{Tutorial} Rubbing out a Finish to a High Gloss

Okay, so today’s tutorial is a little bit of a continuation of the Toning Tutorial that we did last week. This is another secret that never gets talked about that makes your restored furniture look like something right out of a magazine. It’s the last step, and it’s referred to as Rubbing Out A Finish.

It’s not required, and doesn’t add any additional protection to your piece, but it gives you an extreme amount of control over the sheen, plus it addresses any dust nibs or imperfections in your finish. It’s also pretty simple and quick to do with the right materials and tools.

How to Create a High Gloss Finish by WhiteCottageBoutique.com

You’ll notice most of the materials in the list be are used to rub out car paint finishes. It might seem very odd at first to think of using those products on your furniture, but trust me, they work just the exact same way, and are much easier to get a hold of and to use than materials used traditionally in the wood working business. Plus, you can use them to wax and polish your car too! (Maybe even make a little deal with your husband to splurge for the polisher ;)).


*All the links above are to the exact products I used in the tutorial video. If you don’t have a Harbor Freight near you, you can also purchase the polisher on Amazon here. (It’s just slightly more expensive online). The Mineral Spirits I used you can purchase at your local Home Depot, but any brand of mineral spirits will do. You can also substitute for soapy water. The cloth doesn’t need to be microfiber, any cloth will do, but microfiber works best.

Now you may be thinking that the materials in the list seem expensive, but like I mentioned before, they have a dual purpose. Also, you use a very small amount of the compounds on each piece, meaning they will last you a pretty long time. Also, the pads are re-usable. I just seal mine up in a plastic baggie to keep dust and other things from getting on them.

One more thing, if you don’t necessarily want a high gloss finish, but you do want a nice smooth factory finish on your piece, you could stop at the rubbing compound stage, you don’t have to continue to work the sheen higher.

{Video Tutorial} How to Rub Out a Finish to a High Gloss


I think this piece took me about 30-40 minutes to rub out total, and that was with me explaining everything in the video. I highly recommend the polisher I used in this video, but it is possible to rub out a finish by hand, it just takes much longer. The polisher also doubles as a sander if you need a new one of those ;).

More tutorials are on their way! I hope you’ve enjoyed our tutorial series so far.

 Kelsey Elaine Signature by WhiteCottageBoutique.com

  13 12 8 13 6 air 5 13 13 13s 5 4 cheap s 5 13s 13s>> 13s 13s 5 7 7 s 13 13

  • http://www.makeupbyjamielee.com Jamie Wiebe

    I cannot thank you enough for all your tutorials, how to’ and creative genius’!! I’m so glad I found your site. It has been extremely helpful for me. Thank you for sharing!! One question I have (not about this post) is about the oak chairs you painted white than did the chocolate glaze on. Did you sand the chairs down first and if so how much do you recommend sanding them down? Thank you again!! 🙂