What’s the best way to use oil for finishing pieces of driftwood? Some pieces will be indoors and others outside.
Oiling is an excellent way for woodworkers to finish driftwood since it’s so easy to work into nooks and crannies. The right kind of oil also protects and enhances the wood without giving it an unnatural, sealed-in-plastic look that you might get from varnish. For outdoor use, I recommend an exterior finishing oil. I’ve used Minwax Teak Oil personally and it works very well. Apply it with a brush, working it into all surfaces. There probably won’t be any excess oil remaining on the surface since driftwood is so thirsty, but if surface liquid does remain after 30 minutes, wipe it off with a rag. Repeat the process again a couple of days later.
You can use the same product for indoor driftwood, though you’ll get faster drying time with Wipe-On Poly. This is a very thin viscosity urethane that goes on just like oil, but dries harder. Several coats of Wipe-On Poly create a very attractive surface sheen, especially on the burnished and worn surface of driftwood.