Osmo is manufactured in Germany by a timber company that began life as a sawmill in 1878.  The company expanded into producing a wide range of finished timber products including flooring, bench tops, decking, garden fencing, and kit homes.  These all required a durable finish and the owners were dissatisfied with cracking and peeling lacquers even back in the 1960's. 

This motive was the drive to create a better finishing system and led to extensive research and development, and then the opening of the Osmo Color facility.  Osmo is the only timber product manufacturer which completes its product range with surface finishes that are developed and produced in house.

Enduring Beauty from Oils and Waxes

Wood is a natural material and the cell structure can take on and release moisture – it breathes (similar to our skin).  To ensure that this moisture exchange is not prevented, Osmo created finishes especially suited to the nature of wood.  Osmo natural wood finishes are based on oils and waxes.  The oil penetrates into the wood surface, protecting the wood from deep within.  The waxes form an elastic, microporous surface which protects the wood from external moisture and abrasion.  The wood remains naturally beautiful, protected and durable.

The Osmo Polyx® Hardwax Oil surface is extremely tough and hard-wearing. It is water-repellent and dirt-resistant. The finish is resistant to wine, beer, cola, coffee, tea, fruit juices, milk and water, when dry according to DIN 68861 – 1C (German Industrial Norm). Dirt can easily be removed without trace. Retreating worn or damaged areas is easy. Just clean and re-treat worn areas: No sanding, no repair marks, no removal of previous Polyx® Hardwax Oil finish.

Osmo Polyx® Hardwax Oil is based on natural oils (sunflower, soya, linseed and thistle oil) and hard waxes (carnauba and candellila wax). It is micro-porous and does not crack, flake, peel or blister. Therefore, it is an ideal treatment even in rooms with high humidity.  Osmo products are produced on a base of carefully refined plant oils and waxes. The surface is safe for humans, animals and plants when dry (suitable for children's toys acc. to EN 71.3).

Polyx Oil is easy to apply. Polyx Oil is a penetrating finish, not a surface film like polyurethane. It is as durable as polyurethane but preserves the look and feel of natural wood, rather than masking it with plastic.

 OSMO Advantages

Other finishes - Comparison


  • Apply a very thin layer. More is not better – less is better.
  • Work it into the timber. Do not paint it on, as you will apply too much.
  • Never let the finish puddle or build.
  • If in doubt, put on less.
  • Apply first coat, and allow to dry. Then apply a second coat. Do not apply the second coat until the first coat has dried.


*** Avoid the use of all-purpose cleaners as these will damage the finish ***

Wood surfaces treated with Polyx®-Oil are easy to maintain. To clean, add Osmo Wash and Care concentrate to water and clean the surface with a damp (not wet!) cloth. When it is necessary to refresh and clean more intensively, use Osmo Liquid Wax Cleaner. If a higher gloss level is desired, after thoroughly drying apply Osmo Liquid Wax Cleaner thinly and polish when dry. The Osmo Maintenance Kit can be purchased from various suppliers and contains the Osmo Liquid Wax Cleaner and the Osmo Wash and Care.

If the signs of wear and tear are more substantial, the damaged / worn timber section can be re-treated with Osmo Polyx® Oil.


  • How do I prepare the wood surface for using Osmo?

Ensure you use a product suitable for type of wood applying to. Wood surface must be clean, dry and raw (moisture content max. 20%). Clean or slightly sand any old microporous finishes and remove any old varnishes by sanding. Sand carefully prior to application starting with coarse paper - final sanding for flooring P100-150, furniture P180-240. Remove dust etc. thoroughly from the surface before application.

  • Can I use Osmo finishes on top of other finishes?

We recommend applying Osmo finishes onto a clean, dry and raw wood surface for first application for best results possible. We recommend cleaning or slightly sanding any old microporous finishes such as oils or waxes. But, varnish or lacquers must be fully sanded as these types of finishes can block the penetration of the Osmo finishes. Small cracks, larger dents and small holes in the wood can be filled using Osmo Woodfiller. Sand carefully before application starting with a coarse paper, final sanding for flooring P100-150, for furniture P180-240. Remove any dust thoroughly from the surface before application using a vacuum cleaner and apply the Osmo finish accordingly.

  • What would happen if I did use Osmo over another finish?

It is likely that the old finish will slow down or block the penetration of the Osmo finish. This could cause extended drying times, as well as creating a sticky or tacky wood surface. Also, if there is excess oil or wax on the surface of the wood then the surface can easily be scratched. To rectify this, we would recommend using white spirit and a cloth to help the finish penetrate and also remove any excess. If this does not resolve the problem then sanding is necessary and re-application onto a clean, dry and raw wood surface.

  • How do I apply the finish?

For our general range of products such as Osmo Polyx Oil or Osmo UV Protection Oil - apply thinly and evenly along the wood grain with either an Osmo Natural Bristle Brush or the Osmo Microfibre Roller, and spread well. The floor / table tops / bench tops can be buffed using a white pad to assist drying and even out the finish. Allow for good ventilation whilst drying. Once dry, apply a second coat as before. For the renovation of Osmo finishes, generally only one coat is required.

  • Can I apply any more than two coats?

We do not recommend applying any more than the necessary two coats. Wood is porous and the Osmo products are designed to penetrate into these pores. A maximum of two coats is recommended and a third or any further coats will likely fail to penetrate, causing extended drying times and/or tacky surfaces. This can also cause the surface to scratch easily.

  • What is the drying and curing time?

Polyx Oil Original has a drying time of approx 8-10 hours between coats. Polyx Oil Rapid has a drying time of approx 4-6 hours between coats. Osmo Polyx Oil 2K (dries and cures within 4 hours).  Lower temperatures and/or high humidity can increase the drying time. The full curing time for these products is approx. 28 days, however the surface can be used after 2-3 days. During the curing period, we do not recommend heavy traffic, use of water or detergents on the surface for cleaning, or covering the surface with something like carpet of cardboard.

  • Can I speed up the drying time?

Osmo finishes need to be able to dry naturally by oxidation. Opening the windows and doors to provide additional ventilation will help the airflow required. Lower temperatures can extend the drying times while higher temperatures can speed up the drying time, however we do not recommend doing this because it is likely that the finish will dry on top of the wood surface rather than naturally penetrating into the wood.

  • What happens if I damage part of my timber?

Unlike many of the traditional lacquers, damaged areas on timber treated with our products can be sanded and re-treated with the same products without any visible brush marks. To repair damaged areas it is possible to re-apply Osmo Polyx Oil, after sanding the affected area only. Cordon off the damaged area using masking tape. Evenly sand the cordoned surface, then apply a thin coat of Osmo Polyx Oil using a microfibre roller (contained in the Osmo Floor Roller Set) evenly to the surface. When dry apply a second thin coat. Due to sanding the damaged surface area, the woods natural (lighter) colour may again be visible. Don't worry - the difference will balance out over time.


    The location of your furniture can affect its longevity. Placing furniture where it can touch external walls can create moisture build-up, and placing it too close to radiators, heaters and gas or wood fires can increase the risk of scorching damage or discolouration. Sharp objects such as buckles, rings and even the claws of your pets can tear, scratch or break the furniture. Protect from direct sunlight and rotate reversible cushions at regular intervals. Vacuum cushions weekly on low suction and take care with surfaces.


The information above is taken from the following sources; -