Hard Wax Oil & Hardener

This is General Finishes' easiest finish ever and the best oil and wax finish on the market. Hard Wax Oil is a high-quality urethane-solids polymer in a blend of oil & wax that enhances the natural look of wood. The urethane gives Hard Wax Oil improved chemical and mechanical properties over standard oil & wax finishes. Best used with optional GF Hardener to substantially shorten dry time and provide superior durability, and chemical and water resistance.  The recommended use is for interior raw wood furniture, millwork & woodworking projects. What results can you expect? It will not crack or peel, can be buffed to a slightly higher sheen, and is very EASY to use. This is a maintenance product. Reapply when wear becomes evident. 


Step 1: Preparation for Hard Wax Oil

  1. Sand with 120-grit sandpaper, followed by final 220-grit.
  2. Remove dust.
  3. Wipe surface down with mineral spirits on a clean cloth to remove dust from pores.
  4. Allow mineral spirits to dry before applying the GF Hard Wax Oil.

Step 2: Application of Hard Wax Oil

  1. With optional Hard Wax Oil Hardener, mix GF Hardener 10% by volume with GF Hard Wax Oil. For example, 1/4 tsp. of Hardener per ounce of Hard Wax Oil or 1/2 tsp. of Harnder per 2 fluid ounces of Hard Wax Oil. The finish can only be mixed once; mixed product will harden after 4-6 hours.  The combination of Hard Wax Oil & Hardener provides the best overall durability, and chemical and water resistance. Do NOT use General Finishes NCO catalyst.
  2. Apply a thin coat with a trowel or non-woven synthetic pad. Spread evenly with a white non-woven pad or plastic spreader, one manageable section at a time. On large surfaces, use a white non-woven pad with a variable speed buffer or sander.
  3. Let rest for 5 minutes.
  4. Wipe off excess evenly with the grain & with light pressure using a clean terry cloth. Follow with a clean white non-woven pad until the surface is dry and smooth.
  5. If a second coat is needed, wait 24 hours. Prep the surface with a gray non-woven pad before applying.

Ideal conditions: 70°F/21°C; 50% humidity. Cooler temperatures and higher humidity may prolong dry time. Use of the Hardener will shorten dry times.

Buffing Hard Wax Oil

After the surface has dried for 24 hours, you can buff to a slightly higher sheen with a white non-woven pad or terry cloth. 

Cleanup & Disposal of Hard Wax Oil


Clean up application materials and hands with mineral spirits.


Take GREAT CARE when disposing of product-soaked applicators. Application materials containing Hard Wax Oil products may spontaneously catch fire if improperly discarded. Immediately place all application materials soaked with this product in a sealed, water-filled metal container. Dispose of in accordance with local fire regulations. 


Clean up spills with mineral spirits immediately while wet. If oil and wax finishes dry, they are difficult to clean off any surface, clothes or carpet. Carpet may discolor if cleaned with mineral spirits.


Protect your workspace with a tarp, your hands with gloves, and your clothes with an apron.

Storage of Hard Wax Oil

Life of Product

General Finishes products do not last forever, even when unopened. They are best used within 1 year. The life of the product may be extended with proper can closure and storage conditions.

Storage Tips

See our video: Tips for Storing Leftover Finishes 
Oil-based products start to harden and cure when exposed to oxygen. The following best practices will increase the life of your product:

  1. Keep container tightly closed and sealed until ready for use, in the original container. Do not store in unlabeled containers.
  2. Pry open sealed lids with a paint can opener by hooking under the lid's rolled edge. The use of a screwdriver can disfigure the rim and lid, impairing a complete seal.
  3. Keep the lid closed while working. Decant what you will use into a bowl, paper cup, or plate, and close the can lid as you work. Every minute the can is open, the product is curing.
  4. Containers that have been opened must be carefully resealed and kept upright to prevent leakage. Clean the chime of the can thoroughly with a paper towel before closing to create a complete seal. Product in the chime can be minimized by using a pouring lid, such as Fitsall. Avoid wiping used brushes on the lid.
  5. Pound the lid in place using a rubber mallet to avoid distorting the chime or lid. Dents in the lid from direct contact with a hammer can impair a complete seal. Alternatively, place a flat piece of wood over can lid and firmly pound shut.
  6. Avoid temperatures below 50°F/10°C or above 80°F/26°C. Frozen and heat-damaged product cannot be revitalized. Store in the original container protected from direct sunlight in a dry, cool and well-ventilated areas.
  7. Do not store product in an attic, garage, in direct sunlight, or next to ignition source with heat and flames such as a furnace.
  8. Store the can upside down to create a liquid seal, minimizing oxygen exposure from within the can. Decant the remaining product from the can before stirring.
  9. Optionally, add Bloxygen. Bloxygen is an argon gas system that prevents oxygen and moisture from hardening leftover product. Because Bloxygen gas is heavier than air, it sinks to the surface of the leftover finish, creating a barrier between product and air trapped in the container.
  10. Decant leftovers to a smaller, properly labeled container when the finish is almost used up to reduce the volume of oxygen in the container.
  11. Use appropriate containment to avoid environmental contamination.

Warnings and Warranties

Hard Wax Oil  Warnings and Warranties

Limited Warranty
General Finishes products must be tested to your complete satisfaction before using. General Finishes will not be responsible for color satisfaction, misapplication, nor compatibility with other manufacturers' products. General Finishes will be responsible only for the cost of our products, and not for costs such as labor, damage or project replacement.

Contamination and Compatibility
Our finishes are engineered as a system and are compatible with each other. General Finishes cannot guarantee an ideal refinish when applying our products on top of or combined with another company's products or over surfaces that have been in contact with waxes, polishes or sprays containing contaminants such as silicone. Test for adherence and aesthetics before beginning.

FIRST AID: Seek immediate medical attention if symptoms occur due to the following. EYE CONTACT: Remove any contact lenses. Flush eyes with water for 20+ minutes while lifting upper and lower eyelids. SKIN CONTACT: Wash thoroughly after handling. INHALATION: Move to fresh air. Loosen tight clothing. If not breathing, if breathing is irregular, or if respiratory arrest occurs, trained personnel should provide artificial respiration or oxygen. INGESTION: Call physician immediately. Wash out mouth with water. Do not induce vomiting unless directed to do so by medical personnel. Never give anything by mouth to an unconscious person.

Prop 65 WARNING: No chemicals were found in this product which are known to the State of California to cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm. For more information go to www.P65Warnings.ca.gov.

DANGER: Can enter lungs and cause damage. DANGER: Keep out of reach of children. Keep away from heat and flame. Use only with adequate ventilation. Do not breathe vapor or mist. Do not swallow. Avoid contact with eyes. Keep container tightly closed when not in use. Wash thoroughly after handling.


Basic Features
Base Type Oil & Wax
Ambering Yes
Sheen N/A
Interior or Exterior Interior only
Tintable No
Type Oil & Wax Blend
Suggested Use

Furniture, millwork & woodworking projects

Application Method Wipe on with synthetic non-woven pad, Trowel on with a blade applicator
Brushable No
Usable over existing finishes No
Sprayable No
Dry Time
Dry Time - Touch Immediately
Dry Time - Recoat 24+ hr
Dry Time - Light Use N/A
Dry Time - Cure N/A
Can Sizes Half-Pints, Pints
Coverage 150-250 square feet (14-23 m2) per pint
Technical Data
Viscosity Very Thick
Hard Wax Oil: < 50 g/L
Hardener: < 0 g/L
Durability (Highest, High, Medium, Low) Low