10 Best Woods for Bathroom Floors To Choose in 2024

Jan 27, 2024

If you’re remodeling your bathroom or building a new home, one of the most important design decisions is choosing the right wood for your bathroom floor. The bathroom floor endures more moisture than any other room in the house, so the type of wood you choose needs to be able to withstand humidity, spills, and routine cleanings.

The good news is that there are several great wood species that check all the boxes for durability, water-resistance, and style. To help make your decision easier, we’ve compiled this guide to the top 10 best woods for bathroom floors. We’ll compare the pros and cons of each wood type so you can zero in on the perfect flooring for your space.

Key Takeaways:

  • Teak, ipe, and white oak rank as three of the best bathroom floor wood options due to their water-resistance.
  • Look for wood floors with a hardness rating of at least 1,200 on the Janka scale to stand up to bathroom foot traffic.
  • Choose wide-plank wood floors over thin strips to minimize seams and moisture issues.
  • Acclimate any new wood in the installation space before fitting to help prevent later gaps or warping.
  • Use moisture-cured urethane finishes to provide maximum protection from water damage over time.

An Overview of Ideal Wood Floor Traits

When survey the field of wood flooring for bathrooms, several traits emerge as “must-haves” for enduring beauty and quality:

Water-Resistance

Wood needs to stand up to routine exposure to water from showers, sinks, splashes, and potential leaks or overflows. Dimensional stability is key so the floor doesn’t deform.

Hardness & Durability

With bare feet and various bathroom products coming into frequent content, the floor should resist dents and scratches. High hardness ratings indicate long-term durability.

Stability

Minimal expansion and contraction are vital for a bathroom floor, as humidity levels tend to seesaw. Stable woods that resist warping or leaving gaps are ideal.

Workability

Most homeowners prefer wide-plank floors for seamless visuals. Workable woods that can be milled into longer, wider boards fit the bill beautifully.

Style

Last but certainly not least, you want an attractive wood that aligns with your overall bathroom design and decor preferences. You’ll likely be living with this floor for years to come, so make sure you love how it looks!

Keeping those traits and priorities in mind, let’s explore 10 great wood species for bathrooms!

1. Teak

Teak

  • Janka Hardness: 1,070
  • Price Per Square Foot: $9 to $15
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank

Beloved for its warm honey-brown color and exceptional weather-resistance, teak has been the premium choice for outdoor furniture, boats, and decking for decades. Now it’s become a trendy (and pricey) choice for luxury bathroom floors too.

Teak possesses natural oils that make it highly water-resistant. Properly finished and maintained teak can even withstand full water submersion without damage, making it perhaps the single best wood for bathrooms worried about leaks or flooding. It also has moderately high hardness to endure traffic. The downside is the expense, as high-quality teak runs $9 to $15 per square foot installed.

2. Ipe

  • Janka Hardness Rating: 3,684
  • Price Per Square Foot: $7 to $13
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank

Sometimes called “Brazilian walnut,” ipe wood is an exotic tropical hardwood prized for its incredible density and durability. In fact, its Janka rating of 3,684 makes it three times harder than white oak floors! It wears incredibly well in high-traffic zones.

Ipe also boasts natural water, rot, and insect resistance. Its tight grain and rich oil content enable it to thrive in wet bathroom environments. It can be finished or left unfinished. Unfinished ipe grays gracefully to a silver patina over time. The one downside is ipe flooring costs $7 to $13 per square foot installed.

3. White Oak

White Oak

  • Janka Hardness Rating: 1,350
  • Price Per Square Foot: $5 to $10
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank

A beloved classic, white oak hardwood flooring entered the scene in mountain lodges and beach homes where it stood up well to moisture and heavy use. Today it remains a top choice for bathrooms thanks to its durability, attractive grain patterns, light color options, and affordable price point.

The natural tannins in white oak make it moderately water-resistant out of the tree. And white oak’s dense grain means it can stand up to spilled liquids, humidity fluctuations, and routine cleanings year after year. For maximum durability, choose rift-sawn or quarter-sawn white oak planks with vertical grain orientation. Prices range from $5 to $10 installed depending on grade and width.

Wood TypeJanka HardnessCost/Sq.Ft.Water Resistance
Teak1,070$9 – $15Excellent
Ipe3,684$7 – $13Excellent
White Oak1,350$5 – $10Good

4. Tigerwood

Tigerwood

  • Janka Hardness Rating: 2,020
  • Price Per Square Foot: $7 to $15
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank

Don’t let the name fool you – tigerwood flooring boasts striping reminiscent of zebrawood, not tigers. Its rich mix of browns, blacks, reds, and oranges creates unique visual interest. Tigerwood also delivers on performance: its density of 64+ pounds per cubic food makes it very resistant to impacts and moisture.

This tropical hardwood holds up excellently in humid bathroom environments. It has good dimensional stability too. A moisture-cured urethane finish protects tigerwood from water damage and enhances its lifespan. Expect to pay between $7 and $15 per square foot installed for this exotic beauty.

5. Cumaru

Cumaru

  • Janka Hardness Rating: 3,500
  • Price Per Square Foot: $7 to $12
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank

Sometimes called “Brazilian teak,” cumaru shares teak’s coveted water-resistance but costs less. This attractive, chocolate-hued wood accented in reddish-brown comes from South American rainforests. Its exceptional density provides durability similar to ipe flooring but cumaru costs $2 to $5 less per square foot installed.

Cumaru holds up beautifully to routine mopping, humidity, splashes, and more in bathrooms. Some oils may leach out initially but should stabilized with a moisture-cured urethane finish. For best results, allow cumaru wood to acclimate for 1 to 2 weeks before installation. Its dimensional stability minimizes gaps even at higher moisture levels.

6. Acacia

  • Janka Hardness Rating: 1,700
  • Price Per Square Foot: $5 to $8
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank

If you love the look of exotic hardwoods at budget prices, acacia should be on your radar. Often called “luxury vinyl plank (LVP) of the hardwood world,” acacia offers the look and feel of pricier cumaru or tigerwood for less. Its flowing grain patterns and warm, reddish-brown hues resemble teak flooring as well.

Thanks to its density and moderately high hardness rating, acacia wood stands up beautifully to wet bathroom conditions. The rich color pairs nicely with white plumbing fixtures while adding a warm, natural look that elevates the whole space. Typically priced between $5 and $8 per square foot, acacia costs up to 50% less than comparably styled woods.

7. Hickory

  • Janka Hardness Rating: 1,820
  • Price Per Square Foot: $7 to $9
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank

Known for its extreme hardness and durability, hickory wood creates a contemporary, sleek look perfect for modern bathrooms. This North American native wood boasts a tight grain that makes it very resistant to impacts, humidity fluctuations, and everyday wear-and-tear. Hickory’s density also minimizes noise (great for multi-family units) and gives the floor a luxurious feel underfoot.

Given suitable acclimation before installation, hickory provides good dimensional stability as humidity levels shift in the bathroom. It holds up well to moisture too. There are a wide variety of hickory species and grades to choose from; prices typically run $7 to $9 per square foot installed. Expect occasional knots and

8. Engineered Wood

Engineered Wood Flooring

  • Janka Hardness Rating: Varies
  • Price Per Square Foot: $4 to $12
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank, engineered

Engineered wood flooring fuses the best of both worlds: a real wood veneer top layer for beauty, anchored to a durable, stable core below. This layered construction makes engineered wood an ideal pick for bathrooms prone to moisture and humidity fluctuations.

The thick top veneer layer – typically oak, exotic hardwoods, or bamboo – provides the same elegance and warmth as solid wood. Meanwhile, the plywood or HDF core minimizes expansion and contraction issues. Modern construction adhesives keep the layers bonded tightly together.

With proper installation and moisture-cured urethane finishes, engineered wood endures incredibly well in wet bathroom settings. It resists warping and leaves fewer gaps than solid wood. Prices range widely based on the veneer wood chosen, from just $4 up to $12 per square foot. All in all, engineered flooring marries affordability with the stunning look and feel of real hardwoods.

9. Bamboo

  • Janka Hardness Rating: 1,200 to 1,500
  • Price Per Square Foot: $4 to $8
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank, engineered

Often mistaken for wood, bamboo is actually an extremely durable grass. Premium bamboo shares the same hardness and density as many top wood choices for bathrooms. Thanks to its tight cellular structure, bamboo resists swelling and damage from water exposure very well. It stands up beautifully to humidity too.

Bamboo flooring costs less than exotic woods – generally between $4 and $8 per square foot installed – while mimicking their warm, natural look. Choose carbonized horizontal grain bamboo planks for maximum durability and style. Extra-wide planks minimize seams in the bathroom. Many homeowners love the sustainable story behind rapidly renewable bamboo as well.

10. Pine

  • Janka Hardness Rating: 690
  • Price Per Square Foot: $3 to $7
  • Styles Available: Wide-plank, engineered

With proper sealing and refinishing, don’t count out pine wood floors for bathrooms. While softer than oak or exotic hardwoods, pine offers a desirable rustic, natural look at budget prices. Install it properly and pine endures well in bathroom environments. Opt for high-grade vertical grain lumber with few knots, which is less prone to expansion and warping. Use a moisture-cured polyurethane finish for maximum water protection.

The biggest advantage of pine is affordability. At $3 to $7 per square foot installed depending on plank width and grade, pine costs about 50% less than typical hardwoods. Just be aware that pine dents more easily and requires more vigilant refinishing to maintain its water resistance and appearance. But for classic wood charm on a budget, it can be a great choice.

Final Verdict

Hopefully this overview gives you a better feel for ten of the best wood species and top contenders for bathroom floors. Prioritize water-resistant exotic hardwoods or domestic oak for the ultimate combination of beauty and durability. Or choose more budget-friendly options like pine or bamboo to bring natural wood charm to your space without breaking the bank!

Work with qualified flooring pros to ensure proper acclimation, installation, sealing, and protection measures so your new wood flooring thrives for years to come. And most importantly, choose planks you love the look of, so you can enjoy your beautiful new bathroom every day!