A good way to not only retain your car’s shine but to also improve it to some extent is to use a car wax after you’re done washing it. Even though no car wax can realistically deliver the same shine that a new car has, you can definitely revive your old car’s factory shine by employing the right car wax. These waxes are highly effective at coating your car’s paint job and protecting it against all sort of grime and impurities.

With the right car wax, you can also add an extra protective layer to safeguard the paint against tree sap, bird droppings, or any other contaminant elements in the environment. In this respect, pretty much all car waxes are reasonably effective, much thanks to their formulation. Some, however, definitely stand out better than other courtesy of their comprising chemicals. A simple process in principle, car waxing can visibly extend your paint job’s shine while protecting the hood of your car against dangerous elements.

Having said that, we should also point out that while some waxes are intended to offer a two-fold effect by protecting the paint job and delivering aesthetic benefits, others are simply formulated to meet cosmetic parameters. For you to get a hold of a truly reliable and versatile car was, you’re going to have to do a fair bit of research on what the market has to offer. To save you the trouble, we put together a list of the ten best car waxes money can buy.

Best Car Waxes – Reviews & Buying Guide

10Zymol Carbon Wax & Zymol Wax Applicator

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Uniquely designed for cars that are medium or dark color, the Zymol Carbon Wax comes with a special wax applicator for easy application. Thanks to the carbon present in its formula, it is a zyme that turns into a wax which then automatically blends onto the pain when exposed to air. Made from 37% Florida and yellow Carnauba from Brazil, it also includes banana and coconut. Not only does this substance provide a deep and luxurious shine but it also protects the paint on your vehicle, increasing its durability long-term.

Pros:

  • Exceptionally useful for darker colored cars
  • Easy to apply due to a specially designed wax applicator
  • Comes in an easy to store package that also makes it easy to carry
  • Formulated to bond to the paint of your car
  • Much better at providing a deep shine than most waxes in its class

Cons:

  • You must use a special cleansing agent to remove all wax before applying this one
  • Might be a bit expensive considering its size

9Optimum Car Wax

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Designed to protect and add shine to all kinds of outer surfaces including chrome, glass, clear coat, and paint, the Optimum Car wax comes in a handy spray-on bottle, making its application easy and effortless. Made with premium quality ingredients, it does not contain any harmful chemicals, VOC’s, or solvents. Thanks to its unique formula, with just a few sprays, you get to wax and shine your car so as to keep it protected for up to five months.

Pros:

  • Works well with all exterior surfaces
  • Does not contain any hazardous chemicals or solvents
  • Can be applied in just a few minutes
  • Its effects last a very long time after each application
  • Surprisingly affordable considering its effectiveness

Cons:

  • Does not include a spray nozzle
  • Its low hydrophobicity might be an issue for some

8Griot’s Garage Best of Show Wax

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The Griot’s Garage Best of Show Wax is a water-based, silicone free car wax that includes 100% carnauba wax content. Giving your vehicle that superior reflective shine, it provides depth and clarity of the color of the car’s paint. This car wax is your go-to-product thanks to its special ability in protecting the paint and color on your car. Owing to its unique water-based formula, it is extremely easy to clean up and delivers top-notch results. Interestingly enough, you can apply this wax by hand on a cleaned car surface and enjoy a completely different level of shine and perfection than what most waxes have to offer.

Pros:

  • It features a silicone-free formula that makes it very safe to use
  • Its water-based contents help it spread faster and make it easier to store
  • Comes in a user-friendly bottle that can be stored with ease
  • Delivers a more intricate paint depth and clarity than most waxes
  • Very easy to apply due to its convenient formula

Cons:

  • Pretty hard to take off once applied
  • Might leave treble water spots on old paint jobs

7Mothers California Gold Pure Brazilian Carnauba Liquid Wax

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Mothers California Gold Pure Brazilian Carnauba Liquid Wax is an anti-abrasive substance that offers excellent results with frequent use. Thanks to the Carnauba wax contents that make it resistant to heat, it offers a shine that would last for days with a single application. Providing your vehicle with the shine you want, this product can be used regularly without worrying about damaging the surface of your car. The more you utilize the product, the more your car stays protected. Applying two coats on every use would help keep the car’s paint job safeguarded and at its best.

Pros:

  • It is formulated to provide the car with long-lasting shine in all weather conditions
  • The fact that it is 100% non-abrasive makes it safe to use repeatedly
  • When used with a micro-polisher and an electric polisher, it can give the car a new car shine
  • Does not cause any spots when used consistently over long periods of time
  • It smells much better than most car waxes out there

Cons:

  • Might be a bit oily for some, meaning that you might need to use a touch-up spray to even it out
  • Not exactly a winter storage wax

6Collinite Super Double Coat Auto Wax

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Made with a unique blend of Brazilian carnauba wax and other high-quality synthetic waxes, the Collinite Super Double Coat Auto Wax is a highly recommended product for your vehicle. With no need for an applicator, no rubbing, or buffing, this wax can be easily applied and does not require frequent waxing. Free from detergent, clear-coat safe and great for your car, this wax provides a superior shine and reliable protection that lasts for up to a year.

Pros:

  • Very easy to apply due to being 100% detergent proof
  • Requires no special applicator, rubbing, or buffing
  • Offers a clear coat convenience that not many waxes can deliver
  • Can last for a surprisingly long time in storage
  • Its synthetic contents make it highly effective

Cons:

  • Difficult to remove once applied
  • The smell isn’t something to write home about

5Lucas Oil Slick Mist Speed Wax

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Ideal for cars, motorcycles, trucks, and boats, the Lucas Oil Slick Mist Speed Wax delivers superior results on all kinds of surfaces including chrome, vinyl decals, or glass. Thanks to its unique formula and ingredients, it helps deliver a special shine, providing a clear luster over your paint job. With this, it also helps to keep your car exterior protected from dirt, insects, bird droppings, and more. Quick and easy to apply, this car wax is convenient, reliable, and extremely effective.

Pros:

  • Versatile by nature, it works well with virtually all types of vehicles
  • Formulated to be highly effective on chrome, glass, and vinyl decals
  • It features a very pleasant smell
  • Designed to also keep water off the hood of your vehicle to prevent rust and build-ups
  • Very easy to apply given its unique texture

Cons:

  • Cannot remove existing water spots from fiberglass surfaces
  • It doesn’t necessarily last long by car wax standards

4P21S 12700W Carnauba Wax

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Uniquely put together with premium grade carnauba wax and beeswax, the P21S 12700W offers the deepest shine and gloss, enhancing the color of your car. Known as the most popular paste wax on the market, this product is anti-abrasive and can be easily applied by hand or with the help of an applicator. Leaving no residue or powder behind, it can be easily buffed and does not leave any white stains or marks after applying.

Pros:

  • It is formulated to deliver a deep shine without affecting your car’s paint job
  • Given its non-powdering texture, it does not interfere with the shine that your car already has
  • Leaves behind no white stains to speak of
  • Comes in a reasonably large jar that also makes it easy to store
  • Works well even if you do not wipe the car after you’re done applying it

Cons:

  • Could be a bit pricey for some people
  • Might not come in a factory sealed box

3Optimum No Rinse Wash and Wax

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Containing a distinctive blend of polymers that are highly lubricating, the Optimum No Rinse Wash and Wax helps to bond with the paint while removing all traces of grime and dirt, leaving your car surface looking exceptional. This wash and wax product works towards shining and protecting your car with a simple easy application. With just 1-2 gallons of water along with the wax, you get a clean, shiny surface on virtually any vehicle. Thanks to its special formula, it is ideal for cars, RVs, trucks, motorcycles, airplanes, boats, and fiberglass vehicles of any kind.

Pros:

  • Versatile formula allows it to be used effectively on any vehicle
  • Features highly lubricating polymers that bond to the paint of your car
  • Combines all the benefits of no-rinse wash and shine products with the added benefit of an increased protection against the elements
  • Relatively easy to apply straight out of the bottle
  • Comes in a reasonably large bottle and has a very nice smell

Cons:

  • Requires two or more applications for a perfect shine
  • Perhaps not as waxy as other products in this price range

2Meguiar’s Ultimate Liquid Wax

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Known for its quality, performance, and efficiency, the Meguiar’s Ultimate Liquid Wax features a unique formula that provides optimum synthetic protection, color clarity, depth, shine, and durability. Thanks to the latest in Thin Film technology, it can be easily wiped on and off even under the sun without leaving any stains, marks, or residue. It also comes backed up with a Hydrophobic Polymer technology that helps with the increase of surface tension, keeping off water and moisture from the surface of your car. Ideally safe for all surfaces, including glossy paint works and clear coats, it can be easily applied via hand or using a dual action polishing tool.

Pros:

  • Its synthetic polymer crosslink provides a protective barrier against all sort of damaging elements
  • Formulated to allow water to roll off the paint in order to minimize the risk of rust and paint damage
  • Can be applied by hand or with a speed polisher with no limitations whatsoever
  • Designed not to stain when applied on sensitive paint jobs
  • Its liquid-like form makes it very easy to apply

Cons:

  • Might leave a bit of an oily haze behind if you’re not careful
  • Doesn’t really last as long as other waxes in its class

1Chemical Guys Butter Wet Wax

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The Chemical Guys Butter Wet Wax is a 100% carnauba based product featuring an ingenious formula for a quicker application. Offering a deep, wet look on application, this product provides UVA and UVB protection for your vehicle to an impressive standard. Thanks to its unique blend of ingredients, it melts into the paintwork of your car, leaving it shiny and glossy. Very easy to spread and apply, as the name suggests, this butter wet wax offers unmatched quality and better results with every use. Overall, it is perhaps one of the best car waxes on the market today.

Pros:

  • Its carnauba-based formula makes it very thick and protective in regards to insects, bird droppings, etc.
  • Delivers a deep wet look for virtually any paintwork regardless of the vehicle
  • Formulated to offer more UVA and UVB protection than pretty much any other car wax out there
  • Offers majestic results for darker shade paint jobs
  • It features a very pleasant smell

Cons:

  • May cause buffing spots if you’re not careful when applying it
  • Less bright than many solid waxes on the market

More products also worth checking out:

What To Look For In A Car Wax

You can expect a decent car wax to work proportionally well with how fast you worked when applying it, how thorough you were, and how big your car is. Depending on the wax you employed, results may vary from anywhere between a reasonable shine with minimal protection and up to a brand-new shine for your car accompanied by an almost sublime protection against tree sap, bird droppings, and any other form of impurities that might damage your car’s paint job over time. That said, in order to better understand what makes a good car wax, you should perhaps take the time to figure out what a car wax is and how to best make use of it once you’ve got it.

What Is Car Wax?

Car Wax is a substance utilized to protect and safeguard the paintwork of your vehicle without causing any damage or effect. It can be made from natural ingredients that help with adding shine and gloss to the surface while preserving the paint. This should preferably be done without having to employ any additional products and without taking too much of your time and effort in applying it.

Types of Car Wax

Although they do not really vary in their intended purpose, car waxes can definitely differ ever so slightly from one another in terms of texture, application, formula, and packaging. At the very least, you can differentiate between a broad-use, common wax and a high-end product simply by their consistency and fragrance. Before that, however, you should understand that car waxes usually come in two categories – Carnauba Waxes and Synthetic Waxes.

Carnauba Wax – This type of wax is made from the leaves of Brazilian Palm trees. Offering a glossy protected finish, this type of wax is usually combined and blended with beeswax to help with an easier application as it is quite delicate on its own. This is intended to provide your car’s paint job with the protection it requires to maintain its factory shine despite the abuse it gets subjected to on a daily basis.

Synthetic Wax – This type of wax is made from man-made chemicals and although it is fairly cheaper than Carnauba wax products, it does have its own disadvantages and benefits. As compared to Carnauba wax, this type is easier to work with and in thinner, often available in a spray-on formula. Ideal for utilizing in areas hotter than normal, this wax type melts easily. They do not provide the same shine and gloss as carnauba wax products but they do provide a long-lasting protection. 

Benefits of Waxing Your Car

Helps protect your car against damage – Most experts and professionals would recommend car waxing regularly, as it is the most common way to protect your car against superficial damage. 

After waxing, the surface gets slippery and helps to prevent any dirt and grime from clinging onto the surface. Instead, dirt and grime will tend to bounce off without causing any dents or outer damage.

Provides a special layer for clear coats – The clear coat of the exterior of your car is the outermost layer and is easily susceptible to threat and damage. Car manufacturers design cars to prevent dirt, reflect UV light and keep the outer layer protected and strong, however, over time, this layer weakens and the paint layer gets damaged. With waxing, you are creating a special protective layer above the clear coat. This would help prolong and extend the lifespan of your clear coat and your paintwork. 

Reduces repair costs – Nobody wants to spend time and resources to fix a paint job that’s been damaged just because they did not apply car wax from time to time. By employing a car wax at least twice a year, you can definitely help in the reduction of paint job repairs and upkeep of the outer look of your vehicle. Not only that but the aesthetic benefits should also be considered thoroughly for obvious reasons.

Resale value increase – A well-maintained car will fetch you more cash when you are ready to sell. Keeping this in mind, it is very important to keep your car free from dents, cracks, scratches, chips and any kind of exterior damage. For the buyer, on seeing a car with severe outer damage, would only feel the seller is unable to upkeep and maintain his car and would wonder what other mechanical and technical problems the car might have. Keeping your car shiny and show-room like would allow any buyer to immediately get drawn in. Applying car wax and protecting your car from damage is essential so that you can demand a high price when and if you decide to sell. 

Reduce the number of car washes –  Car waxing considerably reduces the need to wash your car owing to its special slipper consistency. This helps remove all dust particles, dirt, and grime long-term. In fact, a simple swipe with a clean soft cloth would take away any debris on the exterior of your car without having to go into further detail. Presuming that you are reasonably thorough with your waxing, you can reduce the number of car washes your vehicle requires by almost half in a year. 

Factors to Consider

Form and Texture – Car waxes are generally available in paste, liquid, and spray form; which needless to say, affects how easy or hard you will have to apply and buff the product during the waxing process.

Natural or Synthetic – According to the kind of buff and shine, your car paint type and the level of protection you are looking for, it is important to know whether you would prefer natural or synthetic car wax. Natural wax includes carnauba wax among its ingredients, which provides a heavy deep shine, while synthetic wax offers a higher gloss level. 

Machine or Hand Application – Depending on the time and effort you would like to put into waxing your car, choosing a wax that can be either applied by hand or machine. In all fairness, this usually depends on personal choice more than anything.

Price – You can choose a wax that is budget friendly by most metrics or a world-renowned brand that is guaranteed to work. Keep in mind, however, to not always go for a big brand name as their formulas can change over time depending on marketing patterns. You can instead go for a low-end wax if it’s easily available, but be sure to check their prices and read plenty of reviews before making a purchase.