In cabinetry, “finish” denotes the final application of color or lamination that imparts a completed look to the run. To make the finish of kitchen cabinets, a finishing layer of laminate can be glued to the wood used for construction. However, when solid wood is employed, most wooden cabinets will have a painted or stained finish. Multiple techniques can achieve different styles of finish, catering to the desired texture and sheen of any project.

Before selecting a finish to add to a project, several contributing factors need to be taken into account. Firstly, it is crucial to consider whether the finish needs to match any other pieces and how they were finished. Secondly, the durability of the projected finish is a crucial factor in determining which finish to apply. For instance, a simple oil-based finish is visually appealing and easy to work with, but it is only suitable for surfaces that are not at risk of prolonged exposure to water, heat, or abrasion. Therefore, a kitchen cabinet door is more likely to have an oil-type finish than a table. Horizontal surfaces such as tables often benefit from the application of a finish that is waterproof and abrasion-resistant.