Originally Posted by Journeyman
I think that the technique of burning the polish a little with a lighter is quite common in the armed forces. I don't know whether it really works or not, but the theory is that by taking a lighter to the polish before applying it, it burns off some of the ingredients (alcohol, perhaps?) in the polish, and it makes it easier to get a high shine.
Yep, used to do it like that back in my army cadet days. Lit the polish (Kiwi) with a match, let it melt, put it out with help of the lid then applied it. Don't know anything about the chemistry involved but my boots looked like glass when finished. Main thing: did it out on the back porch!