How to Remove Water Marks from Wooden Furniture

Total Time
Prep 5 mins
Cook 0 mins

My kids and former husband were bad about leaving their glass full of melting ice on top of their desks or next to their chair. I've found this works pretty well on most water stains on wooden furniture. This works best if you can get to the water mark earlier, rather than on one that has been there for years. This works best if you mix a little cigar or cigarette ashes in with your mayonnaise. doesn't recognize those items, so I couldn't list them in the ingredients. If you don't have cigar or cigarette ashes, the mayo alone works well, just not as well.


  1. Mix a little mayonnaise in with the ashes. ( wouldn't let me list the ashes in the ingredients -- didn't recognize them as an ingredient.) :)
  2. Rub the water spot gently. For really tough water marks, let it sit about 30 minutes.
  3. Wipe the mayo mixture off and clean with furniture cleaner.
Most Helpful

I'm afraid I did not see the injunction to use cigar or cigarette ashes until after I had already tried this recipe. I'm rather glad because I might not have tried it (not having access to said ashes). I used ashes from our charcoal grill instead. They didn't smell at all. The water mark on our coffee table was made by steam from an iron, and was recent. I can still see the faintest ghost of the watermark there, but it ts not at all noticeable. What really impressed me was the way this concoction filled the scratches in the wood (which were very noticeable). It dyed them a dark color, and now they are almost invisible. Our coffee table looks almost new! Thank you for a very helpful recipe.

LynneBethany August 11, 2011

Although this did seem to reduce the stain, it didn't get rid of it. To be fair, it was an older water stain. I'll try it again if I get a fresher stain and I'll update the review at that time.

Dreamer in Ontario April 19, 2011

I rather not rate this as my stain was older and I tried it hoping it might work, but the recipe states it's best on newer stains. My one concern was the ash seemed to leave some grey behind so I had to clean it pretty vigorously to remove it all.

momaphet April 18, 2011