Re: Staining/Sealing Wooden Wainscot in a bathroom
To clarify and build on what Jack suggests, there are different types of oak (red, white, and black ), these are species differences, not merely a topical whitewashed look as suggested by Lowes. It is important that you choose the same species for both your panel and trim due to their unique coloring and graining.
Originally Posted by kbrunson09
When you choose your finish, you will first sand everything to your liking, you must sand to remove surface dirt, tool marks, wood filler overage, etc. It is imperative that you sand everything uniformly because this will affect the way the stain is absorbed into the material. You only need to sand the exposed faces and edges of the material.
Choosing a finish. What Jack was implying is that it is better to use a stain only product to color your wood. Once that process is done you can then apply your top coat. Stain/sealer in one do not work well, the stain is suspended in the top coat, rather than penetrating into the wood. Scuff the finished product and you've got bare wood with no color. Also, with each application, the 2-in-1 material will darken with each coat, and you will be applying at least 3 layers of top coat.
What to use, I have always had good results with Minwax stains, but Minwax top coats are complete and utter garbage! I can elaborate more if you need to know why they are complete and utter garbage. My preferred top coat is McCloskie's polyurethane, however in a wet and humid environment, an oil based varnish such as the one Jack suggests would be a better choice.
Always, always, always, test compatibility of your stain and top coat materials before you apply them to your project. Some products don't play well together and that is not always evident by reading labels.
I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!