Hi friends! What do you do when you need the tough durability of a poly, but you want the beautiful antiquing and soft sheen of a wax?
Lately, one of the most frequent questions I’m getting is whether to apply poly over wax or wax over poly? You can see how many times I’ve been asked in this one post alone… and it’s a GREAT question! So, today I have a perfect example of this duo topcoat to share with you.
Madelyn (a client) brought me her mother’s desk and vintage chair for a restyle. She’s been generous enough to let me use her furniture as an example even though she’s anxious to get it back home – thanks Madelyn! 🙂
She decided on a Sherwin Williams ‘Paris Grey’ custom mixed paint, a dark grey glaze and poly finish. Between Madelyn working on her laptop, and her son on his homework, this desk will get a lot of use. For durability, I used 3 coats of Varathane’s Diamond Polyurathane in Satin. For a vintage antiqued sheen, I also applied Annie Sloan’s Black Wax on selected areas OVER the fully dried coats of poly.
Here’s what we started with.
And here it is with a poly and wax finish.
THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS TO PRODUCTS USED. YOU CAN SEE MY FULL DISCLOSURE HERE.
This desk and chair make a really nice one-of-a-kind set. It also has sentimental value because this chair has been in Madelyn’s family for over 50 years. The black wax really helps to bring out all the chair’s character.
THE RULE OF THUMB IS WAX OVER POLY
POLY FIRST – WAX SECOND
NEVER the other way around. Just keep in mind that WAX IS ALWAYS LAST. Just like when you wax a car, wax is the very last thing you do for a beautiful finish and protection.
If you’ve waxed your furniture and then decide you’d prefer a poly finish, remove the wax with mineral spirits (in a well ventilated area) before apply a water based poly. Otherwise, the wax tends to repel the poly and it ruins the finish or may be more work down the road.
Have you top coated furniture with both poly and wax? Chime in because I always love hearing from you! 🙂
Happy painting and stay inspired!