Colored Car Wax—Does it Really Work?

Colored car wax can help cover micro-scratches, but it’s not necessarily any better than regular car wax.
Written by Sarah Williams
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
Colored car wax may seem like an affordable solution for filling in scratches on your car, but in reality, regular car wax will usually do the trick. 
In some cases—black wax on a black car, for example—it is possible to notice an improvement using colored wax. But given the number of paint colors out there, it can be difficult to find a colored wax that matches your paint close enough to make a difference. 
If you’re looking to cover up scratches in your car, it’s good to understand the differences between regular and colored wax, how to wax your car, and how to remove scratches.
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With this peace of mind, you can focus on taking care of scratches and dings. Below, we’re answering all of your questions about colored car wax.
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Does colored car wax work? 

The purpose of car wax is to protect and enhance your paint. Color-tinted car wax will accomplish this on micro-scratches just the same as regular wax, but it’s designed to match the color of your car. Ideally, colored car wax helps camouflage scratches, but in reality, it is often difficult to find a wax color that matches your car’s paint color exactly.
Because of this, many retailers have focused on selling black- and white-colored waxes, since these are usually easier to match. 
In most cases, the difference between regular and colored wax is indiscernible. 

Does colored wax hide scratches?

While colored car wax will help to hide micro-scratches, anything larger will need alternative solutions. Deep scratches, for example, require the use of paint. 
If you’re working with a black or white car, you’re more likely to find an exact color match and see the benefits of colored wax. Otherwise, a regular wax should do the trick.  
Key Takeaway Unless you have a white or black vehicle, regular car wax is all you need to help cover up scratches. 

Colored wax vs. regular wax 

Colored wax

Colored car wax is made using color additives to match popular car paint colors. Originally, sellers produced a wide variety of colors on the market. Today, however, the industry has cut back to primarily selling the two most popular colors: black and white. 

Regular wax 

Car wax is an effective way to fill and cover minor scratches while creating a clean, reflective surface. Not only does it enhance the current condition of your car, but it conceals many small imperfections. It also provides protection against the elements
Waxing your car is an important part of
routine car maintenance
, particularly if you live in a harsher climate. 
MORE: Does car insurance cover weather damage? 

How to wax your car

To maintain your car and protect it against the elements, it’s important to wax it routinely (every three to four months). 
Regardless of which wax you decided to use, follow these steps for best results:
  1. Wash your car—this prevents further scratches by removing debris. 
  2. Dry the car with soft cotton fabrics. This will help to create a beautiful shine for your finished product. 
  3. Decontaminate your paint using a
    clay bar
  4. Remove previous wax with a microfiber cloth—microfiber is lint-free, soft, and absorbent.
  5. Apply the wax, but be careful to avoid the windows, rubber trims, glass, etc. These stains will be difficult to remove. 
  6. Follow the instructions on your particular wax—each wax will have different parameters for when/how to apply it. For example, most waxes are easiest to use in a shaded area, but some can be used in direct sunlight. 
Key Takeaway Waxing your car every three to four months not only helps protect it from the elements but keeps it looking great. The harsher the climate, the more frequently you should be waxing your car. 

Tips for removing scratches 

Most people turn to colored car wax to remove scratches from their car. Removing scratches as quickly as possible prevents them from getting worse, leading to rust and rot. 
While colored car wax will work for micro-scratches, here are some tips for getting both light and deep scratches out. 

Light scratches

Start by thoroughly washing your car. Once you have a clean panel, take a close look at the scratches. If you can catch the paint on your fingernail, you are working with a deep scratch. If the scratches are light, apply toothpaste to a soft, damp cloth. 
Once the toothpaste has been applied, buff the scratches in a circular motion with steady, firm pressure. All that’s left is one more wash and a good wax. Here is where you can incorporate your colored car wax to finish the job. 

Deep scratches 

The only way to get rid of deep scratches is with paint, and the easiest way to do this is with a paint touch-up kit
This is a fairly involved process, so depending on how much time you are willing to invest, it may be worth looking into a
car body repair quote
. If you are up for the challenge, check out our article on
removing scratches
for detailed instructions. 
Key Takeaway Use car wax—colored or regular—for micro-scratches. For light scratches, you can use toothpaste, but deep scratches require paint. 

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One of the best ways to protect your car is with good car insurance. While the process of finding the best deal may seem like a headache, it doesn’t need to be. 
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Some top recommendations for colored car wax brands are Turtle Wax Color Cure, Meguiar’s Color X, Dodo Juice Orange Crush Soft Wax, and Dodo Juice Purple Haze Soft Wax. Keep in mind that the color of the car, the durability of the wax, and other factors should be taken into account when making your decision.
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