Best Wood for Outdoor Furniture

By John Brown •  Updated: 01/29/24 •  4 min read

When it comes down to nature, selecting the best wood for outdoor furniture is crucial for ensuring both durability and aesthetic appeal. Outdoor elements can be harsh, so opting for the best wood suited for these conditions will result in furniture that withstands the test of time.

This guide will equip you with the knowledge to navigate the often-daunting world of outdoor wood, ensuring your furniture weathers the elements in style.

Before we get deeper into the guide, below is a quick summary that outlines the best wood types for the outdoors.

Comparison Table: Best Wood for Outdoor Furniture

Wood TypeWeather ResistanceDurability

Factors to Consider When Choosing Wood for Outdoor Furniture

Weather Resistance

Outdoor furniture is constantly exposed to various weather conditions, so it’s essential to consider a wood’s resistance to moisture, rain, and the sun’s intense UV rays.


You should also consider the wood’s resistance to decay and insects. Choosing wood that naturally repels these elements is crucial to ensuring longer lifespans for your furniture.

Here’s where hardwoods like teak, ipe, and mahogany step into the spotlight. These robust players boast natural oils and density, standing firm against the sun, rain, and even pesky insects.


Maintenance Requirements

Consider the maintenance needs of the chosen wood. Some woods may require regular sealing or finishing to maintain their appearance and structural integrity.

With that out of the way below is a walkthrough of the different types of woods and how they would perform outdoors. We are going to split this list into two categories, hardwoods and softwoods.

Hard Woods Suitable for Outdoor Furniture


Teak renowned for its natural oils is highly resistant to moisture and rot-proof, requiring minimal maintenance. It weathers to a charming silver-gray patina, adding a touch of rustic elegance to your space. Its durability and longevity make it a popular choice for outdoor furniture. Regular cleaning and occasional sealing can help maintain its appearance.


This South American hardwood is a force to be reckoned with. Incredibly strong and dense, it repels moisture, insects, and decay with unwavering resilience. While low-maintenance, its price tag can be steeper than its competitors.


Combining beauty and brawn, mahogany offers excellent weather resistance. However, regular maintenance with sealants is crucial to shield it from the elements.

Soft Woods Suitable for Outdoor Furniture


Cedar’s natural resistance to decay and insects, combined with its lightweight, make it a practical choice. While it weathers to a beautiful silver-gray over time it can be prone to warping if not properly cared for. Some may appreciate this characteristic, and sealing can be applied for color retention.


This Californian native thrives in various weather conditions. Redwood boasts natural resistance to decay. Considered a sustainable option, redwood is both durable and visually appealing. Proper maintenance involves periodic sealing to enhance its longevity.


Similar to cedar in properties and appearance, cypress is less readily available but a charming alternative.

Other factors to consider

Durability isn’t the only factor to ponder. Consider these elements for a harmonious outdoor experience:


Remember, the “best” wood is ultimately the one that best suits your needs and preferences. Consider your budget, desired level of maintenance, and aesthetic vision to make an informed choice. With the right wood by your side, your outdoor haven will be ready to embrace sunshine, laughter, and memories for years to come.

Bonus Tip: For an extra layer of protection, consider treating wood for outdoor use with a sealant or stain specifically designed for outdoor use. Regularly cleaning and maintaining your furniture will also extend its lifespan significantly.

John Brown

John Brown brings a wealth of experience and passion for DIY, Home and Garden, and Woodworking. With a dedication to empowering enthusiasts, he shares insights, tips, and comprehensive guides to help you transform spaces and master woodworking skills.

Keep Reading