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Teak Shower Floor: Pros and Cons & What You Need To Know!

Teak Shower Floor

Teak shower floors are easy to DIY and are a popular addition that gives the room an amazing tactile. The aesthetic is wonderful and gives any shower a hint of Hawaii, Asia, or somewhere tropical. Alas, for all its good qualities, it is also high maintenance.

If the inserts are not cleaned regularly and polished at least once in a blue moon, gross mold and bacteria that can even be harmful to your health will grow. So, it’s a bit of a trade-off—if you want nice, pretty-looking things, sometimes you must put in the work. Whether you want to do that or not is of course – up to you.

We’re here with pros and cons to help you make up your mind. These are a beautiful addition to the bathroom and are very functional as a shower floor. In case you aren’t sure what we’re talking about just yet, let us explain.divider 1

What is a Teak Shower Floor?

A teak shower floor is a style of insert for your shower floor. It is made of ultra-high-quality wood, which is where it gets the name from. This wood comes from tropical regions of Asia and is naturally extremely hard, and oily.

That may sound like a terrible quality for a shower floor to have, but it isn’t! Not in this case, anyways. That’s because this kind of oil is in the wood itself, not secreted into pools for you to slip on, and it has some great benefits, too. This oily quality of the teak wood makes it resistant to pests like pine beetles, makes it essentially waterproof, and gives the lumber a non-stick quality. It’s a naturally awesome type of wood!

This also makes it highly sought after—and you know what that means. Teak is a very expensive, exotic hardwood, so for many people, the combination of expensive and high maintenance is an automatic no.

There are also many who don’t mind paying the extra money and doing a bit of work if it is a good product, which begs the question:

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Is Teak Good for Shower Floors?

There is only one truly definitive answer to this question, and that is: it depends. If you don’t mind cleaning your expensive inserts regularly then they are awesome. It’s really going to depend on the values of the individual readers and what they want. What do we think? That it’s perfectly justifiable to spend a little extra and do a little more work if it adds something to the space.

To that end, teak shower floors really do add a marvelous feeling to the shower. They are the essence of the word tactile, being visually attractive as well as appealing to the sense of touch. Of course, it’s a matter of personal taste. There are many people who will understandably disagree and find it to be impractical.

Speaking of practicality, one question springs to mind:

How Long Does Teak Last in the Shower?

This is usually a matter of how well looked after they happen to be, but as a generalization, you can expect a good 10–15 years out of a teak shower floor.

So, we’ve already begun to paint a picture of this style of shower floor insert. Now, let’s dive in and get to the meat and potatoes of what is great, and what is not so great about teak shower floors.

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Pros and Cons of Teak Shower Floors

If you aren’t sure if you want to invest in teak shower floor inserts, then pros and cons are a great way to help you decide. We break down the strengths and weaknesses of teak shower floors for you below.

Image Credit: Roman Akhmetov, Shutterstock
  • Aesthetically Appealing
  • Highly Durable
  • Retains Heat
  • Comfortable
  • Expensive
  • High Maintenance
  • Requires Special Cleaners
  • Prone to mildew


Aesthetically Appealing

There’s no denying the beauty of this dark, rich-colored hardwood. One of the biggest features of the wood is its magnificence.

Highly Durable

This naturally pest and moisture resistant hardwood is incredibly tough and won’t break down unless neglected.

Retains Heat

As a material, the teak is well suited to the shower. This wood holds onto the heat from the shower, making them nice to stand on.


Teak is extremely comfortable to walk around on and stand on. It has more ‘give’ than tile and enhances the shower experience in a subtle, yet noticeable way.

Shower Window Bathtub
Image Credit: Jumpstory



Being highly sought after, teak comes with a fairly steep price tag.

High Maintenance

One of the main reasons you may not wish to install teak shower floor inserts is the amount of work it takes to keep them clean. If you do not wash them often, they will grow bacteria and mold. It’s not only unappetizing, it’s bad for you. If you aren’t willing to put the maintenance in, teak floors aren’t for you.

Requires Special Cleaners

Teak floors don’t respond well to regular bathroom cleaners, so you’ll also need to go a little out of your way to find special cleaners for the wood. These, like the material itself can be pricy, but they will keep it lasting for much longer, so they are justifiable in that sense.

Teak shower floors are great if you love them—but if you value low-maintenance items in your home as many of us do, you may want to give these a pass. So, what does cleaning a teak floor entail?

divider 1 How to Clean a Teak Shower Floor

The good news, for those who really want these inserts, is that cleaning a teak shower floor isn’t actually too difficult if you have the right tools. All you need is your cleaner and a soft-bristled brush. Even a clean old toothbrush will do.

Pull the inserts out and wash them with the supplies mentioned. Then, just clean the rest of the shower and underneath the teak with your regular bathroom cleaner.

Glass Block Shower Window Glass Bath tub
Image Credit: Jumpstory

How to Polish a Teak Shower Floor

An important piece of maintaining your teak shower floor is or would be polishing it regularly. The wood is resistant to moisture, but over time, some does get in. Polishing the teak replenishes the oil which is the barrier between the moisture and the material.

If you want to polish your teak shower floor, then you will first need to clean it, following the simple instructions above. To polish it, however, you will need to get a special teak oil polish. You must wait until the wood is completely dry, so it’s recommended to clean it the night before and let it dry in the morning.

Then, you use a brush to apply the oil. Make sure you have a good amount of coverage but don’t apply so much that it is running off the wood. Then you need to let it sit for about 2 hours to let the wood absorb all that oil.

Now, it’s time to polish it. Put in some elbow grease and shine it up with a soft old rag in small circles. That shine is going to tell you when you need to polish the wood – every time it starts to look dull, it’s time to hit it again!

Where Do Teak Shower Floors Come From?

Teak shower floors came from South-East Asia, originally in the area around Sri Lanka. It was used heavily in wooden ships because of its water-resistant and durable qualities which made it perfect for the job. Of course, today you don’t see many wooden ships.

The origins of using teak for things in the home such as a shower floor came about when ships began to be primarily built out of steel. As the old teak ships were decommissioned, the wood was salvaged and used in many household items like outdoor furniture and wet areas in the home.

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It just depends on what you are looking for. If you want something you don’t need to regularly maintain, then teak shower floors might not be your first choice. On the other hand, it depends how you think about it. Teak shower floors are comparable to plants – they add a real sense of life to the area but require some maintenance.

You could think of it as giving the beautiful wood a second life. It all comes down to what design ideologies speak to you. If the maintenance is a labor of love and price is no issue – then you’ll love your teak shower floors! Hopefully, this information will help you come to reach the decision that is best for you.

Featured Image Credit: Ekaterina Kolomeets, Shutterstock


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