One of our goals here at Garage Dreams is to provide ‘real world’ consumer advice in the form of honest reviews of products.
If you’ve ever tried to find a product review online, then you have probably noticed there are many dubious, false, or misleading reviews out there.
Other times, reviews can be problematic from the perspective that the person conducting the review is just too good at what they are doing and the way they use the product for an ‘average Joe’ to be able to get the same results.
In my experience, this tends to be the case with reviews of car detailing products.
There are many car detailing enthusiasts out there who put huge amounts of time, effort and expense into perfecting the art of making their cars look incredible. I have nothing but respect for people who put big effort into detailing.
However, for people like myself who just want to keep our cars looking decent (and occasionally put a bit of extra effort into improving and protecting the appearance) we need to know how a product works for a layperson who lacks the skills or tools to do anything more than what is written on the bottle’s instruction section.
With that in mind, I recently purchased some Turtle Wax “Hybrid Solutions Ceramic Polish & Wax” (what a mouthful of a name) and in this review I’m going to cover my experience with using this product to try and improve the paint finish on a few different cars.
I saw it on the shelf in my local auto store when browsing for some new car wash, and thought I would give it a try.
What Is This Product?
Long story short, Turtle Wax pitch this as a “hybrid” product – a cross between a wax and a polish that can be used to remove paint imperfections and create an attractive, vibrant finish.
Why Might You Use It?
Because you want a single detailing product than can remove paint imperfections (such as swirls and scratches) and rejuvenate the finish of your car – you don’t have the time to muck around with separate compounds, polishes, waxes etc.
Not everyone has the time or the inclination to do in-depth detailing (respect to you if you do!). Some of us just want to have a simple product that makes it easy to periodically “correct” and enhance the finish of our car’s paint, while also providing protection in the form of a wax/sealant.
How Much Does It Cost?
Pricing varies depending on where you are located and where you are buying from.
I live in “rip off” New Zealand, where everything (particularly imported products like this) cost a fortune, so I paid around $50 NZD from a local auto parts retailer.
You can get a good deal on this product from Amazon.com here
It definitely isn’t the cheapest wax/polish on the market, but nor is it the most expensive – I feel it is fairly priced for what you get.
There is enough to last a decent amount of time/uses, provided you apply as per the manufacturer’s instructions. I imagine one bottle might easily last a two car family a year (maybe even longer).
Does It Work?
This is the bit that actually matters in this review of Turtle Wax’s hybrid ceramic wax polish – does it actually work!
Well luckily you’re in the right place, as I will now share my real world experience with the product.
Disclaimer: I am incompetent. I am basically incapable of doing anything practical properly (I am one of those car enthusiasts who likes driving cars, not working on them). I am the Jeremy Clarkson of the Garage Dreams editorial team, and therefore this means that in the hands of a competent user a product like this is likely to be more effective.
With that disclaimer aside, let’s get down to business.
I tested the Turtle Wax hybrid ceramic wax/polish on three different cars, trying to solve three different issues.
In all instances I hand-applied the product using a foam applicator pad, and then buffed off with a microfiber cloth. I don’t have an orbital/DA so can’t comment on how it would work with one of those.
The first car I tried the product on was my trusty (or rather untrustworthy – if you’ve read my ownership experience here) Volkswagen Touareg.
With 150,000kms on the clock and a chequered ownership history, the paintwork in this car is dull and imperfect.
The previous owners (who I know on a ‘friend of a friend’ basis) used the Touareg to take a caravan all over the place, and also lived up a driveway with lots of bushes and trees.
This is reflected in the number of small scratches and imperfections on the metallic blue paintwork – and the level of swirling indicates a hard life of washes only in service station drive throughs.
As such, I wanted to see if the Turtle Wax hybrid product could help to rejuvinate the finish on the Touareg.
Here are some examples of what I was able to achieve:
While I would probably not be so bold as to call the finish “as good as new” it is miles better than what was there before, and really does have an impressive improvement in terms of clarity, lustre and shine.
For a 15 year old car with substantial mileage (and a tough life) under its belt, I was genuinely impressed.
The second car I tried the Turtle Wax product on was my brother’s Volvo 940 wagon.
This car has significant scratching around the driver’s door lock, due to its lack of remote locking. 25 years of people having to lock and unlock the door using a key (and sometimes missing) equates to a lot of scratches.
Here’s a ‘before and after’ comparison of what I was able to achieve:
I didn’t do any prep work apart from clean the door area off and then use the product as directed. Presumably with more attention to detail, better preparation and superior application technique I could have got even better results – but for something that took me less than five minutes I am genuinely impressed.
The final car to undergo my ‘torture test’ was a family member’s Nissan Cube, which is definitely showing its age in the paint department.
This car is an interesting one as it has aftermarket decals/stickers (applied by a vehicle graphic designer/signwriter as it is used as a business car for Art Box Gallery).
I tried the product on two key areas.
The first was to see how it would work at trying to minimise a significant scuff mark on the rear of the car, where someone had scraped while backing out of a carpark.
As you can see, this didn’t result in much success. While the surrounding paint definitely improved, it did little to reduce the visibility of this defect – I would image that a more aggressive cutting compound or polish would be required to make any noticeable improvement.
Where the Turtle Wax product did do well, however, is with regards to improving the vibrancy and depth of colour of the stickers/decals on the car.
Age and sunlight have faded the deep orange to a much lighter colour. However, as you can see in the following images, there was a substantial improvement from using this product.
Conclusion – Turtle Wax Hybrid Solutions Ceramic Polish & Wax Review
Overall, I was impressed with the results from Turtle Wax hybrid ceramic wax polish – it does what it says on the tin.
Considering I am famously impractical, and not in any way, shape or form a competent car detailer, I was able to achieve some results that I would consider impressive for the cost and effort required. This is especially so when you consider I hand applied the product, rather than using any kind of orbital or DA.
It was easy to use with nothing more than an applicator pad and a microfiber cloth for buffing once applied.
As mentioned earlier in this review, I don’t have the best technique when it comes to auto detailing, but nonetheless I was able to achieve what I consider to be more than satisfactory results.
If you want to revingiorate your paint finish and “bring back to life” the lustre of your paintwork while removing minor imperfections, then this product from Turtle Wax could be a great option.
It is simple to use and easy to get some decent results in a variety of different applications.
If you need to do serious paintwork correction, then you are probably going to need a more “heavy duty” polish or compound. For example it really didn’t do much at all to a more significant area of damage on one of the cars I tested.
But for a quick, affordable and effective solution to bringing the shine back to your paintwork and eliminating minor imperfections, then you should definitely consider this product.
One thing I haven’t yet had the time to test is the durability of the wax finish. I wrote this article the exact same day as I did the testing. However, I will update in a month or so’s time with regards to how well the wax “sheen” has lasted. To be honest that part was a bit of an afterthought, as I was more interested in how it would work at rejuvenating the finish of tired, dull paint … and for that purpose I am more than happy with my purchase!
Have you used this product? If so, please share your experience with us by leaving a comment below. We would love to hear from you!