The Best Finish for Walnut Table Tops

The Best Finish for Walnut Table Tops When Sealing or Restoring

I have tried many finishes in order to find the one that works best for me. The Rubio Monocoat Oil was chosen because it’s high-quality, versatile and durable.

There’s a beauty to this: there is no “one-size-fits all” answer. Different solutions are needed for different situations. This list of top finishes will tell us when each is the best.

We can help you with a variety of options, whether it’s a special look, an eco-friendly choice, or a budget that is specific. Continue reading to discover the perfect finish for your walnut table.

Table of Contents

The Best of the Best

Varathane 262025 Fast Dry Premium Wood Stain


Best Finish For Walnut Table

  1. Best Overall Finish for Walnut Table Rubio Monocoat Oil
  2. The Best Value for Money Premium Varathane 262025
  3. Odie’s Oil Universal finish is the best non-toxic finish for Walnut tables.
  4. Gel Stain General Finishes Oil-Based Gel Stain is the best gel stain for finishing walnut.
  5. Best Fast Drying Flaxseed wood finish Boiled Linseed oil
  6. Best stain for Restoring Walnut Wood Howard Products 6016 and 3016
  7. Best Dark Walnut Table Stain – Minwax Wood Finish 70012444
  8. Best Water-Based Walnut Stain General Finishes Water Based Wood Stain
  9. Waterlox 5284qt Stain
  10. The Best Varnish Finish for Interior Walnut FurnitureThe Tried and True Varnish oil
  11. Best Walnut Lacquer Finish Watco Lacquer 63041

Best finishes for Walnut table reviews

  • Rubio Monocoat hardwax oils protect and color interior wood with ONE layer. You get a durable finish, save time in treating your wood, and maintain it easily when you need to do repairs or renovations.
  • Protects all types of wood: Oil Plus 2C is suitable for almost any type of wood and offers excellent wear, heat and water resistance. It is very easy to use, consumes little and does not leave marks or overlaps.
  • ECOLOGICAL WOOD TREATING – 0% CO2: A small amount of wood treatment is needed to protect your wood. This ensures low consumption, minimal packaging, and reduced transport. The linseed base of our wood oil makes it sustainable.

Rubio Monocoat Plus 2C has been rated as the best stain for walnut tables. The one-layer application of Rubio Monocoat Oil Plus 2C is revolutionary, as it combines protection and color with a single swipe.

This method is quick and easy to maintain. It’s perfect for your walnut table.

The results of Rubio Monocoat were very impressive. The application was easy and produced a beautiful sheen. The stain was superior to other stains in terms of quality and ease of use.

Rubio Monocoat Oil Plus 2C revolutionizes wood finishing. Even though they cost more, you’re buying items that are easy to use, environmentally friendly and durable.

Rubio Monocoat is a great value, as it is only one layer thick, eco-friendly and durable. This is the best buy for your money.

Why settle for less for your walnut table when you can have the best? Rubio Monocoat is the best treatment for your table.

The Good

  • Single-layer applications save time and effort.
  • Excellent wear, heat, and water resistance.
  • The linseed base is eco-friendly, with a VOC of 0%.
  • Choose from 55 different colors to customize your product.
  • Safe for indoor use, even on wooden toys.

The Not So Good

  • Premium price point.
  • Physical stores are limited (often, it is best to buy online).
  • Use on furniture, cabinets and trim, as well as doors, trim, and paneling.
  • Oil-based formula with one-coat coverage and fast drying.
  • The product dries to the touch within 1 hour, and can cover up to 70 square foot.

Varathane Premium 262025 is a top-budget wood stain that offers great value.

It’s affordable and adds value to indoor wood projects. It may not be quite as high-end as Rubio Monocoat Oil but it still has many great features.

The one-coat feature of Varathane Premium 262025 is a great time-saver for DIY enthusiasts. You only need to apply one coat for furniture, cabinets and trim.

The oil-based stain is dry to the touch within an hour. Bye-bye to long wait times for traditional stains. You can use your projects or continue treatment faster.

Varathane’s high-performance stain is enhanced by nano pigment particles. This is a major change, as it makes the stain color more even and highlights the beauty of the wood.

Varathane 262025 Premium is not only for wood. Varathane Premium 262025 is versatile, and can be applied to many surfaces including plastic. It is great for many different projects.

It isn’t as easy to use as Rubio Monocoat Oil but is still an excellent and less expensive option.

It dries fast and can be used on various surfaces.

The Good

  • Affordable without compromising on quality.
  • Savings on time and money with a single coat.
  • Reduce project turnaround times with fast drying.
  • Application on different surfaces.
  • Wide range of colors available

 The Not So Good

  • Not as specialized a product as premium.
  • You may need to apply more coats if you want a specific finish or effect.

3. Best Non-toxic Finish for Walnut Table – Odie’s Oil Universal Finish

  • All of us want to see our woodworking projects look the best possible when they are finished. It shouldn’t be difficult to choose what to use or how to apply it to your project. Odies Oil is a non-toxic, food safe wood finish that’s solvent free. Odies Oil has a beautiful sheen and is waterproof in just one coat. This is the perfect finish for metal, leather, vinyl, plastic and concrete.
  • Odie’s oil is perfect for both interior and exterior use. You can use Odie on: Boats and Brightwork, Decks and Floors and Gates. Also, Patio Furniture and Patio Furniture, Cutlery, Bowls and Cutting Boards. Toys and Auto Detail.
  • Try Odie’s oil if you are a woodturner. It will bring out the best of your projects. It can be used as a friction-polish! It can be used on almost any project that you can think of, including pens, bottles, bowls, vessels and more! Odie’s oil is free of toxic chemicals or driers and food-safe. This oil is safe for everyone: children, pets, and families! It’s super easy to use and requires no sanding, stripping or retouching between coats! Wipe on, wait a bit, buff off!

If you are concerned about the environment, and want to get the best finish for your walnut tables, choose Odie’s Oil Universal. The formula is non-toxic and safe for children and pets.

Odie’s oil is a product that has a low VOC content. Your walnut table can be finished with a beautiful, durable finish. No need to worry about harmful fumes or left-over substances.

It’s easy to apply – just wipe on, wait and buff. There is no need to sand or strip between coats. It is easy to use and accessible to DIY enthusiasts as well as woodworking beginners.

Odie’s oil is unique in its versatility. You can use it on metal, leather, concrete and plastic.

This flexibility allows you to get the most from your purchase, and makes it an important addition to your DIY toolkit.

Odie’s Oil is different from Rubio Monocoat Oil and Varathane 262025. It is easy to use and non-toxic. Choose Odie’s Oil Universal Finish to make your walnut table shine and safe.

The Good

  • Walnuts are protected from UV rays, maintaining their dark beauty.
  • Perfect for tabletops and surfaces that are near food.
  • Even beginners can easily apply the application.
  • Cost-effective coverage with lasting results.
  • Versatile and suitable for a variety of materials other than wood

The Not So Good

  • The exact mixture of natural oils is a secret.
  • The sun protection may not be complete for outdoor use.
  • General Finishes stain has the “finishing feeling” that is most similar to other products.
  • The woodworkers are enamoured with the glossy finish.
  • The stain is heavy-bodied and therefore does not penetrate the wood as deeply as liquid oil base stains.

 General Finishes Oil Based Gel Stain is a unique gel stain that offers a distinctive option for finishing walnut table.

This gel stain is ideal for kitchen tables made of wood.

This gel stain is a cost-effective solution. You can avoid replacing furniture by restoring the appearance.

It is important to follow the instructions, as if you leave the stain for too long it can cause complications.

The use of a high-quality brush and a sock to reach areas that are difficult to reach can produce exceptional results.

To prevent staining or fading, it is best to finish with a polyurethane. This step will ensure the longevity of your stain and preserve the appearance of your table.

Gel stain provides precise control of color and appearance.

You can achieve a smooth finish by applying many coats and paying attention to the details.

General Finishes’ Oil Based Gel Stain can be used on specific types of furniture, such as wood kitchen tables.

It may not be as versatile or offer the same specialization for walnuts and other materials as Odie’s oil, but it is more affordable and easier to apply for furniture restoration.

The Good

  • Restoring old wooden furniture such as a dining room table can be done at a reasonable cost.
  • Easy-to-use application process
  • Polyurethane varnish will extend the life of the stain.
  • Multiple coats allow for precise control of color and appearance.

The Not So Good

  • It is limited to wood furniture, which makes it less versatile.
  • To avoid complications, it is important to follow the instructions carefully.
  • The Boiled Linseed Wood Refinishing Oil absorbs into wood grain to enhance the natural color and texture.
  • The Boiled Linseed Fast-Drying Wood Oil penetrates deeply into the grain of the wood to condition it, restore it and ensure its longevity.
  • Raw Linseed Oil is the purest form of the oil and takes a long time to dry.

Boiling linseed oils are a great option for walnut dining tables that have no significant flaws.

This oil is ideal for areas with high traffic, such as tabletops. It enhances the natural beauty of wood and reinforces its surface.

The ability of boiled linseed finish to protect untreated wooden surfaces is one of its most notable features. Most formulations include waterproofing agents to protect against rot, insects and fungus.

This finish is relevant because, although termite attacks don’t affect tabletops, it must be resistant to water.

It’s important to know that boiled linseed contains drying agents which make the finish toxic.

It is not safe to eat during the curing procedure, so walnut tops for dining tables should be avoided. Consider it instead for coffee tables, side tables, or drawing rooms.

If you need a finish on a surface that is near food, raw linseed may be the better option.

The Good

  • Enhances the natural beauty of wood.
  • Wood is restored and conditioned.
  • Keep untreated wood outdoors and indoors.
  • Simple application on large surfaces.
  • Water resistant.

The Not So Good

  • Toxicity of curing.
  • Some finishes require a longer curing time.
  • Restor-A Finish is a unique formula that penetrates the wood finish to restore it while blending minor scratches, blemishes, and abrasions.
  • Neutral, Golden Oak (Maple-Pine), Cherry, Walnut and Mahogany. Dark Walnut and Dark Oak.
  • Most wood surfaces can be restored with a wipe-on-wipe-off method in just a few moments.

Restor-A Finish is an oil-penetrating formula which repairs walnut wood and removes blemishes. The product is available in nine colors that match most wood finishes.

Available colors include Neutral, Maple Pine, Golden Oak (also known as Golden Oak), Cherry, Walnut and Mahogany), Dark Walnut or Dark Oak (also known as Ebony Brown), and Ebony brown.

You can restore most walnut wood surfaces in just a few minutes using a wipe-on-wipe-off method. This will save you time and money.

The stain removes watermarks and other imperfections such as sun fade, smoke damage, and other defects. It also restores the original luster of wood without affecting any wood finishes that have been applied previously.

This amazing finish will restore your walnut dining and coffee tables without the hassle of removing old paint or sanding off scratches.

Restor A is a finish that we have used and reviewed many times before. It has become a favorite among woodworkers for good reason.

Even without woodworking experience, Restore-a Finish is easy to use. Apply the RAF according to the directions after wiping the surface clean.

All rough areas should be finished with 0000 steel-wool. The process should take 45 minutes, depending on how large your wooden surfaces are.

By morning, they’ll be looking great. When a polish becomes glossy, it’s like magic! Even if they’ve been used for some time, the surfaces will still look like new.

The Good

  • You do not have to use gloves when using the Walnut finish
  • Mineral oil and spirits are not necessary for cleaning surfaces.
  • It can be used on multiple surfaces

The Not So Good

  • Some color shades aren’t right
  • RICH, EVEN COLOR: Minwax Oil-Based Wood Finish provides a beautiful color that enhances the wood grain with just one coat. This is perfect for staining interior projects like wood furniture, cabinets and doors.
  • The staining of interior wood has never dried so quickly. It penetrates wood pores in just 5 minutes, is resistant to lapping and dries within 2 hours.
  • Easy to Apply – Use a cloth or a wood stain brush and apply the wood stain along the grain. Wait 5-15 minutes, then wipe off excess stain. The darker/richer color will be the longer you wait. Reapply coats to get deeper color.

If you want a uniform, rich color for your dining table, this wood stain is for you. This wood stain gives you a satin finish that enhances the natural grain of the wood in one coat.

This product is ideal for staining interior projects, such as tables, coffee tables, wood furniture, cabinets and bare walnut. It dries in record time, so you can get on with other tasks on your list.

It penetrates wood pores in just five minutes, thanks to its unique formula. It also resists lapping and makes all your projects beautiful, quick, and easy.

It penetrates walnut wood pores within five minutes, thanks to its unique formula. It also resists lapping and makes all your projects beautiful, quick, and easy.

Even if you don’t have any woodworking experience, it is simple to apply the stain. Follow these tips for woodworking and you will be ready to go. Use a paintbrush or a clean cloth to apply this stain.

Wait 15 minutes before removing any excess stains. Give it more time for drying if you want to get a darker or richer color. You can reapply the coats to achieve the desired color.

The Good

  • The colors on the can are the same as the ones you receive
  • Easy to use
  • You can get even more color.
  • It can be used for a variety of projects

The Not So Good

  • The number of coats you apply will determine how long it takes to dry.
  • Hand-applied or sprayable, these pigments are of high quality and produce dark colors.
  • Use indoors only. Formulated with a similar workability to oil-based stains
  • Water cleanup, low VOC and low odor.

General Finishes manufactures some of the best wood finishes available. The water-based stain can be used to give walnut woods or furniture a new lease of life.

The walnut wood is easily blended and penetrated, which reduces imperfections. The dye stain is made up of high-quality pigments which produce dark, even colors on black walnut.

This water-based stain can be applied with a brush, a clean rag or by spraying it on your surface for professional results.

General Finishes’ Water-Based Stain has a low VOC level and is odorless, unlike most wood stains. You can use this stain without any protective gear because it does not emit toxic fumes.

This stain can only be used indoors and has the same functionality of oil-based stains such as tung oil. Combining General Finishes Water Based Stains with any General Finishes Water Based Top Coat will create custom colors.

Non-combustible. It’s completely safe to use, without any fear of catching on fire. It dries fast, has a natural, thick finish and offers extensive coverage.

It is recommended that you work on a sample board to determine if the color suits you and if you want to use it for your walnut tables. You will be able to enjoy seeing it everyday.

The Good

  • The walnut wood is deeply penetrated, which reduces blotches.
  • Even if you don’t have any prior experience, it is easy to use.
  • Simple cleaning with soap and Water

The Not So Good

  • You can only use it indoors. It’s not suitable for outdoor use, no matter how you may like it.
  • DURABLE WATERPROOFING : Waterproofs and penetrates when used in multiple coats as a finishing product on its own, or with Waterlox Original Satin or Waterlox Original Gloss finish.
  • MEDIUM SHEEN: Achieves a medium shine (75deg sheen when finished, fades to 50-55deg sheen in 3 to 6 months).
  • Long-lasting: Provides a durable finish that is resistant to household spills and moisture, as well as foot traffic.

You are looking for a waterproofing stain that penetrates and waterproofs your walnut wood. You need not look any further. Waterlox 5284qt Stain TB5284 is easy to apply and will protect your walnut tables for a long time.

Waterlox 5284qt Stain TB5284 will bring the beauty of hardwood flooring to your home. The stain provides maximum protection from everyday household spills and moisture. It also gives your floors a beautiful, long-lasting finish.

This stain can be used on interior wood surfaces, such as flooring, windows, doors and cabinetry. It is also suitable for furniture, tables, bars, picture frames, fly-fishing rods, gunstocks, etc.

It is non-toxic when fully dried. Once you have applied it to a surface, you don’t need to worry about your children or pets.

It can be used as a primer, sealer, tie coat or paint additive for improved adhesion. It adheres well to thick, oily exotic woods like teak, ipe, and rosewood.

This stain works great for sealing porous surfaces like slate, bricks, tiles, stone, linoleum and cement, as well as preventing dusting and chalking.

A gallon of paint will cover 500 S.q. Ft. per coat. The porosity of the wood will determine how many coats are needed.

After applying a coat, let it dry for 24 hours before adding another. You may need to wait longer to let the stain dry if you have low temperatures, high humidity, or poor ventilation.

The Good

  • This is a multi-purpose sealer. It can be used on a variety of wooden surfaces
  • It provides a long-term services
  • Drying time between coats can be as little as 24 hours
  • Easy to use and apply

The Not So Good

  • The smell lingers for several days
  • This superior penetrating finish is made from linseed and pine resin and is perfect for interior furniture of high quality, including tables, counter tops and other surfaces.
  • Varnish oil is a furniture finish that has a high content of resin and produces a beautiful semi-gloss shine.
  • The gloss and durability will increase with each coat


Tried & True Varnish oil is the perfect solution for protecting turned wood bowls. This premium finish can be used straight from the can.

Follow the instructions on the can. Apply two thin coats each of the original oil finish and varnish oil, one day apart.

This blend of pine resin and linseed oils provides a durable and penetrating finish that is perfect for interior furniture, such as tables, counter tops and other items.

Do not settle for anything less than the best. It has a long life and is resistant to scratches and abrasion. It is used by amateurs and professionals to finish walnuts and bare wood.

If you have ever used boiled Linseed Oil, this will be thicker. Use sparingly. It may not dry as fast as other cheaper brands, but its advantages are that it is odorless and can be washed off with hot water.

This stain, unlike most hand-rubbed oils, will not create a hard, dent resistant coating. It will instead bring out the grain, and show depth. It feels and looks organic.

To achieve professional results, wet the sand and apply three coats. Rub each coat with a dry cloth. Always wet the sand in between coats.

Add a mineral oil mixture and finish the wax polish. The wood will be able to accept all dents, but it will still look beautiful.

The Good

  • It’s food-safe
  • It can be used on multiple surfaces
  • This is the best traditional varnish available
  • Easy to use

The Not So Good

  • Drying takes more time
  • Prices keep rising
  • Use on doors, furniture, cabinets, and paneling. Not recommended for exterior surfaces or floors.
  • Formulated to produce a finish with a higher degree of clarity than polyurethane
  • The product dries to the touch within 1 hour, and can cover up to 290 square feet.

Watco’s 63041 Lacquer clear wood finish could be just what you are looking for if you want to give walnut furniture, doors or cabinets a glossy, clear finish.

This lacquer is crystal clear and will give wood surfaces an attractive, durable finish. This lacquer is a great choice if you want to add some glamour or protect your wood.

This finish will give you a glossier finish than polyurethane. The finish dries to the touch within an hour and can cover 290 square feet.

This product also removes wood filler. The product protects surfaces from scratches. For a professional finish, you don’t need to apply more than one coat. In most cases, two or three coats will suffice.

Use on walnut cabinets, wall panels, doors and furniture. It dries within 30 minutes, and it is not necessary to sand between coats. It’s also one of the only affordable lacquers available that does not come in a spray.

It is self-leveling, so even if you apply it heavily there won’t be any ugly brush marks or drips.

If you want less shine, you can use denatured alcohol to thin the spray.

The Good

  • It is a beautiful laying down
  • Sprays and dries well
  • This is the only top-of-the line lacquer that’s not available in a can.

The Not So Good

  • It is not allowed in areas with high traffic.

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How do you protect a walnut table?

Impact Resistance

Your walnut table can be protected against scratches and impacts. You can use an oil or wood finish.

It will protect your table from moisture, and it will be more resistant to scratches. You can purchase a cover or table pad to place over your table.

It will be protected from accidental spills and bumps. You could also install an acrylic glass protector on the top glass of your table. It will prevent it from breaking in the event that you bump or hit it.

Protecting walnuts against rot and decay

Keep your walnut table dry to prevent rot. The table will rot if it’s wet.

Mineral oil should be avoided as it will not dry out and is best used for cutting boards rather than furniture. Opt for an oil-based finish that offers a colorless, clear coat or enhances walnut’s natural color.

Use a polyurethane coat, boiled linseed or clear varnish to protect it. It will not fade if you keep it out of direct sun.

Use felt pads to protect the table by placing them under the legs. It will prevent water from seeping under the legs of the table and causing damage.

Protecting a Walnut Table Before, During and After Use

A protective coating is needed to protect the black walnut from water and humidity getting into the grain, which could cause the wood to be distorted. How to do it.

Before Use

Use polyurethane, oil based polyurethane finish or Danish oil to protect your walnut coffee table before you use it.

During Use

Use placemats and coasters during meals.

When wet glasses, hot dishes, or cups remain on the tabletop, white rings will form. The same marks can be caused by leaving food and drink on a walnut table.

After use

The black walnut table should be cleaned and dusted with a microfiber cloth. You may need to apply wood finish every two or three month if you have chosen a walnut wood with a natural oil finish.

How to Create a Beautiful Finish on Walnut Wood

Walnut wood has a reputation for being a natural finish that requires more effort to achieve a durable finish than applying a wood finishing.

The majority of walnut furniture that is finished with linseed or Tung oils tends to become grey. This makes some walnut pieces unattractive. Let’s look at the best ways to finish walnut wood.

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Walnut Wood: What type of finish do you use?

Linseed Oil

Linseed oil is the best choice for walnut wood because it has a burnished, deep color. Moreover, boiled linseed gives walnut wood an even darker appearance.

Linseed oil is easy to maintain and environmentally friendly. It has a glossy finish that highlights the grain and color of the wood beneath.

Raw linseed is the purest form. Raw linseed oils drying time can be a problem for many people. Even one coat can take weeks to dry.

Tung Oil

Tung oil, a plant-based lubricant, produces a protective finish. The oil dries quicker and leaves a natural look. The oil also has high-penetration properties that enhance and protect old furniture, walnut wood countertops and other surfaces.

This oil has been used by hobbyists, carpenters and woodworkers for centuries to treat walnut wood. This oil is non-toxic, food-safe and environmentally-friendly.

Linseed and tung oil share some similarities. The oil is available in raw, polymerized and boiled form. Raw tung oil is not used by many craftsmen due to its lengthy drying time. Professional woodworkers prefer polymerized Tung oils.

Danish oil

This oil-finish for wood furniture is made up of ingredients like tung oil and thinners. It also contains linseed, drying agents, thickeners etc. It can be used on walnut tables, dining tables, and tabletops.

Danish oil is often a varnish containing Tung oil or linseed, but that isn’t always the case. Danish oil is often sold as polymerized linseed oils. Read the menu to determine the authenticity.

Lacquer finishes are preferred by professional woodworkers as well as DIY enthusiasts due to their rapid drying time.

A single or two coats will seal and protect your walnut wood. It may not be necessary to apply a final coat. Applying a lacquer to walnut wood can be done with a pressured and airless spray.

  • Ideal for use with a variety indoor wood surfaces, including those that are bare, stripped or even sanded. Not recommended for floors
  • The oil-based formula of combined oil and varnish penetrates deep into the wood pores to provide ultimate protection
  • It dries to the touch within 6 hours, and can cover up to 85 sq. ft.

Walnut with Polyurethane

How well polyurethane adheres to walnuts depends on how smooth the surface is.

To achieve a high-gloss finish on woods with an open grain (such as walnut, oak, or ash), apply a wood filler prior to the polyurethane. The polyurethane finish on wood is durable and water-resistant. It is therefore a popular alternative to traditional coatings like shellac.

Use a cheesecloth or a rag moistened with denatured ethanol to clean the wood if it is an oil-based poly.

Burnishing Technique

The technique can be used on walnuts that are bare, finished or oil-treated. This system gives a beautiful, shiny, walnut-like finish.

You can apply wood burnish with your hands. It is also known as a hand-rubbed surface. You may need to apply several coats, depending on the needs.

How to Choose the Best Finish for Walnut Tops

When choosing the perfect finish for your walnut project, you need to consider a number of factors.


Durability should be the top priority when choosing a finish. If your project will be used frequently or is exposed to significant environmental changes, a durable finish is necessary.

Oil-based finishes such as tung oil have a reputation for being exceptionally resistant to wear and tear. Water-based finishes like polyurethane provide similar protection and durability.

Sheen preference

After deciding how durable the walnuts should be, you can choose the level of sheen. The sheen determines whether the walnuts will look shiny or matte after drying.

They can make something look shiny, which is not natural. They are easier than matte finishes to maintain. High-gloss surfaces show less scratches and flaws.

When it comes to furniture, a matte finish is better for items that are used frequently and need to be cleaned regularly. This will make small scratches less noticeable and the furniture look more classy and elegant.

Simple application

The ease of use is another important factor to consider when choosing a finish. The ease of application varies depending on whether you use a brush, spray, or wipe.

For a quick finish that requires minimal preparation, wax-based finishes should be used. You can use the traditional method for black walnuts if you have time. These methods use oil-based finishing to make them beautiful and protect them over a long period of time.

If time is an issue, polyurethane can be applied quickly.

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Walnut Dinner Table Set With Plates

How to Finish Walnut Step-by-Step

Step 1: Sand the Walnut Wood

Walnut wood is characterized by a dark grain pattern. To bring out the patterns, you’ll have to hand sand first. To make the process easier, you may want to use a sanding sealing agent.

Sand the walnut with 320-grit or higher paper. Vacuum the dust off after sanding. After sanding, use a damp cloth to wipe the wood.

Let the wood rest for some time. Finally, lightly sand the walnut wood in order to remove any raised grains. Sanding is the best way to get a smooth surface on walnut.

Step 2: Applying the First Coat of Shellac

Shellac is the first step to a beautiful finish on walnut wood. Shellac primer provides a great foundation for gel stains and glazes.

You can also combine shellac and other stains to create a semi-gloss finish on the dark walnut slab.

Read the Battle of Black Stain vs. Black Paint for a few important differences you should know before choosing which product to use.

Step 3: Apply a second coat of Shellac

Allow sufficient time for the shellac first coat to dry. When will shellac dry? Shellac is fast drying and will be dry enough to touch in under 30 minutes.

If any spots remain after the shellac is dry, sand these down again. After vacuuming up the residue, apply the second coat.

Apply additional coats after the first coat has dried.

Walnut Finishes FAQs

What is the best oil to use on walnut wood and why?

Finishing walnut wood with tung oil or boiled linseed is a great idea. These oils harden the wood, seal the end grain and give it a soft, pleasing sheen.

What should you do with walnut wood stain?

Apply boiled linseed or oil-based varnish directly on the raw wood in order to darken or stain it. The color of the stain will be determined by what you use.

What is the best stain to use for a natural walnut finish.

The best way to finish walnuts is with lacquer. It is easy to apply and dries fast. It is also easy to use.

What is the best way to finish black walnut wood?

Lacquer is the most popular finish for black walnut. The black walnut finish is fast drying; only two coats are needed to complete the job. The airless spray can be used to apply the finish to a surface. Lacquer has a glossy finish which will enhance the beauty and quality of the wood. If the color isn’t even, you can use black walnut stain.

Walnut Finish Summary

It is important to have a high-quality finish on your walnut table if you want it to look classy and aesthetic. We spent hours scouring the internet to compile the list of the best finishes for walnut tables.

Our top pick for Rubio monocoat oil. It is simple to use, even if you don’t have any experience. It can be used on a variety of surfaces and has exceptional coverage and durability.

The Best Finish for Walnut Table Tops

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