Best car polishes 2023

We countdown the very best car polishes you can buy, and reveal how to get outstanding results...

Best car polishes 2022

Simple as car polish might seem, there’s a world of different products out there from colour-specific options to scratch removers and more. We got the polishing pads out to find out which is best.

Starting with a clean, cool, dry car, we used a fresh polishing pad and a mechanical, rotary polisher so that every polish we tested was applied with the same vigour and pressure, before finishing by buffing with a clean microfibre cloth. We’ve assessed the polishes based on how quickly and how effectively they removed any haze and minor surface scratches from the paintwork, and how good the finished shine was. As always, we’ve also considered price.

Top 8: car polishes

1. BEST BUY – Meguiars Ultimate Compound

Meguiars car polish


The Meguiars polish did the best job of all of our polishes when it came to scratch removal, even helping to remove a fairly noticeable supermarket trolley scuff. It goes on smoothly and buffs to a really high shine, and left the paintwork looking lustrous for a good few weeks afterwards. Sure, it’s not the cheapest product here, but it is the best, whether bought as a general car polish or for tackling specific marks and scratches.

What Car? says 5 stars

2. RECOMMENDED – Simoniz Liquid Diamond polish and wax

Simoniz car polish

The Simoniz polish is fantastic value and a brilliant general polish. It can’t match the performance of the Meguiars polish when it comes to tougher scratches or marks, but it was easy to apply, polished up quickly and it didn’t take much buffing to bring it to a bright shine. It kept the paint looking fresh and clean for a long time, too. For the money, you just can’t knock it. 

What Car? says 5 stars

3. Turtle Wax Renew Polish

Turtle Wax car polish

This does a great job, going on easily and buffing up to bring a bright shine to the paintwork without too much effort. It wasn’t quite as effective at getting scratches out as some of the other brews in this test, but it did a really good job on some fine haze that had formed on the metallic paint of our 20-year old test car. As a general polish, it’s a solid choice and good value for money.

What Car? says 4 stars

4. Autoglym Super Resin polish

Autoglym car polish

The Autoglym polish is a good all-rounder; it buffs up to a really bright, smooth shine that kept the paint looking clean and lustrous for weeks afterwards. It even seemed to help disguise some ‘orange peel’ finish in areas. It wasn’t quite as effective as the rival Meguiars polish when it came to removing scratches, but if it’s a high quality, long lasting shine-and-protect polish you’re after, this is a really good option. 

What Car? says 4 stars

5. T-Cut Colour Fast

T-Cut car polish

This is a colour-specific polish that’s designed to be particularly good for any deeper scratches, where the pigment of the polish can help to revive and work out visible marks. It is good, too; our test car had only a small, light scratch but the T-Cut polish worked it out easily, and the rest of the paintwork was left with a good shine. It even comes with free polish and buffing pads. 

What Car? says 4 stars

6. Sonax car polish

Sonax car polish

Ironically, the only English on the Sonax’s packaging is the phrase ‘Made in Germany’, which is fairly evident from the fact that everything else (including the instructions) is in German. The polish isn’t complicated to use, though, and it’s very effective. It dries quickly, but is great for restoring paint finish and shine, and did well on light scratches, too. Not the cheapest or the easiest to understand, but still a good product.

What Car? says 3 stars

7. MER Ultimate Shine Polish

Mer car polish

Decent value (albeit only in a 1.0-litre bottle) and with a child-proof cap that’s so effective that it’ll even keep most adults out, this is another from a reassuringly Germanic, masculine brand. It does the job, too; it left the paint of our test car looking mark free, smooth and bright. However, it doesn’t seem any more effective than cheaper options here and it isn’t as good at getting scratches out as our winner.

What Car? says 3 stars

8. Glart Anti-hologram polish

Glart car polish

The Glart polish is very effective but takes more effort to be brought up to a shine. We found that it dried so quickly that it was prone to leaving residue, so it took more effort to remove than most others. However, with a polishing machine it’s fine and leaves a good, long-lasting shine. It’s only available in a large 1.0-litre bottle, though, which may be less convenient for storing than those that are offered in 500ml bottles.

What Car? says 2 stars

How we test products

The products or services referenced in this story have been reviewed independently by our experts. When you buy using the links on our site, we may earn a commission, but this will never influence our opinion or ratings.

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