My Zymol Application Technique
I recently obtained some Zymol Carbon and Vintage, but I have never done any bare hand application. With the small amount of vintage I have, I want to get a technique down with carbon before dipping my hands in the vintage. This method should work well for pretty much any "gritty" paste wax that needs a little coaxing to get the right consistency.
The technique is actually a hybrid between bare-hand and foam applicator. I chose this for a few reasons:
1. I get the melting benefit of a bare-hand, so the product is at its ideal consistency for application.
2. I get the thin application benefit of a foam applicator to minimize the amount of product used.
3. There's less potential for cross contaminating the "waxed" hand/hands with anything you touch. You can expect to pick-up a towel 1-2 times per panel with these products and it you even graze a bit of dust or dirt in the process, you can expect the oils on your hand to pick it up. Same with picking up the wax pot.
So here it goes step by step, assuming you have already cleaned your hands, opened your wax, smelled and admired it.
1. Swipe your applicator through the wax 2-3 times just to pick up some product for "priming" purposes. I only use about 1/4-1/3 of the applicator surface at a time to ensure all the wax on the surface is being used and not just accumulating and curing on the pad.
2. Rub the waxed applicator against the palm of your other hand in a circular or back-and-forth motion with ample pressure and speed to melt the wax. Why the palm only? You'll need to pick up the pot again later with your finger tips, so this avoids cross contaimination.
3. With a primed pad and hand, go in for a second swipe of 1-2 times to pick up wax for application purposes and rub into the palm of you hand as in step 2. In this case, use your fingertips to pick-up/hold the wax pot so as not to touch your waxy palm to anything but the applicator.
4. Begin application to the vehicle as you normally would, 1-2 swipes through the wax should cover 1/2 of a normal size panel or more.
5. Repeat steps 3 & 4 until you complete a panel. Depending on you speed you may want to stop with 1/2 of a large panel like the hood or roof.
6. After completing one panel (or less depending on your speed), set down your applicator pad with the primed side up on to a clean surface, I used a piece of aluminum foil for this. Grab your MF towel of choice (I found a short-medium nap worked best) and remove the wax using the same hand you are using for the applicator. Zymol waxes are wipe on-wipe off, so do not allow it to dry. Expect to go through a few towels in the process, I use 1 side of the towel once, then refold the towel to a fresh side (no flipping). In this way, nothing that has touched the paint has touched my hand and vice vera, preventing cross-contamination (you do touch the very corner of the towel, but there is never any pressure and minimal contact between paint and towel at the corners).
7. Keep working your way around the car, I did find a little wax build-up over time in the lip between the sides of the foam applicator; when that occured, I wiped the build-up back in the palm of my hand, rubbed until melted and continued on. There was never a need to move to a new portion of the applicator with the consistency of the wax.
I found this method to be very effective at using minimal product and getting the appropriate wax consistency for application. For reference, I did this in my garage, temps were about 75-80F and mid-levels of humidity - there was no ghosting at all.