Many polishes for wooden furniture are made with beeswax or other animal-derived ingredients. As a vegan, I'm refusing buying any of those products.
Does any alternative to beeswax for polishing wooden furniture exist?
While I grew up using wax products on wood, as of the past 2 or 3 years I have had great experience in cleaning and polishing wood furniture with coconut oil. I use the refined oil so that there is not a strong coconut odor, and I tend to use the more expensive virgin oil for consumption.
I have used coconut oil on dark-stained wood tables, then repeatedly a pecan-colored wood large bookshelf in my office that was beginning to look parched after multiple cleanings by our cleaning staff with harsh chemicals. It soothed and buffed the wood right up. I then got the courage to use it on my baby grand piano at home. A lightly oiled cloth does a great job of pulling the dust, and generous wipes with oil, followed by buffing, can give a good soft shine.
Here are a few DIY and traditional/natural article and sites that discuss the benefits of using coconut oil on wood furniture.
There may be alternatives available in specialized vegan shops.
But you can also make your own polish at home.
Here are some examples in ratio:
- 3/4 of olive oil
- 1/4 of fresh lemon juice or vinegar
Mix and spread with a soft rag.
- 1/10 of white vinegar
- 9/10 of warm water
Pour in a bottle and apply with a rag.
I've not tested it yet though.
Carnauba wax is widely recommended as a wood polish, however you might have to mix your own polish (recipes from people far more knowledgeable than me in woodworking can be found all over the web) from it since many pre-made carnauba polishes contain beeswax in addition to it...