Back in the day I experimented with varnishing my miniatures. After seeing gloss finishes on some miniatures, I knew that was something to avoid, so I decided to try a matte polyurethane finish. I sprayed it on an old genestealer, and it came out ok. The miniature definitely felt like it was well protected, but I wasn't entirely happy with the satin-like finish. So I decided not to varnish anything else. Since thing I haven't varnished anything, and the result is that every so often I have to go and touch up a miniature or two--after every game there's a couple "casualties" that I put in a repair box to touch up the paint that's rubbed off, or reattach the piece that broke off when I dropped it.
If I've worked particularly hard on a miniature, I want to protect it so I don't lose the work, but I don't want to ruin it in the act of protecting it! I've heard lots of opinions on varnishing. And lots of horror stories...like this one from Admiral Drax.
I haven't had to deal with miniatures frosting, or turning white or what not, and I never want to.
I've heard lots of people recommend various sprays (Krylon Matte Varnish seems to get good marks), while others stay away from sprays like the plague. Also Testors Dullcote (brush on) seems to have some fans as well.
Basically the effect that I'd like to achieve is a varnish that will protect the miniature, but also be completely flat, and essentially invisible. In short, I really dislike "glossy" miniatures, as I think it makes them look more like toys or game pieces. Yes, I know that they are both toys and game pieces, but in my pride I like to think of them as little works of art and "models" rather than merely toys/game pieces.
So what are other people's opinions?