Jojoba oil or wax by itself isn’t known to be a very tough material. However, when combined with other natural waxes of plants, it does wonders as a shiny wood finish.
The properties which help this plant-based wax deeply hydrate the skin are what make it an ideal choice for products needing to penetrate deep into wood pores– like wood bowls, wooded spoons, cutting boards, butcher blocks, etc.
This also means that by including jojoba in oils or waxes, you can greatly improve their efficacy when you need to coat the wood designed to be used for food preparation or food contact surfaces.
Is Jojoba Wax or Oil?
Jojoba (also called goat nut, deer nut, pignut, wild hazel, quinine nut, coffeeberry, and gray box bush) is native to the Southwestern United States.
Simmondsia Chinensis is the sole species of the family Simmondsiaceae, placed in the order Caryophyllales.
Jojoba oil is the oil extracted from the nut of the jojoba plant, which has been used for centuries as a treatment for several skin conditions.
The majority of jojoba oil on the market is actually jojoba wax. Jojoba oil is a triglyceride, while jojoba wax is a mixture of esters.
So what’s the difference?
The main difference between jojoba oil and jojoba wax is that jojoba oil is mainly composed of triglycerides, whereas jojoba wax consists mostly of esters.
Jojoba oil is extracted from the seeds of the jojoba plant, and it’s mainly used in cosmetics and as a carrier oil for essential oils.
On the other hand, jojoba wax is obtained from the leaves and stems of the same plant, and it’s mostly used as a food additive and in the cosmetics industry as well.
Jojoba oil is a clear liquid with no color and a slightly nutty odor, while jojoba wax is a pale yellow solid with a faint odor of roses.
Jojoba oil is insoluble in water but soluble in ethanol, while jojoba wax is insoluble in both water and ethanol.
Uses for Jojoba Oil and Wax
Jojoba oil has many uses, but it’s mainly used in cosmetics and as a carrier oil for essential oils.
It’s often used as the main ingredient in lotions, creams, shampoos, and conditioners. Because it is beneficial for the skin and hair, it is also used as a massage oil.
Jojoba wax is mostly used as a food additive and in the cosmetics industry as a thickening agent in creams and lotions. It’s also used to make candles and furniture polish.
Is Jojoba Oil For Wood Surface Good?
As I said earlier, the jojoba oil or wax on its own isn’t thought to be very durable.
However, it can perform miracles as a glossy wood finish when combined with other natural plant waxes because of its Vitamin E and antioxidant enrichment.
By using jojoba oil, you can not only make your wooden products look amazing but also give them a smooth feel.
This type of oil is particularly helpful for tables and chairs made of wood since they often come into contact with food, drinks, and hands.
Jojoba oil, unlike olive or sesame oils, is a liquid wax ester. Because jojoba oil contains long-chain monounsaturated liquid wax esters, it has a greasy feel to it.
So, if you are using it on your wood furnishings, make sure to apply a small amount and rub it in well.
Another advantageous aspect of Jojoba oil’s unique feature is that the waxes allow for efficient penetration into wood pores because of its long-chain monounsaturated liquid wax esters.
This means that by adding jojoba oil to other oils or waxes, you can significantly improve their efficacy and nourishment when trying to coat wood designed for food preparation or food contact surfaces.
Besides the above, there are a few other advantages of using jojoba oil as a wood finish. These include:
- Its Food Grade
- It’s biodegradable
- It’s a renewable resource
- It’s non-carcinogenic and non-comedogenic
- It’s a great natural insect repellent, so it prevents bugs on wood
- It gets easily absorbed into different types of wood and is easy to apply
- It’s a natural product that’s gentle and non-toxic while nourishing the wooden products
How to Use Jojoba Oil On Wood Correctly?
Now that we know all the great things jojoba oil can do for wood let’s learn about the correct way of using it on your wood surfaces, like tables, chairs, stairs, kitchen utensils, or other wooden items.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how you should do it…
Step 1 – Preparing the Wood Surface for Jojoba Oil
When using jojoba oil, always start with a clean surface. Any dirt, grime, or residue will prevent the oil from penetrating the wood and performing its job properly.
The best way to clean the wood surface is by using a mixture of water and white vinegar.
You can also use lemon juice or jojoba oil itself. Just make sure to dilute it with an equal amount of water so that it doesn’t damage the wood.
Once you’ve cleaned the wood surface, wait for it to dry completely before moving on to the next step.
Step 2 – Applying Jojoba Oil to Wood
Now that the wood surface is clean and dry, it’s time to apply the jojoba oil.
Start by pouring 3-4 drops of oil into your hand or onto a rag. Then, spread it evenly over the surface of the wood using long, gentle strokes.
Ensure to cover the entire surface, including hard-to-reach areas.
Once you’ve applied the oil, wait for it to soak in for at least 30 minutes before moving on to the next step.
Step 3 – Wiping Off the Excess Jojoba Oil From the Wood
After the jojoba oil has had a chance to soak into the wood, it’s time to wipe off the excess.
To do this, simply use a clean rag or paper towel and gently wipe away any oil that’s sitting on the surface of the wood.
If you find that there’s still some oil residue, you can repeat steps 2 and 3 until the wood is completely free of oil.
Step 4 – Applying the Second Coat of Jojoba Oil (optional)
If you want to achieve a deeper, richer finish, you can apply a second coat of jojoba oil.
To do this, simply repeat steps 2 and 3 until you’re happy with the results.
Keep in mind that it’s always better to err on the side of too little oil rather than too much. Too much oil can leave your wood feeling sticky and looking greasy.
Step 5 – Enjoy Your Beautiful Wood Finish
Once you’ve applied the jojoba oil and wiped off the excess, you’re left with a beautiful, natural wood finish.
To keep your wood looking its best, simply repeat steps 2-4 as needed. This will vary depending on the type of wood and how often it’s used.
In general, however, a good rule of thumb is to reapply the oil every few months or so.
Jojoba Oil on Bare or Finished Wood – What Works Better?
Jojoba oil can be used on both bare and finished wood.
Bare wood is any wood that has not been treated with any type of finish. This includes wood that’s been sanded but not stained or sealed.
Finished wood, on the other hand, is any wood that has been treated with a finish. This includes wood that’s been stained, sealed, or painted.
In general, jojoba oil works better on bare wood. This is because the oil is able to penetrate the wood more easily, resulting in a deeper, richer finish.
That being said, jojoba oil can still be used on finished wood. Keep in mind, however, that it may not penetrate the finish as well and will require more frequent reapplication.
The bottom line
If you’re looking for a good natural way to protect and enhance your wood surfaces, jojoba oil is a great option.
Whether you use it on bare or finished wood, it will help keep your surfaces looking beautiful for years to come. Just follow the steps I have outlined above to get the best results.
Hi, I am Mark Garner a professional carpenter, woodworker, and DIY painter. I live in the small city of Peoria, Arizona as a semi-retired woodworker. I have started this blog with a simple motive to help you with my wood experience in this sector. If you like to know more about what I love doing and how it all got started, you can check more about me here.