How to Use Danish Oil Finish

Danish oil is a penetrating finish for furniture and other wood products. It is manufactured under different brand names, and some variations of it include a stain. This enables the consumer to stain the wood and give it a sleek finish at the same time during the application process. Danish oil finishes penetrate the wood and never require stripping, according to the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service website.

Transport the furniture outdoors or apply the finish in a well-ventilated area with an exhaust fan. It is important that the area contains little dust, since dust may stick to the finish before it dries. Adequate ventilation prevents the fumes from becoming overwhelming and causing lung irritations.

Wipe the wood off with a damp cloth or a feather duster to remove any dust on its surface.

Dip a clean paintbrush into the Danish oil finish and apply it to the wood surface using a generous layer of the oil.

Wait for the oil to penetrate for approximately 30 minutes.

Rub the Danish oil into the wood with a soft cloth once the 30 minutes are up. Use a circular motion for rubbing. Do this over the entire surface of the wood.

Wipe off any excess Danish oil with another soft cloth. Allow the Danish oil to dry -- typically overnight -- but check the label on your particular brand.

Rub 000 steel wool gently over the wood surface in between the coats. Wipe off any particles with a clean cloth. This ensures that the surface is smooth to the touch once all the coats are applied.

Repeat the steps until you have at least three coats of Danish oil finish on your wood. Allow sufficient time for the oil to dry in between coats. Apply more than three coats if you desire.


China bristle or camel's hair paintbrushes are best for use with Danish oil finish. Test the Danish oil finish on an inconspicuous area of the wood if it contains a stain. Allow the finish to dry completely to determine if it is the colour you desire. Check the label on your Danish oil finish. Some brands allow you to add other coats after only 30 minutes of penetration.

Things You'll Need

  • Damp cloth or feather duster
  • Paint brush (China bristle or camel's hair)
  • Soft cleaning cloths
  • 000 steel wool
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About the Author

Chelsea Fitzgerald covers topics related to family, health, green living and travel. Before her writing career, she worked in the medical field for 21 years. Fitzgerald studied education at the University of Arkansas and University of Memphis.