How To Stain Pine

If you’re looking for a cost-effective wood to use for your DIY projects, pine is a great choice. It’s easy to work with and has a beautiful grain pattern. However, staining pine can be a challenge. In this article, we’ll teach you how to stain pine in a way that will make your project look professional and beautiful.

What You’ll Need

Before we get started, let’s gather the materials we’ll need. Here’s a list of what you’ll need to stain pine:

  • Wood conditioner
  • Stain
  • Brushes or rags
  • Sandpaper
  • Masking tape
  • Drop cloth

Preparing the Pine

Before you begin staining, you’ll need to prepare the pine. Start by sanding the wood with a fine-grit sandpaper. This will help the wood absorb the stain more evenly. Once you’ve sanded the wood, wipe it down with a damp cloth to remove any dust.

Using Wood Conditioner

Pine is a soft wood that can absorb stain unevenly. To prevent this, apply a wood conditioner to the pine before staining. This will help the wood absorb the stain more evenly and create a more uniform finish.

Choosing the Right Stain

When choosing a stain for your pine project, it’s important to consider the color and type of wood you’re working with. Some stains work better with certain types of wood than others. It’s also important to choose a stain that complements the overall look and feel of your project.

Applying the Stain

Now it’s time to apply the stain. Use a brush or rag to apply the stain in the direction of the wood grain. Make sure to apply the stain evenly and avoid leaving any drips or puddles. You can also use masking tape to protect any areas you don’t want to stain.

Removing Excess Stain

After you’ve applied the stain, use a clean rag to wipe away any excess. This will help create a more even finish and prevent the stain from becoming too dark.

Allowing the Stain to Dry

Once you’ve finished staining, it’s important to allow the wood to dry completely. This can take several hours or even overnight. Be patient and don’t rush the process. If you try to apply a finish before the stain is dry, it can ruin the entire project.


Can you stain pine without conditioning it?

While it’s possible to stain pine without conditioning it, the results may be uneven. Conditioning the wood before staining helps the wood absorb the stain more evenly and creates a uniform finish.

What type of stain works best for pine?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. The type of stain that works best for pine will depend on the color and type of wood you’re working with. It’s important to experiment with different stains to find the one that works best for your project.

Can you stain pine darker?

Yes, you can stain pine darker by applying multiple coats of stain. However, make sure to allow the wood to dry completely between coats to avoid over-saturating the wood.


Staining pine can be a challenge, but with the right techniques and materials, you can achieve a beautiful and professional finish. Remember to sand the wood before staining, use a wood conditioner, choose the right stain, apply the stain evenly, remove excess stain, and allow the wood to dry completely. With these tips, you’ll be able to stain pine like a pro.