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How to Clean and Shine a Wooden Coffee Table Naturally

Wooden coffee tables require special care—here's how to maintain them properly.

Wooden coffee tables require special care—here's how to maintain them properly.

The Best Way to Clean a Wood Coffee Table

With care and maintenance, a good wooden coffee table will last you for many years. However, that doesn’t mean you need to keep aerosol cans of spray furniture polish containing who-knows-what around. Natural home cleaning allows you to maintain a sparkling house without exposing you and your family to the hazardous chemicals found in many commercial cleaners. Here is how you can keep your table looking beautiful using natural cleaning recipes that are easy to make and easy to use.

What You Need

You probably already have everything you need already. Check your cabinets for these ingredients:

  • Olive oil (as a polish)
  • White vinegar or lemon juice (both are natural disinfectants and cleaners)
  • Soft, clean cloths

If your table has a glass top, you will also need the following:

  • Clean spray bottle
  • Water
  • Vinegar

As a note, don’t go out of your way to get the most expensive brands of these products. The cheapest thing you find on the grocery store shelf will work just as well in this case. Unless you already have good quality olive oil in your cabinet and you’re not looking to go out and buy more, go with using the cheapest thing you can find.

Couch and coffee table in a hotel room.

Couch and coffee table in a hotel room.

How to Clean Your Wooden Table

  1. Take a cloth and wipe off any visible dust you see. It’s always good to take care of this before you start cleaning.
  2. Next, mix up your furniture cleaner and polish. Add a few drops of olive oil to some vinegar or lemon juice. You won’t need too much for this, so it’s best to start with a little bit and make more if you need it. If you find you want more or less oil the next time you use it, this recipe is easily tweakable until you have the type of cleaner that you need.
  3. Pour some of your new furniture cleaner onto one of the cloths. Going with the grain, rub it into the wood. If there are water rings or white spots, this will also help to remove them. If the spots aren't coming off, add a bit more oil to your solution.
  4. After you’ve wiped down the entire table, take a new cloth and wipe off all of the excess oil.
  5. With a third fresh cloth, buff the table to shine it up.

What If I Have a Glass Top?

If you have a glass-top coffee table, it’s easy to clean that naturally, too.

  1. Take a spray bottle and fill it halfway with white vinegar, and then fill it up the rest of the way with plain water.
  2. Shake it up, then spray and wipe as you would with any window cleaner.
  3. This solution also works on mirrors and windows. In fact, you can use the same vinegar solution you use on your glass to clean many different things in your house, making it extremely useful beyond your coffee table maintenance.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.


luckyfind on February 04, 2012:

Great stuff ,we just purchased a new dinning set and I wanted to polish it a bit but didn't want to us a wax. The olive oil sounds perfect. Thanks!