A wood stain consists of a colorant suspended or dissolved in a ‘vehicle’ or solvent The suspension agent can be water, alcohol, petroleum distillate, or the actual finishing agent. Colored or ‘stained’ finishes, like polyurethane, do not penetrate the pores of the wood to any significant degree and will disappear when the finish itself deteriorates or is removed intentionally. Two types of colourants are used, pigments and dyes. The difference is in the size of the particles.