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If you have a kitchen from the 1990’s like me, you probably have honey oak cabinets that you want to update.
I searched and searched for ideas to update them, and most of the suggestions were to paint the cabinets. Let me be super honest with you. I don’t have time to paint my cabinets nor am I a master DIYer!
Painting requires sanding and precise application of the paint. I knew I didn’t want to spend that much time or detail painting my cabinets.
So after much research, I discovered another solution. Here’s the before and after of my cabinets.
In this post I’m going to share how I updated my oak cabinets without painting them by using a stain called Briwax (affiliate link).
It doesn’t require sanding and is very easy to apply. So if you want to keep things simple like me, you’ll still get great results with this product!
First, here is a before picture of my oak kitchen cabinets without Briwax. Very basic. Very orange!
Supplies Needed to Apply Briwax
- application cloth
- buffing cloth
- Briwax (I used Tudor Brown.)
- mask (optional)
How to Apply Briwax on Kitchen Cabinets
1. Wash all dirt and grime from the cabinets.
This is the best part. You don’t have to remove the cupboards unless you want to. You also don’t have to sand them! Just wash away any grime.
If you have grime in the little corners that are hard to get out, try using a toothpick!
2. Apply Briwax stain to cabinets.
Before applying the stain, I strongly recommend wearing gloves as it is a bit messy. Then using a cloth cover the section of cupboard you are staining.
You don’t have to use a lot of the product. A little bit goes a long way!
I suggest starting in a lower cabinet that isn’t the first thing people will see. That way you can get used to using the Briwax on the cabinets that aren’t as visible.
3. Rub in excess Briwax with a different cloth.
This is the hardest part (but still easy!). Once you have applied the Briwax, it will take some elbow grease and time to rub in the stain. You don’t want any clumps leftover. It should be dry to the touch.
Once the Briwax has set, you can take your updating to another level by updating the cabinet hardware.
SOME CONSIDERATIONS BEFORE USING BRIWAX:
1. This is my personal experience. You may get different results. I’m not a professional.
2. In the pictures I’m not wearing gloves. However, I quickly discovered that I needed gloves. Trust me! 🙂
3. Briwax has a VERY strong odor! You may want to wear a mask.
4. As others have pointed out, it does NOT work on wood that has a polyurethane finish to it. The Briwax will not stick.
5. I suggest trying it on the back of a cabinet door first to see if you get the results you want.
6. If you have specific questions, you can contact Briwax on their website.
4. Update the cabinet hardware.
I personally love the look of wood and black metal, but that is total preference.
I also updated the kitchen faucet which made a big difference in the overall look and feel of the kitchen. This is the faucet that I purchased.
I hope these Briwax before and after pictures inspire you to update your honey oak cabinets even if you can’t paint them!
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