall back nevertheless to exotic wood, should absolutely pay attention to the FSC seal (more information in addition on fsc-deutschland.de).

By the way, wood heats up considerably when exposed to intense sunlight. This can lead to “burning” feet in the pool area.


Pool Surround Ideas - WPC
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The material WPC has become a big “competitor” to wood. This is a composite material made of wood and plastic (WPC = Wood Plastic Composit). These wooden planks consist of approx. 60 percent wood and 40 percent plastic. Due to the high plastic content, however, many raw materials are required and energy consumed during production. In contrast to pure wood, however, this material is very easy to care for, durable for a long time and predominantly splinter-free. So no injuries need to be feared.

WPC is technically manufactured and therefore you have a wide range of colours available. The WPC planks are only available in one colour – a typical wood design is therefore not possible.

You should also keep in mind that WPC floorboards heat up even more than normal wood.


Pool Border Ideas - Resysta
2015 Resysta International

Resysta is a so far quite unknown material. This is a 100 percent ecological product. It consists for the most part of rice husks. In its characteristics it is very similar to the WPC (comparison on wpc-terrassendielen.eu). It is also splinter-free, weatherproof and fungus-resistant.

The probably decisive advantage over WPC is probably the optics. Resysta is visually much closer to wood than WPC. It can also be painted and oiled as desired. In addition, this natural product does not heat up and does not absorb any water at all. A swelling of the planks is therefore impossible.

Resysta is nevertheless easy to install. You only need commercially available wood tools.

Paving stones:

Pool border ideas - Paving stones
© Kurhan – Fotolia.com

In addition to wood, tiles & Co. you can also surround the pool with paving stones. With the right choice of paving stones you can also create a Mediterranean flair or even connect your terrace with the pool without using any additional material.

If you want to surround your pool with paving stones, you should make sure that the substructure is chosen correctly. In this case please ask a professional for help.

Don Burke

I am Don Burke, one of the authors at My Garden Guide.  I am a horticulturist that cultivates, grows, and cares for plants, ranging from shrubs and fruits to flowers. I do it in my own garden and in my nursery. I show you how to take care of your garden and how to perform garden landscaping in an easy way, step by step.I am originally from Sydney and I wrote in local magazines. Later on, I have decided, more than two decades ago, to create my own blog. My area of specialization is related to orchid care, succulent care, and the study of the substrate and the soil. Therefore, you will see many articles dedicated to these disciplines. I also provide advice about how to improve the landscape design of your garden.

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