Buff, Wax, Seal: Surface Integrity

  1. Pre-wash exterior with foam
  2. Rinse under high pressure
  3. Pre-wash wheels
  4. Scrub brake assemblies
  5. Wash wheel arches
  6. Scrub tire treads
  7. Mask engine compartment with foil
  8. Apply soap solution to engine bay
  9. Scrub engine bay
  10. Rinse under medium pressure
  11. Remove foil and idle engine to remove moisture
  12. Apply soap solution to door shuts
  13. Scrub door shuts
  14. Rinse under medium pressure
  15. Hand-wash exterior of car
  16. Rinse exterior
  17. Apply bug remover to front of car
  18. Rinse front of car
  19. Apply soap solution to all exterior trim pieces and rinse
  20. Wipe all exterior surfaces (including wheels) with clay bar to pick up remaining contaminants
  21. Rinse exterior to remove clay residue
  22. Wipe interior painted surfaces with clay bar
  23. Wash exterior with foam
  24. Rinse
  25. Dry with a leaf blower
  26. Drive car with brakes applied to "wipe" corrosion off brake disks
  27. Remove front grills
  28. Mask all edges with blue painter's tape
  29. Calibrate paint thickness gauge
  30. Measure thickness of paint on all panels of car
  31. Examine paint for surface imperfections
  32. Buff 1 micron of paint off of entire car
  33. Buff a further 2 microns of paint off of scratched areas
  34. Wet sand (by hand) remaining trouble areas
  35. Machine sand deepest scratches
  36. Buff sanded spots back to gloss
  37. Remove tape
  38. Apply finish polish to entire car
  39. Use jeweler's rouge to polish glass surfaces
  40. Apply white primer paint to chipped area of paint
  41. Apply final color coat to chipped area
  42. Apply clear coat to chipped area
  43. Run feather duster over entire car to pick traces of polish
  44. Wipe down car with cleaning solution
  45. Apply layer of wax to entire car
  46. Buff wax off with towel
  47. Wipe down surface with cleaner
  48. Apply second layer of wax
  49. Apply leather cleaner to interior of car
  50. Feed leather with balm
  51. Wipe down leather with clean towel
  52. Wax door shuts
  53. Buff off wax
  54. Coat door seals
  55. Apply metal polish to exhaust pipe outlets
  56. Seal surface of exhaust pipe outlets
  57. Seal surface of wheels
  58. Apply tire gel to sidewalls
  59. Buff out tire gel
  60. Polish the license plates
  61. Dust engine compartment
  62. Seal engine compartment with aerospace protectant
  63. Wipe down exterior surfaces with cleaner

That's a lot of steps to get to a truly clean car, but it's probably not that far off of an Academy Awards ceremony beauty regimen.  While Blanchett is most likely a beautiful woman on the worst of her days, we can bet that she'd been at the center of quite a bit of primping and preening on the day of the photo. Glamour, even when it starts from a stunning baseline, often requires a great deal of labor. 

To sum it all up, here's what "unglamorous" looks like:


And then here's glamorous:


Same exhaust tip, the difference is a matter of surface integrity. Glamour gives us a chance to believe that there's no such thing as entropy.  It takes us to a state of being where paint doesn't fade, where rust always sleeps, and where bodily functions, sickness, and decay don't matter.  For those moments of extreme glamour -- before you dirty the perfect Gallardo on public roads once again -- I suppose the satisfaction is priceless, because it's as close as we get to a feeling of timelessness.