Top 5 Best Brush for Varnishing Wood Reviews [Reddit Choices]

The best brush for any kind of woodwork project will give a standard or the desired final effects. That is an attractive, seamless, or uniform finish. A perfect varnish finish is expected to be smooth and glossy with residue marks.

There are different types of wood varnish brushes in the market used for different types of finishing jobs. The varnish wood brush, in this case, is used to apply varnish as a final touch on wood projects.

It would be best to consider several factors when choosing the most effective and efficient brush for varnishing wood. Although there is also a wide range of varnish brushes in the market, we will look at a few of the best brushes popularly used for varnishing wood.

Top 5 Best Brush for Varnishing Wood Review 2022

1. US Art Supply 3 Pack

US Art Supply 3 Pack of Variety Size Synthetic Bristle Paint

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The Us Art supply 3 pack is a packet that consists of three different size brushes in 1, 2, and 3 inches. All three brushes are 7 inches long and come with bristles about 1-1/2 inches to 1-7/8 inches Long. The bristles are made of pure white synthetic material that gives a very standard and polished finish.

These synthetic brushes can also be used for jobs other than varnishing. This includes putting solvents, touch-ups on paintwork and cleaning machines or wooden parts. 

It has a 5-inch wooden handle that is smoothly sanded for easy use or handling. The US art brushes can be used for glues, varnishes, paints, gesso, and stains, mostly in woodwork.


  • The quality synthetic bristles give great results
  • They are utility job brushes.
  • Its long handle and bristles make any job easy.
  • It is designed to have a smooth brushing glide.
  • Very easy to wash, dry, and store away.


  • The metal ferrule rusts after short use due to cleaning
  • Bristles from the brushes fall off.
  • Cleaned wet brushes do not give the desired smooth finish effect.

2. Hiltex 00308 Brush Paint Stain Varnish Set

Hiltex 00308 Brush Paint Stain Varnish Set

The Stain varnish set is a pack of 5 brushes. This pack consists of different width size brushes in 1, 1 ½, 2, 2 1/2, and 3 inches wide. This range of brushes gives great value for money. One pack of brushes can cover different jobs at a go. They can be used for home projects, art, and craft projects. 

These brushes are made of polyester bristles with feathered edges that give a smooth finish. In addition, they have sturdy wooden handles that allow easy dry hanging or storage. 

The handles also have an extra part holding capacity that makes brushing or painting jobs easier. This brush set is ideal for paint, varnish, and stain jobs.


  • The Polyester bristles give a smooth and standard finish.
  • Its sturdy wooden handles enable hang drying and storage.
  • Hiltex brushes can be used for different size projects. 
  • They are easy to clean, dry, and store.
  • The Extra brushes can cover any extra job.
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  • The Metal ferrule rusts easily.
  • Polyester and feathered bristles stiffen after use with some products.
  • Different width brushes cannot be interchanged in case one is wet or damaged. 

3. eHomeA2Z Foam Paint Brushes 10 Pack

eHomeA2Z Foam Paint Brushes 10 Pack

This consists of 10 different assorted size brushes for different jobs. They are all made from foam material and polyurethane, used for stains, varnishes, crafts, and acrylics.

These brushes are ideal for both interior and exterior job applications. In addition, they can be used for spreading, painting, and finishing jobs. 

The foam brushes are lightweight with an overall length of 7 inches, with a wooden handle. The spongy feature allowed for easy absorbance and reduced dripping until application force has been made on the surface.


  • The brush Foam is Spongy and absorbent.
  • These brushes are lightweight and easy to handle. 
  • The assorted brush sizes are ideal for many different jobs at one time.
  • Once the product is absorbed, there is reduced dripping until the application.
  • They can be used for both interior and exterior arts and crafts jobs.


  • These brushes are not suitable for some products such as shellac and lacquer.
  • Product absorbance cannot be controlled and may over-drip during varnish application.
  • It may not achieve the desired finish due to the uncontrolled absorbance and application release.

4. US Art Supply 72 Pack

US Art Supply 72 Pack of 1 inch Paint and Chip Paint Brushes for Paint

This product consists of 72 pieces of 1-inch paint and chip paintbrushes, with 11/2-inch bristles held by a metal ferrule. Have smooth sanded wooden 5-inch handles with good holding capacity.

They are white and are ideal for paint, stain, varnish, glues, latex, and gessos. They are specifically used for small art and craft jobs. It would be very tedious to try and use these 1-inch brushes on large varnishing jobs.

This super value pack of 72 1-inch brushes may be efficient for small jobs but will not give value for money. You will need to purchase a larger set of brushes for any large project that may arise.


  • These brushes can be used for both interior and exterior jobs.
  • They can be easily interchanged and replaced due to size similarity.
  • Good smooth sanded wood handle holding capacity.
  • Easy to clean and store.
  • Works well with most products.


  • The brush bristles tend to fall off while brushing, and removing them will damage the finish.
  • Once cleaned, they cannot be used while wet, unlike when they are dry.
  • These inch brushes are too small to work on a large project.

5. Artist Flat Paint Brush

Artist Flat Paint Brush-Large Wash Brushes Set

This product is a set of 6 large brushes in one pack. They vary in width size and length size. However, the difference in width is very small and may confuse the same brush if not keen. Therefore, they are ideal for different size art and crafts projects.

These large flat paint brushes are ideal for paintwork, varnish, watercolour and can be used on acrylics, wood, wall, and furniture. The bristles are fully packed in the ferrule to give a smooth and even finish. 

The brushes maintain their original shape when in use, and they do not shed easily. As a result, they are easy to clean, and they do not hold residues from products.


  • The different sizes are ideal for different jobs.
  • They have very soft bristles.
  • These brushes have a fullness that gives a smooth finish.
  • They are very easy to clean and holds no residues.
  • It can be used for both interior and exterior jobs.
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  • They are not ideal for very small jobs and may not give desired results.
  • Bristles occasionally shed.
  • Confusion due to small difference in width size.

How to Choose Brush for Varnishing wood 

The wood varnish is one of the best finishes that you can have on any wood if you do not have spray equipment. Varnishing is sure to give you the best finishes to produce beautiful woodworking projects. 

Varnishing is easy to apply, tough, and at the same time, attractive. But to produce an outstanding piece of varnish, you need to find the best brush for the job. 

There are several factors to consider, but the major ones include checking the brush’s size, durability, bristles, and dripping. Then, when you carefully select your brush, it will be left on your skills to produce a high-quality varnish on any wood.


The size of the brush will greatly depend on the type of woodworking project you are engaged in. if you are working a large area, then a bigger brush will do the trick. But if you are working on a small table or door, then a small brush will be appropriate. 

The best carpenters always advocate for a small brush because of the close control of the project. A small brush will also go to the tightest of spaces where a big brush might not reach. A small brush will also produce near-perfect strokes that will be sure to improve the aesthetics.


This is another important consideration when choosing a brush for varnishing. You want to be sure that you will be getting a brush that will last the course and will not disappoint midway through the project. 

Nobody would like the idea that you get a brush, and when producing an amazing piece, the bristles come undone, or the brush snaps and breaks. This means that your varnishing work will likely get spoilt in such a process. 

You will be left frustrated, and what’s more, you will have to spend more money to get a new brush. You, therefore, have to select a reliable and excellent brush that will not stress you or fail you.


You need to carefully choose the bristles when you want to get into varnishing. These are vital in applying a smooth and glass-like finish to the project you are working on. 

For instance, you can go for white China bristle if you are applying oil-based varnishes. These bristles are perfect for any varnishing work as they are both flexible and soft, and you will be able to produce some outstanding finishes. 

You also need to get a brush with durable bristles for long-term use. If you are working on a rough surface, you can consider going for tough bristles as they are likely to last the course. 

Also important is choosing a brush with minimal bristle loss, as bristles can spoil your finish.


Dripping is also one factor that you should not overlook when looking for a suitable brush for your brush. The amount of paint you apply has a significant effect on the final piece you will produce. 

For some of the best varnishing, getting a brush that reduces the dripping amounts is important. Too much dripping can spoil the final finish. This is because varnishing is precise, and applying the right amount of varnish is key in having the best results. 

You would loath dipping your brush in the paint and realize that you have made a mistake and that your brush cannot correct the situation. Having a brush that remains saturated for longer will greatly improve the finishing that you will produce.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to apply polyurethane without bubbles?

When applying water-based polyurethane, it is preferable to apply numerous thin coats one after the other with a synthetic brush rather than a natural brush to minimize bubble formation. 
Utilizing a paintbrush, a foam applicator, a cloth, or a spray gun are all effective methods of applying water-based polyurethane smoothly to prevent bubble formation. Other methods include using a spray gun and a foam applicator. 
You can then apply water to the whole brush to make the application even smoother and more consistent. Finally, do not shake the can since it will cause bubbles; instead, mix the polyurethane.

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How to apply spar varnish?

Spar varnish is a protective coating applied to outdoor wood. It protects wood from UV radiation, moisture, and temperature/humidity fluctuations. Apply using a foam or bristle brush, and make sure you do it slowly and smoothly so that the varnish is on the wood evenly. Then, spread the varnish with paint thinner. 
The number of layers required depends on the varnish’s thickness. The greatest effects come from building up the spar varnish slowly. Varnish must dry for 24 hours before sanding. Uncured varnish feels sticky or gummy. 
Sand between layers for optimum results. You will get the best and final results of your spar varnish by following these steps.

How to clean varnish brushes?

Utilizing mineral spirits to clean your varnish brushes is the most effective method of cleaning. When cleaning, the spirits will assist you in achieving the greatest results with the least amount of effort. 
To begin, you must first fill a cup halfway with mineral spirits. Then press the bristles on the bottom of the cup. To rinse, you will need to use water and repeat the process until the water is clear. 
Alternatively, you can use soap and water to clean the brushes. All you need to do is soaking the brushes in soapy water then rub them against a paper towel until it clears out.

How to apply varnish without brush marks?

To apply varnish without brush marks, one needs to make sure that they sand their wood. By doing this, the wood will be smooth, and it will be easy to apply the varnish. 
The cleaning of the working surface is important too, and this will help achieve clean work. Finally, the collecting of items to be used is a step one cannot forget. 
Gather your paintbrush, measuring cup, paint thinner, and all necessary items for painting and varnishing. You need to stir the varnish and avoid shaking the container. 
Wear the protective gear, and then start applying the varnish. You will get desired results if you follow the steps.

How many coats of varnish?

The top of a table should have two or three coats of varnish applied to get the desired effect. However, those who like to put varnish to the base recommend using one to two coats of varnish per layer of the base. This way, you will be sure to get the best.

Final Thought

As a result, this range of brushes may be ideal for one job or another depending on an individual preference, the size of the project, and the desired effect. Every brush is made ideally from a specific material that works well with a given product to achieve a specific result.

In conclusion, I recommend the Artist Flat Paint Brush as the best brush for varnishing wood of the above wood varnish brushes. This is mainly because of the six different sizes of brushes that are ideal for both large and small varnishing jobs. And they give great results.

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