We'd like to recommend you the best products! We may get a small share of the sale should you buy something through our recommendation links.

What are The Best Wood for Sauna?

I will help you find the best wood for saunas so that you can enjoy them for many years. Read on to learn more!

Many different types of wood can be used in constructing a sauna, but one type stands out above all others as being ideal: Red Cedar. This hardwood’s scent and natural oils make it perfect for use in the hot room where people sweat profusely. 

best wood for sauna
Best Wood for Sauna

Let find out more types of the best wood to build sauna right below!

What is the best wood for sauna?

Saunas have been used for centuries as a way to relax and rejuvenate the spirit strictly. I became interested in saunas after hearing all of their health benefits. 

As far as design goes: The foundation starts great if one uses quality wood (such as picking). Before you build your sauna, it’s essential to consider what type of wood will work best for the design. 

Cedar is excellent at dissipating heat and has few knots or blemishes, making it aesthetically pleasing. In addition, the scent that comes from Cedar can be described as a pleasant natural aroma in contrast with other woods like Pine used on decks where there might only exist dry rot smell due to its susceptibility toward fungus growths over time.

Poplar wood is the perfect alternative to Cedar and other scented woods if you want a scentless sauna. It has an inviting and clean look that will suit any home decor while also being relatively free of allergens or toxins compared to its counterparts.

Wood is a popular material for saunas, and many different types of wood for sauna can be used. First, I will discuss the pros and cons to consider when deciding between hardwoods versus softwoods and what smells may come from wood due to its natural essence (phenols). 

Lastly, we discuss which type would work best in terms of both looks AND scent about best wood for sauna.

Best Types of Woods in Saunas.

Softwoods vs. Hards Woods

Softwoods are from conifer trees. These are the ones with needles, and Cedar, hemlock, or pine is a common material used in saunas because they’re softwood;

Hardwood can be found on deciduous plants like poplar. For example-this type usually contains leaves but not so much else about them!

Deciduous trees tend to grow slower than coniferous ones, making their wood denser and more complex.

Softwood is easier to cut because it bends more easily than hardwoods. Hardwoods are more robust and durably but softer, so they heat up less in the sauna. Softwood also tends to be cheaper than its strong counterpart!

Softwoods (Cedar, hemlock, Pine, Spruce)


The most common wood in saunas is Cedar. It has a distinctive scent that many people enjoy, but others find it too much for their liking to handle, especially if they’re sensitive to smells or allergies – luckily, we have other options! 

In addition, Cedar doesn’t get hot and will provide you with years upon your investment; this makes it worth choosing over cheaper alternatives like Pine since there’s no risk of burning yourself when entering an already heated room (plus who can resist the smell)? 

The downside? Well, yes, despite how great these qualities may seem on paper at first glance-cost certainly comes into play here as well.


The scent of hemlock is particularly refreshing, and it’s an excellent choice for those looking to add green décor to their home. Hemlock also offers fewer allergens than Cedar, making this alternative even more appealing!


Pine is a light-colored wood that looks similar to spruce, except that it tends to convey a pine scent. As you would expect, this material can give off heat in saunas and make for an inexpensive construction option – but there are some drawbacks as well! 

For example, knots may fall out or leave holes when they break down over time, so Pine might not always be your best choice if cost isn’t a top priority. 

However, research any treatment before purchasing because many treatments available at stores sell toxic chemicals, which could end up causing health issues later on down the line (this applies especially if one uses pesticides).


This light-colored wood is commonly used in Finnish Sauna; it is cheaper than other sauna wood types such as hemlock or Cedar. 

Hardwoods (basswood, poplar, Eucalyptus)


Basswood is a light-colored hardwood with little to no fragrance. It’s also an excellent choice for people who want to avoid the strong scent of red cedar since it has none in comparison virtually! 

Basswoods are usually cheaper than most other sauna wood types, so they’re worth considering if you need your furniture preserved from moisture or insect damage at all costs.


Poplar is a hardwood often used in medical facilities because of its light color and odorless ness. It can be bought for more than Cedar or hemlock. Still, it has some downsides, too.

Poplars are hotter to touch than softwoods like spruce or pine needles which means they may cause burns if care isn’t taken when handling them on an ongoing basis; the wood also stains easily, so make sure nothing gets into your wounds!


Eucalyptus is a reddish-brown hardwood that grows in Australia. Eucalyptus saunas are environmentally friendly as they can be replanted and regrown, making them an appealing option for those who want to do their part against deforestation or climate change! 

Although eucalypts are typically more expensive than other woods on this list, you’ll find that it’s worth investing when considering how quickly these heaters grow. within only 3-5 years, your investment will have paid off because trees take so long (upwards of 80+years) to mature fully before reaching maturity height-wise unless someone cuts down one too many!)

Wood Scent

Softwoods, like Cedar and hemlock, have a fresh scent that lasts for months. However, if you don’t enjoy their natural smell, this may last even longer than expected on your clothes or surroundings.

The good news is they only produce the fragrance when dry, but unfortunately, it’s not enough to make up for all those who dislike these scents in general, so be mindful of what appeals most before buying them!

Synthetic Wood in a Sauna

Composite woods are a mixture that can cause formaldehyde emissions, both an irritant and a known carcinogen. The United States has stringent laws about the amount it must emit before being sold commercially. 

However, this doesn’t mean you should avoid using composite wood in your sauna because the high heat levels will make matters worse for those with respiratory problems like asthma or emphysema.

In fact, due to its moisture content (over 60%), many experts recommend against storing anything other than clothing inside one’s home if they’ve got any ventilation system installed at all.

The chemicals that are used to make stains and laminates can quickly end up in your sauna. They could cause you an array of health problems, such as increasing the risk for certain cancers or congenital disabilities if they’re inhaled during a session! 

The best way is not to use these products at all – but don’t worry because we have stainless steel screws so our customers won’t have this problem either.

Best Wood for Sauna Benches and Walls

If your skin is sensitive, invest in Cedar or Hemlock. These softwoods are ideal for benches and backrests because they’re gentle on the human body! 

Another trick to save money while still having a fantastic sauna? Use more expensive woods like these on everything except framing (use cheaper ones there) — This way, you can enjoy quality construction without breaking your bank account too much; plus, people with allergies will thank us later.

While you can get by just mixing up some random wood if your goal is two-toned sauna stools that will stand out in any room they’re installed. When arranging them, it’s important to use contrasting colors so the eye gets caught immediately and drawn towards where it should go next – these stylish seats!

Best wood for sauna floors

If you’re looking for a durable, non-absorbent material to cover your sauna floor, then ceramic tile or even concrete might be the best choice. However, keep in mind that these surfaces can also quickly become polished and beautiful!

If you want a more traditional experience, then hardwood sauna floor tiles are your best option. The surface of these slats has wooden prongs that rest on top of a plastic or rubber layer, allowing water to pass through for easy draining into the drain below. 

Also, consider purchasing some made from teak wood for sauna; they’re durable enough not to wear down quickly as softer woods could do overtime.

Best Wood for Infrared Sauna vs. Traditional Saunas

The critical difference between a traditional sauna and an infrared one is that the former will be bathed with warmer air, which increases humidity. This means logs in wood-based Saunas are under more stress as they’re exposed to these harsh conditions over time.

To this form of sweat therapy, those who use infrared rays feel relief from aches not only on their skin but also deep inside by increasing circulation through the bloodstream.

A traditional sauna will be subject to more extreme conditions than an infrared one. This is because the air temperature in these types of facilities is significantly hotter (170℉). In addition, because they are heated by steam, the wood for sauna also experiences higher humidity levels, making them even sweatier!

Infrared saunas provide a much more comfortable and relaxing experience than hot air balmagies. This is because the heating panels in an IR system create 120℉, whereas regular ones can reach upwards of 150 degrees Fahrenheit (65 Celsius). 

Also, without the steam that comes from these systems, your board will swell less due to dryer air not being blown onto you like it would be if there were no boards present at all!

Caring and Teatment for Sauna Wood

Cleaning your sauna is one of the essential parts of maintaining it. Of course, your home’s climate plays a massive role in how often you need to clean out its contents, but if this sounds like an unnecessary hassle, then perhaps just taking care of general maintenance tasks might be better for now! 

The type and quality oils that are used on wooden surfaces also determine their durability over time, which means they should only come with lab-tested certifications so as not to risk any toxic releases into your environment while still getting all these benefits from them, too-plus no smoke or fumes either.

DIY Outdoor Sauna

FAQS about best wood for sauna

Q1: Are phenols toxic?

Phenols are aromatic chemicals that occur naturally. They can be inhaled and absorbed through the skin’s pores or come from natural sources like food items containing them as an ingredient, even though some people may have sensitivities to essential oils found in plants that produce Phenolic compounds (wood). 

Most don’t cause any problems for those who breathe their products but release a pleasant fragrance when burned because it gives off “paradigm shifts” – similar smelling things happen with other scents too!

Q2: Is Cedar or hemlock better for the sauna?

Western Red Cedar is our preferred wood of choice for saunas. The colors are vivid, and it has many hues, which makes them fun to look at! 

This Cedar also stays stable under changes in heat or humidity prevalent in a wooden hut with an open fire inside – so you can enjoy the ambiance without worrying about your investment getting damaged because of moisture build-up on its surface.

Q3: Is hemlock wood strong?

Hemlock is a solid and durable wood that can be found in nearly every construction project. It has a relative stiffness of 500 when dry, but it becomes much more flexible with age or exposure to moisture. 

Hemlocks’ qualities make it perfect for use as framing lumber. In addition, its ability to stand up against bending loads without snapping under pressure; makes hemlock great for roofs where they might experience heavy snowfall during wintertime!


There are many different types of best wood for sauna available. Choosing the type that will suit you best and maintain good heat for more extended periods is essential. 

We have listed our top choices on this list based on durability and aesthetics. They all provide excellent insulation qualities, making them suitable for any area in the home or office! If one doesn’t work out for you, check back here soon- we may update with more reviews! Which one of these woods for sauna do you think would be perfect?

Show Comments

No Responses Yet

Leave a Reply