How to Clean and Care for Wooden Furniture so that it Lasts a Lifetime

How to Clean and Care for Wooden Furniture so that it Lasts a Lifetime

How to clean and care for wooden furniture especially now that non-painted furniture is making a comeback in design trends.

It may surprise you that I actually have more wooden furniture in my home than painted pieces. While I love how much paint can transform a piece of furniture, I’m a huge sucker for some gorgeous wood grain I mean look at my house… it’s all post and beam!

Before we dive in, be sure to grab one of our palm brushes while it's still in stock. It's perfect for applying salve or other wood conditioning products. 


You may have also noticed that wood furniture is becoming a lot more popular and traditional furniture styles are trending. Over the past decade, we’ve seen a lot of rustic and farmhouse style take center stage, but now we’re seeing more modern pieces mixed in with vintage finds sort of a mix of eras. Personally I love the look of mixing retro pieces (especially MCM) with elegant antique European looks and sprinkling in some modern touches. My funky taste may not be for everyone, but one thing is for sure; if you’re going to take the time to source unique pieces, you'll want to take good care of them. 

Caring for wooden furniture involves a bit of upkeep, but it mostly comes down to being mindful that it’s a different surface than what you’re used to in the rest of your home. We have to be extra kind to wood because it’s an organic, not plastic, not glass… this thing was ALIVE. So of course it’s going to be more temperamental. Here are my top tips and detailed instructions for caring for wooden furniture:

  1. Dust wooden furniture regularly with a soft, dry cloth. This will prevent dirt and dust from building up on the surface, which can scratch the wood over time.
  2. Avoid using chemicals and abrasive cleaning materials on your wooden furniture. These can damage the finish and should be avoided. Clean wooden furniture with a mild soap and water solution. Use a damp cloth to wipe down the surface, then dry it thoroughly with a clean cloth. Just make sure you don’t use too much water since it can cause water damage if it saturates the wood. 
  3. Protect wooden furniture from scratches and spills by using coasters, placemats, and tablecloths. These will help prevent damage to the wood caused by heat, moisture, and sharp objects.
  4. Condition wooden furniture to maintain its natural moisture content. Use a wood conditioner or oil to nourish the wood, and apply it according to the manufacturer's instructions. This will help prevent the wood from cracking or splitting.
  5. Avoid placing wooden furniture in direct sunlight or close to a heat source, as this can cause the wood to dry out and warp.
  6. Regularly check for any signs of damage, such as scratches, dings or water damage. Address these issues as soon as possible to prevent further damage.

BONUS TIP: Put some life back into an older antique by adding an amazing smell. Wise Owl furniture salve comes in tons of long lasting scents that make you excited to open drawers.... I'm not even kidding. Grab your favorite scent here!

Wood furniture definitely requires more upkeep and special attention than painted furniture, but it’s absolutely worth it in the long run.


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