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Home » Wood Ceiling in a Bathroom | 14 Examples

Wood Ceiling in a Bathroom | 14 Examples

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You are probably remodeling your bathroom because it is too outdated or you are looking for a change. You thought that changing the tile would be enough to make it look modern, but now that the tiles are done, the room still doesn’t look perfect.

Usually, when you think of a bathroom that has a wooden ceiling, there is something old-fashioned about it. Your parents’ bathroom or better said your grandparents probably had one if not even two rooms with wooden ceilings.

You most probably never liked them because they felt so dark and uncomfortable back then, but now you realize that if done correctly, they can add a certain touch of elegance to the bathroom.

Can you install wood ceiling in bathroom?

Yes, you can install a wood ceiling in your bathroom, but you need to make sure that the bathroom is properly ventilated. The moisture from the shower and bathtub can damage some types of wood, so you need to make sure that either the wood you choose is resistant to moisture or you take some extra precautions to protect it.

Why Should you Choose Wood Ceiling?

A wood ceiling can really add a touch of elegance, personality and make your bathroom feel warmer and more inviting.

In terms of style, there are many different types of wood ceilings that you can choose from. You can either go for a traditional look with tongue and groove boards, or you can choose a more modern look with a smooth finish.

No matter what type of wood ceiling you choose, it will be a great addition to your bathroom and will make it feel like a true oasis.

What type of wood is best for ceiling?

A wooden ceiling can be made out of different kinds of wood, but it is important to pick the right one because you want to make your bathroom look classy and not tacky.

Birch wood

Birch wood is one of the most popular types used for ceilings because it gives that rustic, vintage look you are probably after.

It is important to know that when working with birch, your bathroom must be moisture free so before starting to work on your ceilings, make sure you have drywalled the bathroom, especially around the window and door areas. Other than that, you are good to go.

Walnut wood

Walnut is a very hard wood and most people prefer to use it for flooring rather than the ceiling.

If you have the time, money, and patience to work with walnut, you probably will get a great result because it can add an elegant touch to your bathroom.

With the use of walnut in your bathroom, you can achieve a great rustic and industrial look.

teak wood bathroom
Image source


Teak is a very popular wood for furniture, but it can also be used for ceilings.

It has a beautiful natural color and it is very durable, which makes it perfect for bathrooms. Moisture won’t be a problem with teak because it is naturally resistant.

The only downside for using it in your bathroom is that it can be a bit expensive.

Cedar wood

Cedar is always a great choice when it comes to wood for the ceiling in the bathroom.

The wood itself has great resistance to moisture so if you have problems with mold in your bathroom, this type of wood might be great for you.

The only mistake you can make when using cedar is painting it. This can ruin its natural strength and will make it more vulnerable to moisture. Stain it insteed.

NOTE: Even if this type of wood can handle some moisture, it doesn't mean that you don't have to treat it.
poplar wood ceiling

Poplar wood

When it comes to the bathroom, poplar is a good choice for the ceiling. It is less expensive than other woods but still looks great.

What makes poplar wood the best option when working with bathroom walls and ceilings are its natural qualities. It has great water resistant properties and it is naturally resistant against mold and mildew.

If you don’t know what to choose between birch and poplar, go with the poplar. Even though it doesn’t look as natural as birch (you can see individual rings in the wood), you will get a good quality ceiling that will last for many years without losing its looks.

Carbonized Bamboo

Carbonized bamboo is expanding in popularity recently.  It is strong, light weight and will add a unique touch to your bathroom.

The funny thing about this type of ceiling is the fact it looks better in bathrooms with wooden flooring. It also goes really well with marble or stoned tiles.

Before going ahead and putting in a carbonized bamboo ceiling, just keep in mind that it doesn’t have that much strength against water.

So if you ceilings are high and moisture is not an issue, you can, With help of Carbonized Bamboo, achieve great modern look with asian flair.

Even though if looks great, just keep in mind that it is a high maintenance type of wood and will require regular cleaning and painting.

The good thing about bamboo ceiling is the fact you can refinish it as many times as you want to update your bathroom decor. Just make sure you use proper products for this.

Cherry wood

Cherry wood can be a great choice for the ceiling.  It has that natural depth that makes it look great, no matter how you decide to apply it.

This type of wood will give your bathroom an elegant touch if combined with the right colors and tiles, but it can also create a rustic or industrial feel depending on what fixtures will you use.

NOTE: You can paint it or leave it natural, but make sure you protect it with polyurethane to prevent water damage.

White Ash wood

White Ash will add elegance and warmth to your bathroom. Even though it is resistant to moisture, it does need some maintenance from time to time.  

You can clean it using soap or any other cleaning product you routinely use when working on wooden surfaces. Just make sure you rinse the surface afterward.

White ash is highly recommended for bathrooms with wooden flooring. It goes perfectly together and will be more than just a good-looking addition to your bathroom decor.


Hemlock wood has a beautiful a bit darker natural color and it looks amazing when combined with white tiles.

This type of wood will add warmth and elegance to your bathroom, but make sure you don’t expose it too much to moisture because its resistance is not that good.

It is a good idea to look for a contractor who will stain your ceiling in the perfect color or leave it natural.


Mahogany wood is another option you can consider for ceiling in your bathroom. It has beautiful color and grain structure but it is also really expensive.

You will achieve great visual contrast and modern look, you hardly can with any other wood.

Douglas fir

Douglas Fir is a great choice if you want a ceiling in your bathroom with a rustic touch. It will add character and warmth to the entire space, but it needs regular maintenance.

Keep in mind that it has natural knots, which means that you will have to fill them accordingly. If you don’t know how to do it, just ask for professional help.

Even if Douglas fir is a very popular choice for ceiling, as long as you know what to expect from it and how to maintain it, your bathroom will look amazing!

Pine Wood

When you choose pine wood for your bathroom, you want to make sure you go for clear pine wood. That means the whole piece needs to be light in color and have a natural finish. This type of wood is often seen as rustic and country-style like in the image above.

When used correctly it can also feel a bit antique and all in all with a lot of character.

Oak Wood

When it comes to wooden ceilings, the choice is never small when you think of oak wood.

There are many different types of oak wood, each in different color tones so you can pick the one that works best with your bathroom design.

It can be minimalistic and modern but at the same time rustic and traditional. With oak, you can get that chic feel or even that modern industrial look. The possibilities are endless.

Maple wood

Maple wood is known as the more elegant and sophisticated type of wood. Usually, you see it as a flooring option rather than a ceiling material. However, with a bit of creativity, you can turn it into one of your most favorite elements in the bathroom.

If your bathroom is already decorated in a lot of warm colors and you don’t want to make it feel cooler, maple wood is a great choice. It can deliver that relaxing feeling every bathroom needs.

What type of designs should I avoid?

When you want to install a wooden ceiling in your bathroom, there are a few things you should consider before picking the design because it is not a decision that can be taken lightly.

To many patterns

Avoid putting too many patterns or prints on your ceiling. It needs to stay clean and classy because it will create the entire look of the space.

Stick to one color and small patterns like lines or dots.

Too high, too low

There might be a temptation to make your ceiling as high as possible but it can create an uncomfortable feeling because you will feel closed in.  

The ideal height of the ceiling in your bathroom would be around 8 feet.

However, you can go for a lower or higher ceiling with help of high end lighting and proper use of texture and decorations.

For example:

Low ceilings are usually replaced by taller curtains that act like walls around your bathroom. And when it comes to high ceilings, you can install a mirror that will make the space look even bigger and brighter.

Too many colors

Avoid using dark colors if you want to make your bathroom look bigger. Pick warm and light wooden ceilings for smaller bathrooms.

NOTE: If your bathroom is very small, don't go for anything darker than off-white.

Strings of lights or bulbs

Although this type of decoration is very popular, it’s usually seen in living rooms and bedrooms. In the bathroom, it can be a bit too much and take away from the relaxing feeling you’re going for.

TIP: Save these types of decorations for other spaces in your home and keep the ceiling simple and elegant in our bathroom.

How do you install the wooden ceiling?

When it comes to wooden ceilings, there are two types of installation: floating and drop.

Floating installation

Floating installation is easier and doesn’t need any specific tools other than a drill, screwdriver, and tape measure.

All you have to do is put the wooden boards on top of each other and create a pattern or designs that suits your bathroom and attach them together.

Drop installation

Drop installation, on the other hand, needs more time and effort because it requires beams.

It might sound complicated but when you have everything set up, the result is absolutely stunning.

All you have to do with this type of installation is install beams with or without insulation, cover it in wooden ceiling panels and make sure they stay secure.

Do I need to treat my wood before my bathroom ceiling installation?

Yes. Wood treatment is necessary to protect against moisture in your bathroom. If your wood isn’t treated you can use:

  1. Walnut or Liseeed oil
  2. Varnish
  3. Stain

Which method you choose depends on the type of wood you have.

If it’s made of oak, the varnish is a great choice because it will darken the wood and make it look even classier.  

However, if your room has lower humidity levels or no misting at all, walnut or linseed oil is a better option because it will make the wood look richer and darker.

NOTE: In most cases, stores already treat their products before selling them. Ask them if any treatment was done to the wood you are planning to purchase.

Is Floating or Drop Instalation better for Bathroom Ceiling

It depends on your bathroom. If you have beams in your ceiling, then drop installation might be a better option because it will be more secure.

However, if you don’t have any beams or your beams aren’t strong enough to carry the weight of the wooden panels, floating installation is a better choice.

In any case, make sure to use a good sealant between the panels and the beams/wall to avoid moisture damage.

Are There any Additional Tips When Installing a Wooden Bathroom Ceiling?

Yes. Note these 4 important additional tips when installing your wooden bathroom ceiling:

  1. Make sure you have enough space above your head to install the panels.
  2. Check the height of your room and make sure the panels you choose are the right size.
  3. You might also want to consider adding insulation if your bathroom is in a colder area.
  4. Last but not least, always use a good quality sealant between the panels and the wall/beams to avoid moisture damage.

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