I have not used guitar polish in 20 years. That was back when I used Martin polish on my S6 Cedar. The polish wicked into the grain via scratchs in the cedar, causing the top to change geometry enough that I couldn't tune it properly. My luthier had to do a setup on it twice to get it back in action. I never opened that Martin polish since, not even for furniture. I tossed the bottle in trash this summer. I've been using damp cloth.
I bit the bullet and ordered a 6 oz bottle of 'Seagull Luthier Grade Guitar Polish" This is also available branded as Godin. I had read about how silicon-based polish built up on guitars and make matt guitar finishes have glossy spots.
Stewmac says that the silicone and micro-grits in aggressive polish restores the shine by sanding away the scratches in a dirty finish. However, these silicone-based products add a layer to the guitar’s existing finish, making repairs really difficult – glues and new finish have difficulty attaching to the new layer of silicone. Instead of polishing your guitar’s finish, you should be cleaning the finish.
Most of my guitars are matt finish, of my acoustics only my Ibanez parlor and my Alvarez Baritone are glossy. Aggressive polish can make matt finishes shine. This is bad outcome Due to the covid-19 lockdown I've been trying to learn to take better care of my guitars. I hear buffing motions is therapeutic
Has any one else used Seagull's or other brand on silicon-free polish?
RobertW, Yep. It's the only guitar polish I've ever used. I use it sparingly and I'm still on my first bottle which is, I don't know, probably 10 years old by now. Still over half full.
Never had any problems. But, to be fair, I've only used it mainly on gloss tops/bodies. I used it a little bit on my matte finish guitars in the past, but very sparingly. I didn't have any problems.
I mainly protect my finishes through the keep-in-case-unless being-used philosophy and pick guards and playing technique admittedly. The guitar polish I usually only use when the guitar needs a good cleaning, usually at string change time. Being an Elixer user almost exclusively, that doesn't happen near as much as with most people.
Also, to be fair, I never really believed in using guitar polish on matte finishes. I usually just use a clean rag that's either slightly dampened with water, or with a little bit of fret board oil on it. In either case, I just want the rag to be damp enough to grab the dust etc off the guitar body.
I don't know if that helps, but that's what I do and I've never had any problems.
===================================== One Alvarez in the hand is worth two Taylors and a Martin in the guitar store!
I've had a variety of gloss finish and matt finish guitars. The gloss finished guitars can be polished to a very shiny polished finish, using guitar polish and elbow grease. The matt finished guitars can be cleaned with a very damp clean rag, and finished with a clean dry rag.