Varathane One Step {Review}

While working on my DIY x-mas presents I had a chance to try Varathane One Step Stain & Polyurethane, in colors Early American & Dark Walnut. We bought the Early American first and after hearing back on color preference we decided it was too light for the gift we intended to use it on{bar stools}. However it seemed to be the perfect color, based on sample at store, for another gift.

Now generally I love anything that boasts a stain and polyurethane combination. Usually my problem is it doesn’t come in a suitable color. I have used another brand and loved it very much. Varathane’s version not so much. The Early American seems to be a bit lighter than represented by the can {not surprisingly} and shown at the store. The Dark Walnut was MUCH lighter than the regular stain. I am not sure if it was that particular can or what. The One Step is on the left with 2 coats and the right is Varathane Dark Walnut stain.

It did give a nice finish with polyurethane half. However I would look at either buying the stain & polyurethane separately or another brand of stain & poly combo.

If you like this, please check out my new site with more like this at Old Country Love!


Triple Thick {Review}

Update: I have been working on my sewing area {trying to expand to an office/work area and had a chance to use this on my new DIY desk. After giving the whole thing a very thick coat I was left with wood rougher than 120 sandpaper. I definitely will not be using this on any future projects…and I still have a third of the quart left.

I am always on the hunt to find products that make my projects go easier. On one of my previous trips to Menards I stumbled upon Varathane Triple Thick Polyurethane.


It  boasts the capability of 3 coats of varnish in 1.

I tested it out on 2 different kinds of projects to see if I would love it or not. The first project is a faux beam that we put in our present bedroom {I say present because next year we plan on starting our addition}; the second is our dresser. I started applying the water based varnish with a foam brush and quickly realized that was going to be a no {looked like the new foam brush was disintegrating}. Then I switched to one of my nicer brushes {technically for paint but the varnish is water based and came right out.} The consistency was like a stripper, so it was kind of interesting.

The faux beam consists of 2 2×6’s that equal to about 14′-15′. I’m not totally sure how long it is, I can never remember. I stained the 2x’s in kona using my sock rag method. I had thought of sanding some of the kona off, but didn’t remember that until I had already started varnishing it. The triple thick poly went on really well on the beam and gave me just the right coverage.

The dresser was painted, in Valspar “Country Lake”…which I love! Now technically the poly did not say whether or not you could use it on painted wood {just said stained wood}, so this was definitely a “lets pray it works” scenario. I ended up putting 2 coats on the dresser since I did that project first and wasn’t quite sure how thick I should apply it.

Things I noticed about the Triple Thick Polyurethane by Varathane:

  1. It dried VERY fast! Which is okay if you use a thick layer.
  2. It shows a lot of streaks on painted surfaces. Now again the can never says it can be applied to painted wood. I also think if a thick coat is applied to a light or more neutral color it would not be as bad.
  3. There were no runs at all on vertical surfaces. Loved that!

I loved how nice and easy it was to use on the beam! I will definitely be using it on stained surfaces in the house. I did not love how it looked on the painted wood. I believe I will be giving the dresser a light sanding and getting some spray varnish.