Choosing the Best Wood for a Standing Desk (A Complete Guide)
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Choosing the Best Wood for a Standing Desk (A Complete Guide)

Autonomous|Jul 15, 2022

Regardless of your setting, the furniture you use is vital to your comfort and interior decoration.  

Your desk is a centerpiece that dictates mood and productivity in a workstation. Standing desks help prevent many health problems associated with sitting for long hours at work. 

The kind of wood used for this desk influences how effective they are to the user. Other factors guide this selection that we assess later. 

This article reviews common wood for desktops to enable you to choose the best one for your office setup. 

Types of Wooden Desks


Hardwood - wood standing desk

Hardwood comes from dicotyledonous trees, meaning the branches feature a broadleaf and seeds with a coating around them. Examples of these are oak, ash, and beech. 


This is another best wood for desk. Wood from conifers is called softwood. Unlike hardwood, the seeds from these types of trees are bare. Pine, fir, and spruce are excellent examples. 

Medium-Density Fiberboard (MDF)

Medium-Density Fiberboard (MDF)

MDF is from pieces of wood that exist as byproducts of mills. Most are in the form of sawdust and shavings.  

These are mixed with resin and compressed to produce hardwood for woodwork. 

The Autonomous SmartDesk Surface is an example of MDF furniture. It is scratch and UV-resistant and showcases the different benefits of this type of product. Overall, this attribute makes it perfect as a wood gaming desk


Plywood joins wooden fiber sheets and resin to create a thicker sheet material.  

When Should You Choose Hardwood or MDF Wood?

There are different reasons to choose any type for your wood desk setup

Hardwood is tough and durable. It is the best choice when desk makers want highly resistant material to withstand damage and shock. This type is expensive and common for high-end furniture.  

MDF is cheap and used for budget-friendly furniture like bookcases and cabinets. They finish with paint for visual appeal. 

Top Wood Options to Consider for Your Standing Desk

1. Oak

Oak wood standing desk

The strength and durability of oak make it perfect for quality office furniture. This type of wood lasts for a long time if you maintain it well. 

Desk makers use oak when going for style and elegance in their designs. It has excellent finishing qualities and can be stained to fit several home and office setups. 

Oak has a wide price range depending on the type you want. An example of this is the cost of white oak compared to that of red oak. The former is more expensive than the latter. 

Standing desks made from oak offer users high quality at affordable rates. A classic example is the Autonomous SmartDesk Chunky Oak. This wood standing desk is one of the best pieces of furniture on the market. 


  • Oak is durable and can last for years with proper maintenance.
  • Desk makers find it easy to finish and stain this material for every setting.
  • It is high-density and has excellent natural grains. 


  • The weight of oak makes it a wrong choice for furniture that will move around. 

2. Walnut

Walnut wood standing desk

People often choose walnuts because of the beauty and aesthetics of the material. This feature makes it excellent wood for desktop projects that focus on style and modernity. 

You can get it in different shades of brown with a natural grain that makes it look classic. Over time, the color of walnut wood lightens but still fits into your decor. 

Walnut wood standing desks are not only visually appealing but also durable. They can withstand roughness from most environments. This ability is no excuse for you not to take good care of your walnut furniture. 

Woodworkers claim they can easily shape them, making walnut excellent for curvy desks. They also add identity and class to any setting. 


  • Walnut wood has a beautiful color tone.
  • It is durable and resistant to mold, water, and shock.
  • The material can easily convert into elaborate designs. 


  • Desks made from Walnut wood are expensive.
  • It develops dents when used heavily. 

3. Cherry

The size of the trees it is cut from makes it popular. Cherry trees grow to heights beyond 100 feet over a long period. 

It has high demand because of its visual appeal and natural luster. Wooden standing desk manufacturers also claim that it cuts and shapes easily, making it suitable for designing.

Cherry wood has a straight grain and smooth texture that gives it an excellent finish. The material is strong and highly resistant to rot and decay. These qualities make it long-lasting. 


  • It is strong and durable, perfect for making a solid wood standing desk.
  • Cherry wood is highly resistant to environmental conditions such as mold and decay.
  • Furniture makers find it easy to transform this wood into beautiful designs. 


  • Cherry wood can easily get scratched.
  • It is expensive when you compare it with similar wood types.  

4. Maple

Maple wood standing desk

Maple is perfect for making office furniture, especially standing desks.  

Even though it is lightweight, the wood is very durable. It is beautiful, comes in several species and colors, and stains easily.  

The material has a high rating on the Janka test with a 1,450 score. This rating is impressive considering that woods such as cherry, oak, and walnut scored 950, 1360, and 1010, respectively. 


  • Maple is sturdy and great for a wood standing table.  
  • It has a straight grain with some swirls.
  • The wood has a beautiful color with high moisture resistance. 


  • Maple is not resistant to insect attacks. 

5. Birch

This hardwood is found all over North America. White, yellow, and black birch wood are examples of the different types available. 

Birch is sterilized and kiln-dried to remove moisture from the wood. This process enables it to withstand outdoor conditions well. Therefore, it is commonly used for exterior wood columns instead of furniture. 

Yet, standing desks made from birch are strong. When properly maintained, they can last for years without evident damage. 

The golden color of the yellow birch is beautiful. It's fine grain and closed pores give the wood an attractive look that stains and finishes excellently. 

Birch is affordable when compared to other furniture wood types. 


  • The wood is tough but easy to shape.
  • It is not very expensive when compared to others on the market.
  • Birch has straight grains that make it easy to finish.


  • It cracks easily in dry conditions.
  • This material is prone to wear and warp. 

6. Rosewood


Rosewood is another famous solid wood used for making furniture, especially desks. 

The wood is naturally beautiful and exists in different shades of red. Its exterior is greasy, enabling it to withstand rough weather conditions. 

Direct sunlight increases the rate of its warping, making it perfect for indoor use. 

This type of wood standing desks are heavy. 


  • It is very durable and strong.
  • Rosewood has an attractive color that makes its products beautiful when finished.
  • Some consider it the best wood for desk projects. 


  • Rosewood is heavy and bulky for desks that move around often.
  • It easily deforms and is quite expensive.  

7. Teak

There are several high-quality outdoor pieces of furniture made from Teak. Manufacturers choose it because it is one of the strongest hardwoods available. 

This hardwood standing desk can keep its natural qualities in some of the roughest weather conditions. It withstands damage even when directly exposed to sunlight and moisture. 


  • The material is pest and insect-resistant. You do not have to bother about mites eating into your desktop.
  • It is beautiful and has a natural color that ages to become even more elegant.
  • Teak stains well to retain its natural color. This feature makes it easy to maintain.
  • The wood does not rust even when it comes into contact with metallic surfaces.
  • It is durable and can last a lifetime. 


  • It is expensive and increases the price of furniture.
  • Teak is scarce on the market. 

8. Pine

Pine wood standing desk

Pine may be softwood, but it is strong and highly resistant to shock. This attribute makes it a good choice for most desk makers. 

It is easy to work with and has a beautiful creamy appearance. You can also stain and finish it to any color you want. 

This wood standing table is affordable and easy to maintain. 


  • Desks manufactured from pine are light but durable, making them very mobile.
  • Its natural color blends into most setups.
  • Pine is highly resistant to shock and damage.
  • This wood is the cheapest for making high-end office furniture. 


  • It is not easy to transform into various shapes. 

9. Elmwood

Elmwood is excellent for making hardwood standing desks. It is strong and has a rough grain. This feature enables it to withstand splitting under pressure. 

Furniture makers use it for desks, chairs, and other office pieces. This type of wood is easy to style and has excellent finishing qualities.  

It is tough to cut but easy to shape, polish, and sand. The wood reacts negatively by tearing when planed.  

With good maintenance, elmwood can last for a very long time. 


  • It is strong and durable, so it’s great for making office furniture.
  • Elmwood has a smooth texture that makes it easy to finish. 


  • The wood is prone to insect attacks and is not fit for outdoors.
  • It is not easy to dry when treating it. 

10. Bamboo

bamboo desk is a classic example of eco-friendly office furniture. It naturally has a smooth surface and has excellent finishing abilities. 

The wood comes from grass. It grows fast, making it an environmentally sustainable material for making desks.


Bamboo is resistant to water, humidity, and intense temperature. It is also sturdy and crafty enough for elegant designs. 

Outdoor or mobile workstations are perfect settings for the use of bamboo desks. 


  • Obtaining bamboo causes very little damage to the environment.
  • It is highly durable and can withstand most climate conditions.
  • You can easily maintain bamboo desks since they are highly resistant to damage.
  • The weight of bamboo desks makes them very mobile. 

What to Look out for When Choosing the Best Wood for a Desktop

There are several varieties of wood that manufacturers use for making desktops. The one you choose should make you comfortable and enable you to achieve maximum productivity. 

Below are some factors to guide your selection of wood for your desktop: 


Your goals influence the type of wood you want for your desktop. Working in damp or humid conditions might require variants such as teak. If the workstation is mobile, lightweight hardwood such as corkwood is perfect. 



Solid wood is cut whole from trees and transformed compared to the other kinds engineered by combining layers of wood. 

This type of wood is called solid because of how compact it is. It is durable and highly resistant to damage. 


Aesthetics are necessary when choosing office furniture. The color of the wood you choose determines the beauty and elegance of your ergonomic standing desk. Some require finishing to have visual appeal, but others naturally fit into interior decorations. 



How much you are willing to spend is a vital factor. This characteristic also involves finding a balance between purpose and cost. 

Depending on what you are looking for, you can compare prices to see which product fits into your budget. Sometimes, you compromise on purpose and quality or must wait to get a bigger budget. 

Why Use Wood for Your Standing Desk

Manufacturers use several materials when making wood standing tables. What then makes wood unique compared to all the others?

Wood has a natural beauty over all the other materials. It has visual appeal, feels comfortable, and has many ergonomic qualities. 

The material can fit into many rigs, be it mechanical or digital. Woodworkers find it very easy to shape and transform. 

You can finish wood in many ways to fit any decor so that it never goes out of style. Using wood for your modern office furniture makes them timeless. 


There are several other types of wood you can learn about for more information. Knowing why you select a particular kind enables you to get the one that best fits your preference. 

It also saves you time and money during the whole process. You can best avoid buyers' guilt with this knowledge. 

The wooden standing desk provides comfort, increases productivity, and reduces health risks. Make sure you choose the best one on the market.

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WRITTEN BYAutonomous

We build office products to help you work smarter.

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