LAST UPDATED: April 16, 2019
Best Tire Shine: Our Top Picks to Make Your Tires Look Brand New
The best tire shine products to protect your tires and keep them clean while you drive
The Review Team
How We Decided
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PUBLISHED ON April 16, 2019
Taking care of your car means making sure it’s clean, sparkling, and free of any dirt or blemishes. That can be a time-consuming process and cost a bit of money if you wash, wax, and polish your ride often. It’s also easy to forget about the tires if you’re so focused on the vehicle’s body. That’s why a good tire shine can be a good finishing touch when detailing your car. Here are our top picks for the best tire shine products to leave your tires looking fresh and brand new.
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All of our reviews are based on market research, expert input, or practical experience with most products we include. This way, we offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.
Benefits of Tire Shine
- Make your tires stand out. Tire shine makes wheels look brand new. They help keep tires sparkling while you drive and are designed to bring out the black shine in the surface.
- Keep away dirt and mud. Tire shines help keep dirt, mud, and other road debris from sticking to the tires for a period of time, keeping them looking fresh and sparking.
- Protect the tires from sun damage. Tire shines help keep the tires protected against UV rays, meaning they will keep the tire color from fading if left in the sun for long periods of time. They also help to prevent cracks from appearing on the rubber.
Types of Tire Shine
Spray On Shines
Many tire shining products come in a spray bottle for better application accuracy. These tire shines are easy to apply and allow the liquid to reach challenging areas such as in between the tire ridges. They are made up of oils and polymers mixed with water. These types of shines don’t wear down the tires, meaning they can be used more often without fear of damaging the tires in the long run. However, they do not last as long as gel-based options.
Gel shines come in a bottle and give you control over how much product you use and where exactly it goes. These shines are applied by rubbing the gel onto the rubber of the tire with a microfiber cloth. You could also do the opposite by applying the gel to the cloth first. These require more time and care to make sure the tire gets a nice finish.
Based out of California, Chemical Guys designs and creates high-quality waxes, coatings, polishes, and sealants for cars. The company offers videos and courses to teach people how to properly care for a car. One of its top products is the Chemical Guys TVD80816 Optical Select Tire Shine (Hybrid V07).
Car Guys is a brand devoted to properly detailing cars to make sure they last longer. It launched as a website in 2015 and evolved into a company later on as it started to design its own personal car products. Its best-rated tire shine is the Car Guys Tire Shine Spray.
Founded in 1901, Meguiar’s has been creating care products for more than just vehicles over its 118 years of business. It began as a furniture polishing laboratory by Frank Meguiar, Jr., then later began to develop its own products for automotive care. One of its most recommended products is the Meguiar’s Endurance Tire Gel.
Tire Shine Pricing
- $5-$10: With tire shines, you mainly pay for the size of the bottle. Within this price range, anything below 16 ounces typically falls here.
- $10-$20: This price range has larger bottles and containers that offer more solution for more applications or larger vehicles.
- $20-$60: Here, you can find anything from 64 ounces to one gallon or more for a large supply of tire shine.
Tire shines come with an added feature and benefit for your tires: While giving them a shiny finish, they also protect against the sun’s UV rays. This prevents them from fading and showing signs of aging. If you live somewhere particularly sunny, we recommend investing in a tire shine with better UV protection.
Spray and gel shines can leave your tires with a number of different finishes. The results depend on how long the shine is left on the rubber and, in some cases, how much is put on. The longer it remains before being removed, the shinier finish the tires will get.
- Ease of Application: Tire shines come in a gel or spray form. Both are simple to apply, but gel-based shines may take more time and require more manual labor, while sprays are applied more quickly.
- Finish Results: If making your tires super shiny isn’t the end goal, you can instead give them a matte or satin finish. This look will make the tires less sparkly and create a factory look instead.
- Microfiber Applicator Pad: It is important to have something to rub in the tire shine. Microfiber applicator pads are used to rub in the spray or gel to get an even coat all around the tires. Many products may come with their own pad, but if they don’t, you will need to buy one in order to make sure you get the best finish possible.
Best Tire Shine Reviews & Recommendations 2020
The best tire shine product we found overall is the Car Guys Tire Shine Spray. It comes with its own patented polymer additive to better protect car tires and give them a restored look. It works to extend and enhance the life of the tire without including the chemicals that can damage the rubber of the tire.
It can even be used on plastic and vinyl surfaces so you could use it to clean the dash or other parts of the car. The shine also doesn’t damage rubber, plastic, or vinyl, meaning you can apply it over and over again without harming the vehicle.
It includes its own microfiber applicator, but we found it to be on the cheap side since it falls apart after just a few uses. Other drawbacks include a finish that isn’t water-resistant and can wash off with a small amount of rain. Water can remove the satin finish, meaning you may have to apply the spray again after a storm.
Meguiar’s tire shine gel is what we recommend as a good value shine. The product comes with a healthy amount of gel that should last through a couple of sets of tires before running out. One of the best things we found with this gel is its pleasant grape smell.
Not only does the tire gel ensure the black surface doesn’t fade, but it also acts as a protective layer against UV rays to prevent the sun from fading the color of the tires. The shine also helps to keep the rubber from cracking in the heat.
There are a few drawbacks to using a gel as opposed to a spray. It is more time-consuming to put it on all four tires and requires more manual labor. It also can get your hands dirty if you are not careful, but it is simple to remove by just washing your hands. Finally, the 16-ounce bottle of tire gel does not come with a microfiber cloth so you will have to purchase one yourself.
Here, we have a tire shine can create a high-gloss shine while also protecting the rubber against signs of aging. It’s easy to apply and works well after one coat, so you won’t have to keep applying it day after day. The spray is also capable of getting rid of salt, dirt, and grime, making it perhaps the most versatile on our list.
One of the greatest features of this spray is its ability to give the tires a medium or high shine, which is determined by the amount of solution and time you spend on the application process. The longer you keep the spray on the rubber before wiping it away, the shinier the surface will be.
One thing we noticed is that the spray bottle itself feels a little flimsy in the grip, so you’ll want to make sure you hold onto it firmly during application. Also, the nozzle has a wide spray pattern that causes a lot of overspray onto the ground or the vehicle’s body. We recommend holding it closer to the tire to get a more even spread across the rubber.
Thanks to a special blend of synthetic polymers, you can achieve a high-gloss, wet-look shine on your tires with this coating from Meguiar’s. You’ll then enjoy a lasting finish thanks to the use of advanced resin technology. The beautiful glossy finish will maintain its look thanks to anti-ozonates, which protect your rubber tires from cracking or fading.
Not only will you love the high gloss shine, but it’s also easy to achieve. The aerosol can allows you to quickly spray the shine product on your tire: That’s it, you’re done. The innovative technology used in the making of this shine coating ensures you enjoy the latest and most effective product on the market.
Unfortunately, this tire shine doesn’t stick well once you start driving. This means it creates a sling-off effect on your car’s paint, which you’ll then need to clean off. The shine will dull quickly once you start driving.
This two-pack of tire shine from Armor All will ensure you have plenty to keep your tire’s looking shiny and like-new. You’ll achieve an extreme wet-look and deep black glossy shine. Regular application will create a protective coating on your tires. This will protect against fading and cracking.
Mixed into this shine coating are gloss enhancers and conditioners. This improves the life of your tires. They also help you achieve a mirror-like finish on your tires. Once applied, it’ll last for several weeks, which means you have to apply tire shine less often.
Unfortunately, the spray bottle is challenging to use, and the spray nozzle will create a mess on your tires. You’ll then need to clean your wheels before you can call the job done. You also need to let the product dry for at least an hour before you can drive. This is significantly longer than other tire shine products and even then, you may still get sling-off.
When you apply Turtle Wax Wet’n Black tire shine to your tires, it penetrates deep into the rubber. This locks in the high-gloss shine so you can enjoy the shine for weeks afterward. Spray the product on your tires and let it sit for three to five minutes. The self levelers will go to work, ensuring you get even coverage.
The coating is a proprietary blend of silicone polymers. They have unique bonding chemistry that allows the shine to cling to your tires, even through washing. You’ll also be extending the life of your tires thanks to UV inhibitors that protect your tires from drying and cracking.
Unfortunately, it can look streaky on your tires, and if you apply too much, it’ll look cloudy. You should also be very careful to not get it on your wheels. Certain types of wheels can become damaged if the product is sprayed on and left there.
Lightly mist your tires with Tire Wet and let them sit for one to three minutes. The result is a high-gloss shine to your tires. The PolyShine Technology goes to work making your tires look shiny and new. If you prefer a more subtle shine, you can spray Tire Wet onto a clean sponge or cloth and then wipe your tires down.
This tire shine claims to last up to four weeks. That means you’ll only have to apply it once a month. Once applied, this tire shine product dries fast to reduce the chance of sling-off.
Unfortunately, the trigger spray is challenging to set. Either too much product or not enough comes out. You may also find that the “high-gloss method” doesn’t produce as high of a wet-gloss look that you’re hoping for. You should also be careful if you have Plasti Dip wheels. This shine product contains petroleum, which will eat away at your Plasti Dip coating.
Spray this Slick Mist tire shine on your tires and have tires that look like new. This easy-to-use spray goes on smoothly and smells pleasant. The product is thick and will effectively cling to your tires. Through repeated use, it will build on your tire to create a productive coating without being gummy or goopy.
What’s nice about this product is that it isn’t just a tire shine. It will enhance the look of your tires, but you can also use it on your black trim. It also won’t create slick driveway stains like several other tire shine products on the market.
Unfortunately, it won’t restore your faded and old black plastic to new. You may find some success after several applications. This means you may not see results for a while, and you’ll need to put in a lot of effort to achieve a change. You may also find a similar problem with your tires where after this product dries, your tires look like they did before the application.
Just spray and walk away with this tire shine from Mothers. You’ll get an instant high-gloss finish. This durable tire shine spray will penetrate into your tires to provide you with long-lasting results. The product uses advanced micro-emulsion resin technology. To use, spray on your tires, wipe off any overspray or drips, and then let it dry for a few minutes.
If you want something that works fast with minimal effort, then you’ve found it. You can’t get it any easier than the directions for this product. To make it even better, it performs well with no discoloration or sling-off. The formula also smells really nice, which makes it enjoyable to use.
Unfortunately, this product is not safe for your wheels. It can cause etching and discoloration, which is almost impossible to get out. This tire shine product may also turn some rubber tires a strange brown color. If it does work for you, the shine won’t last as long as other products on the market.
This No Touch formula is a one-step tire care product. Spray it on and let it dry. What you’re left with is a rich satin finish. This protective barrier on your tires will prevent discoloration and cracking. It will also repel water, dirt, and dust. This product comes as a six-pack of 21-ounce cans.
Other care tire shine products require you to clean and dry your tires before you can apply the shine—not this product. It will clean, shine, and protect all in one step. This makes it very easy to use since there’s no wiping required. An added benefit of this product is that it’s effective at loosening rusted bolts and lubricating hinges.
Unfortunately, the stream coming out of the spray nozzle can be very weak. This makes it difficult to apply enough product to your tires. You may also feel that the shine from this product isn’t as glossy or wet as other tire shine products on this list.
The Chemical Guys Tire Kicker Extra Glossy Tire Shine comes in a 16-fluid-ounce spray bottle and is designed for both tires and other rubber, vinyl, and plastic parts on your vehicle. The product is safe for interior, exterior, and engine bay use and is a non-slippery and non-greasy formula. It also prevents parts from fading in the sun.
What's great about Tire Kicker is its versatility. Not just for tires, you can also use it on faded grilles, plastic mirrors, bumper parts, dashboards, vinyl seats, etc. Instead of purchasing multiple products, you just need one to update the look of your vehicle's exterior or interior. Plus, it's really easy to use: just spray it on, and wipe off the excess formula.
One downside with Tire Kicker is that you have to reapply it regularly. There have also been some complaints that it's a little messy and the nozzle tip may act erratically.
The Carfidant Ultimate Tire Shine Spray makes your tires look wet, dark, and slick with just a few pumps from the spray bottle. The formula blocks UV rays and provides protection from salt and other road debris. Made with a nano-polymer coating, the non-toxic Ultimate Tire Shine does not contain any excess dyes or fragrances, and it's environmentally friendly.
Users like this product because it's simple to control the shine level on a vehicle's tires. The instructions are straightforward, and you can opt for a more natural shine or a deeper, more wet-looking shine. American-based Carfidant is so confident in its product that it will provide a 100-percent refund if you're not satisfied with the results.
One problem with the Ultimate Tire Shine is the nozzle may leak when it sprays, so you may waste a little bit of the liquid. Unfortunately, this is a problem endemic to many brands. Also, it's longevity isn’t the greatest, particularly if it rains.
Meguiar’s NXT Generation Insane Shine Tire Coating produces a high-gloss shine and what it describes as an "insane" wet look. The product's mirror-like shine is due to the formula, which features synthetic polymers, advanced resin technology, and antiozonants that keep your tires from turning brown and aging prematurely.
The Insane Tire Coating is glossy, protective, and resistant to washing off, so it should last a long time. Compared to some rival brands, this product can last up to two weeks and will continue to perform even after it rains. The aerosol spray can is also easy to use and applies evenly, giving your tires that coveted showroom look.
If you prefer a more subtle shine, then this isn't the right product as it makes your tires look extremely shiny. Some users complain that it has a chemical smell. Also, because it's an aerosol bottle it can easily get on your wheels.
The Griot's Garage Black Shine Tire & Trim Coating is a water-resistant formula that's designed to last through rain and several car washings. It also protects against harmful UV rays. The product features an even and precise spray pattern to prevent overspray and promotes a smooth application on your tires, wheel wells, and trim while promoting a deep and dark shine.
One benefit of this tire shine is that it won't run or streak. Also, it has a pleasant scent, which makes cleaning your car that much easier. It's easy to apply, and you only need one or two quick passes for it to take effect. It lasts a while, and it's a good value. Overall, it's very efficient and leaves your tires looking deep black for days.
However, applying too much can create slinging around your fenders and panels, so you may want to spray it on a pad applicator instead of directly on the tires. It may also sling if you don't let it sit a bit before driving.
The Superior Products California Cover All Automotive Tire Shine is a professional-grade product made in America that’s backed by a 100-percent satisfaction guarantee. This water-repellent and high-gloss formula still looks good weeks after application. Because it doesn't have any acetone in the formula, you don't have to worry about it damaging your tires or other parts of your vehicle.
One of the best things about this product is that you can also use it on running boards, vinyl tops, side panels, dashboards, etc. The high silicone content creates a waterproof barrier, which protects tires and other parts from damage. It's also easy to apply and doesn't require a cloth or wipe. It stays where it's sprayed and will not drip or run.
There have been some complaints, however, that it's a little greasy and can take a few hours to dry. It also has a tendency to sling off your tires if you don't let it set.
Adam's Tire Shine comes in a 16-ounce spray bottle that produces a dark shine without a greasy effect. You have the ability to scale up the shine by applying multiple layers, which won't run or sling if applied properly. Made of durable silica polymers, this tire shine produces a glossy sheen and is a good option if you have large tires or those with aggressive tread blocks.
This product cleans off tires very easily and lasts longer than typical water-based tire shine formulas. It smells nice, is easy to use, and you don't need a lot to get results. If you use a tire brush, it won't drip down to the wheels or anywhere around them. Just make sure to use a light coating to prevent splatter.
There have been some complaints that it washes off easily in the rain. It's also slightly more expensive than some other options, and it may come with a defective sprayer.
- Make sure your tires are clean and dry before applying a spray or gel. The shine solution can’t remove debris or dirt effectively, but the resulting shine can help keep dirt and other road debris from sticking to the tires.
- For sprays, it is recommended you hold the bottle closer to the tire when applying. That way, you will have more control over where you’re spraying and how much product hits your tires.
- Sling is what happens if a tire is not fully dried after applying tire shine to the rubber. If any water from the product is leftover, it will be flung off and stick to your car as soon as you start driving, thus removing the tire shine. To prevent this, make sure the tires are completely dry.
- Avoid applying tire shine when it’s hot out to get a nice even coating on the tires and give them a slick finish. You should also avoid applying shines to tires that are hot or warm. Bring the car into the shade or wait until the sun has set to apply.
Q: Can all tire cleaners be applied to plastic and vinyl?
A: Some, but not all, tire shine products can be applied to other areas of your car. We recommend researching a shine before you start applying it to plastic or vinyl.
Q: How long does the shine last?
A: This is a difficult question to answer because each tire shine is different. The majority will keep your tires shining for up to a week, but check with the manufacturer to make sure.
Q: Will tire shines leave a stain on concrete?
A: Yes, however, most stains will go away over time or can be washed away with a hose or power washer.
Q: How easy is it to remove accidental marks on wheels?
A: It’s simple to remove any marks you may get on the wheels. Just use a microfiber to wipe it off quickly.
If you want your tires to stand out from the rest, we recommend the Car Guys Tire Shine Spray. It goes on quickly and comes with its own microfiber applicator to help bring a glossy look to your tires.
However, if you are looking for a cheaper option that will give your tires a decent shine, we’d go with Meguiar’s Endurance Tire Gel.