Do you have problems with uneven surfaces...glare and dull spots? I used to varnish my oil paintings. I found it difficult, tedious, smelly, you name it, I didn't like it. But, I also hated the unevenness of the surface. If you use mediums, this can be a big problem. Recently, I discovered a new way to protect the surface of your paintings while creating an even surface look.
I have been using cold wax. Yup, it works great, easy to apply and you can buff it up to get the desired look. No, it won't turn shinny but you can buff it enough to get a satin look which is what I prefer.
Buy your cold wax from an art supply store so that you know it is right for you oil painting surface. Wait for your painting to dry as you would before applying varnish then take a clean soft white cloth and apply the wax in a circular motion. Once you have covered the entire surface, let it dry over night and then buff it out the next day. If you don't like the look, continue to add more wax. I usually use two or three coats for the look I want. I have recently developed arthritis in my thumbs! UGH! So, I am using a car buffer to do the job for me. Car buffers have a range of costs. I think I paid $35.00 for mine and it is well worth it!