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How to Make Beeswax Furniture Polish

You don’t have to use commercial furniture polish that contains… well who knows what? Bring new life to your wood furniture by making beeswax furniture polish at home. Polishing fine wood products is a common way to use beeswax. This simple beeswax furniture polish recipe is an inexpensive way to protect all your wood surfaces.

Why Beeswax for Furniture?

Using rag and homemade beeswax wood polish to buff a brown table image.

Beeswax is a natural wax that is produced by honey bees.  Bees use the wax to construct their comb and provide storage for food and young bees.

Thankfully, bees can make a lot more wax than they need. The excess left over after honey extraction can be put to good use – never wasted. We can use beeswax in many different ways around the home.

Is beeswax safe to use on wooden furniture? Sure – in most cases it is a great product for polishing various wood surfaces. Though of course, you should always try a small test area first.

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The advantage of using beeswax polish is that it provides a warm glow to the surface.  It does not alter the appearance of the wood or leave a fake, commercial finish. It is so safe to use that you can use it on cutting boards too. You can even make your own moisturizing spoon butter.

Traditional wax furniture polish seals the wood and offers protection from moisture and sun. It is a light polish and may need to be applied more often than some other wood protectors. But that’s okay as it is inexpensive to make.

Many commercial products contain know carcinogens. When you make your own furniture polish, you know what is in the finished product.

Room temperature coconut oil and small blocks of beeswax.

Materials

There are many recipes for making your own beeswax polish.  Some of them use turpentine and others suggest a variety of oils to combine with the wax.

They all work well and the one you choose may depend on what you already have. For this very simple recipe we use just a few ingredients. You may already have them in your kitchen.

  • beeswax
  • olive oil

Use Clean Beeswax

When using raw wax, it is advisable to clean the beeswax thoroughly.  I suggest straining the melted wax through a piece of nylon or similar material.  This removes any bits of dirt, wax or propolis that may still be present.

We do not want any dirt in our finished polish as it may scratch your nice wood surface. The rich homemade polish will last for a long time when stored in the refrigerator. 

I prefer to use net weight when creating my recipes.  However, you can use volume as long as you keep the proper ratios in mind. 4:1 Four parts soft oil and 1 part hard beeswax is the most common.

Olive Oil

There is no need to spend more money than is necessary on olive oil. The store brand will work just fine. Our goal is to make the beeswax more spreadable and combining with a soft oil will achieve that.

Using rag and homemade beeswax wood polish to buff a brown table image.

Beeswax Furniture Polish Recipe for Wood

Charlotte Anderson @ Carolina Honeybees, LLC
A simple recipe for making beeswax furniture polish to clean and protect wooden furniture. This basic tutorial only requires 2 ingredients: beeswax and olive oil. You probably already have them on hand.
5 from 3 votes

Tools

Supplies
 

  • 8 oz Olive Oil net wt
  • 2 oz Beeswax net wt
  • 6 drops Lemon Essential Oil optional
  • 4 drops vitamin E oil optional

Instructions
 

  • Melt the beeswax using a double boiler. (I love this double boiler.)
    Beeswax pastilles are nice and easy to measure. However, chunks of wax are also just fine. 
    Melting beeswax in a double boiler for furniture recipe image.
  • Once the beeswax is melted, slowly stir in the olive oil.  Stir until everything is mixed and melted.
    Measured olive oil being added to melted beeswax for furniture polish recipe image.
  • Pour into containers. Remove the small pot with ingredients from the heat source. Now you can add a few drops of Vitamin E oil (if desired). 
    This is not necessary but it prolongs the shelf life of the oils in the finished furniture polish.
    Pour the mixture into any type of container you wish to use. I pre-warm glass jars to hold my beeswax furniture polish. Let cool and seal with a lid.
    Pouring beeswax furniture polish recipe into glass jars to cool image.

Notes

**Optional: Some people prefer the natural beeswax scent.  However, you can add a few drops of lemon essential oil or similar fragrance if you wish.
*It is safe for most types of wood but always test on a small inconspicuous area first.
Learn more about bees and using products from the hive!Join me on Instagram – @carolina_honeybees

Using Beeswax Wood Polish

Apply a small amount of beeswax polish to your wood using a clean cloth or rag. Wipe across the wood surface with light strokes going with the grain of the wood. 

Do not use a circular motion -go with the wood grain. Let it set for a few minutes and then buff off the excess. Don’t apply too thick. Using excess polish does not work better and only wastes your product.

Beeswax does serve as a cleaner for wood surfaces. It also polishes and seals the surface to protect it from stains etc.

However, if your items are really dusty or dirty – take the time to clean the furniture first. This allows your wax polish to do its very best job of renewing the wood surface.

Beeswax polish is often used as the final step in a furniture refinishing project. Then, periodic use helps keep the wood looking nice.

Using beeswax wood polish in jar to buff a wooden bowl image.

Benefits of Natural Beeswax Polish

Making your own natural beeswax wood polish is a great way to avoid questionable chemicals in your home. It is also a good way to practice sustainability through using natural products. Beehives are not harmed by responsible wax harvesting.

In addition to cleaning your wood, you can create many other useful items. Some of them also make great gifts when you need a small thank-you present.

Beeswax wax melts are easy to make and help freshen the air. Food wraps made with beeswax are a favorite of homes that wish to reduce their use of plastic. This simple beeswax furniture polish recipe can be made in small or large batches.  Share the shine.

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FAQs about Using Beeswax Polish

How long does beeswax polish last on wood?

Depending on how it is applied, the polish may clean and protect wood for several years. Most people prefer to apply light coats of wax more often.

Does beeswax polish change the color of the wood?

The appearance of wood polished with wax only changes slightly. It may have a darker appearance as the natural beauty of the wood is exposed.

What are the disadvantages of natural wax polish?

Beeswax polish must be applied by hand which is time consuming. It is also not as durable as varnishes.

Does beeswax furniture polish cover scratches?

Small shallow scratches in your wood surface may be covered by the polish. If you have a lot of scratches, they will require buffing out and then waxing.

Can you apply beeswax polish over varnish?

Yes, in most cases, natural beeswax polish works well over other stains and varnishes.

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