Acccenting with Rub N Buff


Happy Sunday, my friends!  It is an absolutely gorgeous day in Atlanta today and I’m pretty thrilled about that.  With all the crazy Winter weather we’ve had lately, I’m happy to see the sun shining and the temps up higher so that we can enjoy being outside.

I shared the vanity makeover last week, but I thought I’d talk about that product I used to highlight the leg detail, Rub N Buff.  I’ve shared this before years ago on my blog and I used to use it quite often on decorative things, so got a new tube for this project and figured out another thing to use it on, so I thought it would be worth talking about and sharing with you in case you haven’t used Rub N Buff before.

What is Rub N Buff?  It’s a metallic paste and comes in a small tube.  A little goes a long way and it’s a beautiful way to add gold highlights to anything from plastic, to metal, to wood.  It sticks really well and stays on and doesn’t come off.  With gold making a comeback, I’m adding a little more gold touches around the house and Rub N Buff is a great way to do that.  I found this stuff probably 20 years ago and it’s still a great product.  You can find it at Hobby Lobby or Michaels, any of the craft type stores.  Here’s an Amazon page (affiliate links) with all the colors they have.  I love Antique Gold, but the European Gold looks pretty too.  I’ve also used Spanish Copper before.

The small tube lasts a long time. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever used one up, it will sometimes harden if it sits for too long before being used, but it’s a great metallic paste and comes in so many colors.  I’ve used it on picture frames, light fixtures, furniture and more to highlight little raised areas that you want to show off with a metallic accent. It’s made from carnuba waxes and fine metallic powders.

I had already used Rub N Buff on this vanity when I first painted it black, but I wanted to freshen it up this time. This is such a close up picture that it makes everything look pretty bad up close, but the finish doesn’t look this bad when you’re looking down at it. I used a small makeup applicator or you can use a q-tip to apply it.  Or I’ve used the tip of my finger in an old cloth too, to spread the Rub N Buff.  Again, a little goes a long ways.  Be careful not to get it somewhere that you don’t want it, beause it doens’t come off easily at all.

Once you get it on your surface, then take an old soft cloth and just rub over it to burnish the gold and make it shine with a pretty gleam.

Antique gold is a good accent with the brass knobs that are original to this piece and I love how it accents the wood raised areas on the legs.

Another piece I used it on is this faux bonsai tree.  I picked this up from Hill Street Warehouse here in Atlanta, a place I’ve been going to for about 20 years.  They are going out of business and my sis and I went down there to see how the sale was. They had some nice faux succulents that I got and this pretty bonsai tree so we both picked one up.  It was about $24 with the sale price.  If you’re in the area, you may want to check out Hill Street’s sale. I think as the weeks go by they will continue to mark things down, but the first week we went, accessories were 20% off, but they will eventually sell out the whole store, so it might be worth going back.

I thought this little planter could use a gold accent too, so Rub N Buff to the rescue.  I used my applicator and adding gold stripes all the way around top and bottom, burnishing it with a rag as I went along.

It takes no time to use Rub N Buff and I was finished shortly.

Right now, I’ve got it on top of the master bedroom chest of drawers, but it is subject to move around, but doesn’t it look pretty with the gold accents?

Just thought I’d share Rub N Buff with you again since it comes in handy for many projects around the house. Have you used it before?  Can you think of something that needs a little accenting?  Rub N Buff comes in so many colors, including black, white, silver, copper, so many pretty shades for many home decor ideas.


- Rhoda


  1. it’s like lipstick for furniture – love it – really changed the look of the planter!

  2. Noticed the detail when you showed us the re-do on the vanity, and I thought it was a great addition! I had a jar of Rub n Buff but it dried out fast….your tube is the right way to go, of course! Yay for you!

  3. Love this! Where do you find it in the craft stores?

  4. Rhoda I love using rub and buff also! Everything looks great!

  5. I moved into a fixer-upper in March and since then have looked at the old, pitted and worn shower curtain bar. It finally hit me . . . Rub-N-Buff! It made that old thing look new again. Just love this stuff

  6. Debbie Wright says:

    I too have been a user if Rub n Buff since the early 70’s(Lord that makes me feel old). For the last 3 months we have been updating and remodeling our first floor. I have changed out all the door knobs and hinges on all my doors, shower curtain rods and rings, and asst. decor that I still wanted to use but wanted silver instead of their orange ngonal color. I am getting ready to take on a burnished bronze dining room chandelier, and make it a pewter color to better match my new surrounding living room brushed nickel and glass tables. Have you ever tried mixing two colors to achieve a new color? I thought of mixing silver leaf and pewter to try and create a brushed nickel color but am a little apprehensive. What are your thoughts?

    • Hey, Debbie, I don’t see why that wouldn’t work. Since a little goes a long ways, I’d just experiment on something metal that you have laying around to see if you can get the look you’re after. It just might work, so go for it! Rub N Buff looks so good once you finish with it.

  7. Pam Hinton says:

    Has anyone ever used rub n buff on a gold trimmed shower door?

    • HI, Pam, I think it could probably work on the areas that don’t get water on it. Not sure about the long term use if water is getting on it regularly, but it does hold up well in many areas that I’ve used.

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.