Written by Terry Smith

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Best teak oil [UK]: Ronseal, Cuprinol, and Bartoline teak oil reviewed and compared

This article was last updated on November 10th, 2021 at 2:32 am

There’s some cracking teak oil these days. It doesn’t matter wether you want to spruce up and protect garden furniture or oil the deck on your boat, in this review I have you covered. Not only that, I run through how to use teak oil properly – so often results are underwhelming and the teak oil blamed, but my experience is almost always the preparation is the problem. Take these scaffold boards for example that are turned into a garden table and look super:

Teak garden table lovely effect

There’s nothing to stop you replicating this effect with my top picks for the best teak oil 🙂

My picks for the best teak oil in the UK:

Best teak oil overall: Cuprinol Naturally Enhancing Teak Oil
Best teak oil for garden furniture: Cuprinol Naturally Enhancing Teak Oil
Best alternative teak oil: Bartoline Teak Oil
Best value teak oil: Ronseal TO1L 1L Teak Oil – definitely my choice if Cuprinol unavailable
Best marine grade quality you can use on garden furniture too: Cura Lignum teak oil
Best furniture teak oil: Furniture Clinic Teak Oil (250 ml)

Effect you’ll get from a good teak oil like Cuprinol

What to consider when buying teak oil and how to use it?

Firstly you’ve got to consider protection. After that you’ll probably be thinking aesthetics. If you go for a teak oil that doesn’t absorb well but looks great, obviously you’ll be in for short lived happiness. So in this review I try to look at aesthetics but lean more toward product with proven longevity. But here’s a solid run down of how to apply teak oil as well as the preparation to give a professional result every time:

The difference between Teak Oil and Danish Oil
How to apply leak oil
How to clean teak furniture before oiling?
How to apply teak oil to outdoor garden furniture?

How to apply leak oil 

  1. As is always the case, it is important to make sure that the surface you will be treated is free of any dust and debris… unless you want a grainy look. 
  2. Remove any existing finish from the surface before you apply teak oil. Using chemical solvents or strippers can help with this. Sand the surface afterwards.  
  3. Use a piece of lint-free cloth to generously apply the oil over the surface. Make sure you wipe it with parallel strokes once you’ve let it dry. 
  4. Allow at least 30 minutes before applying a second coat. Apply using the same strokes. Let it dry for approximately 15 minutes and wipe the surface using a piece of cloth. Leave it for about 10 hours. 

How to clean teak furniture before oiling? 

You may have teak furniture that you’ve had in storage for many, many years, and you look at it to ask yourself why it hasn’t rotted or decayed. Luckily, Teak furniture won’t rot or decay. Although, you may have noticed some white or green specs… that’s mould and mildew, which isn’t the most attractive. You will want to get rid of this before you pull your furniture out ready for your summer BBQ. To remove the mildew, you need to know how to clean it properly – unfortunately, it isn’t as easy as slapping a wet cloth over the top and giving it a quick 5 minute wipe.

Here are the cleaning process steps: 

  1. Gather the materials you need to perform the cleaning process. A bucket, a soft brush, one cup of bleach, dish detergent and one gallon of water.
  2. Prepare the space where you will be cleaning. Ensure all other objects are out of the way. Place the furniture in a well ventilated area.
  3. Spray your furniture down with a light mist of water from the garden hose. Don’t use an aggressive spray setting. Keep it light and simple. 
  4. Apply a teak cleaning solution to the furniture and scrub it gently with a soft brush. Alternatively, you can make your solution by mixing 1 cup of bleach, 1 gallon of water, and 1/4 cup of dish detergent. It might be better to use your cleaning solution because the commercial teak cleaners from the store contain a lot of added chemicals. Be mindful that these chemicals could potentially damage the teakwood of your furniture. Commercial teak cleaners do a better job of removing residue that is caught deep inside the pores of the wood.
  5. After scrubbing the furniture, ensure to leave it for approximately15 minutes. Take your hose and rinse the furniture for a second time with a mist of water. Make sure all the residue is washed off. 
  6. Let your furniture dry off completely and place it in an area of your garden where the sun can catch it. The sun will ensure that mould and mildew don’t formate.

How to apply teak oil to outdoor garden furniture? 

There is a process that must be followed when applying teak oil to outdoor garden furniture. 

Teak garden table lovely effect
  1. Grab your materials that will be needed. These materials include a bristle brush, lint-free clean cloth, teak oil solution, and sandpaper. Consider looking for specific teak oil products that content UV and mildew resistance.
  2. Rinse off your furniture with a garden hose. Do not use too much water pressure. Let it dry off. 
  3. Using the sandpaper, remove any previous finishing treatments.
  4. Using the bristle brush, apply the teak oil coat to the furniture. You can also use the cloth as an additional application device.
  5. Grab another lint-free clean cloth and remove the excess teak oil once it’s been applied, if you use something like the Cuprinol or Bartoline they will leave streaks!
  6. Leave the furniture to dry for two hours. This is usually how long it takes for the drying process to complete.
  7. Repeat the teak oil application. It might be a case of applying up to four coats of the oil before the wood stops absorbing the oil.
  8. You’ll probably have to repeat this whole process every 2-3 months. That is about how long it can take for the discolouration to start up again. 

Hopefully our guide has provided you with plenty of useful information to help you choose the best teak oil for garden furniture. Ask a hardware store or check reviews if you’re in doubt and you’ll be sprucing up wood like this in no time:

Teak scaffold boards turned into a garden table

Fancy buying yourself some wooden furniture for your garden? It looks great and provides enough comfort. However, if you don’t look after it, within a couple of years, it can lose its natural colour due to weathering and UV exposure. You might like the silver/grey look that the furniture will provide, or maybe you don’t. Regardless, the good news is that your garden furniture can be easily preserved, maintained, and restored with the right garden furniture oil.

It goes without saying that the furniture more or less relies on how you handle it. Don’t overdo it but ensure that the same is not underdone as well. To help you out with the process, we are going to be sharing some of the best teak oil products that you can take a peek into.

Specification: Protects and nourishes the wood: yes, Can use this on: Exterior hardwood/softwood garden furniture and decking, Volume: ‎‎0.5-1L

I really like Cuprinol Naturally Enhancing Teak Oil. It doesn’t matter if it’s wood preservative (oh yes and their wood preservative is legendary!), dry rot treatment or teak oil, their products have been on point for twenty years now. The first thing you’ll notice about Cuprinol Teak Oil is the formulation. It’s now water based. This makes application all the easier and as far as I can tell, there has been no loss of quality on the product itself. It still gives your wood a lovely newly oiled look. The formula seeps into timber deeply, giving long lasting protections – I normally lay this on twice a year if I remember my chores :D. Once in spring and once before winter sets in.

Be certain you are oiling bare timber. This will not work properly on stained or painted wood. The oil needs a chance to absorb deeply so that means a bit of sanding too so the bare timber has a nice key. That might not be a helpful quantifying if your furniture can be coated. What I do is the old water bead test. Flick a few droplets of water at your timber and end grain. Do they absorb quickly? If yes, they are ready for teak oil application. That should help… 🙂

In terms of application, definitely use a cloth or brush – the spray, in my opinion and experience, leaves little bubbles and not quite the excellent finish we’ve come to expect from Cuprinol. Give it a good day or two and you’ll be sitting on your lovely garden bench again much happier! Culprinol won’t alter the look of your timber, it’ll just bring the grain up nicely and make your limber look its best. An absolute buy rating from me and would pick Cuprinol as my best teak oil, without question.

Cuprinol teak oil – 1 Litre

Pros:

  • Exterior hardwood/softwood garden furniture
  • Protects and enhances all exterior hardwood and softwood for long protection
  • Great for garden furniture and decking
  • Replaces oil that is lost from the wood when exposed to the sun
  • Protects against weathering on new and old wood
  • Penetrates and nourishes.
  • Contains ingredients to help combat mildew and algae

Cons:

  • Hard to pick fault

Specification: Protects and nourishes the wood: yes, Can use this on: indoor and outdoor furniture (especially suitable for wooden garden furniture), Volume: ‎2L

I use this oil on my solid wood outdoor furniture which is oak, not teak. I would say that it is probably designed for teak but it can be used on any wood. I think it’s good quality and I have used to for a number of years following a recommendation from a friend and it’s almost certainly the best teak oil available in the UK overall.

Bartoline Teak Oil should be applied with a lint-free cloth or brush to give an even finish and ensure that you’re giving the furniture its best look. You should remember to clean, dry and unvarnished your furniture before applying any oil, this will leave an even finish. I then take some time to wipe off any surplus oil after saturation. If you’ve got hardwoods such as Oak and Teak, then Bartoline Teak Oil has been specially formulated to give the sheen back into them, and it works really well. You can use this oil on indoor and outdoor furniture and it contains a solvent carrier to aid penetration, which is a double bonus.

If you struggle to use a cloth or brush, then there is a ready-to-use trigger spray available, which in my opinion, gives it just as good a finish as a cloth or brush. It creates a slight sheen the more you put on and the oil soaks straight into the wood. It’s brilliant stuff and will restore your garden furniture that has turned a bit shabby after years of use. It’s got a thick consistency so you only need a little bit to apply to ensure that you’re covered for a good while, don’t make the mistake I made by applying loads to a cloth and rubbing it on… it will leave streaks!

Pros:

  • A wood sealer which is especially suitable for wooden garden furniture
  • Protects the wood from drying out after long periods in the sun
  • Gives wood a natural sheen that lasts

Cons:

  • Some complain it’s thinned with white spirit or similar

Specification: Protects and nourishes the wood: yes, Can use this on: outdoor furniture rather than indoors (especially suitable for hardwood garden furniture), Volume: ‎0.5L

RonSeal Teak Oil has nourished and enhanced my hardwood garden furniture and gives an added bonus of protecting it from the weather. It’s best to use this oil on outdoor furniture rather than indoors. When using this oil, I noticed that it penetrates deep into the wood and brings back the oils that it’s already lost over the months and years.

I usually apply RonSeal Teak Oil twice a year, once at the beginning of summer and again when winter is just setting in. I did notice that it had quite a potent smell, so I applied it outside where you get the best source of ventilation.

Ronseal teak oil

Once I’d prepared my wood with a light rubbing of fine sandpaper, the oil went on very easily with a soft brush. I let it soak over the weekend and applied another coat for extra protection. I would recommend applying 3 coats but to wait for it to dry really well before reapplying. It dried quickly and it wasn’t sticky as some products can be.

If it does rain in between coats, you’ll notice the rain appearing as bubbles on the wood – and it doesn’t sink in!! I would recommend RonSeal, and I can’t fault it. 3 coats on a teak bench and the wood with added waterproof qualities. With more intricate designs, it’s easier to apply using a brush rather than a cloth.

Pros:

  • Ergonomic design
  • Ideal for the use on all types of hardwood garden furniture including Teak
  • Naturally nourished, protects, and enhances all types of hardwood garden furniture
  • Deeply penetrates through weathering
  • Protects and maintains the appearance of new hardwood garden furniture

Cons:

  • I feel you need an extra coat for a deep finish

If you’re looking for something a bit overkill on your garden furniture to get literally years of protection then you’ll probably opt for the Cura Lignum Marine Teak Oil. I’d only use this every other year if doing the decking on my boat – and that is subjected to splashing salt water, high winds and salty sea spray ! Needless to say for garden furniture it’s more than up to the challenge. It’s so hard wearing you could use it as decking oil as well.

In terms of application you’ll still need to follow the rules of preparation – this is by no means some quick fix instant bullet to a stunning bit of teak garden furniture 😀 If only it were that easy 😀 You’ll definitely need a few coats before you see beads of water forming and running away. One is not enough from my experience.

Here’s a sensible look at the before and after colour of Cura:

Cura before and after

This is no sales scam, it’s a legitimate before and after without any picture editing aids. It’s just a good quality teak oil with dual purpose use.

In terms of application it’s just like the rest – good prep, brush or cloth, and wait for it to dry – you’ll want to give this a fair bit of time to dry between coats sometimes it takes a couple of hours, others as much as all day which depends largely on weather temperature you’re working in.

Overall it’s a great product and thoroughly over designed for garden furniture which is great news for us buyers.

Specification: Protects and nourishes the wood: yes, Can use this on: outdoor furniture rather than indoors (especially suitable for hardwoods), Volume: ‎‎0.5L

I used Barrettine Teak Oil to treat and enhance my untreated wood, which included hardwood. It penetrated into the wood leaving a water-resistant and natural finish. I used this product on both indoor and outdoor furniture and it left a great looking matt finish. I was highly impressed. It doesn’t leave a thick and tummy look like a lot of other teak oils, which is a huge positive. which is ideal for traditional matt finish indoor furniture and outdoor garden furniture. I used it on my teak furniture with amazing results.

After a power wash, you only need to apply two or three coats twice a year, once at the beginning of summer, and then again at the end. I noticed my wood looking more nourished, revived and it absorbed straight in. I found that it’s good to use as it’s a lighter consistency than others and sinks in quickly and smoothly.

It’s best to apply using a cloth and not a brush as it’s quite thin. Barrettine Teak Oil is very effective on all types of wood. The results you will have are impressive and the teak wood will have a great finish of golden brown. If you’re looking for a wood finish which is easy to apply and imparts an excellent finish with minimum effort, then Barrettine Teak Oil could be a choice for you. The several times I’ve used it, it’s given a good effect.

Pros:

  • Specifically formulated to replace natural wood oils in hardwoods such as Oak and Teak
  • Contains a solvent carrier to aid penetration
  • Suite for use on indoor and outdoor furniture
  • Easy to apply with a cloth or bush
  • Ready to use trigger spray also available

Cons:

  • On the weak side which is to be expected being so low priced

Specification: Protects and nourishes the wood: yes, Can use this on: especially suitable for garden furniture, Volume: ‎‎0.25-1L

I bought this product to protect some solid wood garden furniture. Even on the first application, it transformed the furniture. The wood completely drank up the teak oil which brought out the grain in the wood.

I applied 3 coats and this made the furniture go from good to amazing really quick! The 1st application took me longer to apply than the 2nd and 3rd, but the 1st layer was the quickest to dry. I used a brush rather than a cloth which coated just as well. I just found it easier to use a brush to get into all of the nooks and crannies.

You will notice that your furniture may turn darker when applying, but after a day or so once it has dried, it will become lighter and will look amazing. It has quite a strong smell, which is unpleasant (I quite like it!). One bottle transformed my table, two benches and two chairs, just for reference.

I was a bit sceptical at the pricing to begin with, but after using it, I definitely think it’s worth it and would recommend it. It also gives a waterproof layer so you don’t have to go running to cover any furniture when the rain starts to pour!

Pros:

  • Restores old and weathered teak furniture
  • Protects and waterproofs exotic wood and hardwoods
  • Seals and protects unfinished or bare teak
  • Ideal for garden furniture
  • Prevents from weathering and turning grey over time

Cons:

Furniture Clinic Teak Oil (250 ml)

The difference between Teak Oil and Danish Oil 

The difference between teak oil and danish oil is mainly the finish. If you prefer a slight sheen, the teak oil is for you. Danish oil will leave a more lustrous finish. You can use teak oil inside and outside wooden furniture and also provides a protective coating to stop any UV ray damage. An added bonus is that teak oil is waterproof, so when you see rain flooding down, you can sit back and relax. 


About Terry Smith

I’m Terry Smith from gardentoolbox.co.uk, a professional landscape designer, hobbyist gardener, and barbecue fanatic with 20 years experience building and restoring. So as you go through my site you'll watch me document some of the professional garden installs I make as well as the major projects I take on at home. While sharing those experiences and guiding you, I'll be recommending some great tools I use to enable this along the way so you can really buy in confidence. Always feel free to pop me a message: info@gardentoolbox.co.uk

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