Originally Posted by Z K
There's a big difference between most off the shelf waxes which are "cleaner waxes" and pure waxes. Cleaner waxes have some polish in it and are designed as a "one step" product. It's not designed for frequent use. Pure waxes have no cleaning properties and you can layer it to add protection and depth.
There is not a "big" difference, but there is a difference. Not all over the counter waxes are meant to be cleaner waxes which can either be loaded with chemical cleaners, abrasives, or both. Many over the counter waxes do contain traces of these to help their "performance" (they're formulated to what 99% of car owners need) in giving you a better look from your paint.
Professional/enthusiast grade waxes generally do not contain such things, as they're made to only protect and add gloss (these are made for the >1% of car owners). If you're the type of person that clays and carefully washes your car (and potentially polishes your paint), you can benefit from these higher grade products as they'll typically last longer.
In the end, you're always better off using products in a way that you apply an additional layer of protection prior to the last layer wearing off. In this way, using Mother's Gold 'nuba wax every month is better than using any professional grade wax every three months. While over the counter waxes don't tend to layer as well (slight abrasives can remove previous layers during application), pro-grade waxes don't truly
layer either (the fresh application of solvents can weaken the wax underneath). Layering wax is about having uniform protection, not more