Category Archives: Types of Furniture Finishes

Types of Finishes for Wood Furniture

There are many types of finishes for wood furniture, and the one to choose should depend more on how the furniture will be used rather than the type of wood that makes up the piece.

A few questions to ask before choosing a wood finish are:

Will the wood piece be a decoration or will it be used?
Will people be sitting at the piece of furniture to eat or drink on a regular basis?
Will the furniture be placed inside or outside?
Do you want to apply the finish with a spray gun, a rag, or a brush?
Do you want the finish to be glossy, colored, matted or almost invisible?
Surface Finish vs. Penetrating Finish

Which to Choose?

There are quite a few types of finishes for wood furniture, and there are pros and cons associated with each one. While some provide a heavy-duty seal on a piece of furniture, others provide a more natural look. Some are easy to apply and others require the use of special equipment. Some repel water and some do not provide much protection from accidental water spills. The types of finishes available are plentiful, so a little bit of research should be completed before choosing the best finish for your piece of furniture.


Different Types of Varnish Should be Used for Outdoor and Indoor Purposes Varnish is a type of wood finish that is used to provide a protective barrier. After it is applied and dried, varnish provides a resistance to water, heat, chemicals and solvents. Two Types of Varnish Varnish can be placed into one of two […]
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Lacquer is an All-Around Excellent Finish but Not Typical for Antiques Lacquer is known as an excellent finish for wood furniture because it dries very quickly, it provides a finish with excellent depth and richness, it is strong, and it can be shined relatively easily. However, lacquer was not developed into a synthetic or “modern” […]
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Shellac is a Wood Finish that Has Been Used for Centuries The history of shellac goes back for hundreds of years. The term “shellac” comes from the family of “lac” insects, which secrete a substance that was discovered centuries ago to work as a wood sealer. Today, these insects are cultivated for the purpose of […]
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Linseed Oil Finish

Linseed Oil can be used as a Wood Finish that Provides a Protective and Water-Resistant Coating A linseed oil finish provides a piece of wood furniture with a protective coating that offers a water-resistant layer of protection. Linseed oil is a natural substance that is derived from the flax seed. It can be used as […]
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