A simple cleaning method to clean your wood kitchen table using only natural products.
How do you clean a wood kitchen table?
There are only a few steps to effectively clean your wood kitchen table, and you don’t need any fancy gadgets or toxic chemicals to do it right! Taking care of your wood dining table the right way will help it to last for generations.
I asked friends and family about their biggest issues with cleaning wood furniture, and here are the most common responses:
- Current cleaners either leave a residue or strip the shine
- Stuff gets stuck in the crevices
I sought to address these common wood table problems in a natural way, using only natural ingredients I already had on hand!
The following simple steps apply to tables with all different wood finishes. Whether you have a solid wood dining table, reclaimed wood table, or pressed wood table, using this natural method shouldn’t harm any type of finish.
I also have an excellent All Purpose Cleaner recipe if you plan to clean your counters next!
Steps to clean a wood kitchen table naturally
1) Initial wipe down. With two toddlers, my table gets so bad that I decided to wipe down the surface grime briefly before beginning the whole process.
2) Clean crevices with a dry brush (old toothbrush or cleaning scrub brush). I’ll be honest. My table cracks haven’t been cleaned in quite a long time (photo evidence is a bit scary).
3) Scrape any sticky residue using a dish scraper.
4) Vacuum if necessary. I pulled so much out of the crevices that I decided to vacuum up the crumbs instead of wiping them right back into the cracks.
5) Spray the table with your wood cleaner.
6) Wipe with a clean lint-free cloth in a circular motion.
7) Optional: Fill in the scratches using the method recommended below.
Why I don’t use vinegar to clean my wooden furniture
While researching this post, every single DIY I found contained vinegar. I was so confused! Everything I know about vinegar screams, “Don’t use vinegar on wood!.” So what gives?
Vinegar is an excellent cleaning agent. I use it in my own All Purpose Cleaner. However, vinegar is very strong and abrasive. In my opinion, you should never use vinegar on porous surfaces, including wood and natural stone. Vinegar will likely dull the shine on your wood table with time, and that is what we are currently trying to fix!
This Consumer Reports article backs my claim! Don’t use vinegar on wood (especially on a daily basis!).
All-Natural Wood Cleaner Ingredients
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 2 TBSP olive oil
- 1/2 TBSP Castile Soap
Other supplies: Reusable spray bottle and a dry microfiber cloth or cotton cloth.
I don’t recommend using paper towels because they are both wasteful and ineffective, leaving dust particles behind.
All-Natural Wood Cleaner Directions
1) Put your filtered clean water in a measuring cup.
2) Add in olive oil and castile soap
3) Stir vigorously
4) Using a funnel, pour into a reusable spray bottle
Can I use this natural wood cleaner on a daily basis?
Yes! There are no abrasive cleaners in this DIY cleaner, so it shouldn’t dull your shine over time.
How to hide scratches on a wood kitchen table
From light scratches to the huge gauge mark, my table has seen it all. We are a military family, so this table has quite literally traveled the world. I wanted to do this whole task with items I already had on hand, but you could certainly purchase a set of furniture repair markers to fill in your cracks. Before moving forward, try your crayon or marker in a small spot in an inconspicuous area first to make sure you are not about to ruin the look of your table.
In these attempts to dull the appearance of the scratches on my wooden dining table, I grabbed my kid’s art supplies (Yes, really!).
Attempt 1: Using Brown Crayon to Fix Scratch on Wood
First, I used brown crayons. I figured the wax would also help seal the raw wood. It turns out, you have to go darker than your table for the crayon to show. If you dry this, use a damp cloth to remove any wax from the areas surrounding the cracks.
Attempt 2: Using Black Crayon to Fix Scratch on Wood
Since I knew I needed to go darker, I went all in. I used a black crayon. It basically made the gauge look like a burn mark. I do not recommend using black unless you have an extremely dark table.
Attempt 3: Using Marker to Fix Scratch on Wood
After scraping away all the black crayon, I went for marker! The marker soaked into the wood like a stain and covered the scratch much more than the crayons. I think it did the trick! After I finished, I cleaned up the area with my cleaning solution and it is not much less noticeable.
What store-bought non-toxic cleaner can you use to clean a wood table?
If you are not the DIY type, you may choose to purchase a furniture polish or other cleaning product instead.
My top recommendation from Amazon is the ECOS Furniture and Polish Cleaner. I have used this product for years and love it.
Other Questions about Wood Table Care
How to remove Sharpie from a wood table
Try coloring over the area with a dry-erase marker, then promptly wipe with your DIY wood cleaner. If you don’t have a dry-erase marker on hand, color back over the dried Sharpie with more Sharpie, and wipe away before it dries.
How to clean the crevices in a wood dining table
For the dry crumbs, I recommend using a soft brush such as an old toothbrush or a small cleaning brush meant for grout.
For sticky spots in the cracks, use a scraper (mine is meant to scrape dishes), or a cotton swab soaked in your DIY wood cleaner.
How to naturally remove water rings from a wood kitchen table
If you cannot remove the ring marks with your olive oil solution, try ironing! Put a towel over the water mark and iron briefly. The ring should come out. Beware, this could dull the surface shine of your wooden table, so always try a small area first!
Pin It for Later!
Looking for other non-toxic cleaners? Check out my post on how to make natural all purpose cleaner, a surface scrub, and toilet bowl cleaner!
About the Author:
I’m Brittany, totally modern and mainstream turned crunchy mama!
Read more here about how I went from a totally incompetent cook and hyper-consumer to striving to live a more meaningful life from scratch.
I can’t wait to share my modern homesteading journey with you and I hope I inspire you to join along!