The Different Types of Wood Stains

ECOS Paints 07/17/2020
The Different Types of Wood Stains

The Different Types of Wood Stains

Is it time to give the hardwood in your home a refresh? Whether it’s your hardwood floors or the kitchen table you just got from the thrift store, wood stains give a new look to drained pieces. But how do you figure out which one is best for your space? Picking the perfect one for your project can be a bit overwhelming—learn more about some of the different types of wood stains below.

Water-Soluble Dye Stains

You may not have heard of these as often as some of the others on this list, but water-soluble dye stains were quite popular in the past. The stains come in powder form, and to create the stain, you simply mix it with water. These were most popular before the invention of metal complex dyes (stains dissolved in glycol and then blended with ethanol, methanol, or similar substances).

This stain offers a wide range of colors (the more powder you use, the more intense the color), but it won’t hide a wood completely no matter how many coats you apply. That can be a positive for some people and a negative for others, as the stain maintains the natural wood texture and feel.

Oil-Based Stains

Some of the most popular wood stains are oil-based stains. This is for a few different reasons—they penetrate deep into the wood and are incredibly durable. They have good surface adhesion and leave behind a rich color on the wood, but they can contain noxious chemicals. When people use these stains, they often need to use a respirator mask, and even after use, those chemicals and VOCs can persist and permeate the air. For this reason, a lot of people have started to steer away from this choice, especially if they’re striving for an eco-conscious project.

Water-Based Stains

Here comes our bread and butter—water-based stains. These use water instead of organic thinners and contain water-soluble dyes to produce the color. Whereas oil-based stains produce VOCs, water-based stains are often low or zero VOC. In addition, these stains are easier to clean up and extremely resistant to mold and mildew. If you’re looking for a stain for a smaller project, then this is definitely the route to go, since they dry quickly. These stains offer tons of benefits—we suggest beginning with these on smaller projects to see how you like the results before starting on bigger projects.

At ECOS Paints, we provide the wood stains and varnishes you need for a successful project. We always suggest going with water-based products, as they tend to be better for your health and for the environment. Our eco-friendly wood stain is just what you need for your new piece of furniture or the wood floors in the kitchen. When you finish off your project with a top coat of one of our durable varnishes, you’re sure to love the final results. Shop our collections now and see what you can gain when you partner with us!