What To Waterproof Canvas With

Canvas is a flexible and long-lasting substance utilized in a multitude of uses, from outdoor tents for camping to sails for boats, and even in fashionable items such as handbags and footwear. Even though it is recognized for its strength, canvas is not naturally waterproof. Do not worry, as there are several techniques and products available to easily waterproof canvas. This guide will assist you in comprehending what to use to waterproof canvas and how to do it efficiently.

Choosing the Right Waterproofing Product

There are many products available for waterproofing canvas, but the most commonly used ones include:

  • Wax: Heavy-duty wax is often used to waterproof canvas items that are exposed to harsh conditions, like tents and outdoor gear.
  • Fabric Guard: This is a spray-on product that repels water and stains on canvas materials, ideal for items like shoes and bags.
  • Silicone sprays: These are easy to apply and ideal for large items like tarps and awnings.

How to Waterproof Canvas with Wax

Wax is an effective way to waterproof canvas. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to wax your canvas:

1. Clean your canvas: Ensure it’s free from dust and dirt.
2. Apply the wax: Use a cloth to rub the wax onto the canvas in a circular motion.
3. Allow it to dry: Give the wax time to soak into the canvas.
4. Heat it up: Use a hairdryer or a heat gun to melt the wax into the canvas, ensuring it penetrates the material.
5. Let it cool: Allow the wax to cool and solidify, which can take several hours.

Remember, it’s crucial to use a high-quality wax that won’t crack in cold weather or become sticky in hot weather.

How to Waterproof Canvas with Fabric Guard or Silicone Sprays

Fabric Guard and silicone sprays are less labor-intensive than wax and are perfect for waterproofing canvas items that aren’t exposed to extreme conditions. Here’s how to use these products:

1. Clean your canvas: Like the waxing process, ensure the canvas is clean.
2. Spray evenly: Hold the can 6-12 inches away and spray an even coat over the canvas surface.
3. Allow it to dry: Let the product dry into the canvas for several hours or overnight.
4. Apply a second coat: If necessary, apply a second coat to ensure an even application.

Always remember to work in a well-ventilated area when using these products, and do not inhale the vapors.


Whether it’s a tent, a pair of shoes, a bag, or an awning, waterproofing your canvas items can significantly enhance their durability and lifespan. So, why wait? Start waterproofing your canvas items today using the methods described above. Remember, the key to successful waterproofing is choosing the right product and applying it correctly.