Rub N Buff

Want to turn something a metallic color?   Rub N Buff may be your answer.


It comes in 20 colors which could even be combined for custom colors.


It’s easier than spray painting and you don’t have the overspray.  It’s also inexpensive at around $5 per 1/2 oz tube.  That tiny tube covers 20 sq ft of surface area.  I bought mine at Hobby Lobby and used a 40% off coupon.  They only had the three golds, Silver Leaf and Ebony.

Rub N Buff has been around for a while, but more and more people seem to be using it.  I used it for the first time this week.

I used Gold Leaf on my “new” Craigslist chair that sits in my entry.   Before and after?

Entry-029 Chair-001-5

Inspiration?  Stephanie’s settee over at Creative Design Inc.


Gorgeous.  Back to Rub N Buff.  Truly, you just rub it on (it’s an ointment consistency).

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So, tape off anything you don’t want colored and grab a paper towel or your fingers, squirt some out and rub it on whatever you want to turn metallic.

I couldn’t believe how easy it was and how well it worked.  Just took a little over an hour to do the chair.   The taping took the longest.   No sanding or prepping other than cleaning the surface.

What all can you use this on?   Let’s take a look at some examples in GOLD!   Oh, and if you haven’t caught on…  gold is back!




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Lamps. (Below, Andrea toned it down.)

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Of course, you can do the opposite as well and go from gold to pewter, silver and so on.  Have you used Rub N Buff?

There is one warning.  I’ve been sick for a couple of days from it.  I’m sensitive to smells and very allergic to this, apparently.  Burning eyes, sneezing, runny nose, etc.  So, if you are sensitive to such things, let your project sit in the garage for a while before bringing it inside (unlike me)!

You can use it on just about anything!  And, no sanding or prepping.



  1. This is really cool and your chair looks great. I’m glad you addressed smell/etc because that was one thing I was chemical-y it is. Seems like a great way to pretty simply transform something though. Thanks!

  2. I’ve never used this before but I’m intrigued. I like how your chair turned out. It’s sassy! :)

  3. Thanks for giving me some more scoop on rub n buff because I have been wanting to try it. This seems simple enough and I love how your chair turned out!

  4. Thanks for the shout out! I am seriously addicted to this stuff. I even rub n’ buffed a pair of shoes last week. Just purchased my second tube.

  5. I’m going to have to try this stuff out! I absolutely LOVE the way your chair came out!

  6. Kristy, I am one of those who has used rub and buff for many years. I have always used it on small stuff. Never thought about large projects. Now, it makes sense. I always had lots left over and it would get hard, guess I didn’t know how far it would go. You have inspired me, thanks.
    I am sooooo glad gold is back, I never got rid of it because I always loved it. In retrospect, I guess I really didn’t care. The “theys” of this world always say “go with what you love, regardless.”. However, I am glad to be somewhat in fashion again.
    Have a great weekend, Ginger:)

  7. Oh yeah, love me some rub-n-buff. It’s addictive too. After I finished my project I walked around the house with an open tub looking for my next victim :)

  8. Kristy: wear a respirator! Also gloves. Apply it outdoors. I have been using this for years. It is amazing how many different golds there are. You think you have the right shade to touch up a picture frame and it looks worse than the chip. You should probably seal off your workroom from your house. Don’t wear your painting clothes into the house. Act like your house is a sterile room. While the summer is still creating pollen and wildfire ash, be especially careful. Don’t wear your shoes into the house. You don’t want to inhale things you are sensitive to. It has an additive effect to your food allergies. Ann Know it All

  9. Isn’t that stuff great? I don’t know if you remember but I did my driveway gate with Rub n Buff as well. A little goes a long way. And it it still looks great after a year in the sun. I don’t wear gloves, even though I should, but in doing so I found that baby wipes takes it off your skin. Just a little tip. Your chair looks fantastic! Quick and easy, my kind of project.

  10. One of my very favorite products in the world!! But I NEVER would have thought to use it on a pouf – GENIUS!!

  11. Love love love the chair! The green is amazing. Did you paint this chair green and if so what did you use?

  12. I have been wanting to use this so bad but have a hard time finding it in Canada. Got some from michaels, they only had like 2 different tubes in the clearance section, and it was more hard like a paste wax then ointment so that was a bummer. I used to see it everywhere but it seems to have dropped of the face of the earth here.

  13. Judith Williams

    I’ve been practicing with the Rub ‘n Buff. I don’t want to cover the entire piece of furniture, just the edges. I haven’t done too well with my practice pieces, and since the furniture is brand new I don’t want to ruin it. For some reason I can’t seem to spread it thin enough. I wish I could water it down and make it more like a gold wash Does your finger work best or should I use a soft cloth? I love what you’ve done with your furniture.

    • For me, my finger works best because I can control it more. The way I get a thin coat (did this on my entry mirror) is to put it on a small spot and very quickly rub it right off. Keep rubbing for a bit, spreading it and removing it. This gave me a thin layer. Hope that helps!

      • Judith Williams

        What about that liquid deglosser that I’ve heard people mention?

        • I’ve never tried that. I don’t think it’d help in this case. Perhaps paint thinner/ mineral spirits on a cloth may help if you run it over it very gently?

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