If you’ve ever hesitated to paint a piece of furniture because you don’t want it to have a new, freshly painted look, dark wax might be just the product you need!  Applying dark wax, {also sometimes know as Aging Cream, Antiquing Wax, or Brown Wax} to painted furniture helps give it an aged appearance, but also changes the color of the paint a bit, too.  So let’s learn what dark wax is, why you’d use it, and what the secret is to getting a nice, smooth finish, which I”ll share with you in…..a video tutorial! I am completely camera shy, so this is a huge step for me.  I hate having my picture taken, let alone being in a video, but I really wanted to show you how easy it is to use this product, so this is my very first video {and possibly my last}. :)

Can you spot the difference between these two sample boards?

Learn to use dark wax like a pro!

I’m going to refer to this type of product as Aging Cream because I’m own CeCe Caldwell’s product and that’s the name of this product for that particular brand, but no matter the brand or what it’s called, they all have the same basic purpose.

Why & When to Use Aging Cream {Dark Wax}

Aging Cream is particularly useful if you want to tone down a painted color and give it a more muted look.  This is great for a painted piece that looks to stark for your decor or for a color that is just a bit too bright for your taste.  It also can give a cooler tone paint and warmer appearance.

Aging Cream is also a good way to give a painted piece a distressed look, even if you can’t {or don’t want to} actually distress the piece.   Distressing a piece brings out a lot of color depth to a piece, allowing the bottom color to show through, but also lightening the paint in some areas, so the painted piece has a lot of color variety.  If you’re hesitant to distress, or don’t want the bottom color to show through, Aging Cream can help bring out some depth of color without wearing away your paint job.

Lastly, Aging Cream helps to accentuate the details of a piece, particularly carved areas, curves, and grooves and on older pieces, these are beautiful details to highlight!  Below, you can see that I let more of the dark wax settle into the crevices of my Mora clock.

How to Use Aging Cream

First, let me start by saying that a little goes a long way!  It’s always better to use too little and add more later, than to use too much and desperately try to wipe it off before it dries!

Second, there’s a secret to getting a nice, smooth coating of Aging Cream without looking streaky.  Here’s a side-by-side comparison of a smooth application, versus a streaky.  Both pieces have been distressed, but do you see how on the left, you can’t actually see the dark wax because it  has formed a smooth coat on top of the blue paint?  Whereas on the right, you can actually see streaks of the wax as it was applied {which actually looks a bit like it’s been dry brushed with dark brown paint.}

Learn how to achieve a smooth finish with your dark wax!

There’s no right or wrong, it’s a matter of preference, but if you want a smooth look, there’s an easy trick to creating this look!  Watch below to learn the secret and see how easy it is to achieve a smooth finish!

Click to Watch the Video!

Easy peasy, right?  And in all honestly, it’s a lot of fun to work with because it’s so satisfying to see a painted piece transform.  Just remember, you an always add more, but it’s difficult to take off if you put on too much, so just add a little at a time until you get the look you want.  I only used a small amount on the table below, mostly to town down the color of the paint, as opposed to giving it an aged look.  If I ever decide to add more, though, I always can!

Happy painting!

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  1. jeani miner says:

    Thanks Kim, for showing this in video form. I’ve read a few books (Annie Sloan) and seen photos, but seeing just how little wax you actually used was really helpful.
    You didn’t mention anything about ‘buffing’. Is the product you use actual wax or is it a cream that doesn’t require buffing to get a smooth finish.

    1. User Avatar Tidbits&Twine says:

      Hi Jeani!

      Good questions! I do buff the piece but after the wax has dried and I only buff it juuuuuuust a little to keep more of a matte look. :) Kim

      1. jeani miner says:

        Thanks – I prefer the somewhat matte look as well. Good to know.

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