How To Easily Apply White Wax On Wood Furniture

6 Materials
1 Day

What would you say if I told you that white wax created a whitewashed look on an antique dresser in one easy step? I was totally shocked at the results. Read on...

I thought long and hard before I started this one. This dresser was given to me from a local lady that had been disabled from Lupus. We share the love of making old new again. The day she reached out to me to see if there was something I could do to save it, I was overwhelmed that she wanted to give it to me and I had a hard time taking it without some kind of trade. All she wanted was for it to be beautiful again. It had been sitting in her barn for 10 years and I knew before I even picked it up there would be many issues. The words she spoke to me that day I'll never forget. "I just know you can make it beautiful again." It would be a challenge!

The first thing I did was to remove the old varnish from the antique dresser using an Orbital Sander. This made the job quick and easy. I started with a 180 grit sandpaper and finished with a 220 grit sandpaper. Because the antique dresser had been sitting in a barn exposed extreme temperatures, the finish had become old and almost powdery. Looking back, I pretty sure it was easy because my sweet rescue pup "Bud" was helping me. Furniture licking is a thing you know. :)

I cleaned the raw wood with a 50/50 solution of denatured alcohol and water, because a dirty piece of furniture and white wax don't mix well. Yep, I applied WHITE WAX over the raw wood and the look was amazing! With long strokes working with the wood grain, I applied a thin, even layer of the white wax with the wax brush over the raw wood making sure to work it in all the cracks and gaps. Again, I used long smooth strokes.

I allowed the white wax to dry for about 30 minutes and buffed with a soft white cloth. The preparation of the wood was the hardest part of this makeover.

Look how gorgeous this is!

Did ya see what I did to the mirror harp? You can see how I did it over on my blog.

I hope this has inspired you to try white wax on your raw wood furniture makeovers. I'll never use that messy whitewash again. I like EASY PEASY!

Happy painting!

xo, Do

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 8 questions
  • Linda Premo
    on Jan 16, 2019

    Can you add layer upon layer of white wax to get a whiter finish or will it just build up?

  • Ck
    on Jan 19, 2019

    How many cans to do

    Triple dresser

    2nd dresser

    2 night stand

    Headboard one coat approx.

  • A Keller
    on Jan 20, 2019

    What did you use on the top of the dresser?

Join the conversation

2 of 20 comments
  • Carole
    on Jan 26, 2019

    This remake is amazing! You did a great job on it. I love that you took out the bottom drawers and the mirror. It looks so pretty with just that simple wreath hanging in the center. Wow!

  • Susie
    on Feb 15, 2019


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