What is carnauba wax? Why should I use it on
Carnauba wax comes from the carnauba palm (Copernicia
prunifera) found mainly in north east Brazil. The wax is
natures' way of protecting the palm's leaves against UV light,
heat, insects and water-loss. A completely natural product,
carnauba wax has long been used in cosmetics, confectionary,
furniture polish and the highest quality automobile wax
polishes. Carnauba is the hardest natural wax - harder than
concrete in its pure form. It has a high melting point and
provides a very high level of surface reflectance. It is
harvested by cutting the palm's fronds, allowing them to dry
then flailing them to separate the flakes of wax. No chemicals
are used in the process. The highest grade is
Premium No 1 Yellow - which we use in
Why use it on your car?
Because it provides an incredibly deep gloss finish and lasting
protection. And it protects your paintwork without chemical
It simply provides a very tough coating which resists dirt and
pollutants, reflects UV radiation and seals the paint finish
from moisture and corrosives. That's about it. No smoke &
mirrors. No claims that it lasts forever. No nonsense about
having to use different versions for different makes of car or
types of paint.
special about Valentine's Concours Carnauba?
We believe it is, quite
simply, the finest car wax in the world. It's made for Valentine
& Co in England by a firm that has been producing quality
speciality wax polishes since 1914.
Unlike many automobile polishes and waxes, Valentine's contains
no abrasives. It will not scratch or react with paintwork or
clear-coat finishes. It's extremely easy to use. And it works
equally well with all types of automotive paintwork and
clear-coat finishes. We think you'll find it produces the
deepest, most luxurious gloss finish you have ever seen.
It makes a great present for busy people who care about their
cars. The wax is always supplied in a smart presentation
box complete with applicator pad, detailing brush, two
microfibre polishing towels, full instructions and our
We hope you'll love it as much as we do. But if for any reason
you're dissatisfied, just send the complete kit back within 21
days and we'll refund the purchase price in full.
Polish or wax - what's the difference?
In automotive detailing
circles, 'polish' has come to mean a product which includes a
small amount of abrasive or chemical cleaner to help freshen up
dull paintwork. That abrasive is usually a very fine grit which,
when rubbed over the surface, grinds off a tiny layer of dirty
or oxidised paint to reveal a fresh layer of paint below. Tough
on paintwork? It can be because, depending on the brand of
polish , each time you may lose a little more paint. Also, the
abrasive can cause swirl marks, particularly if the polish is
applied by machine. Even brand new cars can show this problem.
Of course, not all 'polishes' contain abrasives and not all or
are bad for your paintwork. Some contain fairly gentle chemical
cleaners. Most are liquids which you rub on, allow to dry, then
rub off. Our experience has been that most are hard work to use.
By contrast, Valentine's
Concours Carnauba is a simple wax 'paste'. It does not contain
any abrasives or chemical cleaners, so won't damage paint. It's
fast to apply, does not need to dry out and polishes off
extremely easily to leave an extremely high gloss finish.
It is NOT designed to clean paintwork but to seal and protect it
from UV light, dirt and oxidation. It does this by producing a
smooth, tough, deep highly reflective coating which lasts often
for months, depending on the conditions in which the car is
PS. Even though it
contains no abrasives or cleaning chemicals, we call Valentine's
Concours Carnauba a 'wax polish'. According to the Oxford
English Dictionary 'polish' simply means:
• noun 1 a substance used to make
something smooth and shiny when rubbed in. 2 an act of
polishing. 3 smoothness or glossiness produced by
polishing. 4 refinement or elegance. ORIGIN
Must I use a pre-cleaner before applying
Only if your paintwork
looks dull or has blemishes such as tar spots. Once you have
thoroughly washed and dried the car, if the paint looks and
feels fresh, clean and shiny you can apply Valentine's
Concours Carnauba or Road 'n Track wax immediately.
If in doubt, try using a
proprietary liquid tar remover on a small area. If the treated
area looks and feels much smoother and shinier than the rest of
the car, you should consider pre-cleaning all of the paintwork.
You can use tar remover for this - it's mild, low in cost
compared with some ludicrously expensive pre-cleaning products
and, used properly, won't damage paint. There are a wide variety
of automotive paint cleaning and conditioning products - but be
careful, be gentle. Being heavy-handed can damage paintwork.
My paint looks really dull. What should I
If your paintwork really
looks bad, it's necessary to clean it thoroughly before putting
on any kind of wax. For details see our section
Car Waxing &
Polishing Tips. Tar remover or using a lehm klay bar may be
sufficient, but for badly degraded paintwork the best solution
may be to use a 'cutting' paste or polish to restore the finish.
But be very careful. As its name implies, this stuff works by
cutting a layer of dirty paint away. It comes in a variety of
grades. Some brands are designed to 'flatten' newly sprayed
paint. The guys in the paint shop will use the coarsest grade
first, finishing up with the finest grade. We suggest you start
with the finest grade and apply it by hand using minimal
pressure. Better to go over a section several times very gently
than to be too energetic and find you are looking at undercoat
or even bare metal. Be particularly careful on seams and
My paint looks great. Why bother waxing it?
If you have pre-cleaned
your paintwork or used a cutting polish, you'll have stripped
off any protection the paintwork had. Even if you have done
nothing more than wash your car, without some protection the
paint or clear-coat will be raw and open - literally - and road
dirt, traffic pollution and strong sunlight can quite rapidly
dull the finish or even damage it. By applying Valentine's
Concours Carnauba wax, you will be putting a very tough barrier
on the surface of the paint or clear-coat which will protect it
against oxidation, sunlight, road dirt and airborne pollution.
Oh, and you'll get an incredibly deep gloss finish which will
look terrific each time you wash the car for a very long time.
Can I use
Valentine's over other waxes and polishes?
Our trials indicate that
there is no difficulty with this, provided the car
already looks and feels smooth and shiny and has just been
washed and thoroughly dried. Obviously, we have not been able to
test the results of using Valentine's over every one of the
hundreds of polishes and waxes available, so we do not guarantee
the results. One answer is to use a little Valentine's wax on a
small section. Remember, for Valentine's to produce its full,
deep gloss it must be applied to a surface which is already
clean and shiny. If the results of your test are excellent, we
think you can go right ahead and wax the whole vehicle. One
point: to produce great results and be long-lasting, Valentine's
must bond with the surface of the car. Ideally, this bond should
be to the paint or clear-coat, rather than to an unknown, and
perhaps not very good, polish or inferior wax. If you have any
doubts, use a branded pre-cleaner or mild bodywork cleaner such
as liquid tar remover to thoroughly clean the paintwork or
clear-coat before applying Valentine's wax.
What about car
shampoos with wax?
Our experience suggests that
there's no problem applying Valentine's Concours Carnauba
or Road 'n Track on
cars that have previously been washed using some form of 'wax'
shampoo - provided the car really is clean and shiny.
Again, we have not tried all possible types of shampoo with wax,
so can't guarantee results.
Once you have applied Valentine's we
do not recommend using car shampoos with added wax. This is
because the tiny amount of 'wax' in the shampoo will obviously
not produce such a deep, hard-wearing gloss finish as
Valentine's. And the shampoo/wax will quite probably obscure the deep gloss of the Valentine's wax.
Also, the shampoo wax will
almost certainly deteriorate rapidly, resulting in your car
looking less than wonderful...
Valentine's Concours Carnauba? Is it safe?
Carnauba consists mainly of natural
No 1 Grade Premium Yellow
carnauba wax. In fact, this makes up more than 80% of its
solid content. We gently heat the carnauba and blend it with
odourless mineral spirit and ... well, that bit's our secret. We
use odourless spirit because it has been further refined to
remove the more toxic
aromatic compounds found in solvents such as benzene or
traditional white spirits.
You'll find our wax smells
rich and marvellous BUT because of the solvent, you should avoid
eating it or getting it in your eyes. If someone accidentally
swallows some, don't panic and don't induce vomiting. Call a
doctor for advice. If you get it in your eyes, rinse well with
water. The wax won't harm your skin but it may make your
hands feel a little dry (a waxed surface sheds water) so you may
want to use a moisturising cream after waxing your car. If you
have delicate skin, you could wear those neat disposable plastic
gloves whilst working with the wax.
Should I apply the wax in circles or straight
We recommend applying our
wax in straight lines. This is partly to reduce the risk of
causing swirl marks, should you accidentally trap grit on the
applicator pad. Interestingly, wax applied in straight lines
does seem to produce a deeper gloss. Why? Probably because
the molecules of polish all face one way and so reflect light
better without scattering it. If your car shows swirl marks, we
suggest you apply the wax first vertically, then horizontally.
This allows the wax to fill more of the tiny grooves which make
up the swirl marks. However, when polishing off you can rub in
circles if you wish - but do be careful not to trap any dirt or
grit in the polishing cloth or towel.
Does Valentine's wax remove swirl marks or
No. Sadly, nothing really
does but, like a number of other products, our wax helps
disguise the problem. To completely remove swirl marks or even
light scratches it's necessary to strip off the damaged
layer of paint or clear coat - which really is a
What most 'scratch removers' do is try to hide the scratches or
swirl marks by building up a layer of product in the fine
grooves. Unfortunately, nothing works perfectly because, to be
100% effective, the material filling the scratch would have to
be the same - or at least have the same refractive index - as
the paint surface. We make no silly claim that our product
removes swirl marks. What it does is help hide them. See
Car Waxing &
Can I use a mechanical polisher?
We don't recommend it.
Applying and polishing off Valentine's Concours Carnauba by hand
is fast and easy and a lot safer for your car's paint finish.
Should I let the wax dry out before polishing
No. It's best to apply a
small amount of wax to a small area - perhaps a quarter or a
third of a body panel. Polish off before the wax dries out,
usually within one or two minutes, depending on the temperature
in which you're working. If the wax does dry out, just apply a
little fresh wax to soften it, then polish off as usual. Don't
rub and rub at dry wax. You could scratch the surface.
Can I use Valentine's in hot sunlight?
Better not. Car bodies can
reach very high temperatures in bright sunlight and the wax will
dry out too rapidly for you to easily polish it off. Put your
car in the shade and if it has been standing in hot sun, let the
bodywork cool a little before waxing. If the wax has hardened
before you have time to conveniently polish off, just apply
a little more wax to soften it, then polish off. In very hot
conditions, do just a small area at a time and polish off
quickly. It takes only a few seconds for the wax to bond to the
Must I use special applicators or
No. But we suggest you use
the foam applicator and microfibre polishing towels we supply
with our wax.
The foam applicator pad
spreads the wax evenly. When you have finished, the pad stores
conveniently in the jar, so it doesn't dry out. You can wash it
by hand or in a washing machine. You will need to use quite a
lot of detergent to remove the old wax. Make sure to rinse the
pad thoroughly in clean water and let it dry fully before use.
For polishing, we
recommend using the microfibre towels we supply at no charge
with our wax. There's no need to rub hard. Just turn the towels
frequently. We recommend keeping these towels clean by
occasionally washing them by hand or machine. It's vital to
ensure the towels don't fall on the ground and pick up grit. If
this happens, DON'T use the towel until it has been thoroughly
washed and dried.
Any good quality terry
towelling can be used for polishing off - well-laundered
terrycloth nappies or old bath towels are good - but not as good
as a quality microfibre towel. Whatever you use, make sure it
really is soft. The days of using those awful cotton stockinet
cloths to polish cars are, hopefully, over. They seem to have a
knack for putting swirl marks in paint. Microfibre towels are
ideal. They don't shed lint and they absorb a lot of polish
before needing washed.
Should I apply a heavy coat of wax?
No point. No matter how
much you apply in one coat, only a small amount of wax bonds to
the paint, the remainder coming off on the polishing cloth.
However, there's no advantage at all in being mean with the wax.
You'll find that you use very little even on a large car or SUV.
Is it better to apply several coats of wax at
Not in one session. You
should allow the wax to dry out thoroughly after each
application - for several hours on a hot summer's day, for a day
or two in winter. Then a second application will build up the
wax coating. If you apply a second coat immediately, you could
just be dissolving off most of the first coat and achieving very
little. After you have polished off the wax, try leaving your
car in the sun for a while. The gloss seems to deepen when you
do this... we admit we don't know why.
Does the gloss
deepen if I apply a lot of coats?
Several coats do seem to
look better than one. On most cars, one coat is really all you
need. However, some detailers have applied as many as ten coats
of Carnauba and say the result is worth the effort. That seems a
little much to us but it's entirely up to you. Some cars seem to
look better and better every time a coat of Valentine's Carnauba
wax is applied. If you're going to apply several coats of wax
you should leave each to dry out thoroughly - ideally overnight.
If your vehicle is in frequent use and you can't do this, try
applying a coat of wax each time you wash the car. We won't be
surprised if you don't see any major difference after applying a
second or third coat. One coat of Valentine's wax is all it
takes to make most cars look amazing.
How long will a coat of Valentine's wax last?
It depends on what
conditions your car is used in. Yes, sunlight, road film,
pollution and dirt will all eventually degrade the finish but
this often takes months.
Valentine's Concours Carnauba is tough
stuff and lasts for a surprisingly long time. But
Valentine's Road 'n Track Carnauba is designed to last
longer and costs a lot less to buy... Our experience is
that a car used on the filthy roads we encounter in the UK and
Ireland will require waxing perhaps every two or three months -
longer with Road 'n Track.
Some people will wax more often. Others, perhaps just once or
twice a year. It's up to you. Of course, if your car is only
used occasionally for concours or competition, the wax will last
and last. Washing and drying the car is all that's necessary to
restore a perfect finish. One tip: water 'beads' when you rinse
off a well-waxed car. If the water tends to pool rather than
bead, it's an indication that the wax is wearing out, even
though the surface still may look glossy.
How long will a
jar of Valentine's last?
How many cars do you have
and how often do you wax them? Unfortunately for our sales
figures, you'll find you use very little each time you wax a
car. Our experience is that our 250 gm jar will be enough for
15+ generous applications, plus occasional touch-ups on heavy
wear areas. So, if you wax, say, two cars four times a year one
jar should last for about two years. (If you can hear some
strange sound in the background, it's our accountant groaning)
Don't store the jar in direct sunlight, put it in a cool, dry
place - and keep the lid on.
Chamois leather or towel?
We prefer towels, they're
much less work and leave a perfect finish free of water spots
and streaks. Two soft, old terrycloth bath towels are perfect
for most cars. We find all that wringing-out with chamois
leather is just hard work. One tip: when drying off the car, use
a fresh towel to dry the windscreen first. This avoids the
possibility of transferring tiny particles of wax or grease to
the glass. Very, very little wax will come off during normal
washing but even microscopic amounts can produce those
infuriating streaks on a wet windscreen.
Do you have
a hot tip or comment about car detailing that you want to share
with others? Just email us at
and, if it's appropriate, we'll include it here.
Click to order Valentine's Carnauba