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Product Review: Sonax Brilliant Shine Detailer


I have enjoyed many of Sonax’s products over the years and continue to use a fair amount of them on a regular basis.  I did not notice this particular product until I saw it mentioned in another article, so I decided to pick some up since I have been using the same quick detail spray for about a year now and I am always looking to try new things.

As with most quick detail sprays, Sonax Brilliant Shine Detailer can be used to remove light dust and contaminates in between regular maintenance washes, however I typically only use quick detail spray immediately after a proper wash to help clean up any remaining water spots/streaks and to help boost the protection on the paint.

Before using Brilliant Shine, the vehicle was thoroughly washed and then carefully dried.  I applied Sonax Brilliant Shine Detailer by lightly misting it directly onto the surface and then carefully buffing it off with a plush microfiber towel.  Remember to flip to a clean, dry side of the towel as needed to avoid streaks.  I prefer to use a thick, ultra plush towel for QD applications.

ATD | Sonax Brilliant Shine Review

I found the product to be extremely easy to apply and remove.  Only very light pressure was needed and I had zero issues with streaking or smearing.

ATD | Sonax Brilliant Shine Review

It is worth noting that, like most quick detail sprays, you do not need to use much product to cover the vehicle. Only a couple of sprays are needed to cover an entire panel and using excess product may create streaks.  After application, the surface was smooth and very glossy!

ATD | Sonax Brilliant Shine Review

Several days after applying Sonax Brilliant Shine Detailer, this car sat out in a pretty good rain storm.  I went out to examine the beading action, and was pleasantly surprised.  Even though the vehicle already had a good layer of protection, which beaded nicely on its own, I noticed even better beading and sheeting when it was topped with Brilliant Shine Detail Spray.

ATD | Sonax Brilliant Shine Review

The beads were small, tight, uniform, and spherical in shape – all indications of a fantastic layer of protection.  I’ll never get tired of seeing water bead up like this on a nicely protected surface!
ATD | Sonax Brilliant Shine Review

If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to enhance the gloss and protection on your vehicle, Sonax Brilliant Shine Detailer is a fantastic option!  I really enjoyed using this product and was very pleased with the results.

Thanks for reading!

Zach McGovern
Attention To Detailing Peoria
Peoria, IL

15 comments on Product Review: Sonax Brilliant Shine Detailer

  1. Very worth while write up for a great product! This particular Sonax product seemed to go un-noticed for a while but is picking up popularity due to insane beading but also worth mentioning its very impressive resistance to strong detergents even neat APC. 10 weeks seems to be its durability but as a quick detailer is punching way above its weight and doing far more than it should!

  2. Thanks for the reply! 10 weeks is quite good for a QD spray… and the beading is truly awesome.

  3. James Mendenhall says:

    Great article, I’ll have to give it a shot.

  4. Mike Nickles says:

    I am so glad I researched this product. Upon reading the label, I was thinking this product was just a simple detail spray like most of the others. It was only after a few youtube videos that I saw this product has fantastic hydrophobic properties and it does a great job at not attracting dirt. It also lasts through weeks/multiple car washes. I think this product needs to be in everyones arsenal. I would take this over any spray wax.

    • Glad you’re enjoying it! The hydrophobic properties are great.. I personally wish it left a crazy slick surface like many other QDs do, but that is just a minor annoyance.

  5. Richard Manrique says:

    Dear Zack – question about interaction with waxes – I have jet black Nissan, and wanted to ask if you have had any experience layering Brilliant Shine over both straight carnauba (like Dodo Juice Blue Velvet), or carnauba/sealant mixes (like Wolfgang Fuzion Estate Wax). Really love shine, longevity & water repellency of Brilliant Shine in Pac NW winter, but I’d also like to use some of the waxes I’ve picked up. I seal with 2 coats of JetSeal which last 12+ months. So, I wind up alternating wax with sealants (Collinite 915 with Opti-Seal for instance).
    Wondering if the polymers in Brilliant Shine would bond with the polymers in a wax/sealant mix (like Wolfgang), allowing me to alternate layers?

  6. tonosity says:

    Hi Zack! I have questions regarding the use of Sonax PNS with Sonax BSD. There’s a definite lack of information from Sonax, and what I’ve been able to find on the ‘Net.

    1. Do both products use the same base solvent? For example, is BSD water-based?

    2. After PNS has been applied, and cured for 24 hours, will the solvent in either product remove this cured coat of PNS?

    Thank you!

  7. tonosity says:

    Zack, just to be clear, my question is essentially about layering. If the primary coat of PSN, when fully cured, is *not* desolved by the solvent of a second coat, then layering is possible. (Even if not necessary.). So, that’s why I’m interested in the robustness/resistance of a cured coat of PNS, and how it interacts with whatever solvent is used in either product.

    Further, if BSD uses the same base solvent, then finishing off, or touching up, an application of PNS with BSD doesn’t seem productive—might as well just use BSD as your sealant.

    Thanks again!

    • Hi – I’m sorry, but unfortunately I do not have any additional information for you that will answer your questions. For this type of detailed info, you will have to reach out directly to Sonax or one of their representatives. Thanks for reading!

      • tonosity says:

        Thanks, Zack! I’ve written Sonax USA and Sonax International a couple of times, with no response.

        I find it interesting how all these auto-care product companies create these product lines that are devoid of practical information on their contents and properties. Allowing their customers to then understand how to use them as tools to achieve their particular goals. Sort of the “give a man a fish or a fishing pole” thing.

        Instead, only marketing blather, really.

        So, my running assumption (without any supporting info) is that a single coat of cured PNS—which cannot be layered because the solvent of subsequent coats will simply melt off any previous coats—is the intended usage of the product. Then, supplementing the PNS coating with BSD after washes, and between reapplications of PNS every six months.

        I have no idea if PNS is even helpful in this usage scenario. If the BSD provides the same protection (albeit, for a shorter period of time), and you wash your car periodically anyway, the after-wash BSD treatment should provide the same protective benefits to the car’s paint.

        Any comments you may have would be appreciated.

        Thanks very much, Darryl

        • Jordan says:

          PNS is a great base sealant/coating. I’ve used it on my previous car with great results. I’ve used the BSD to keep up the beading to make the PNS properties last longer. I cleaned and paint corrected the car coated it in February and it went for almost a full 8 months before I noticed the beading die down.

          • tonosity says:

            Hi Zack. Thanks, that’s helpful! My quest is to understand *how* these products work together.

            The question I’m waiting for Sonax to answer is: Can an applied coat of Polymer Net Shield be layered with a subsequent layer of Brilliant Shine Detailer? Or will the application of BSD simply replace the existing layer of PNS?

            According to Sonax, neither PNS and BSD require no curing time. I just want to understand what PNS provides as a benefit, that BSD does not. The reported effects are the same (beading, etc.).

  8. tonosity says:

    Okay , here’s their response:

    “A layer of Brilliant Shine Detailer can be applied over PNS but is not very effective to be done in reverse. BSD is an excellent refresher for the Polymer Net Shield when applied as a Quick Detailer.”

    As you describe.

    I’d like to get the techical details of how they work together, but that doesn’t seem to be possible. Oh, well.

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