To understand ceramic coatings, it’s helpful to first look at the most common paint-protection products.
Wax is organic and the most affordable, available in various forms ranging from an old-school paste to a quick-and-easy spray. For decades, “waxing” a car has been synonymous with keeping it looking shiny and new. Unfortunately, wax isn’t terribly durable and, therefore, should be applied multiple times per year. Some companies claim otherwise but environmental contaminants and even a harsh soap can easily break through that thin wax barrier.
Sealants, on the other hand, are synthetic and developed to last several months. They are easily applied, though typically don’t offer the same deep shine one gets from a quality wax.
Both are outmatched by a ceramic coating. This silica-based liquid polymer is applied by hand and cures to form a protective layer that, when properly maintained, can be effective for several years.