8 Best Stain for Pine- Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

Image of a pine wood floor coated with best stain for pine

The ability to select the best stain for pine furniture and even floors will determine the appearance and protection that your wood gets. Stains, for example, can protect your wooden surfaces from coming into contact with water or scratching. It is, therefore, crucial that you get it right when you are shopping for the best stain for pine.

WoodCritique does not want you to get it wrong in your attempt to protect your wooden structures. Therefore, we have narrowed down a list of tested and proven stain products for pine that will give you value for your money.

Best Stain for Pine Comparison Table

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Best Stain for Pine Buyer’s Guide

In this section, I’ve given a breakdown of some of the features of deck stains for pine that you should have in mind as you prepare to go into the market for similar products. These stains come with protective features which help keep your pine product safe against destructive environmental elements such as UV light, moisture, molds, and mildews depending on the area where the structures are located-interior or exterior.

Factors to Consider Before Shopping for The Best Stain for Pine

As you look to purchase your stain for pine, you should know that there are several stains, and they don’t perform similar functions. It is, therefore, crucial that you are aware of the type of wood on your furniture before settling for the final product. 

In our attempt to help you get the best stain for pine, we have reviewed and included a full range of factors that you need to consider as you dive into the market for stains.

  • Application

Before you buy a stain, you need to find out the need for the wood project. Different formulas come with various applications. Therefore, ensure that you go for the less complex one.

If you are a beginner in wood staining, you could go for simple application methods such as brushing. There are complex application methods that you can only use if you are an expert. Using a sprayer can lead to uneven surfaces, especially if you are not sure about the process.

  • Color

There are different types of pine, and each has its distinct color. Choosing the right stain will ensure that you get the very best out of your wooden structure. Semi transparent deck stains, for example, allow for the wood grain to show, which is an excellent thing in enhancing the natural beauty of the wood. Also, the color of stain that you pick for your outdoor furniture or structure, such as the deck, must match your house’s exterior.

  • Opacity

Different pinewood structure owners need stains for various purposes, so you have to ask yourself why you need a wood stain. If you are looking to cover your structure completely, then you can go for solid deck stains. Solid deck stains cover the wood grains of your structure, completely offering protection for an extended duration.

Semi-transparent deck stays allow the wood grain of your structure to show, enhancing the natural beauty of the structure in the process. These stains offer reliable protection in the process, making them worth every penny.

  • Budget

What’s your budget, and how much does your desired stain cost? It would help if you got it right with the budgeting to avoid buying a formula that will leave you in a compromising situation financially.

Additionally, you must ensure that the product you buy is worth spending on; I have seen many users complain about spending so much on stains that did not last on their pine structures.

Different Types of Finishes for Pine

  • Gel

They are arguably the easiest stains to apply on your wooden structures because they do not run or drip often. Their little compact property makes them the best stain for beginners.

  • Wiping

When it comes to this stain, the application is usually through wiping. It requires multiple coats for you to achieve your desired color. When working with this kind of stain, you must be specific and understand the exact color that you want for your project.

  • Oil 

The oil-based stains are the most common, especially for the pine, because they are easy to apply. Besides, their absorption into the wood is an easy one.

  • Sealer

As for the case of sealers, you are likely to find the two in one. In that case, they serve as both stains and sealers. 

  • Varnish 

When it comes to varnishes, you need to be extra careful; every time you get it wrong with this kind of stain, you will notice that the final product would either look cheap or of poor quality. They are mostly used on the hidden parts of furniture.

Best Stain for Pine Product Reviews

In this section, I am going to give a detailed discussion of the very best deck stain for pine in the market. These products have a distinct feature that makes them perform differently though all with one intention-to give maximum protection to wooden structures constructed using pine wood. Such structures could be kitchen cabinets, doors, and a lot more.

1. General Finishes Golden Pine Gel Stain Pint

If you want the very best stain for pine, then the General Finishes Gel Stain is the answer. You will find this stain working comfortably with some of the hardest woods to stain, like pine and aspen. 

The application of this product is an easy one. It only takes wiping the stain on the wood using a piece of cotton cloth, or a foam brush then allows it some time to dry. 

This stain is available in several colors giving you the flexibility on choosing to your preference. Regardless of the color you pick, this formula will be true to it. It takes sandpaper to remove blemishes that might appear during the application of this formula.

The Summary of Top Features

  • It gives you the most finishing feel ever
  • It cures into a lustrous finish that shows up
  • A heavy-bodied formula that does not penetrate as deeply into the wood as a liquid oil-based stain
  • Works well with challenging to stain woods like aspen or pine
  • Easy-to-use stains to apply

new pine gel stainAdvantages

  • Easy to apply
  • Works well on tough to stain woods
  • It’s available in several colors for flexibility


  • It might take longer to dry especially on extremely low temperatures
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2. Ready Seal Pail Golden Pine Exterior Wood Stain

If you are working on a timeline, then this product is all that you need. It’s an oil-based formula with a semi-transparent look making it the best stain for pine. It’s both a stain and a sealer hence offering your wooden structures adequate protection. 

Other than preserving your wood, this formula enhances the natural look of wood thanks to its semi-transparent property that allows the wood grain to show.

Even though it is a thick formula, it does not hide what’s underneath. 

The Summary of Top Features

  • It’s a semi-transparent stain with water resistance features.
  • Its oil-based nature allows it to penetrate the wood for protection
  • It prevents the growth of mildew and mold on the surface of your wooden structures.
  • The formula has anti-UV rays from the sun.
  • It dries out into a semi-transparent finish
  • It applicable to any temperatures
  • Does not need a primer as it is both a stain and a sealer

ready sealAdvantages

  • It’s available in up to 9 different colors such as dark walnut, burnt hickory, mahogany, light oak, golden pine, natural cedar, mission brown, pecan, and redwood.     
  • It’s an excellent waterproofing product.    


  • Its area of coverage is lower compared to other sealers available in the market; this implies that you might need several gallons to get the work done.
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3. Minwax 222104444 Wood Finish Penetrating Interior Wood Stain, 1/2 pint, Ipswich Pine

This product has earned its place among the best wood stain for pine thanks to its extraordinary performance. As an oil-based wood stain, it offers your wooden structures a long-lasting wood tone color. This wood finish has a high penetration ability that plays an essential role in the sealing of the wood pores to help seal and protect the wood. 

This formula provides one of fantastic flexibility in terms of colors. It is available in 28 wood-tone colors, which help in beautifying any bare or stripped wood surface. Minwax 222104444 Wood Finish Penetrating Interior Wood Stain is perfect if you are looking to stain unfinished wood furniture, wood doors, cabinets, trim, molding, as well as hardwood floors.

The Summary of Top Features

  • It’s available in up to 28 beautiful colors.
  • You can use it to beautify any bare or stripped wood surface.
  • It is perfect if you want to stain unfinished wood cabinets, tables, wood doors, furniture, trim, molding, and hardwood floors.
  • Has strong penetration which helps it highlight the grain
  • Number one product for every American in wood finishing

wood finishAdvantages

  • Many colors for flexibility
  • High penetration for maximum protection
  • It’s a durable product


  • Not best for spraying
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4. Varathane 211714H Premium Wood Stain, Quart, Ipswich Pine

If you are talking of the best stain for pine, then this formula deserves to be on the list. It is a Soya oil-based premium wood stain created extraordinarily such that it can penetrate so deep into the wood to give premium synthetic pigments for a brighter color. 

This product is perfect for use on all interior wood projects such as cabinets, furniture, doors, floors, trim, and paneling. It’s easy to apply this product, besides it can cover a relatively large area of about 150 square feet per quart. 

You need a mineral spirit to clean this formula. Alternatively, you can use paint thinner to clean up.

The Summary of Top Features

  • This product gives your interior pine furniture, cabinets, doors, trim, floors, and paneling a vibrant natural appearance
  • Has a deeper penetration thanks to its superior soya oil-based formula 
  • It takes about 1-2 hours to dry to touch with a coverage of up to 150 sq. Ft.
  • This formula enables the display of the wood’s grains

varathane wood stainAdvantages

  • Faster dry time
  • Displays wood grain
  • Covers a relatively large area
  • You can use a variety of interior surfaces


  • Might take longer to dry under low temperatures
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5. Varathane 262012 Premium Fast Dry Wood Stain, Ipswich Pine

We have included this product in our list of the best stain for pine because it can bring the beauty of natural wood. This formula is a product of a unique base that gives the wood an ultra-fast dry time while sealing. 

It’s a high-performance stain that contains nano pigments; these nano pigments intensify the color clarity and, in turn, help to highlight the wood grain to give a perfect shade in a single coat.

This formula is excellent on virtually all interior wood projects like furniture, doors, kitchen cabinets, trim, floors, and paneling.

It has an area coverage of about 275 square feet per quart with lasting durability.

The Summary of Top Features

  • It’s a time-saving formula 
  • It does not require a wood conditioner
  • Great for furniture, floors, trim, etc.
  • It dries faster in just one hour
  • Comes with exceptional coverage of 275 square feet per quart
  • Needs one coat to achieve the target color
  • It’s excellent for all interior wood projects

varathane premiumAdvantages

  • Dries faster
  • Has a wide coverage
  • Just a single coat is enough


  • Can be hard to sand
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6. Minwax 61310444 PolyShades – Stain & Polyurethane in 1 Step, quart, Honey Pine, Satin

Here is another best stain for pine that you can use for your wooden structures. It has a variety of uses and can be used over a polyurethane finish, which gives you room to change the color of your finished wood. You don’t have to remove the existing polyurethane finish before applying this product.

Another feature that makes us consider it the best stain for pine is the fact that it enhances the original appearance of your wood by exposing the wood grain. In cases of spillages, you can clean this product using mineral spirits. It’s best for interior wood surfaces.

The Summary of Top Features

  • It enhances the wood grain
  • You can use this product over a polyurethane finish, which gives you flexibility in changing the color of your finish.
  • It saves time time
  • Clean up with the use of mineral spirits
  • For use on interior wood surfaces
  • Available in a variety of colors to choose from


  • Available in several colors
  • It’s easy to clean using mineral spirits
  • Saves time as you can apply over another finish like polyurethane


  • Can be sticky and thick
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7. OLD MASTERS 12504 Wip Stain, Puritan Pine

This product, Old Masters 12504 Wiping Stain, is arguably the best stain for pine because of its versatility. First, it’s not an expensive product, yet it offers so much protection to your pine with reliable durability.

This product is a wiping stain; hence it is thicker and a little heavy compared to other penetrating stains. Thanks to its thickness, this formula gives you so much control of the results that you desire because it allows you to cover the blemishes in the process. Besides, you can use it if you are looking for a little darker stain.

Another important aspect of this stain is that you will find it in many different color shades for flexibility in your projects. Whichever color that you choose is effective.

The Summary of Top Features

  • This product adds great value to your wood as it can do more than staining
  • Its thickness gives you control 
  • Best for interior, you can use it for exterior alongside a bright protective finish


  • It’s a pocket-friendly product considering the quality you get
  • It’s available in different shades
  • Covers blemishes


  • Dries faster hence needs a quick wipe off.

8. Old Masters Gel Stain American Walnut Oil-Based

Old Masters have a reputation for producing some of the best wood finishes in the market. If you need the best stain for pine, then you should dry this product. This product is among the best when it comes to application, as you can use a brush or a cotton rag.

You can apply it to multiple surfaces including fiberglass, in the cases where you will be using this product to a previously painted surface, you need to sand it fast and clean it.

It has a relatively faster drying time of up to 8 hours. 

The Summary of Top Features

  • Works on a variety of surfaces
  • Comes with an easy application using a brush or rag
  • Comes with extensive coverage of 300-500 square feet

old masters gel stainAdvantages

  • Dries relatively faster
  • Covers a large surface area of 300-500 square feet
  • Can be used on several surfaces among them fiberglass and a previously painted wood surface


  • Very thick layers might not be very pleasing
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Wooden structures made of pine are, in most cases, difficult to stain, and that’s why we encourage that you get the very best stain for pine. Staining adds beauty as well as protection to your wooden structures, but only if you get the best product in the market.

In our quest to help you get the very best out of your money, we have reviewed the best stain for pine, and any product that you will pick depending on your budget will serve you right. Even so, I would recommend the Ready Seal Pail Golden Pine Exterior Wood Stain as the overall best stain for pine. This formula offers semi-transparent look which retains the natural beauty of your pine. It comes with a wide coverage which makes it great for large projects and the most fascinating feature of all is that it is both a stain and sell-in one.

I hope you found this content helpful even as you look to get the very best stain for your pinewood structures. If you would like to share your thoughts, questions or general comments regarding this post kindly do so in the comment section below. Meanwhile, have a great shopping spree.

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Tyron Otieno

Tyron is an avid woodworker and writer. He founded this website to help other woodworkers, whether hobbyists or professionals by sharing his knowledge and experiencie after a decade of woodworking.

2 thoughts on “8 Best Stain for Pine- Reviews & Buyer’s Guide”

  1. kathleen kamyk

    Loved your article, it helped a great deal. At the top is a picture of stained pine wood, what color and stain was used? Kathy K

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