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How to Clean and Revive Wood Furniture

Polish Reviver

Wood can become dull and dirty from years of use. We often get asked how to clean dirty furniture. In this article we are going to teach you how to clean and revive wood furniture, by polishing old furniture without the need of stripping and French polishing.

Our Priory Polishes Polish Reviver has been specially formulated to restore, clean and revive finished surfaces on all furniture and woods, without the need and expense of having your item French-Polished. It will enhance the original patina to create a beautiful lustre whilst removing years of dirt, grime, some white rings, heat marks, watermarks, haze and bloom. It has been used by furniture restorers and French polishers for many years and we believe there is nothing on the market that compares. Learn how to revive revive wood furniture with easy instructions below.

General wear and tear causes most items of Furniture to become dull, discoloured, smeared and dusty over time. This is where Polish Reviver can bring that shine back to its former glory. It will revive and give a new lease of life to old tired French polished surfaces leaving you with a wonderful sheen and colour.

The process of reviving wood furniture requires care and sensitivity, but with our Polish Reviver, blemishes can be erased and the original colour and sheen will be revealed.

Directions on how to Revive Wood Furniture

Watch our video tutorial on how we revived this beautiful Desk or follow the step-by-step instructions below.

1. Firstly remove all the Brass-wear, handles etc. where possible as this will give you the best results and make life easier when polishing. Masking tape around any glass or areas you do not want to polish but this is optional.

2. Wax-fill any small chips, scratches and dents using our Repair Kit. It is best to do this process before any finishing as it becomes very difficult to wax fill on top of a polished / cleaned surface.

Revive Wood Furniture top before
You can see this Victorian cabinet is so dirty from years of dust and grime as it has been neglected.


3. For most surfaces, use our good High Quality Buffing Rag and apply the Polish Reviver onto the cloth so it has a nice damp section (don’t forget to shake the bottle well before use). Then apply to the surface, always working with the grain. Then buff off straight away with firm pressure. For very dirty pieces, apply with our Ultra Fine 0000 Quality Wire Wool. This has been specifically made for use on fine furniture finishes. Apply the Polish Reviver onto the Wire Wool, ensuring it is very damp and apply in the direction of the grain. Again buff off straight away with a clean buffing cloth.

Revive Wood Furniture applying reviver
We are applying the polish reviver using 0000 wire wool in the direction of the grain.

4. With ring marks, water marks and heat marks etc. firm pressure is required and circular motions may be used, but always finish in the direction of the grain. This is not always 100% successful but does work effectively on most pieces.

Revive Wood Furniture buffing up
Revive wood furniture by buffing off the grime and dirt with a soft buffing cloth and you will see the sheen start to appear. Always buff in the direction of the grain.

5. Continue the above process over the entire surface until your desired finish is achieved. You will be amazed how much dirt is removed!

Revive Wood Furniture - finished top
you can see the top is now revived and the furniture looks like new again.

6. Now this is complete, we highly recommend to finish by waxing the entire surface using our Finishing Wax, using ultra fine wire wool or a buffing cloth. This will further enhance your sheen and colour. It will provide a barrier to protect your surface and stop future dulling. The more frequently a piece is waxed, the better the finish will be. Only apply Wax in thin layers as over-waxing can result in smeary surfaces.

Victorian cabinet polish revived 1
Here is the cabinet finished, fully polish revived and waxed.

Products used in this blog

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