Stair Nosing

Stair nosings can help to reduce accidents on stairs as well as helping to provide an ‘inclusive’ environment giving access to all building users as well as offering an aesthetically pleasing finish to each step.

What is a Stair Nose or Step Nose?


Stair nosings are fitted to the edge of each step to improve safety on stairs by providing visual cues and preventing slips and falls.

Why Have Stair Nosings? 


Nosings will have contrasting colour compared to the rest of the stair tread, making it easily visible. It also provides a slightly rounded, non-slip surface at the edge of the step, reducing the risk of accidents. Nosings have to be installed on all steps in commercial areas with only a couple of specific exceptions.

It also looks better, when done well – bringing a better look to your stairs!

However, nosings are always the safer option.

Aluminium stair nosing

Types of Nosings for Stairs


Commercial nosings can be made of aluminium (the most common), brass, bronze or PVC. The strips can also be lit with LED lights for rooms with low lighting, illuminating the way. They will have a non slip strip inserted onto the top surface to provide improved slip resistance.


This strip will also be a contrasting colour to the floor covering to make the edge of the step easily visible.

Did You Know? 


All commercial floor coverings should be given a ‘Light Reflection Value’ (LRV). All nosings inserts (the strip across the top of the nosing) will also be given an LRV. When choosing your insert a 30 point difference is required between the LRV of the floor covering and of the insert to meet DDA requirements. This is to ensure that the edge of the step is clearly visible thus improving safety.

LED Stair nosing

FAQ’s for Stair Nosing:

Can we have nosings with an insert that matches the floor covering?

Unfortunately not. The insert colour must offer a contrast to the colour of the floor covering for safety reasons.

Do we need to have a yellow or a different colour insert on the top and bottom step of each flight?

Not at all. It is not only the top and bottom steps that can be a trip or fall hazard. So long as every step has a nosing with an insert that has an Light Reflection Rating that is 30 points difference from the floor covering, then DDA compliance is achieved.

How are stair nosings installed?

Stair nosings are screwed down and glued for good measure. The nosings are often cut down to size in the factory but can also be cut on site if you have stair winders or if a mitre is required.

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Stair Nosing Brands

The major brands manufacturing stair nosings and other accessories are Gradus, Quantum, CAT, Marlings and Genesis.


Gradus flooring


Marlings Flooing




CAT Flooring


Genesis Flooring

Stair Nosing London

It is essential that stair nosings are expertly installed by the DDA guidelines. Olivers Contracts has over 30 years experience installing stair nosings and accessories. We can advise on the best solutions for aesthetics and safety requirements.