Homemade Furniture Polish to Make Wood Shine

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Last Updated on November 24, 2020 by Ellen Christian

Have you wondered how to make a homemade furniture polish recipe? Get the directions and learn how to make wood shine.

We purchased a kitchen table and chair set when the kids were younger.  It’s probably close to ten years old now and has seen its share of crayons, markers, and wear.  

The finish is starting to come off the top of the table in spots and it has lost its shine. 

close up shot of a bottle of furniture polish

Homemade Furniture Polish Recipe

I have seen furniture polish in the store that is supposed to restore shine to worn wood but I wanted to find something without a lot of chemicals.  I deiced to learn how to make furniture polish myself.   

And, this homemade furniture polish recipe is the result.

After all, I’m sure my Grandmother must have polished her furniture long before there was furniture polish in spray cans at the grocery store.  If you need a zero-waste furniture polish, this is a great option.

You won’t have an aerosol can to dispose of when you’re done. Look into buying the ingredients in bulk to save on waste.

Have you wondered how to make a homemade furniture polish recipe? Get the easy directions right here and see the difference!

Why does furniture need to be polished?

Wood loses its shine for two reasons. It gets dirty and it gets worn.  Oil, smoke, dirt, and any number of other things can build up on the surface of the wood.  

If it’s not removed regularly, it can create a build-up over the surface of the wood and make the wood dull.

Why should I make furniture polish?

If you use this homemade furniture polish recipe, you won’t need to worry about chemicals or aerosol cans which makes it more eco-friendly. It’s much less expensive than buying a name brand polish.

And, it should not cause any allergic responses.

spraying homemade furniture polish on a wooden table

How to make wood shine

Use a soft, lint-free microfiber cloth when you apply your polish to the wood. That ensures that you won’t leave behind fuzz or lint on the wood. 

The first step is to use undiluted white vinegar on a sponge to clean your table. Vinegar is very effective at cutting grease and removing grime. Plus, it’s all-natural and non-toxic.

 You can find pure lemon extract in the baking aisle in the area you would find vanilla. Do NOT buy lemon flavoring.

You need pure lemon extract which is a mixture of alcohol, water, and oil of lemon.

If you want a homemade furniture polish with essential oils, you can add a drop or two of your favorite citrus-based essential oil. An orange oil furniture polish recipe would smell amazing. 

Have you wondered how to make a homemade furniture polish recipe? Get the directions and learn how to make wood shine.

What can I use homemade furniture polish on?

You can use this on almost anything that is wood. Traditional mineral oil is toxic so you should not use it on things like cutting boards or cooking utensils.

If you want to use it on wooden cutting boards or butcher blocks, use food-grade mineral oil.

You can use it on:

  • Wooden furniture
  • Wooden picture frames
  • Wicker baskets
  • Wooden banisters
  • Wooden chests

spraying polish on a table to make it shine

Homemade furniture polish recipe ingredients

You will need these simple ingredients and a spray bottle.

How to make homemade furniture polish

  • Mix one cup of mineral oil and three drops of pure lemon extract.
  • Using a funnel, add the ingredients to a spray bottle.
  • Shake carefully.
  • Spray onto the wood.
  • Using a microfiber towel, rub the polish into the wood until it shines. If your wood is very dry, you may need to do this twice.
  • Let the oil sit on the table for five minutes.
  • Gently buff the table, wiping away any excess mineral oil. The wood should be smooth to touch and not tacky or sticky.

a potted plant and a bottle of furniture spray on a wood table

How often should I use this?

I repeat this process about once a month.  Be sure to use vinegar to remove any grease or grime from your table first.

More homemade cleaning recipes

Now that you know how to make wood shine, check out these DIYs.

I originally shared this DIY in 2013. It was updated in 2020 with better photos and more complete information. 

Yield: 1

Homemade Furniture Polish Recipe to Restore Shine

Homemade Furniture Polish Recipe to Restore Shine

Easy homemade furniture polish recipe to restore shine to wood

Prep Time 5 minutes
Active Time 5 minutes
Additional Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Difficulty easy
Estimated Cost $5.00

Materials

  • 1 cup of mineral oil
  • 1 few drops of pure lemon extract

Tools

  • spray bottle
  • microfiber cloth

Instructions

  1. Mix one cup of mineral oil and three drops of pure lemon extract.
  2. Using a funnel, add the ingredients to a spray bottle.
  3. Shake carefully.
  4. Spray onto the wood.
  5. Using a microfiber towel, rub the polish into the wood until it shines. If your wood is very dry, you may need to do this twice.
  6. Let the oil sit on the table for five minutes.
  7. Gently buff the table, wiping away any excess mineral oil. The wood should be smooth to touch and not tacky or sticky.

Did you make this project?

If you make this, tag me on Instagram so I can see (@ellenblogs)

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24 thoughts on “Homemade Furniture Polish to Make Wood Shine”

  1. That is great! I'm a DIY, too!  I used to have wide pine board floors, and we would rub linseed oil into the wood.  I recently obtained some coconut oil and I was fooling around with it, I have parquet floors, and I had no idea that some spots of the oil got into the wood floor. Now it is spotted and I have been trying to get the spots out!  
    Reply
  2. I love this!  I never thought about making my own furniture polish.  I think this would be great for antique furniture.  Found this on google and will be pinning!
    Reply
  3. Wow! That looks really great! I can really see the shine! We have a wooden table, wooden church pew for a couch, and wooden floors. I still haven't found a polish that works for all three. I will have to give yours a try. Thanks for sharing! 
    Reply
  4. I had no idea about my own furniture polish. I am going to try it this week. I have a new table made out of old wood. It could use a polish or two. 
    Reply
  5. I have made my own cleaners for about five years now and they truly work just as good if not better than the store bought version. Thanks for sharing Ellen!
    Reply
  6. What a great idea to be able to make your own furniture polish at home to take care of your furniture. I have bookmarked this article so I can try this.
    Reply
  7. How do you think of these things? I'm definitely going to have to try this out.  We adopted a dining set from a family member and it's in not so great condition, but it has the potential to be so beautiful! I need to get the mineral oil and pure lemon extract, though.   Do you have any tips for removing GUNK from wooden furniture like gooey furballs from cats?  Oh, I could also use this on my decaying living room tables. This is a must begin project for 2014 with regular maintenance.
    Reply
    • LOL I have no idea. I have a head full of fairly useless information :) If you need to remove something sticky, try WD-40. Use it in a small out of the way spot to make sure it won't damage the finish first but it has always worked for us.
      Reply
  8. Wow! Thank you! Our kitchen table was purchased in a yard sale. The top is pretty marred up but it's solid wood and so sturdy that I had to have it. Now I can rescue it. :)
    Reply
  9. Oh wow that table looks gorgeous after that polish. We have a few worn spots on our table that is only a year old and they've been bugging me. I'm going to have to give this a try to see if it works on my table as well :)
    Reply
  10. Wow, I had no idea that you could make your own furniture polish! We don't have any wooden furniture (well, not real wood anyway) but I need to clean and polish my maple kitchen cabinets and this should do the trick!
    Reply

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