Spray waxes have come a long way in the past several years when it comes to competing with more traditional paste and liquid waxes. The best spray waxes have evened the playing field with traditional paste waxes in terms of paint protection levels, durability, and quality.
The Best Spray Waxes
In many cases, spray waxes provide an even longer lifespan and higher levels of paint protection compared to paste waxes because of their synthetic makeup. Even though the depth of shine that accompanies traditional waxes is still unparalleled, spray waxes can still produce similar results, are much easier to apply, and can cost less than traditional waxes.
1. Meguiar’s Ultimate Quik Wax Spray Wax
Meguiar’s Ultimate Quik Wax is not a new product, but it has recently been improved as a result of using their newer, better polymer formula. This polymer formula provides an increased ability to repel water and other materials that would stick to the surface of your vehicle’s paint while providing a great level of shine for which Meguiar’s wax products have always been known. Along with its increased hydrophobic ability, the new formula provides longer-lasting wax protection than before.
One of the best qualities of this spray is that Meguiar’s claims that it can be applied and removed in direct sunlight without consequence. Usually, it is best that vehicle detailing - including waxing - be conducted in a shady area for various reasons. Being able to apply Ultimate Quik Wax anywhere adds to its ease of use and provides everyone the ability to apply a proven wax product anywhere.
In addition to the wax itself, Meguiar’s has gone one step further and improved its spray bottle. Their nozzle design increases coverage and uniformity of the spray so that little product is wasted and is applied evenly across the paint surface.
2. Mother’s California Gold Spray Wax
Mother’s California Gold Spray Wax earns its entry into the best spray wax category by doing exactly what it says it does very well. It is a durable, well-respected, and relatively simple vehicle wax that is very easy to apply. Even though other spray waxes are also simple to use by default, Mother’s makes sure that spraying, wiping, and buffing are the only three steps needed to use their product with great results.
California Gold Spray Wax can be used as both a booster wax and standalone wax. This enables buyers to more easily keep their vehicle’s paint protected over a long period by applying the spray over the existing coat of wax. Using it as a standalone product will remove fingerprints, smudges, dirt, and other substances.
It can be applied to both wet and dry surfaces, allowing buyers to quickly finish a complete detail on their vehicle very quickly regardless of a vehicle’s condition after washing. Because of its overall utility and relative simplicity, Mother’s California Gold Spray Wax also has the advantage of being very affordable compared to other spray waxes.
3. Lucas Oil Slick Mist Speed Wax
Lucas Oil Slick Mist Speed Wax is not marketed so much as a vehicle wax as it is a paint gloss intensifier and multi-surface cleaner. It produces the same results as a vehicle wax – enhancing a vehicle’s shine after detailing and protecting the paintwork – but it has the advantage of working well on just about any other automotive surface as well. It has many similarities to Mother’s California Spray Wax.
This product is very simple to use, can be used on both a wet and dry surface, can be applied quickly, and undercuts the California Gold Spray Wax by a few dollars, making it the most affordable spray wax on our list.
Despite being a spray-on vehicle wax, it also works especially well on chrome, vinyl, and glass vehicle parts. This allows the Slick Mist Speed Wax to be one of the best bang-for-the-buck products on the market.
Granted, if your goal is to polish chrome, a product engineered for that purpose is always better. The same could be said for other car interior surfaces like vinyl, glass, upholstery, etc.
4. Griot's Garage Best Show Spray Wax
Griot’s Garage Best of Show Wax does quite a bit for a relatively small price. Like most other spray waxes, it is easy to use by simply spraying on, buffing, and wiping with a clean microfiber cloth. But, unlike other sprays, Griot’s formula uses one of the highest percentages of natural Carnauba wax to synthetic polymer on the market, aiding to the wax’s protecting and shining ability.
Griot’s Best of Show also has the advantage of being able to be used on top of ceramic coatings and protective paint film. Usually, waxes work to cancel the beneficial effects of ceramic coatings and films, but Griot’s formula works to enhance their effects. It can also be used as a booster for other waxes as well as a standalone wax product.
Learn More: The Difference Between Wax and Ceramic Coatings
Despite being marketed as a product that can be used on top of other waxes, films, and other protectants as a booster, Best of Show can also outlast many other spray waxes as a standalone product because it combines synthetic and natural products.
5. Chemical Guys InstaWax Spray Wax
Chemical Guys InstaWax combines the ease of using a spray-on wax with 100% refined Brazilian Carnauba wax. Their formula also includes several paint sealants and protectants as well as added ultraviolet ray protection for the best paint protection possible.
Instawax can be used as both a booster and a standalone wax product, but it can also be used on chrome, glass, plastic, metal, and other vehicle parts. Its formula allows quick curing and application is easy – you just need to spray, wait for the spray to change to a milky color, and buff. It can be sprayed directly on your vehicle’s surface or onto a microfiber cloth or other application cloth.
Even though Instawax is slightly more expensive than many other products on this list, its added UV blockers and synthetic protectants add a level of wax protection that several others lack. Despite this, it can be removed just as easily as it can be applied if necessary.
More About Spray Wax
One product can rarely provide all the benefits and functions of every other product on the market.
In other words, the perfect vehicle wax would be easy to apply, provide long-lasting paint protection, provide a deep paint shine after application, be inexpensive to buy, be applied to wet or dry paint, provide both standalone and boosting qualities, and be used on all automotive surfaces with the same results as it has on paint.
No vehicle wax has all of these capabilities, and it used to be that traditional paste wax only offered protection and a beautiful glossy finish to paintwork, the two most important tasks of good wax.
With improvements in technology, spray-on wax has made wax application inexpensive, easy, and attainable to the average vehicle owner. Even though, traditional liquid and paste waxes still provide a superior shine to spray-on waxes, more of all the best features that every vehicle wax can provide is increasingly more attainable through one spray-on product.
Fewer compromises are great in an inexpensive and attainable product, but it is still important to know what each spray-on option has to offer before buying since not one single product can truly provide all functions of each wax.
How Does Automotive Car Wax Work?
The application of vehicle wax onto a painted surface creates a protective coating over the surface that hardens when it cures. Most paste and liquid waxes are thicker because they are made of high percentages or completely from natural plant waxes, the most common being Carnauba. Oils are extracted from Carnauba plants and used to form this protective layer.
Read More: The Different Types of Vehicle Wax
Spray-on waxes can also contain Carnauba wax, but their makeup is thinner so they can be sprayed instead of spread. This is good for easy application, but it also means that spray-on wax is made primarily of synthetic polymers and mixed with traditional vehicle wax ingredients.
These polymers can often cure to a harder, more durable protective paint layer, but most vehicle wax is still considered a short-term protective solution when compared to protective films and ceramic coatings.
How to Get the Best Results From Your Wax
There are three main steps to getting the best results from any spray-on wax you purchase.
The foremost step is to apply the wax to a clean vehicle. Wax – and most other protectants and sealants used on vehicle paint – requires a clean surface on which to properly adhere. A wax job could be ruined by not taking the necessary preparatory steps.
The second step is to use clean materials for any application. It does not make any sense to use dirty cloths and other supplies on a vehicle you have just cleaned. Additionally, it does not help to apply wax with an already dirty cloth or buffing pad.
The last step is to follow all instructions on any product you buy. Regardless of how easy any spray-on wax seems, it is important to follow instructions so as not to potentially ruin your hard work or vehicle paint. For as many things as spray-on wax can accomplish, they are all a little bit different. They all, therefore, work best a little differently from each other.
Spray-on vehicle wax has become more affordable, easier to use, and more technologically advanced over the past several years. They have become viable, and in some cases, superior options to traditional paste waxes.
Even though they cannot provide the depth of shine that a traditional, time-consuming paste or liquid wax can achieve, the least knowledgeable car-buyer can easily apply spray-on waxes with no training and little hassle.