best furniture wax

Best Wood Wax – Finding the Right Wood Wax for Your Furniture

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Wood wax is available in different products and brands. It makes furniture look clean, fresh and amazing. Over the years, wax has been used for protecting wood from moisture and dust. The process of using wood wax is very simple. It can be applied using a cloth to jewelry boxes, bookcases and so on. Wood wax is not recommended for the kitchen table since it’s a piece of furniture that is used on a daily basis. The following paragraphs will discuss in detail the benefits of wood wax.



Types of Wax for Wood

Wood wax can be purchased in different forms depending on preferences and quality. It can be in liquid, paste or solid form. This wax for wood comes in three different types:

  • Beeswax: an animal originated wax
  • Carnauba: a vegetable originated wax
  • Paraffin: which is a mineral originated wax

The most important feature when it comes to wax for wood is the hardness of the wax. This makes it a better option compared to the cheap waxes which have no ability to protect the furniture from wear and tear. Hard waxes are easier to use and can be applied on most wood surfaces to get a nice shine. Even though the hard wax is difficult to apply sometimes, it provides more protection to the furniture than the soft wax. This is why most shops sell a combined mixture of hard wax, soft wax,

and an added solvent. During application, the wax remains on top protecting the wood while the solvent is absorbed by the wood. The solvent in the finishing wax also evaporates when it is applied to wood, only leaving the wax as the protective layer. Wood wax can be removed by using mineral spirits. Wax is only water-resistant so it melts quite easily when exposed to heat. For a better look and feel, you can apply a coat of wax on top of a finish. However, you cannot apply it over waxed wood.

Note: The solvent in most of the blended woodworking products has an effect on lacquer and shellac. This is why you are required to wait a couple of days for these finishes to thoroughly harden before applying the wax.

best wood wax


Carnauba Wax vs Beeswax

Beeswax is the best wax for furniture and it is easy to apply. It is an animal originated wax since it is obtained from beehives. It can be used in two forms, as it is or can be processed much further to produce a variety of colors. The Carnauba wax is obtained from the Carnauba palm leaves. It has to be processed further using chemicals to produce the wood wax. Due to this process, Carnauba wax is more costly than Beeswax. Carnauba wax is hard and has to be combined with other softer waxes for it to be used properly.


Mineral Waxes

Paraffin wax comes from petroleum and it falls under mineral waxes which are considered synthetic waxes. They are perfect to use on wood surfaces since they are non-acidic and has no effect on breaking down the wood. Paraffin waxes do not corrode any of the metal surfaces. This is why they are suitable for the kitchen area, especially on cupboards. This wax is found in most grocery stores. Candles are manufactured from it. Paraffin wax makes the slides of the wooden drawers function more smoothly.

Micro-Crystalline Wax is also manufactured from petroleum and falls under this category. Hard wax is formed from its thick coat since it is initially mixed with a solvent. The finish of this wax is water-resistant and is usually used for those wood surfaces that are most prone to water. Micro-Crystalline wax when compared to other wood waxes is considered as having a higher melting point. This why meaning after prolonged use of this product, the finger marks on most wood surfaces tend to disappear. It is mostly used in cosmetics and with other wax blends to improve benefits.



Pros and Cons of Using Wax for Wood

Most waxes for wood have been tried and tested making them the best option for most users. The following is a list of some of the advantages and disadvantages of wax for wood:


  • It has a pleasant smell
  • It can be applied to painted wood
  • It works well when used with other finishes and even on lacquer.
  • It is a good option for reviving old wood
  • It is easy to apply
  • It forms a layer when applied to wood, thus protecting it from dust and dirt
  • Waxed wood is water-resistant
  • It is non-toxic
  • It protects wood from fading and drying out
  • It has a beautiful shine compared to other products
  • Waxed wood provides more protection compared to unwaxed surfaces
  • Finished wax enhances the natural color of the wood


  • It is not durable
  • Can be damaged by heat
  • It is difficult to apply to unfinished wood surfaces
  • A dull appearance can appear after a period of time due to the build-ups from the wax
  • Not a good option for surfaces that are always in use
  • It has to be used to wax wood all the time
  • Is not resistant to oil

wax woodworking



The Best Furniture Wax

Now that you have a better understanding of wax for wood, you are now in a better position of purchasing the best wax for your wood furniture. The following are some of the recommendations when it comes to choosing the best wood wax polish:


Best Wood Wax: MINWAX Paste Finishing Wax

This is one of the most top-rated brands for providing any wood surface with a beautiful, smooth, and polished finish. This finishing wax is clear and can be used as a protective layer on wood surfaces especially on medium stains and over paint. It can be used as a seal on chalk painted surfaces. This type of finishing wax can enhance the look of unpainted wood. It can be used on antiques, cabinets, and paneling doors.

MINWAX Paste Finishing Wax
  • Protects and polishes various wooden finishes
  • Suitable for furniture, trim, paneling, and more
  • Fast-drying and easy to work with
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  • It is non-messy and dip-free
  • The price is reasonable considering the amount of work it does
  • It dries very quickly
  • It is the best option on objects painted with chalk
  • It is beautifully smooth


  • It slightly wreaks of a light odor
  • It is not safe when it comes to contact with food
  • Cannot be applied on light and faint colored stains

It only takes a few minutes get the desired beautiful shine. This finish can be used in larger projects since it does not spill or create a mess. It can be used to enhance the natural look of wood surfaces.


Best Wax Seal for Wood: HOWARD Citrus Shield Paste Wax

It is a paste wax made from the combination of Brazilian Carnauba and the strongest form of hard wax. This combination makes it a great paste wax for multipurpose uses. It is mostly used on kitchen, cabinets and surfaces since it is a natural paste which is non-toxic. Due to the non-toxic nature, it can also be applied on baby wooden items like toys, baby cribs, and so on. Only a little bit is required to cover a large space area. It works well on finished surfaces although it can also be used on unfinished surfaces.

HOWARD Citrus Shield Paste Wax
  • Provides a hard protective coating of carnauba wax
  • Uses citrus shield to polish the furniture
  • Finishes and reconditions furniture, flooring, and wood finishes
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  • It produces a lovely shine after polishing
  • Consists of a UV Inhibitor
  • Suitable for a variety of surfaces
  • It is waterproof
  • It is free from silicone and linseed


  • It is not food-safe

It gives a lasting shine to wood surfaces. The blended wax will be most suitable for surfaces like metal, marble and concrete.



How to Select the Best Furniture Wax

The following is a list of some of the things to consider before making your choice of furniture wax.

wax table


What is Finish Wax Made of?

The ingredients of most waxes determine the effectiveness of the product. Most of the waxes are made from a combination of beeswax, synthetic wax, and carnauba wax. Colors and enhancers can be added to the combination for better results.

Some of the main ingredients in the wax products include:

  • Silicone
  • Wax
  • Water
  • Petroleum solvent

The product and its formula determine the amount of shine on wood surfaces. There are different types of wood wax; some keep the wood moisturized while others add a gloss finish. Before you decide on the chosen product to purchase, read reviews, and product labels.



The best furniture wax will help your old furniture to look as good as new again. This is a cheaper way compared to purchasing new furniture. Wood wax varies in the process depending on the formula used and the quality of the product. For instance, some other waxes contain enhancers whilst others do not.


Applying the Best Wood Wax

Wax for wood can be applied very easily unlike other waxes. You will only need a little bit of time on your hands and a rag to get the work done. Follow the steps below when applying your furniture wax:

  • You can wear gloves to cover and protect your hands.
  • It is advisable to wear an apron to protect your clothes from the mess.
  • Before using the product, make sure that your surfaces are dirt free and smooth for the best results
  • You can either apply wood oil or use sandpaper.
  • Although wax is suitable for most wood types, test a small area first before applying the product,
  • Use a clean cloth or a wax brush when applying the wax
  • Always follow the direction of the grain from end to end when applying
  • The wood surface can dry in a period of 20 minutes, but for best results, you can leave it for a few hours or overnight.
  • After application, remove any excess wax and use a clean cloth for buffing.

Tip: It advisable to apply a moderate amount of wax to avoid uneven distribution on the wood surfaces. This is because uneven distributions will result in a cloudy appearance.

waxed wood


Removing Finish Wax

Make a mixture consisting of equal amounts of water and vinegar. Damp a cloth in the mixture and use it to wipe the surface area clean. Wipe the wood surface area in the direction of the grain and the wax will lift off. Besides this mixture, you can also opt to buy wax or polish removers from the stores to do the same job. We recommend these because they remove the wax without disturbing the area underneath. They are also perfect for removing cloudy appearances that form from layers of accumulated wax.


Maintaining Your Waxed Wood

The wax will provide protection and a perfect shine to the wood surface after application. It must be reapplied over time to keep the shine. Waxed wood is open to spills since it does not seal. Another option is to reapply the wax once every two months. Reapplying after 6 to 12 months is also okay in keeping the shine and appearance. Use a damp cloth to wipe the dust from the waxed surfaces to keep the area clean and shiny.

finish wax



Frequently Asked Questions


What is the Main Reason for Applying Wood Wax Polish?

Wood wax is important for providing a protective layer, a beautiful shine, and enhancing wood finishes. The wood surface is supposed to be sealed before applying a wax. The wax can also be applied to bare wood; it will act as a natural finish.


How Do You Apply Finish Wax?

A fresh cotton cloth is the best when applying wax to a wood surface. Some people use wax brushes or fine steel wool to do the job. It is recommended to leave the wax for at least 20 minutes after applying. The process is then completed by using a clean cloth to dust off.


When Should You Reapply Wax for Wood?

Reapply the wax once in two months, although the whole process depends on the dryness of the environment. You can also reapply it after 6 to 12 months depending on how often the wood surface is used.


Can You Apply a Finish Over Wax?

No, wax is the final layer after applying the finish. If you apply the wax before the finish, then it will be absorbed into the wood.


Can Wood Wax be Used to Protect from Termites?

No, wax can form a protective layer for the wood surface but it does not offer protection from termites. You should hire a professional to fix the problem of termites.


Can I Use Wood Wax on my Bathroom Cabinets?

Bathroom and kitchen cabinets are prone to heat and moisture so it is not advisable to apply wood wax on them.


Wood wax is a great choice for uplifting wooden furniture and surfaces. Wood wax is easy to apply, and produces a brilliant protective finish to enhance the value of the wood. If you are looking for the best wood wax, then be sure to consider the products listed above.


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