The Best Car Scratch Remover for 2023

Get rid of those unsightly swirls and scratches with these best car scratch removers!

Car Scratch Remover

No matter how careful you are on the road, occasional scratches are bound to occur once in a while. A door-dinger here, a little scrape there. However, these seemingly little abrasions do take a toll on the overall appearance of your car in the long run. That’s why it’s important to fix them as soon as they occur.

However, not all scratches require a professional touch or a trip to the body shop. Minor scratches can be fixed with a simple solution: car scratch removers! These solutions do the work by smoothing the edges of the scratch so that it blends in with the surrounding paint, thus becoming less visible.

Wondering what product to choose to get rid of that scratch on your car? Look no further! We’ve compiled a list of the best car scratch removers available, and we hope you’ll find something that’s just right for you!

How We Picked

  • Effectiveness

    Not all scratches require a visit to the body shop. Car scratch removers should be able to easily remove light scratches that don’t run too deep into the car’s paintwork.

  • Versatility

    A good car scratch remover can also double as a cleaner, capable of removing stains in addition to scratches and oxidants.

  • Quantity

    To avoid running over to the grocery store every time you spot a scratch on your car, it’s important to get a good-sized bottle that can last for more than a few uses.

  • Price

    Although car scratch removers vary in price depending on size and quality, you won’t have to spend hundreds of dollars on the average product.

Our Top Picks

Best Pick

Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze Ultra-Cut Compound

Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze Ultra-Cut Compound

This compound is best used with a dual action polisher machine, which allows the abrasives to break down and finer during the polishing process, resulting in a smooth finish.

Powerful enough to get rid of 1200-grit sanding marks, this car scratch remover is efficient at removing scratches, swirls, holograms, and acid rain defects from your car’s exterior. It provides a mirror-like finish, giving your car a fresh gloss and shine. It is also body-shop-safe and effective on all glossy finishes, including clear coats.

Buy Now for $36.99 ($1.16 / Fl Oz)

The Meguiar's Compound removes not only scratches but also contaminants and pollutants.

Runner Up

Chemical Guys VSS Scratch and Swirl Remover

Chemical Guys VSS Scratch and Swirl Remover

It has the ability to remove grit, sand, swirls, scratches, scuff marks, spider webs, and other surface imperfections.

Get rid of surface imperfections with this highly-rated solution. Not only does it eliminate moderate to heavy scratches, but it also functions as a polish, a compound, and a cleaner. It is both wax and silicone-free so you can be sure that it doesn’t merely glaze over scratches; it removes them completely!

Buy Now for $19.74

Scratches and swirls are no match for this deep-cleaning scratch remover!

Most Cost-Effective

Turtle Wax T-415 Premium Grade Rubbing Compound

Turtle Wax T-415 Premium Grade Rubbing Compound

This rubbing compound offers a friendly price and superior cleaning abilities.

Turtle Wax’s T-415 Premium Grade Rubbing Compound can remove sanding marks up to 1500 grit, in addition to surface blemishes and swirls. Its silicone-free formulation makes it safe for use in professional body shops. You don’t have to worry about your car’s paintwork getting ruined, as it’s advertised to be safe for all finishes.

Buy Now

This compound is formulated with an aggressive blend of nanotechnology polishing agents to give your car that polish and shine.

Almost Made the Cut

Carfidant Ultimate Scratch and Swirl Remover

Carfidant Ultimate Scratch and Swirl Remover

This scratch and swirl remover does the double duty of eliminating scratches and restoring gloss and shine.

The Carfidant Scratch and Swirl Remover has made a name for itself as one of the best car scratch removers on the market. Capable of removing light scratches, swirls, and marks, it also erases years of wear and tear by restoring gloss and shines to your vehicle’s exterior. This special compound also removes oxidation, water spots, and other contaminants from paint. Thankfully, the kit includes a free buffer pad to help you smooth off scratches!

Buy Now for $19.97

This car scratch remover eliminates scratches and adds a glossy finish to your car’s exterior.

Everything We Recommend

Best Pick

Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze Ultra-Cut Compound

Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze Ultra-Cut Compound

This compound is best used with a dual action polisher machine, which allows the abrasives to break down and finer during the polishing process, resulting in a smooth finish.

$36.99 ($1.16 / Fl Oz)

Buy Now

Runner Up

Chemical Guys VSS Scratch and Swirl Remover

Chemical Guys VSS Scratch and Swirl Remover

It has the ability to remove grit, sand, swirls, scratches, scuff marks, spider webs, and other surface imperfections.

$19.74

Buy Now

Most Cost-Effective

Turtle Wax T-415 Premium Grade Rubbing Compound

Turtle Wax T-415 Premium Grade Rubbing Compound

This rubbing compound offers a friendly price and superior cleaning abilities.

Buy Now

Almost Made the Cut

Carfidant Ultimate Scratch and Swirl Remover

Carfidant Ultimate Scratch and Swirl Remover

This scratch and swirl remover does the double duty of eliminating scratches and restoring gloss and shine.

$19.97

Buy Now

Who This Is For

This article is for any and all car owners and automobile professionals! As long as you use or work with vehicles, a car scratch remover is bound to come in handy at some point!

Are car scratch removers effective?

Although car scratch removers have proven effective at hiding the appearance of light to moderate scratches, not all can get rid of the scratch itself. While polishes merely cover up scratches so that they can blend in with the surrounding paint, rubbing compounds remove the scratches completely.

However, not all scratches can be tackled by a simple scratch remover. There are three types of scratches that affect various layers of a car’s paint. Surface scratches only affect the topmost layer of paint, known as the clear coat. These can easily be removed by any car scratch remover. Next, there are paint scratches that affect the second layer of paint, which is the enamel or base coat. These can be repaired by rubbing out the scratch with fine-grit sandpaper and a compound before reapplying a fresh layer of clear coat. On the other hand, there are primer scratches that run deep into the primer layer and even the bare metal of a car. These can be fixed by filling in the scratch; applying new layers of enamel paint and clear coat; buffing; and polishing.

Thus, it’s important to know what kind of scratch you’re dealing with before getting a product. As seen above, car scratch removers are only effective at getting rid of light to moderate scratches on a vehicle’s clear coat. If you experience a deep scratch that goes deep into your car’s paintwork, consider visiting a professional for repairs.

Do car scratch removers damage the paint?

Generally, car scratch removers are safe and do not damage the paint. However, some manufacturers have warned that polishing too hard can spoil your paintwork. It’s also important to consider the formulation of whatever product you’re using and if it can work effectively for your vehicle in particular. All in all, it’s best to take care when polishing your vehicle to avoid causing any damage.

Why You Should Trust Us

We’ve looked at dozens of products, customer feedback, and professional opinions to arrive at our conclusions. Therefore, you can be sure that our choices are well-thought-out to settle on the right products for you!

How We Picked

There are dozens of scratch removers on the market, and we know how hard it can be to make a choice. However, there are certain things to look out for, and these are the criteria we paid attention to while making our picks.

We looked at how effective the products were at removing not only scratches but also swirls brought about by dust, fingernail scratches on door handles, oxidation caused by acid rain and other elements, as well as water spots. These products were excellent at removing all of the above. We also considered versatility and found that these products are capable of removing stains as well. Some are also able to function as cleaning and polishing agents, providing gloss and shine to vehicle exteriors. This is important to remove wear and tear.
Each of the products is also easy to use, not requiring any pre-mixing or special application processes.

They can be applied to a buffer pad or a microfiber cloth and used immediately. Alternatively, they can be used with rotary buffers or polishers. Unless you’re scrubbing too hard, you don’t have to worry about damaging the paint as every single one of the products on our list is safe for all car finishes. To top it all off, they all come in lovely, easy-to-handle packaging.

Our Picks For You

Our Top Pick - Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze Ultra-Cut Compound

Best Pick

Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze Ultra-Cut Compound

Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze Ultra-Cut Compound

This compound is best used with a dual action polisher machine, which allows the abrasives to break down and finer during the polishing process, resulting in a smooth finish.

Powerful enough to get rid of 1200-grit sanding marks, this car scratch remover is efficient at removing scratches, swirls, holograms, and acid rain defects from your car’s exterior. It provides a mirror-like finish, giving your car a fresh gloss and shine. It is also body-shop-safe and effective on all glossy finishes, including clear coats.

Buy Now for $36.99 ($1.16 / Fl Oz)

Who It’s For

This ultra-cutting compound is suitable for both automobile owners and body shop professionals.

Why It’s Great

Formulated with micro-abrasive technology, this car scratch remover gets rid of both scratches and below-surface defects. This includes issues such as swirls, acid rain, and holograms. It also removes up to 1200 grit sanding marks. Perfect for all glossy paint finishes, this product is also touted as being body shop-safe. Not only does it remove scratches, but it also leaves your car with a glossy, mirror-like shine, as its name implies. You’re not restricted to one method of application, as it can be by hand, with rotary buffers, or with dual-action car polishers.

Potential Flaws

This product is, unfortunately, quite expensive compared to other brands. Given that this is mostly a professional product, you have to follow the instructions to the T if you are trying to remove scratches by yourself.

Other Features

Apart from its advertised functions, customers have also used this product to remove stains and clean headlights, producing excellent results. With an average of 4.6 stars on Amazon, this product has been aptly described by a customer as the “holy grail” for paint work!

Runner Up - Chemical Guys VSS Scratch and Swirl Remover

Runner Up

Chemical Guys VSS Scratch and Swirl Remover

Chemical Guys VSS Scratch and Swirl Remover

It has the ability to remove grit, sand, swirls, scratches, scuff marks, spider webs, and other surface imperfections.

Get rid of surface imperfections with this highly-rated solution. Not only does it eliminate moderate to heavy scratches, but it also functions as a polish, a compound, and a cleaner. It is both wax and silicone-free so you can be sure that it doesn’t merely glaze over scratches; it removes them completely!

Buy Now for $19.74

Who It’s For

This cleaner is for those who have experienced scratches on their cars and want to restore their shine without having to go to a body shop.

Why It’s Great

The Chemical Guys' scratch remover is an all-in-one solution that produces great results. Using diminishing abrasive technology, it creates a wet mirror-like finish after removing scratches, swirls, and oxidation effects. Unlike other products that may leave the paint dull and in need of waxing, this one polishes your clear coat to achieve the "finest level of optical clarity," as stated by Chemical Guys. It can also remove sanding marks up to 2500 grit! However, this doesn’t have a negative effect on clear-coat paints and single-stage finishes. It’s also compatible with all colors, so you don’t have to worry about that part either. Thankfully, it’s free of oils, silicones, and fillers that merely mask scratches without actually removing them. It’s also safe for any professional body shop or paint shop environment.

Potential Flaws

This product is incredibly thick, and it may be difficult to dispense from the tube.

Other Features

With over 7,000 global ratings on Amazon, this scratch remover is definitely not a newcomer to the scene. It has a 4.4-star rating and tons of positive reviews. Although its consistency is pretty heavy and thick, this ultimately has no effect on its results.

Most Cost-Effective - Turtle Wax T-415 Premium Grade Rubbing Compound

Most Cost-Effective

Turtle Wax T-415 Premium Grade Rubbing Compound

Turtle Wax T-415 Premium Grade Rubbing Compound

This rubbing compound offers a friendly price and superior cleaning abilities.

Turtle Wax’s T-415 Premium Grade Rubbing Compound can remove sanding marks up to 1500 grit, in addition to surface blemishes and swirls. Its silicone-free formulation makes it safe for use in professional body shops. You don’t have to worry about your car’s paintwork getting ruined, as it’s advertised to be safe for all finishes.

Buy Now

Who It’s For

This product is for those who want an effective "do-it-yourself" solution without having to spend a lot of money!

Why It’s Great

As affordable as it is, this unique rubbing compound produces surprising results. Not only does it remove scratches, swirls, and blemishes, but it has the ability to clear up to 1500-grit sanding marks! Another bonus is that it also restores gloss and prepares the car’s finish for proper waxing. The silicone-free formulation is also safe for use in any professional body shop or detailing shop. It can easily be applied by hand or with a rotary polisher or buffer. Although it gets rid of heavier scratches, it doesn’t cause damage to clear coats.

Potential Flaws

Customers report that it may require a lot of elbow grease and several tries to remove scratches and stains.

Other Features

With a 4.4-star rating on Amazon, this product has certainly won hearts with its ultra-affordable price and superpower effectiveness. Customers report that, in addition to removing scratches, it also works well in cleaning headlights, removing oxidation, dried paint, and so on. So this product hits the versatility mark quite well!

Almost Made the Cut - Carfidant Ultimate Scratch and Swirl Remover

Almost Made the Cut

Carfidant Ultimate Scratch and Swirl Remover

Carfidant Ultimate Scratch and Swirl Remover

This scratch and swirl remover does the double duty of eliminating scratches and restoring gloss and shine.

The Carfidant Scratch and Swirl Remover has made a name for itself as one of the best car scratch removers on the market. Capable of removing light scratches, swirls, and marks, it also erases years of wear and tear by restoring gloss and shines to your vehicle’s exterior. This special compound also removes oxidation, water spots, and other contaminants from paint. Thankfully, the kit includes a free buffer pad to help you smooth off scratches!

Buy Now for $19.97

Who It’s For

This product is for those who want to get rid of minor scratches and other small marks on their paint.

Why It’s Great

This product is effective at getting rid of small scratches, swirls, water marks, and other environmental contaminants. It’s also promoted as being effective at erasing years of wear and tear from a car’s exterior, restoring shine to the paint, and restoring its original brilliance. It can be used safely on all clear-coat colors, as well as single-stage and multi-stage finishes. It comes with an included buffer pad, so you don’t have to make any additional purchases unless you want to.

Potential Flaws

Unfortunately, this product only removes the smallest of scratches and will not remove anything even remotely deep. For this reason and also because of its low rating, it couldn’t make it into our list of top picks.

Other Features

On Amazon, customers rate this remover an average of 3.9 stars. If you’re still not satisfied after making a purchase, the manufacturers offer a 100% money-back guarantee, which you’ll hopefully not have to use!

Care and Maintenance

The first step should always begin with cleaning the targeted area to remove any dirt. If you intend to work on a large surface area, you can go ahead and wash the entire car. Next up, follow the instructions written on the bottle or tube, as each product has unique peculiarities that must be paid attention to.

In general, however, the process begins with applying the solution or compound to a cleaning pad, foam, or microfiber cloth. Next, you proceed by rubbing your pad over the scratched area in a circular motion, allowing it to spread evenly. When this is done, use a dry cloth to remove any excess solution. Then, go ahead and use a buffer to buff down the area in a back and forth motion, although this step is optional. Continue buffing or wiping with a solution until the scratch is completely gone. Once you’re done, cover the bottle or tube and store it in a cool, dry place.