How to Hide Scratches in Wood (5+ Ways)

Wood is a popular material used across homes due to its warm, natural beauty. However, it is also susceptible to scratches and scuffs from daily wear and tear. Thankfully, there are ways to disguise and minimize the appearance of superficial scratches in wood furniture, floors, cabinets, and more.

Scratches in wood can make furniture or floors look worn and dated. Fortunately, there are techniques to hide and conceal scratches to restore wood’s beauty. With some basic supplies and these step-by-step instructions, you can make scratches virtually invisible.

How to Hide Scratches in Wood (5+ Ways)

Common Causes of Scratches

Understanding common causes of scratches can help prevent future damage. Frequent causes include:


Cats, dogs, and other pets can cause scratches and gouges from claws and teeth. Place scratching posts, pads, and toys to redirect scratching. Cover furniture when pets are unsupervised.

Children and High Traffic Areas

Kids and movement of furniture across floors can create surface level scratches. Use furniture glides, lift furniture when moving, and restrict play around fragile wood pieces.

Improper Cleaning

Abrasive cleaners and scouring pads scratch wood while cleaning. Use mild cleaners and soft cloths instead. Overly wet mopping also damages floors.

Everyday Wear and Tear

Daily use of wood surfaces causes minor scratches over time. Applying preventive measures helps limit this gradual accumulation.

Solutions for Hiding Scratches

There are several effective options to conceal scratches, varying based on the severity of damage, type of wood finish, and desired results:

Furniture Markers and Touch Up Pens

For light surface scratches, colored markers and pens seamlessly blend into wood grain to hide imperfections. Available in range of wood shades. Easy, inexpensive solution.

Stain Fill Sticks

Fill sticks fill in scratches and dents for an invisible repair. Apply over scratch, let dry, then buff with cloth to blend. Walnut colored sticks work for range of wood tones.

Putty Eraser and Grain Filler

For deeper gouges, putty erasers fill in voids then grain filler evens surface to match surrounding wood. Multi step process but repairs significant damage invisibly.

Refinishing and Restaining

Sanding down extensive scratches then applying new stain or paint provides fresh wood surface. Most work intensive but also thorough result.

Step-by-Step Guide for Concealing Light Scratches

Follow these simple steps using handy materials for making minor scratches disappear:

Supplies Needed

  • Furniture markers or touch up pens in wood tone
  • Soft cloth
  • Filler stick for spots too large for marker (optional)


  1. Wipe scratched surface lightly with soft cloth to remove any dirt or debris.
  2. Test marker or pen on inconspicuous spot to ensure color match.
  3. Apply marker or pen in direction of wood grain, lightly covering entire scratch.
  4. Wipe with soft cloth going along wood grain to evenly distribute color.
  5. Allow to dry then repeat application if scratch still slightly visible.
  6. For larger spots, use filler stick prior to using marker. Level and buff once dry.

Tips for Preventing Future Scratches

While hiding current scratches, also utilize these preventive tips:

Furniture Pads and Glides

Adhere felt pads to chair and table legs and install plastic/metal glides under furniture legs. Protects from scratches when moving furnishings.

Area Rugs and Runners

Area rugs and runners over high traffic wood floor zones cut down on surface abrasion and wear.

Dust Frequently

Dust build up acts as abrasive agent that worsens and creates scratches as surfaces are used. Dust frequently using microfiber cloths.

Humidity Control

Controlling home humidity protects wood from drying out and becoming prone to scratches and cracks. Use humidifiers to maintain 40-50% humidity.

FAQs: Hiding Wood Scratches

Still have some questions? These common queries provide added insight:

What is the easiest fix for minor wood scratches?

Furniture markers and touch up pens offer the simplest, fastest way to disguise surface level scratches. Just color over imperfection in direction of wood grain for concealed scratch.

How do you fix deep gouges in wood?

For deeper scratches and gouges, use putty filler sticks or erasers to fill in void then sand and refinish wood surface for invisible, seamless repair.

What home remedy hides scratches in wood furniture?

Using walnut or pecan nutmeats, gently rub over scratches until oils conceal imperfections. Buff with soft cloth. Provides natural oil alternative to markers.

Can pet scratches be fixed?

Yes! Cat scratches and dog bite marks in wood can be repaired. Sand gnawed corners smooth then use stain markers to blend repair into surrounding surface. Conceal claw marks with touch up pens.

How do you hide scratches in antique furniture?

Research original stain color then purchase antique furniture touch up kit in closest match. Lightly apply colored wax filler to conceal scratches while retaining antique patina.

I hope these tips help you effectively hide scratches and prevent future damage to keep your wood surfaces looking their best for years to come. Let me know if you have any other questions!

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