How to Care for your Waxed Canvas Apron

High-quality, rugged waxed canvas is meant to be lived in. In fact, it looks and fits better the more it’s worn. Just like sturdy leather workboots, a waxed canvas apron is built to tackle every job — building personality with scuffs and nicks along the way.

But even the most rough and ready pieces need a little love from time to time. Treating your apron right means it can last for years to come.

Treat it like you care

… but not like it’s too precious. Waxed canvas can take a beating so a few marks and a bit of dirt isn’t going to do any harm. What that doesn’t mean is not taking any precautions.

As Ben Franklin so aptly put it, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” We like to think that if he were a craftsman, he’d say to use your apron as intended. Simply shake or beat away dirt and debris that happen during a job well done. And when not in use, store it in a cool, well-ventilated place. That’s because the natural moisture of the waxed canvas can allow mold to grow in hot or humid locations.

Never dry clean, machine wash or machine dry your waxed canvas — as that’s the fastest way to remove your protective wax finish.

Spot clean small stains

When you’ve just come back from an especially muddy, greasy, or grimy job, it’s a good idea to let your apron dry and gently scrub the muck away with a bristled brush. For stubborn spots or stains, you can spot clean it with cool water and a rag. Just remember, less is more here.

If that spot needs additional elbow grease (perhaps for the muddiest, greasiest, or grimiest jobs that even the bristled brush can’t handle), use our gentle canvas cleaner. This plant-derived product not only takes care of tough wearing spots, but also helps preserve your apron from mold and mildew. Simply apply, scrub in circular motions and let dry completely.

Rewax when needed

After years of heavy use, you might simply need to re-wax your apron — especially if the coating begins to thin or your apron isn’t as waterproof as it used to be. You can make it just like new by rewaxing, which helps remove imperfections and beef up protection. There are three steps: apply wax, heat wax, and rub excess wax off. It’s not complicated at all.

Just be sure to start with a clean apron — because the wax will cover up whatever is underneath. If you notice a lot of lint or dust, try using a lint roller or a rigid brush.

Step One:

Once your apron is clean and dry, cut a small amount of wax from your block — and a little goes a long way here. We’d suggest our canvas wax which is handmade in the USA of all-natural ingredients that you can actually read, making it safe for fabric, skin, and your loved ones.

Rub the wax into your apron in circular motions using broad, even strokes until it is fully coated. Try to keep the levels consistent so as to avoid buildups. You can smooth out any lumps with your fingertips. And while you’re at it, use those fingers to work the wax into the corners and crevices of your apron for full protection.

Step Two:

Once applied, it’s time to heat it up, which helps the wax spread even more smoothly to provide better waterproofing that can last for years. We recommend using a hairdryer to slowly and evenly heat the wax on the canvas.

After heated, work the wax into the canvas once again, this time with a rag, helping it to truly penetrate the fabric. Then simply wipe off any excess wax.

Step Three:

You’re almost done! Dry your garment for at least 24 hours in a cool, well-ventilated place (remember we talked about mold before?). Then get back to work.

Waxed canvas is unlike any other material and wear makes it look better than when it was made. Your canvas will develop a handsome patina over time — showing its unique character. That’s because our goods are made from tough materials using the same time-tested techniques that have allowed similar pieces to last year after year. It’s built to be used.