Is Ceramic Coating Better Than Wax?

These Two Types of Coatings Offer Unique Advantages and Require Different Applications.

Adding a protective finish to your car after detailing helps you protect your hard work. It keeps your car looking and shining like new while protecting it from dirt, dust, debris, and the elements. When choosing how to apply this final step, two options stand out: ceramic and wax.

The two aren’t the same, even though they’re intended to achieve the same goals. In this blog post, we’ll cover:

What Is Car Wax?

Car wax has been the classic choice of car owners for decades. Wax is a blend of soft solids that can be evenly spread onto the car’s surface. Carnauba wax often forms the base of car waxes, but oils and other ingredients are also added to create a smooth, spreadable product. The wax can fill in scratches and dings to prevent them from becoming worse while creating an even-looking finish. This barrier helps to protect your car against the elements of the road and weather.

What Is a Ceramic Coating?

Ceramic coatings act as a protective barrier when applied to cars. Rather than simply being rubbed onto the car’s surface, the ceramic actually cures to the paint to create a chemical bond. It’s a newer technology compared to car wax or other sealants, but they’re already earning a reputation as being superior to other alternatives. When properly applied, ceramic coatings show great resistance to pollutants, dirt, and other debris.

Ceramic vs. Wax: What’s the Difference?

While ceramic coatings and car wax aim to protect your car’s paint finish, there are a few key differences you’ll want to consider.

First and foremost, ceramic coatings provide more durability than wax. The coating forms a chemical bond with your paint, one that doesn’t wash away the next rainstorm. It’s longer lasting and doesn’t chip, flake, or break. Wax doesn’t create a chemical bond. Rather, it sits on top of your car’s paint. While wax does a decent job of sticking to your car, it isn’t waterproof and will wash away in a matter of weeks.

Ceramic coatings resist heat, UV rays, harsh detergents, and environmental contaminants better than wax. Again, this goes back to how the ceramic coating adheres to the car. It forms a cured shield that’s hard, smooth, and consistent. Wax’s soft, malleable nature makes it easy to apply, but that same softness also makes it susceptible to damage.

Car wax and ceramic coatings are applied differently. Wax may come in a cream, spray, gel or paste. Regardless, you’ll use an applicator pad to apply the wax to your car. Gently brush on the wax using the pad, then wait a few minutes until the wax becomes hazy. Then you can buff the wax until you see a beautiful, even shine.

Ceramic coatings are typically applied by a professional and application starts with a clean, dry surface. Professionals will first use a clay bar to fill in any light swirls and remove any surface contaminants on the paint. This ensures your ceramic coating will be applied evenly and look as smooth as it did when the car was new. The coating will be applied onto the car’s surface, working on one panel at a time with a microfiber applicator. It will be distributed evenly, then buffed with the dry side of the applicator into a lovely shine.

Last but not least, ceramic coatings last longer than wax and therefore do not need to be applied as frequently. Cilajet Ceramic lasts 5+ years in a single application coating, and you might be able to go longer in between applications if you keep your car parked in a garage or don’t drive often. 

How to Choose the Right Coating for Your Vehicle

To be clear, one type of coating isn’t “better” than the other. The right coating for you depends on several factors, including your time, budget, type of car, where you park, driving frequency, and others.

If your car is brand new, chances are you want to keep it looking that way as long as possible. If that’s the case, then a ceramic coating is probably the better option. You’ll have to apply it less, and its higher durability may help you protect your investment longer than wax. If you don’t drive a lot and your car spends a lot of time parked under a shelter, then either wax or ceramic coatings can work well. For areas where the elements are harsher than average, ceramic coatings might give you more bang for your buck.

Both car wax and ceramic coatings will take time and money to apply. You can save time simply by using ceramic coatings since you won’t have to apply them as often. Think about what’s important to you and know your car will be protected either way (albeit in different ways).

What Does Cilajet Recommend?

Cilajet is a leading manufacturer of ceramic coatings for automobiles, boats, and aircraft. We use Aviation Grade ceramic coatings that are designed to enhance protection, ensure better resistance, and provide long-lasting durability. With a stronger coating, you can better protect your investment with less effort. But we don’t stop there. To up your protection even more, we suggest a combination of Cilajet Ceramic coating and our Cilajet Gel-Wax. Once the Cilajet Ceramic coating is applied, add a thin layer of our Gel-Wax for another layer of protection for your vehicle and to add even more shine! Unlike traditional wax, Cilajet Gel-Wax easily glides over the recently finished surface left behind by the ceramic coating. There’s also no need to buff when you’re done — one coat is all it takes.

Explore Cilajet’s dynamic duo of ceramic coatings and gel-wax, and give your ride the royal treatment!