We’ve all been there. But when it comes to furniture, you may just need some professional help. Here’s how to get rid of the goo.

My mom has been in Hawaii visiting and I love being able to spend time with her. I appreciate her honesty and advice when she tells me how I can do things better.


Take, for example, her observation that our wooden table was always sticky. I hadn’t noticed it before, but the table was exactly as she said it was, and the stickiness wasn’t letting go, even after several wipe downs.

This is typical with wooden surfaces. The finishes become worn and leave a sticky film.


To get rid of the stick, try these tips:

1. Start with a gentle cleanser. Mix liquid dish soap with water, and apply it to a test area of the surface with a cotton swab. If it does not damage the material, apply the mixture to the rest of the piece, then rinse and dry when done.

2. Add vinegar. If the soapy water does not work, add some vinegar. Test the small spot again first, and repeat the process.


3. Use a wood cleaner. Murphy’s Oil Soap works well, but shouldn’t be used for all types of surfaces. Dilute product with water first, and test a small spot before moving on.

4. Refinish the piece. If all else fails, you may need to refinish the piece all together. If you are comfortable, you can do this yourself by first removing the finish, sanding it down, and then applying stain and finish to top it off.

Whichever method you use on the wood, remember to protect it when you’re done.

Have a comment or question for Joanne? Email thefixisinhawaii@gmail.com.