Once you are finished painting a project with MMS Milk Paint, you need to protect it with a topcoat. We have several options to choose from, and we’d love to take you on a tour of each product! So buckle up and get ready to learn all about the fabulous finishes in the Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint collection!
We have two main families or groups of finishes – Waxes and Liquids. For this post, we’ll be focusing on our wax finishes.
Furniture Wax is our clear wax option. It’s formulated with carnauba wax, beeswax and odorless mineral spirits, resulting in a super soft wax that is spreadable and easy to manipulate. It has a pleasant natural aroma and does not contain any harsh fumes. It has the consistency of a natural lotion or margarine and is easily applied with a soft lint-free cloth or wax brush.
Our Furniture Wax is “buildable”, meaning you can apply several thin layers to build up layers of protection. The key is thin layers. Furniture Wax should be applied in thin layers and massaged into the surface like a lotion. Most issues with wax occur when too much product is applied. When it’s buffed out, it should not feel tacky or sticky. You can achieve a variety of sheens from matte to semi-gloss depending on how you buff out your wax. That makes it easy to personalize your finish!
The other lovely feature of our Furniture Wax finish is that it’s “livable”. Scratches and blemishes can sanded out and more wax can be applied, making it a great finish for busy households. You should always take care to use basic precautions to protect your finish from water and heat. Coasters are always a good idea and you should never place anything hot directly on a finish. Use trivets and potholders to provide a layer of protection in between the hot item and your finish.
Keep in mind that wax does melt in high temperatures, so Furniture Wax should not be used on outdoor projects, outdoor furniture shows or on front porches. Furniture Wax is not food safe, so it should not be used on surfaces where food is prepared or eaten directly off of (such as a cheeseboard).
In addition to offering a clear Furniture Wax, we also have two tinted waxes. Let’s start with our White Wax.
White Wax contains the same ingredients as our buttery soft Furniture Wax with the addition of white pigments. It looks like marshmallow fluff in the jar!
White Wax is a fabulous product to use if you would like to create a limed look over top of raw wood or MMS Milk Paint. It almost looks like a white wash. You can see how White Wax changes the look of our soft black, Typewriter, in this graphic by The Golden Sycamore.
See how it creates a soft, white wash effect? Here’s another example on a dresser that Miss Mustard Seed painted.
This is White Wax over Shutter Gray Milk Paint. She even used it on the raw wood top!
When using White Wax, we recommend applying a layer of clear Furniture Wax first over your Milk Paint. THEN, apply the White Wax. This will help keep the White Wax from becoming ghosty and it will preserve the color of your Milk Paint underneath.
You can apply White Wax with a soft lint-free cloth or a brush. It looks absolutely divine when it settles into nooks and crannies on a piece! This table was painted during one of the “Bring Your Own Piece” workshops that Miss Mustard Seed hosted in her old Pennsylvania studio.
The owner of the table painted it in Kitchen Scale and then sealed it with clear Furniture Wax. To draw the eye to the carved details, White Wax was applied and allowed to settle into the recessed areas. This is a perfect way to use White Wax!
So what do you think? Are you ready to grab a jar and try it out for yourself?
Our Antiquing Wax is kind of the opposite of White Wax. It’s another tinted wax that has the same ingredients as our Furniture Wax, but instead of being tinted white, it has a lovely deep and rich brown color.
Antiquing Wax is like instant “age in a jar”. When applied, it will add a warm brown tint to your finish that mimics the look of aged patina. You can see an example of this on this oak washstand that Jenn of Eight Hundred Furniture painted using Bergere.
Jenn applied Bergere Milk Paint, Furniture Wax and then a layer of Antiquing Wax. See how it nestled into the grooves and gives the piece an aged effect?
You can also apply Antiquing Wax directly on raw wood to age it and protect it at the same time!
Antiquing Wax goes on strong, but it can be wiped back to suite your personal taste. If the look is still too strong, rub a little bit of Furniture Wax on and wipe back. The Furniture Wax will act as an “eraser” and help tone the Antiquing Wax down even further.
We recommend turning your wiping cloth over multiple times during the wiping process to ensure you are using a clean spot every time you remove product. This will help to wipe the product back without redepositing it again. We also recommend using a cloth to apply it on flat surfaces (such as tops and sides).
Use a fluffy natural bristle brush to get into nooks and carvings.
See how Antiquing Wax added subtle shadowing and age to the legs of this French chair?
Antiquing Wax and White Wax can also be mixed in varying ratios to create different shades of taupe, mushroom, and gray!
Our final wax finish is our Beeswax.
Our Beeswax finish contains 100% Beeswax and Mineral Oil. It is food safe and is ideal to use on surfaces that will come in contact with food. Rolling pins, bread boards, salad spoons and wooden bowls are all safe surfaces to hydrate with Beeswax.
Our Beeswax finish is also a fabulous product to use as a resist in between layers of Milk Paint.
You can learn how to create this chippy layered look using Beeswax by reading our blog post here.
Beeswax is also a fabulous product to use on leather goods. Give your boots some much-needed hydration after a long winter by rubbing some Beeswax on and buffing it out. You can read the full blog post on how to do that here.
The application process is the same as with our other wax products – apply with a soft cloth or bristle brush and wipe the excess back.
Other Tips and Information
All of the finish in our MMSMP collection are durable when applied properly and allowed to cure for the recommended 20 – 30 day window of time, including our waxes. Here are some more tips and tidbits of information when using our wax products.
- The key with any wax is to apply it in a thin layer. If you ever have trouble with wax being smudgy, sticky, smeary, tacky, etc., it means you applied too much wax. Think of wax like a skin lotion. It needs to be worked into the surface evenly, allowing it to be absorbed. Too much will just sit on top and be a mess.
- It should feel dry to the touch almost immediately. It might feel a little cool and waxy, but the piece can be touched and used right away.
- Wax gives a super smooth, hard, water-repellant finish without any brush strokes.
- Wax is a finish that absorbs, but it’s also a “buildable” finish. You can build the finish by adding more (thin) layers of wax, which can make the finish glossier and thicker.
- The gloss can also vary based on how you buff it. If you just buff it with your brush as you apply it, it will be matte. If you buff it by hand, with gusto, or with an electric buffer/buffing pad, it can have a nice gloss to it.
- If a wax finish is marred/scratched, it can be repaired. Lightly sand the marred area and reapply more wax.
- It is a bit labor intensive to apply wax. Our wax is soft, like the consistency of margarine, so it spreads on easily, but it still takes some muscle and patience. Don’t rush the process!
- It can be tricky to get it really smooth in appearance on a large, flat surface, like a table top. An electric buffer or a buffing pad on an orbital sander really helps with that!
- Wax will melt if it gets too hot. It does have to be pretty intense heat and sunshine, so being inside under a window would be fine. Just keep it in mind, especially if you have pieces on a porch or are putting them in a garage or storage unit that isn’t climate controlled. We also don’t recommend using wax finishes for pieces that will be sold at outdoor market events.
We hope you are now inspired and a bit more educated about our wax products. Are you ready to tackle a project? Shop for MMS Milk Paint products from any of our fabulous retailers or online. Tell us your favorite and share your MMSMP waxed pieces with us on social media. We love hearing from you!
Next, we’ll tackle the liquid finishes in our collection…Hemp Oil and Tough Coat!