add metallic highlight to boring mirror

How to use Rub ‘n Buff for easy updates | Thrifty Decor Chick

How to use Rub ‘n Buff for easy updates | Thrifty Decor Chick

Information about How to use Rub ‘n Buff for easy updates | Thrifty Decor Chick

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If you have a decor item that needs a little something, this “paint”
that comes in a tiny tube is the perfect answer for a quick and easy update!

Rub ‘n Buff is this amazing metallic finish that is super easy to apply (you
just use your finger or a soft cloth). The finish adds dimension and
interest to basic decor like frames, mirrors and decorative objects. 

It really shows off pretty detail on those items as well — so if you have
an intricate mirror or frame, Rub ‘n Buff is perfect for it. 

If you’ve never used it, you’ll be shocked at the power in this little bitty
tube!:

antique gold rub n buff

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It’s not really paint — more of a wax. It goes on easily and then you can
lightly buff it out to soften the look a bit. 

I’ve used this stuff for years, and it’s my go-to when there’s something in
our house that is looking a little bland. 

How to apply Rub ‘n Buff

It doesn’t look like much, but this stuff goes a loooong way. It’s easy to
squeeze out too much — you want to err on using too little and you can
always add more or layer the finish. 

You only have to use a tiny bit for accent projects. I usually
start by dabbing my finger on the opening: 

gold rub n buff tube

I usually use my finger — I feel like it’s easier to do detail work that
way. But you can also use a soft cloth to apply it: 

black frame with gold corner detail
From far away it gives the look of metal brackets. I loved that look so
much, I did the same to some of the frames on our family room
DIY picture ledges

I used a few pieces of painter’s tape to mark off the corners and then just
rubbed it on: 

applying rub n buff to frame

It dries almost immediately, so you can buff it out right away. 

Use either your finger or a cloth to rub it in and even out the
finish: 

buffing out rub n buff

I like a finger for application and a cloth for the buffing part. You don’t
have to buff, but it does give it a pretty sheen and blends it
nicely. 

You can use Rub ‘n Buff for larger projects, but I’ve always loved the
little detail it adds in smaller doses: 

DIY wood ledges on white wall

I think I’m going to add it to the sides of the frames as well, so we can
see the gold accent from all directions. 

I love this mirror in our basement and that it matches the walls almost
exactly: 

westchester gray DIY built ins

Sometimes you want contrast, sometimes a more muted look is what you’re
aiming for. I love how this blends in for a more modern look, but it needed
something

When I added
the box molding on the walls down there, I moved the mirror to another wall and then added gold
accents with the Rub ‘n Buff: 
add metallic highlight to boring mirror

The paint on the mirror had a slightly distressed look on the edges, so I
used those as my guide. 

It only took a few minutes and made a big difference!: 

gold detail on gray mirror

On something like this especially, there’s no perfection needed. Just
swipe it on here and there until you get the look you want!

Where you can use Rub ‘n Buff 

This stuff adheres to all kinds of surfaces — metal and wood are easy. I
haven’t tried it on plastic so let me know if you have! It’s an easy way
to change up light fixtures, frames, art, decorative knobs…the
possibilities are endless! 

I’ve grabbed these tubes a lot over the years — it’s especially lovely
when used to highlight pretty texture. 

gold highlight on textured frame

You can use it instead of spray paint for smaller pieces too. I “painted”
some red metal bells in our Christmas decor last year. The Rub ‘n Buff
gave them a vintage look with more dimension than straight spray paint
would give. 

If you have a large item, you can spray paint it and then add some detail
with the Rub ‘n Buff on top. It’s so versatile! 

DIY metal terrarium with Rub n Buff

The
pewter Rub ‘n Buff gave it the look of metal, with some variation that straight spray
paint can’t give. 

Tips for using Rub ‘n Buff

  • Remember, a little goes a long way — start with a tiny amount!
  • No need for brushes, you can use your finger or a cloth
  • It’s easily removed from your fingers with nail polish remover
  • Play around with colors! It comes in
    nine different metallic finishes, from silver leaf to copper. 

I love that it gives pieces an older, vintage look because the finish
isn’t perfect, especially on textured surfaces.

It added detail so our mirror isn’t so blah anymore…just enough to make it
stand out!: 

westchester gray walls with box molding trim

Have you tried this magical wax finish? It’s fun and easy! 

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