Best Car Detailing Products: Top Picks for a Spotless Ride

These top car detailing products will freshen up your car’s look

TheDrive and its partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links. Read more.

Your vehicle is exposed to a variety of conditions and elements each day, including road debris, tree sap, and pollen, which can all wreak havoc on your car's finish. Your car’s interior can also get stained over time. If you want your vehicle to shine like new, you'll need a few products (and some elbow grease) to make it happen. Check out the best car detailing products in the buying guide below to freshen up the look of your ride.

  • Best Overall
    Turtle Wax Ultimate Car Care Kit
    Summary
    Summary
    This 10-piece kit includes nearly everything you need for detailing, including car wash, tire shine, odor-x spray, scratch, and swirl removal, and wax and dry spray wax.
    Pros
    Pros
    These products help you wash, wax, shine, and protect your vehicle in no time. The kit is fully loaded, so you can take care of your car inside and out without spending too much.
    Cons
    Cons
    The kit does not include microfiber towels, and the tire cleaner is a little watery and not very effective.  Also, the products may leak during shipping.
  • Best Value
    MEGUIAR'S Ultimate Waterless Wash & Wax
    Summary
    Summary
    This waterless wash and wax can be used anywhere. The spot-free formula includes a glossy wax barrier that lasts for weeks. It's safe for paint, glass, chrome, metal, and plastic trim.
    Pros
    Pros
    It's quick and easy to use, and the spray smells pleasant. It wipes away cleanly. It brings out a nice shine and provides a hydrophobic coating.
    Cons
    Cons
    It will not work if your car is caked up with dirt and grime, and it can leave behind streaks. Also, the contents may leak during shipping.
  • Honorable Mention
    Shine Armor Car Interior Cleaner for Car Detailing
    Summary
    Summary
    This all-purpose interior cleaner can be used on a variety of materials, including leather, fabric, vinyl, and cloth. You can also use it on the carpet and headliner.
    Pros
    Pros
    It's easy to use, provides UV protection, and has anti-static properties to ward off dust. It doesn't leave behind a greasy or wet feel, and it has a nice scent.
    Cons
    Cons
    It's a little on the pricey side, and it may not work on stains such as coffee and red wine. It can fog up your windshield if you spray on it by accident.

Tips

  • There are a variety of products that are good for car detailing, including soap, wash mitts, drying towels, wheel cleaner, wax, paint scratch remover, etc. You can start out with the essential products and build up your car detailing toolbox if you are aiming for a concourse-ready vehicle.
  • If you are an enthusiast and attend a lot of car shows, you may want to invest in a polisher. This tool removes swirl marks much more efficiently than your hands alone.
  • Do not use a detailing spray on a hot surface. Try to clean your car in a shaded area, such as in the garage or under a tree, so it will work more effectively.

FAQs

Q: How do I apply a detailing spray?

A: Many detailing sprays are waterless. Simply shake the bottle, and spray it on the dirty surface. If it's a wheel cleaner, you may need to wait a few minutes before wiping off the surface with a clean microfiber towel.

Q: Will a detailing spray remove small scratches?

A: No. Detailing sprays do not contain polishing compounds. You will need to use a rubbing compound with a soft cloth to remove light scratches. Make sure to read the product's instructions to determine its purpose.

Q: How do I clean my navigation screen?

A: Some products are designed specifically to clean LCD screens. Use a microfiber cloth and, if necessary, spray a tiny amount of cleaning solution that doesn't contain ammonia or alcohol, which can damage the screen.

Final Thoughts

Our pick for the best car detailing products is the Turtle Wax Ultimate Car Care Kit. It comes with nearly everything you need to clean your car from top to bottom. 

For a more budget-friendly option, consider the MEGUIAR'S Ultimate Waterless Wash & Wax.