Do you have a piece of furniture that you want to stain? Not sure how to stain and seal wood? Try these simple steps for beautiful results with this easy step-by-step tutorial.

Are you craving a rich stain for your next project? Dixie Belle Paint Company offers two fantastic options!

  • VooDoo Gel Stain: This water-based formula is perfect for easy application and cleanup. It comes in a variety of stunning colors to match your vision.
  • No Pain Gel Stain: An oil-based stain that provides deep, luxurious coverage. It boasts a beautiful color selection to enhance your project.
Dixie Belle Paint Company fan deck of Gel Stain

Recently, we had a family room added to our basement. The railings leading to the basement area were dinky and painted white. We updated them with beautiful thick wood railings. The contractor left them unstained. This way, we could stain them to save money.

Unfinished Hand Railings attached to the wall.

Dixie Bell makes it easy to tackle this project with a few simple steps. Their No Pain Gel Stain is an oil-based gel stain that provides deep and rich coverage on wooden surfaces.  No Pain Gel Stain will provide a variety of looks to your furniture. It allows the beauty of the natural wood grain to shine through. 

What I love about this stain is it can be applied with a lint-free cloth, paintbrush, or applicator pad. It provides deep and full coverage for your furniture or wood project. Did you know Dixie Belle’s stains can be used on unpainted or painted surfaces?

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Dixie Belle Paint Company Applicator Pads (2 pack), a jar of Gator Hide and can of No Pain Gel Stain in Walnut.

DIY Wood Staining & Sealing: Simple Steps for Beautiful Results

Do you think staining wood is complicated? Think again! Here are simple steps in this easy step-by-step tutorial. It will show you how to achieve beautiful results, and using the right products makes the process a breeze.

1. Sanding

Start by sanding your unfinished wood with 120-grit sandpaper, always sand in the direction of the grain. First, you need to give the surface a light sanding. Why? It helps to open the grain of the wood to receive the stain.

Next, you should take a tack cloth to wipe down my surface to remove any dust from the surface. You want a nice clean surface.

2. Apply Stain

To begin, ensure your lid is on your can of stain. Hold the can and give it a good shake. Open the can and stir the stain with a paint stirred or plastic spoon or knife.

It is important to put on some rubber or plastic gloves. You do not want to stain your skin. Add some of the stains onto a paper plate.

What is the best way to apply wood stain? Using a lint-free rag or cloth applicator pad is one of the best ways to apply wood stain. You can have greater control over the amount of stain being applied. It helps to remove any excess gel stain as well.

I prefer to use a cloth applicator pad. It allows me more control over the stain and provides a beautiful even coat on the surface.

Simple steps: 1) Dip your staining pad into the stain; 2) Run your pad along the direction of the grain of the wood; and 3) You can flip the pad over to wipe off an access stain.

Pick up more stain onto your pad and wipe working over the bare wood until the entire rail is covered.

Applying stain going with the grain of the wood.

It is always best to start with a small amount of stain. Remember you can apply more depending on the shade you want to achieve.

Brindle French Bulldog sits at the top of the stairs watching her owner work on a project.

Do you get the feeling of being watched? With ears perked and silhouetted against the light, Piper takes on the air of a giant bat perched atop the stairs! Oh my goodness, this photo makes me laugh. Piper is never far from my side and loves to watch me work on projects.

3. Allow To Dry

Dixie Belle’s No Pain Gel stain is oil-based. It will require additional drying time. The dry time for the stain will be 6-7 hours. It will take 21-30 days for the stain to cure.

Do I need two coats of stain? It depends on the color you are trying to achieve. Two coats of stain will depend on how dark you want your color.

When the walnut stain dried, it was too light. The final coat of gel stain was Espresso.

The No Pain Gel Stain in Espresso was perfect over the Walnut to deepen the stain. Two coats of Espresso may have been too dark for what we were trying to achieve.

You must wait 72 hours. Then you can apply a second coat to make it darker.

4. Protect and Seal

Do you have to seal the wood after staining? Do these simple steps to add protection. If you do not seal the wood, the grains of the wood are porous and will be compromised by dirt, grease, etc.

What to use to seal it? Dixie Belle’s Gator Hide is great to use to seal this project. Why? Gator Hide will make the surface water repellent. It is a great product if you are sealing a table or items used outside. Our railing will get lots of use. Gator Hide will protect that added protection we need on the surface.

5. Clean Up

Have you tried Scrubby Soap? Oh, my words, this soap is amazing and smells incredible. We have a bar at our kitchen sink, and one in the garage by the sink. It is great to use on your hands to clean up from working on projects.

Ditch the harsh chemicals and discover the power of nature’s cleaning magic with Dixie Belle Paint Company’s Scrubby Soap!

This innovative bar is made entirely from biodegradable, all-natural oils. Forget about synthetic detergents – Scrubby Soap relies on the power of citrus oils to tackle dirt, grease, oil, and even paint!

The built-in scrubber adds extra muscle for a thorough clean, making it perfect for hands and artist’s paintbrushes.

Pro Tips:

  • Recommend testing the stain first in an inconspicuous area for your project.
  • Apply stain and wipe back any excess.

The Finished Project

Basement railing stained using a dark stain to match the stairs.

Dixie Belle Paint Company’s No Pain Gel Stain in Walnut and Espresso made it easy to complete this project. The stain is superior and gives the project a quality finish.

The simple steps and tips mentioned in the post, here are a few other things to keep in mind:

  • If you’re staining a large surface area, it may be helpful to work in sections. This will help to prevent the stain from drying too quickly and becoming uneven.
  • Always apply stain in the direction of the wood grain.
  • For a more distressed look, you can sand lightly after applying the first coat of stain.
  • Be sure to clean your brushes and applicators thoroughly after use.

You May Enjoy

Congratulations! You’ve now learned how to stain and seal wood railings like a pro. With a little time and effort, you can completely transform your railings and give your home a fresh, updated look. Remember, the key to a successful staining project is proper preparation. Take your time sanding the railings to ensure a smooth finish, and don’t be afraid to experiment with different stain colors to find the perfect one for your space.

I hope this blog post inspired you to tackle your next staining project. With a little practice, you’ll be staining wood like a pro in no time! Have an amazing day, sweet friend!

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    1. Jennifer, you will love it. It is very easy to use. This is my second project using the stains and very pleased with the outcome and the ease of using it.

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