The Best Car Polishes In 2023

Last updated: Today

Erin Carpenter

Top 5 Best Car Polishes 2023:

  1. CarGuys Hybrid Polish And Sealant
  2. Nu Finish Liquid Polish
  3. 3M Perfect-It Machine Polish (06064)
  4. Meguiar’s G19220 Ultimate Polish
  5. Turtle Wax T-465R ICE Paste Polish Wax

What is the first thing you think about when you hear the words “car polish”?

We bet it’s the showroom sparkle.

But we would like to note that car polish plays a significant role in maintaining the exterior of your car intact.

Yes, it makes your car shiny, but you should not neglect its ability to form a protective coating on top of the wax. We are all aware that car paint deteriorates since it is continually exposed to weather conditions. 

To prevent that and avoid visiting professional detailers every time you see a new scratch, consider investing money in the best car polish.

If you are ready to convert the grime into gloss, this piece will walk you through everything you need to know.

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5 Best Car Polishes In 2023: Detailed Reviews

1. CarGuys Hybrid Polish And Sealant – Strike The Fine Balance

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This brand is well known for their high-quality products that will offer you great performance every time. The polish comes in the form of a spray product for a more convenient application.

The hybrid formula is smooth, and it is made from synthetic polymers that will provide a protective and hydrophobic self-sealing coating on your car’s surface. The carnauba waxing in the formula will enhance the natural color and gloss of your vehicle and make it glisten like the day you bought it.

Let’s be honest; this product won’t provide you with the most durable nor the best looking finish coat since it will not be able to cover more severe scratches. If you want to be sure your paint job will last for a long time, you need a product with UV protection, and fortunately for you, this is the one.

The application is effortless, considering this product comes in a spray pump and includes a microfiber towel. It is safe to use with materials like rubber, plastic, chrome, fiberglass, metal, and paint. All you need to do is spray it on and wipe it off, and in no more than fifteen minutes, you are done.

Also, you can use it to polish any household item that is made from these materials, making it very cost-efficient and versatile no matter that the price is a bit high. The polish is suitable for use after every car wash, and it comes in an 18 oz. bottle, so depending on your washing schedule, it can last you in a range from three to six months.


  • Easy application
  • Excellent glossy finish
  • Hybrid self-sealing formula with was and synthetic polymers
  • Provides UV protection


  • Pricey
  • Not suitable for cars with damaged paint

2. Meguiar’s G19220 Ultimate Polish – Mirror-like Reflection For Dark Colored Cars

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Meguiar’s is one of the most prominent brands amongst the car enthusiast. This particular car polish belongs to the group of liquid products.

It has a rich SMAT formula that consists of premium quality conditioning oils, so if it’s applied correctly, it will leave a perfect hi-gloss finish on your car, and it will also deepen the color. The fine swirls and traces of the towel will not be visible on the surface of the car after this product.

Correct application is crucial when it comes to car polishes. We know that some products are a living nightmare to apply, but luckily for you, this product is liquid, smooth, and soft.You can easily apply it with hands and a buffer, but make sure you do it in the shade on a clean car. Be aware that it will dry very quickly, so you will have some hard time buffing if you are not fast enough.

As we said, this is a liquid polish, so if your car is full of scratches, this polish is not suitable for you, especially if you plan to use it on its own without applying Meguiar’s Ultimate Compound. We found out that this product is a perfect base foundation for the wax coating.

If you decide to purchase it, you will get 16 oz. of an excellent product for a reasonable price. This polish is not suitable for use on the matte and satin paints, vinyl, rubber, and plastic.


  • Conditioning color
  • Hi-gloss finish
  • Eliminates swirls and towel marks
  • Great as a base for wax


  • Dries very quickly so it can be hard for buffing
  • Requires using the compound to remove scratches

3. 3M Perfect-It Machine Polish (06064) – Highest Performing Polish

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If you tend to achieve professional results when polishing your car, then you need a professional product. This liquid car polish is answering your demands.

The SMAT formula is easy to handle and will allow you to polish your car with ease since it is designed not to cling a lot. After you finish applying, the paint will have a deeper gloss and enhanced reflection. It features formula so smooth that even the black cars will have a flawless hi-gloss finish. The swirl marks are history when using 3M Perfect-It Machine Polish.

This polish is a liquid type, and it is designed to be used with a polisher for the best result. Of course, this does not mean you can’t use it by hand, but you can’t expect the same finish gloss. It is best to be used in small amounts on smaller surfaces at the time to prevent stains, considering how quickly it dries off.

Although this is liquid polish, it does a pretty good job in covering scratches, but for deeper imperfections, you must use the suitable compounds, or it won’t be camouflaged at all.

We are aware this is a high priced product, but let us explain to you why. So we already said it is a professional graded product, but did we mention that it features high-concentrated formula? This means that the formula will reduce the amount of product you need to get the job done. 

Considering it comes in a 32 oz. bottle, this product is cost-efficient no matter how high its price is.


  • Provides professional results
  • Works well with all paint colors
  • Provide deeper gloss
  • Eliminates swirls


  • Expensive
  • Must be used with compound for more serious scratches

4. Turtle Wax T-465R ICE Paste Polish Wax – Magnifies Paint Reflectivity

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This is the only paste polish on our list. It won’t provide you with professional performance, but it will offer you a solid quality finish for your car.

The formula is a mix of synthetic waxes and silicone polymers, so it is reasonably strong, but there is a lot of space for improvement. The end result is a smooth, silky, and incredibly bright car. It’s infused with UV protection that will prevent the sun from damaging your paint. Also, you can use it in direct sunlight without worrying about it drying too quickly.

The paste polish contains a bit more harsh abrasive components, so it will give you a fuller finish and will cover the scratches way better compared to spray and liquid products. 

That being said, you must know it requires more skills during the application and removing process. You can safely apply it to rubber, chrome, and plastic since it is not harmful to them.

The application is relatively easy when using the Turtle Wax Applicator, which unfortunately does not come included in the pack. Apply it on one section at a time and use a damp microfiber towel to buff it down well. After this, use the new microfiber towel to buff lightly and remove the remains of the product.

It comes in a pack of 8 oz. which will be enough considering it is recommended only to apply a fresh coat of paste before each season.


  • Features UV protection
  • Comes in the form of a paste
  • Includes silicone polymers and synthetic wax
  • Provides a brilliant finish
  • Can be used on direct sunlight


  • Hard to remove remains
  • The applicator is not included
  • Requires more skills when applying and buffing

5. Nu Finish Liquid Polish – A True Multitasker

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We can say with ease that this liquid polish is our favorite. It will offer you a great shiny finish, durable protection layer, and an excellent price.

The specially designed formula has a very mild abrasive effect that it can be used on plastic, rubber, metal, paint, and fiberglass. Meaning the versatility of this product is fantastic; you can use it to polish cars, planes, boats, and any other household item that is made from materials we just listed.

The formula contains a zinc polymer emulsion instead of wax. This emulsion uses cross-linking bonds to build a protective coat that will also provide a great hi-gloss. It is very smooth, so you will be able to apply it to your car with ease, but you must expect that removing the polish from the surface is a bit more complicated.  

The polish can be used even when the paint is hot, and you are exposed to direct sunlight. That also means the preparatory wash must be thorough, and you can’t use it on the car with damaged paint since it will bond to the scratch and turn it white.

When not appropriately applied, this product is prone to leaving twirls on the surface of the car, particularly visible on the vehicles with the white finishes. We recommend you to work on small surfaces one at the time, and avoid using it in the garage or any other closed space; given it will saturate the air around you and form unpleasant odor.


  • Affordable and versatile
  • Easy to apply
  • Features zinc-polymer emulsion
  • Provides a shiny finish
  • Can be used in sunlight


  • Not suitable for damaged paint
  • Not so easy to remove from the surface

Key Features To Consider Before Buying A Car Polish

To avoid spending money on a car polish that will be absolutely useless in your case, we enlisted all the features you need to examine before making a hard decision. 

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1. Formula

This depends on your car paint job. Some types of car polishes come in pure form without added silicone, waxes, nor any other kind of additive. Always use wax and sealant after using this kind of car polish. Other products are all-in-one formulas with a combination of polish and wax.

But if you want a better visual effect and better protection, in the end, we recommend you to avoid using all-in-one products and get busy with coating your vehicle with polish, wax, and sealant separately.

2. Abrasiveness

Most modern car polishes use abrasives that, during the use, get broken down in small and fine particles. Usually, they aren’t harmful to the paint of your car, but to be sure double-check the product before use.

The market is full of particular kinds of polishes with two types of abrasive compounds: SMAT (Super Micro Abrasive Technology) and DAT (Diminishing Abrasive Technology). So just in case, be extra careful when choosing the right one. 

3. Ease Of Use 

This also depends on your preferences, but some products, for example, in the form of a paste, are more suitable to be used with mechanical buffers than by hand using just a soft cloth. Liquid polishes are ideal for manual use, but they won’t fill the scratches as well as the paste will.

The good polish should always spread across the surface with ease, and after it dries out should only leave an excellent shine without spots and white markings.

4. Value For The Money

A high price doesn’t always mean the best quality. It is still better to look for those products that will offer you the best value for the money. Even cheaper products can give you the best finish if they meet your requirements.

But it is also very important not to go overboard with the size of the bottle. Choose the quantity depending on your car size since the car polishes are prone to deteriorate with time. Always read the label, or you might risk buying a product that is specially designed for some type of car or color that won’t match yours.

5. Car Manufacturers And Color

As I mentioned above, not all polish products are suitable for all car models. The hardness of the paint depends on the manufacturer; therefore, the paint hardness will determine how strong the abrasive effect of the polish needs to be and how hard you need to buff it down into the body of the car.

For example, German cars and most Europeans models use harder paints that require stronger polish formulas. On the other hand, if your vehicle is manufactured in Japan, you should know that they use softer paints; therefore, you need some polish that has a light abrasive effect.

Also, color plays a prominent role. Light colors can withstand rougher polishing formulas and pads, while darker colors need soft pads and light abrasives to avoid visible scratches.

6. Type Of Pain

The type of paint will also determine what kind of polish you can use.

The solid paints are the safest ones since they are suitable for use with almost all kinds of polish products as long as they are not too abrasive. On the other hand, matte paints can’t be polished with standard abrasives, given that they leave a shiny trace.

The metallic and pearlescent paints are very tricky to polish since they are prone to show swirl marks, so you must be very patient when polishing a car with this type of paint.

7. Your Location

The weather conditions and environment can significantly affect car polish. Before purchasing the product, make sure you estimate your climate well. There are car polishes that should be used for a hot climate, those that are suitable for snow and ice, and for areas that are prone to having acid rain. So keep that in mind before making a decision.

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Final Words – The Best Car Polish

Without a doubt, the best car polish will guarantee you a silky, durable, and glossy layer of protection that will maintain the exterior of your car intact for an extended period of time. So there you have it our list of top three favorite car polishes to keep your car safe and sound.

Best Overall Value:  CarGuys Hybrid Polish And Sealant

  • Are you in need of a car polish that will allow you to finish the job quickly and easily? If you are, this all-in-one product will meet your needs and more. If you purchase this product, there’s no excuse not to wax your beloved car.

Best Budget Option: Nu Finish Liquid Polish

  • We are all looking for a car polish that will offer us durability, protection, gloss, and great value for the price. Well, we are happy to announce that we found that holy grail in this unique formulation.

Premium Pick: 3M Perfect-It Machine Polish (06064)

  • If we are going to talk about performance and quality 3M Perfect-It Machine Polish is the ultimate winner.  This product does not demand too much effort when applying, and the end result will leave you speechless.

About Erin Carpenter

Erin Carpenter has over 15 years experience in the diamond industry working with Artic Canadian Diamonds, Anglo-American Diamonds. She is recognized as an industry expert and has been quoted in publications such as USA Today, Forbes, The New York Times and more.