How to Wax a Skimboard: The Ultimate Guide & Best Buying Tips

by Joost Nusselder | Last Updated:  07.03.2022
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The best way to enjoy skimboarding is with the right equipment.

A well-waxed board will provide you with grip and control on the water’s surface. It also makes it easier for you to stay on the board.

In this article, I’ll show you how to wax a skimboard using a few simple steps. I’ll also provide you with some tips on what type of wax to use and where to buy it.

How to wax a skimboard

Skimboarding is a lot of fun, but if you don’t wax your board it will quickly become a pain.

How to Apply Surfboard Wax

Waxing your board is an essential part of taking care of it and keeping it in good condition.

When it comes to waxing your skimboard, there are a few things you need to know in order to get the most out of your board. Make sure to use a bar of wax that is appropriate for the water temperature and apply it in different motions for each layer.

Materials you’ll need to wax your skimboard

  1. Board
  2. Base coat high-temperature range wax
  3. Wax appropriate for your water temperature
  4. Cleaning agent and or plastic scraper, or use a complete wax remover set like this Sticky Bumps Wax Plus Fireball
  5. Cloth or towel
  6. Hairdryer (or the sun)

Do you put wax on a skim board?

Wax is a substance that is applied to the surface of a board to provide grip and control. It also makes it easier for you to stay on the board and a skimboard is notoriously hard to stay on. So yes, you need it.

The type of wax you use will depend on the water temperature. There are different types of waxes for warm, cold, and temperate waters, and we’ll get into those in a bit.

It should be appropriate wax though. Some use candle wax on their skimboard, but I wouldn’t recommend it.

How to choose a good wax for your board

When buying wax, make sure to get a wax that is appropriate for your water temperature. There are different types of waxes for warm, cold, and temperate waters.

You can find waxes specifically made for skimboards, or you can use a base coat high-temperature range wax with an appropriate wax on top.

If you’re not sure what type of wax to get, it’s usually available in the product description of the online store, and you can ask people around the beaches what they use (you can even ask surfers).

Or Google your water temperature near where you’ll be skimboarding before you waste your money on a pair of wax bars that don’t match your weather.

Waxes for warm water typically have a temperature range of 68F to 78F. They are recommended for use in water temperatures that are above 70F. Otherwise, you’ll be better off using a tropical wax.

Waxes for cool water typically have a temperature range of 58F to about 65F, and cold wax is for 58F and below.

Another thing to look for in a wax that has a high-temperature range.

This will ensure that your board is well-protected against extreme temperatures and it is the base coat that you should be using when waxing your board.

A lot of skimboarders only choose one type of wax, the one appropriate for their water temperature. But this is wrong and could shorten the lifespan of your board.

Best skimboard traction wax reviewed

Best overall high-temperature skimboard base wax: Oceanhug

Best overall high-temperature skimboard base wax- Oceanhug

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Although Oceanhug also has sticky surf wax for the different temperature ranges, this base wax is one of the best I’ve seen.

It has a high-temperature range and will protect your board against extreme temperatures.

The wax is easy to apply and it’s especially long-lasting, which makes it a great option as a base wax to apply your temperature-specific wax on top of.

Check prices and availability here

Best budget base wax: EhomeEA2Z

Best budget base wax: EhomeEA2Z

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EhomeEA2Z is a budget-friendly option that still provides good quality.

It has a high-temperature range and it’s easy to apply, making it a great choice as a base wax.

The wax is also biodegradable and environmentally friendly, which is always a plus.

This is a great alternative to expensive sex wax or sticky bumps. It rubs off easily, but it’s pretty solid.

I’ve been using this on my surfboard and skimboard currently, and I have found that, unlike other products where you need constant application for weeks, moderate coats are enough!

Check the latest prices here

Best warm temperature skimboard wax: Sticky Bumps Warm/Trop Surf Wax

Best warm temperature skimboard wax: Sticky Bumps Warm/Trop Surf Wax

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This is one of the best waxes for warm water that I’ve tried.

It has a temperature range of 68F to 78F, which makes it perfect for use in water temperatures that are above 70F.

Sticky Bumps is a really established brand and I’ve been using their products for decades now. Just watch out not to leave your board out in the sun because this wax will melt off pretty quickly and ruin your coat.

Check prices and availability here

Best tropical temperature skimboard wax: Mr Zogs Sex Wax Quick Humps

Best tropical temperature skimboard wax: Mr Zogs Sex Wax Quick Humps

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This is the best wax that I’ve found for tropical temperatures.

I love this quick hump wax because it’s really easy to apply and it gives you great control on the board.

One downside is that it melts pretty quickly if you leave your board in the sun, but as long as you’re careful with that it’s a great option.

It smells fresh like coconut (who doesn’t love that right!) and it still is the world’s leading brand in surfing waxes for a reason.

Check prices here

Best cool temperature skimboard wax: Outdoor Wax Works Eco-Friendly

Best cool temperature skimboard wax: Outdoor Wax Works Eco-Friendly

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This is my favorite wax for cool water temperatures.

It has a temperature range of 58F to about 65F, which is perfect for waters that are below 70F, although it’s indicated to work for a wide range of 50°F to 90°F.

I’ve found that that is not entirely the case, you can get a better wax specifically for warmer climates like Mr Zogs or Sticky Bumps, but it does give it a little more flexibility for when you travel around to different climates a lot.

Outdoor Wax Works uses all-natural ingredients in their wax, making it environmentally friendly and safe for reefs and marine life.

The wax is also biodegradable and it’s a great option if you’re looking for an eco-friendly alternative to some of the other brands.

When choosing the best cool temperature skimboard wax, Outdoor Wax Works Eco-Friendly is the best option because it uses all-natural ingredients that are environmentally friendly.

It’s very easy to use and effective on a skimboard.

Check the latest prices here

Best cold temperature skimboard wax: Sticky Bumps Cool/Cold Water Surfboard Wax

Best cold temperature skimboard wax: Sticky Bumps Cool/Cold Water Surfboard Wax

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Sticky Bumps Cool/Cold Water Surfboard Wax is the best cold temperature surf wax that I’ve tried.

It has a temperature range of 38F to 50F, which makes it perfect for use in water temperatures that are below 50F.

When it comes to cold weather skimboarding, you definitely want to have a wax that is specifically designed for those conditions.

Check prices and availability here

Where do you wax a skimboard?

You should wax the top of your skimboard and do it before you hit the beach. The sun is probably too hot for the wax and could melt it, so it’s best to apply the wax in your garage or in the shade underneath a tree.

How to wax a skimboard

How to remove old wax

Before you apply wax, clean the board using a cleaning agent or plastic scraper to remove any old wax.

If the wax is really old and hardened, leave the board in the sun or use a hairdryer to soften it before scraping.

Wax is an important part of keeping your skimboard in good condition, so make sure to remove all of the old wax before applying a new layer.

One easy way to do it is to use a specially made kit for removing old wax. My favorite is this Sticky Bumps Wax Plus Fireball kit:

Sticky Bumps wax remover kit

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It comes with four bars of Sticky Bumps wax, a Flexcomb to clean your board, and the Fireball wax remover to get the last of the wax off.

The quickest way to de-wax your board, the versatility of this flat scraper is incredible. It conforms to the rails edge and easily scrapes off days of built-up wax.

Another way is to use your own plastic scraper and some Windex, or if you need something more powerful, this Solarez wax remover:

Solarez wax remover

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The best way to get rid of old wax is with a little help from the sun. Just put your board in direct sunlight until it softens or liquefies, then scrape off as much wax using an old credit card-sized flat edge called “a wax comb” or a plastic paint scraper.

After that first round, apply some cleaner like the Solarez, let it sit for a few minutes, and remove the last wax residue from the entire surface with a cloth.

Apply a base coat

Apply a base coat wax to the entire board using a high-temperature range wax. Apply a generous amount of wax to the board. You can always add more if needed.

I usually use a bar for applying wax and do it in a circular motion, then go over it again with a straight edge for the top coat.

Make sure to get all the curves and edges, and make sure the wax is evenly distributed.

The base coat usually takes the most work because it has to be long-lasting and keep your board in pristine condition.

If you apply a lot of force when applying the wax, you can get more of the wax onto your board which is especially useful for the base coat.

Rub off any excess wax and wait for the wax to dry (usually takes about 5-15 minutes) before applying another coat, or riding your board.

Buff the base coat

Let the base coat wax dry for about 15 minutes.

Buff the board after each application of wax with a cloth to help it dry and set.

Apply a top coat

After the base coat has dried, apply a top coat wax.

You don’t need to apply as much force when waxing here since a small extra layer will be enough.

Be sure to apply the wax in a different motion than the base layer for added grip. I recommend using sideways dashes of waxing instead of the small circles, so it’s important to get different grains and wax clumps from different waxing techniques.

Let the wax dry for about 15 minutes.

Buff the top coat

Buff the board using your cloth or towel.

Apply a temperature specific coat

Apply a wax appropriate for your water temperature to the entire board using the appropriate temperature range wax.

This is the coat that you’ll be using to stand on, so make sure to use larger circular motions to get the most grip out of your bar of wax and go all the way from the tail to the top.

Reapply the skimboard coat as you surf

After a few rides, you may need to reapply the skimboard coat.

Just like with a car, waxing your board helps it perform better and last longer.

It’s important to keep up on the waxing as you ride to maintain good performance.

Make sure to use your temperature specific wax to reapply wax to your board every so often, and you only need to reapply base and top coat after long periods of use.

How often do you wax a skimboard?

It depends on the water temperature changes, but as a general rule, you should wax your skimboard every 3-6 months with the changing seasons so you always have the appropriate water temp wax on there, or apply a new coat when it becomes too lumpy or it has melted.

Do you wax the top or bottom of a skimboard?

Most skimboarders don’t wax the bottom of their boards because it only provides a slight speed advantage and the difference is so small, but applying speedwax to the bottom of your skimboard may help with speed if you primarily skim over wet and dry sand instead of water.

Best skimboard speed wax: ZUMwax Ultra Performance

Best skimboard speed wax: ZUMwax Ultra Performance

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When it comes to speed, there’s no better wax than ZUMwax Ultra Performance.

This high-temperature, all-purpose wax is perfect for those who want to get the most speed out of their skimboard.

ZUMwax Ultra Performance features nanotechnology that creates a frictionless surface on your board for longer glides and better performance.

The wax is easy to apply and can be used on all types of boards in all types of weather. It dries quickly and doesn’t require any additional buffing.

So if you’re looking to shave a few seconds off your time, make sure to try ZUMwax Ultra Performance!

It’s perfect for the bottom of your skimboard when skimming sand.

Check the latest prices here

Do you wax a wooden skimboard?

Yes, you need to wax a wooden skimboard as well, unless you have skimboard traction pads installed on it. The water will make even wooden skimboards extremely slippery to ride on and your board will be impossible to control and skimboard properly.

Conclusion

You may need to reapply the wax every few rides, depending on how often you ride.

Waxing your board helps keep it performing well and lasting longer. So be sure to take care of your board by waxing it regularly!

Also read: should I use a traction pad or surf wax on my skimboard?

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Kauai Surf Report is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new sports with everything surfing at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2019 to help loyal readers with surfing and water sporting tips.