10 Best Water Based Wood Varnish in 2022 – [Top Picks]

We are reader-supported. When you buy through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate percentage.

Are you looking for the best water based wood varnish? We’ve got you covered! We did hours of research and analyzed numerous online databases, forums, and real user reviews to find the top products.

You can trust that these products are made of top-quality materials and have received high ratings from users. Let’s view our top picks.

EDITOR'S CHOICE
Varathane 200061H Water-Based Ultimate Polyurethane, 8 Fl Oz (Pack of 1), Gloss Finish
  • Protects indoor wood surfaces such as furniture, windows, cabinets, trim and more
  • Water based formula dries fast and cleans up with soap and water
  • Dries to the touch in 30 minutes with coverage up to 31.25 sq. ft., recoat after 2 hours
  • Durable formula provides outstanding stain and scratch resistance with excellent clarity
  • Gloss finish creates a polished and clean look

Top 10 Water Based Wood Varnish – [Highly Rated]


10 Best Water Based Wood Varnish – [Editor’s Recommendations]

OUR #1 PICK
Varathane 200061H Water-Based Ultimate Polyurethane, 8 Fl Oz (Pack of 1), Gloss Finish
  • Protects indoor wood surfaces such as furniture, windows, cabinets, trim and more
  • Water based formula dries fast and cleans up with soap and water
  • Dries to the touch in 30 minutes with coverage up to 31.25 sq. ft., recoat after 2 hours
  • Durable formula provides outstanding stain and scratch resistance with excellent clarity
  • Gloss finish creates a polished and clean look
14% OffOUR #2 PICK
Minwax Helmsman Water Based Spar Urethane, Quart, Gloss
  • PROTECTIVE CLEAR FINISH – Minwax Helmsman Water Based Spar Urethane is a crystal clear wood finish that is specially formulated to protect against nature’s toughest conditions.
  • EFFECTIVE YEAR ROUND – This wood varnish forms a protective barrier against rain and moisture to protect your projects and keep them looking their best. Special oils allow the finish to expand & contract with the wood as seasons and temperatures change.
  • VERSATILE – Ideal for use on doors, windows, trim, bathroom cabinets, bar tops, kitchen countertops, outdoor furniture and more. It’s a versatile water-based spar urethane that dries quickly and cleans up easily with warm water.
  • GLOSS FINISH – Give your wood projects a sleek finish with this gloss clear varnish. It not only protects the natural beauty of the wood, but offers a shiny, sleek sheen for a modern look. It’s ideal for use over light colored woods and stains.
  • A BRAND YOU CAN TRUST – Minwax is America’s leading brand of wood finishing and wood care products. Since 1904, we have been inspiring consumers to Keep on Finishing. We offer consumers a complete line of products to meet every wood finishing need.
OUR #3 PICK
SamaN Interior Water Based Satin Varnish with Aluminum Oxide – Crystal Clear Wood Finish (Matte Flat)
  • 20 YEARS OF NORTH-AMERICAN EXCELLENCE: SamaN is the preferred choice of professional woodworkers and DIYers all over the USA. SamaN is a green and innovative manufacturer that strives to make woodwork maintenance products. The company promotes the integration of people with intellectual disabilities or pervasive development disorder into one of its departments.
  • HIGH QUALITY VARNISH: SamaN Interior Water Based Varnish is more than twice as durable as Traditional water based finishes.
  • SAFE TO USE PRODUCT: Rinse free, phosphate free, no harmful side effects, risk free for health of the users, pets and the environment
  • EASY TO USE & CLEAN: It’s super simple to use for a first-timer on almost any wood surface without requiring any pro tools. SamaN Interior Water Based Varnish makes it safe and quick to clean after use on furniture, moldings, wood paneling and cabinets.
  • DURABLE CRYSTAL CLEAR FINISH: The self-leveling and non-yellowing formula dries fast in a crystal clear finish.
OUR #4 PICK
TotalBoat-497712 Halcyon Marine Varnish (Gloss, Quart) | Water-Based Polyurethane Wood Finish | Clear Gloss UV Protection for Interior and Outdoor Use
  • DURABLE MARINE-GRADE VARNISH cures to a hard gloss or satin finish for beautiful brightwork; for interior and exterior use on wood trim, toerails, cockpits, doors, cabinets, chairs, outdoor furniture and more - on your boat or at home
  • PROTECTS AGAINST DAMAGE FROM SUN AND WEATHER: Provides superior sun-blocking protection and maximum resistance to salt, abrasion and scratches; excellent adhesion and flexibility let wood expand & contract naturally, without cracking or peeling
  • EASY TO APPLY, EASY TO CLEAN UP: Spar urethane is easy to apply by brushing, rolling or spraying; looks milky-white at first, but cures to a clear or clear amber color, depending on formula; for a satin finish, use gloss for build coats and satin for finish coat; easy soap & water cleanup
  • FINISH VARNISH JOBS FASTER: Dries fast so you can finish faster than with traditional varnishes; apply up to 5 coats in a day, no sanding between coats; apply at least 2-4 heavy coats for interior applications; 4-6 coats for exterior applications
  • CHOOSE FINISH AND COLOR: Gloss finish comes in Clear or Amber colors; Satin finish comes in Clear only; Kit Sizes: Pint, Quart and 4 Quart; Coverage: 40-50 sq ft/pint; 80-100 sq ft/quart; NOTE: Halcyon Satin is not available in a 4 Quart kit
OUR #5 PICK
Rust-Oleum 250241H Ultimate Spar Urethane Water Based, Quart, Satin Finish
  • Durable, poly for outdoor wood surfaces such as furniture, doors, windows, fences, trim and more
  • water based formula is easy to apply and cleans up with soap and water
  • Dries to the touch in 30 minutes and covers up to 87 sq. ft. per quart, recoat after 2 hours
  • supports the Weather and UV , top coat does not yellow and helps against natural elements
  • Crystal clear, satin finish provides a classic and natural look
7% OffOUR #6 PICK
Rust-Oleum 250041H Ultimate Spar Urethane Water Based, Quart, Gloss Finish
  • Durable, protective poly for outdoor wood surfaces such as furniture, doors, windows, fences, trim and more
  • Low odor, water based formula is easy to apply and cleans up with soap and water
  • Dries to the touch in 30 minutes and covers up to 87 sq. ft. per quart, recoat after 2 hours
  • Weather and UV resistant top coat does not yellow and protects against mold and mildew
  • Crystal clear, gloss finish creates a polished and clean look
OUR #7 PICK
PolySeal Water Based Polyurethane Acrylic Interior Wood Varnish - 5 Gallon - Amber Satin
  • Seals the wood pores and helps maintain an allergy free environment
  • Adds depth and clarity to the wood grain
  • Scrub and mar resistant
  • User Friendly – Easy to apply
  • Soap and water cleanup
OUR #8 PICK
DeckGeneral - Downstream Injectable Deck Stripper 4167 - Water-Based Alkaline Wood Stain Remover - for Stripping Paint, Varnish, Sealer & Stain from Patios, Fences & Outdoor Furniture - 5 Gallon Pail
  • DOWNSTREAM INJECTABLE DECK STRIPPER 4167: An eco-friendly, downstream injectable deck stripper formulated for fast and easy wood stain removal. Vanquish hard to remove sealer, varnish, or paint faster than a traditional deck stripper. This alkaline cleaner works as a powerful solvent to remove even the most stubborn oil, latex, clear coats, waterproofers and more!
  • MULTI-PURPOSE SOLUTION: Not just for patios and decks, use to strip wood surfaces anywhere outside. Our downstream injectable Deck Stripper works excellent on fences, siding, and outdoor furniture. DeckGeneral's industrial-grade multisurface solution restores and preps wood for restaining, sealing, painting, or varnishing in minutes!
  • SAFE AND ECO-FRIENDLY: Our water-based deck stripper is safe, reliable, and potent. Unlike other stain strippers that require laborious effort on your part, and have harsh, toxic chemicals, our low-VOC non-toxic formula takes less energy, is eco-friendly, and skin-safe. This biodegradable, spray-on solution will work without breaking your back or harming your grass and plants!
  • EASY, DAMAGE-FREE REMOVAL: DeckGeneral's stain stripper makes deck restoration a breeze without damaging the wood! Designed to be used as-is in a downstream injector, spray surface, allow 5 to 10 minutes for the solution to react with the surface, and then rinse the wood in the direction of the grain. Allow to dry to reveal the renewed surface beneath that is ready for restaining or varnishing.
  • DECKGENERAL GUARANTEE: Offering a full range of premium quality, professional deck & wood cleaning products and supplies, General Chemical Corp. has been solving your toughest cleaning problems since 1980! Many professional deck cleaning companies have switched to our non-corrosive products because of their expert cleaning results. Give us a try!
OUR #9 PICK
Rust-Oleum 200241H Water-Based Ultimate Polyurethane, Quart, Satin Finish
  • Protects indoor wood surfaces such as furniture, windows, cabinets, trim and more
  • Water based formula dries fast and cleans up with soap and water
  • Dries to the touch in 30 minutes with coverage up to 125 sq. ft., recoat after 2 hours
  • Durable formula provides outstanding stain and scratch resistance with excellent clarity
  • Satin finish provides a classic and natural look
OUR #10 PICK
Minwax 33333000 Polycrylic Protective Finish Spray for Wood, Clear Satin, 11.5 oz. Aerosol Can
  • PROTECT WOOD SURFACES – Minwax Polycrylic Protective Finish Spray protects even hard to reach spaces and adds beauty to interior wood projects. The clear top coat spray can is easy to use and protects against scratches, dirt and more.
  • CRYSTAL CLEAR FINISH THAT LASTS – The crystal clear finish offered in this wood protection spray is ideal for use over all Minwax Oil-Based and Water-Based Stains and colors, as well as all wood species including light woods like maple, ash and birch.
  • SATIN SHEEN – Give your wood projects a sleek finish with a satin clear varnish. It not only protects the natural beauty of the wood, but offers an attractive, classic sheen for a modern and subtle look. It’s also non-yellowing, non-ambering and low odor.
  • ULTRA FAST DRYING – Get more done with this protective poly coating. It’s a fast-drying clear sealer spray, which allows for quick recoats after 1 hour, letting you get projects done faster.
  • EASY CLEAN UP – This water-based wood finish allows for easy soap and water clean-up, so you don’t have to stress about spills and big messes.

Final Words

We hope you found our research on the best water based wood varnish helpful. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us, and we’ll be happy to answer them.

EDITOR'S CHOICE
Varathane 200061H Water-Based Ultimate Polyurethane, 8 Fl Oz (Pack of 1), Gloss Finish
  • Protects indoor wood surfaces such as furniture, windows, cabinets, trim and more
  • Water based formula dries fast and cleans up with soap and water
  • Dries to the touch in 30 minutes with coverage up to 31.25 sq. ft., recoat after 2 hours
  • Durable formula provides outstanding stain and scratch resistance with excellent clarity
  • Gloss finish creates a polished and clean look