Is Sandalwood Good for Furniture?

Sandalwood sets a significant mark on religious and spiritual rituals. Its fragrant bark captures a vast market of products, thanks to its unique notes and properties. You can use this wood for soaps, home fragrances, shaving, and aftershave creams for men, perfumes, and candles. However, most woodworkers would like to explore this wood further, and so they ask: Is Sandalwood Good for Furniture?

Believe it or not, Sandalwood is among the quality woods suitable for furniture processing. But you will often find it in luxurious furniture like musical instruments. More so, the lumber has distinctive features that make it stand out above other wood types. For instance, it features a straight and fine wood grain that delivers exceptional surfaces.

Unfortunately, Sandalwood is in high demand and appears to be among the most hunted wood species. Therefore, it must be quite pricey. And it is prudent to learn more about the lumber in this article to utilize its value. 

Why Is Sandalwood So Expensive?

Sandalwood is so expensive because it is in high demand and among the most hunted for woods globally. Even worse, the lumber is on its way to becoming extinct. Therefore, one has to fight tooth and nail to get it.

In addition, most states enlist this wood as an endangered species and among the most exploited trees. This move only reduces the supply of Sandalwood, leaving it susceptible to smuggling. And thus, the lumber continues to be more expensive.

Statistically, Sandalwood is the second-most expensive lumber in the world. And it widely serves the cosmetic industry, especially in perfumes production. The wood features a creamy, soft, and durable scent, which increases its demand significantly.

Increased demand leads to increased prices. No wonder sandalwood is insanely expensive. However, we still have people who can afford it as it offers unmatched benefits to the users. Thus, it is no surprise that its demand will keep on increasing by the day.

Does Sandalwood Lose Its smell?

Sandalwood does not lose its smell easily. Instead, it has a long-lasting fragrance that will not wear out soon. Therefore, you will get this wood as a popular ingredient on multiple perfumes and beauty products.

Besides, Sandalwood powder does not expire. But its odor and color may change with time due to moisture. Therefore, it would be best to store the product in a cool and dry place for longevity.

Is Sandalwood Real Wood?

Sandalwood is real wood. It belongs to the class of woods from trees in the Santalum. These woods are usually yellow, heavy, and have a fine grain. Thus, they are distinct from other aromatic wood types and retain their fragrance for a long, long time.

One may think that the wood is not real because it is rare and almost extinct. However, the wood is pretty much available but at a very high price. It is cited to be among the most expensive woods in the world.

Sandalwood originates from the Santalum album tree of Southern India. Even more interesting, it is an extremely slow-growing tree that needs to be at least fifteen years old before you can harvest it.

On top of that, the tree is heavily harvested in India, and the state currently considers it as a threatened species. Unfortunately, we still have problems with illegal harvesting even though the government now controls Sandwood harvests.

Although the Indian Sandalwood is still the highest quality and best smelling among the Sandwood category, most of the lumber you find comes from Bangladesh, Australia, Nepal, Pakistan, Indonesia, and Hawaii.

Lastly, it is easy to confuse the wood with Isobornyl cyclohexanol, a synthetic chemical fragrance that functions as an alternative to Sandalwood. But how do I know that my Sandalwood is legit? Please continue reading through this piece to find out!

How Do You Know If Sandalwood Is real?

There is a saying: How do you know that your father is your father? Because your mother told you so! But these are not words to live by when you want irrefutable proof. Therefore, it would be best to go for a DNA test.

Similarly, the only way to test whether Sandalwood is real is by doing a DNA examination. Most woodworkers judge the authenticity of the wood by checking whether it smells as they think. Unfortunately, this is not a recommended test because there are compounds that mimic Sandalwood’s smell.

Besides, Sandalwood’s smell is an effect of multiple variables. For example, the existing environmental conditions as the tree grows often affect the quality and percentage of the wood’s oil.

Sandalwood’s age also affects its fragrance, and older beads will smell differently. Thus, it is prudent to do a DNA test when unsure of the wood’s authenticity. Also, buy the wood from someone you trust if you do not have time to analyze it.

Which Sandalwood Is Expensive?

The Indian Sandalwood tree is perhaps the most expensive wood. It has significant cosmetic and therapeutic value, leading to a huge international demand for it. Therefore, the wood’s price is quite high to balance off the increased demand.

In addition, harvesters do not cut the wood down at the trunk close to the ground. Instead, they harvest it by removing the entire tree. This way, they get both the root and the stump for further processing.

What Are the Benefits of Sandalwood?

Image of a sandalwood furnitureSandalwood is unique from other wood types and has numerous benefits. However, it would be best for us to check out the lumber’s special attributes. This way, we will appreciate its benefits better.

This lumber is a class of woods that come from the scientific term Genus Santalum. It features fine-grained and yellow wood. In addition, the lumber can retain its fragrance for a very long duration.

Sandalwood trees need approximately 15 years of growth to be valuable. They also need to get to a height of ten meters and have leathery leaves. Therefore, it would be best to be patient and allow the trees to mature before harvesting them.

These woods are partially parasitic as they rely on other tree species to get nutrients and minerals from the environment. Thus, it is better to grow them together with other plants and trees.

Interestingly, Sandalwood generally grows in sandy or dry clay soils. They can also survive in high wind, drought, and even intense heat. So, please check these conditions to guarantee high-quality wood.

The primary Sandalwood types include White Sandalwood and Red Sandalwood. However, White Sandalwood is better than its counterpart when you consider its aromatic attributes. In addition, Red Sandalwood has a lesser supply than White Sandalwood.

On top of that, Sandalwood contains a pretty high percentage of essential oil. Moreover, they have an impressive four to eight percent of these oils. Therefore, it comes in handy for essential oils manufacturing. 

That said, the wood’s uses in both the commercial and medical fields make it highly prestigious. More so, Sandalwood delivers mind-blowing value that led to states declaring it an endangered tree.

Let’s decipher some key pointers on why we need Sandalwood.

  • Fragrance

This aspect distinguishes Sandalwood in the current age. The wood delivers a soft, creamy, milky, smooth, and warm wood scent. More so, this scent is long-lasting and goes on for decades.

Therefore, Sandalwood is popular for making perfumes, But it is has a high price. So, manufacturers use it in smaller portions as a fixative to enhance the durability of various perfumes.

On top of that, this lumber comes in handy in other products in the cosmetic industry. In addition, it is possible to use Sandalwood to make beard oil, shave cream, and aftershave. Check out these products in detail!

  • Sandalwood Beard Oil

It would be best to use Sandalwood beard oil when you observe any beard itch after shaving. The product moisturizes your skin and keeps it hydrated. Eventually, you’ll have softer and smoother facial skin.

  • Sandalwood Shave Cream

Shaving creams serve the sole purpose of moisturizing beard hairs. They make them soft and allow you to shave them easily. More so, your razor glides smoothly onto the beard, preventing nicks and cuts.

Sandalwood shaving cream reduces shaving irritations and aftershave razor bumps. Therefore, you’ll enjoy a smooth and refreshing feeling after shaving. This way, you have a smooth shaving session and healthy skin.

  • Sandalwood Aftershave

The anti-inflammatory and antiseptic attributes of Sandalwood aftershave products deliver numerous benefits to the skin. They clear out the pores and keep the skin nourished. In addition, the product prevents irritations and burning sensations.

  • Sandalwood Carvings

Different religions use Sandalwood carvings for their worship activities. For example, Sandalwood was the primary wood for making the first Buddha Sculpture during the sixth century in India.

In addition, the Indian Sandalwood comes in handy in worshipping the god Shiva. Hence, the Indians consider it a very sacred wood. More so, they believe that the goddess Lakshmi lived in Sandalwood.

This lumber aids user in making decorations for deities and religious utensils. In addition, devotees apply the wood’s powder on their necks, foreheads, and chests during worship. Some religions also use it for calming the mind during meditation and prayer sessions. 

In Buddhism, Sandalwood is in the Padma group and attributed to Amitabha Buddha. Further, Buddhists believe that the lumber’s scent can change one’s desires and enhance their alertness. 

Similarly, this wood comes in handy in Jainism during worship. Jain monks and nuns believe that Sandalwood’s powder releases blessings. Also, they use the lumber’s garlands in dressing a body during the Jain cremation.

In the Tamil Culture, Sandalwood paste indicates devotion and respect. Devotees apply the paste on the graves of Sufis. In addition, East Asian Religions like Korea, China, and Japan refer to Sandalwood as the Tree of Life.

On top of that, the Zoroastrianism culture offers Sandalwood to the Afarganyu and uses it to keep the fire burning in the temple during religious ceremonies. Devotees can add their Sandalwood piece to the fire after the ceremony to keep the fire blazing.

Interesting findings, right?

That said, people prefer carvings from Sandalwood because of the aromatic wood it gives. In addition, the lumber offers a woody and sweet fragrance that lasts for decades. However, these cravings are among the most expensive kind in the market. Thus, you’ll need to chuck out some money to acquire them.

  • Health Benefits

Sandalwood is not just a gem in making beauty products, creams, and ritual accessories. It also has a distinct mild, earthly aroma and plays a special role in healing various healing conditions.

Besides, this wood delivers a fragrant oil that is super rich in sesquiterpenes, chemical compounds that are highly useful in improving a person’s health and general well-being. Therefore, you will find it in medicines, mouth fresheners, lotions, and deodorants.

The health benefits of Sandalwood oil include relieving anxiety symptoms, improving digestion, and controlling emotions such as power, pleasure, and hunger. Other advantages are as follows:

  • Antiseptic

Sandalwood antiseptic properties are among the most promising benefits of this lumber. This attribute prevents bacteria growth that may cause an infection. And that’s why most men’s products such as aftershave lotion or splash and shaving creams contain Sandalwood.

You are likely to cut yourself when you use a dull razor or the wrong shaving technique. Fortunately, you can avert bacterial growth using Sandalwood antiseptic qualities and minimize any adverse effects. Therefore, you’ll deliver a healthy and fresh shave.

On top of that, Sandalwood oil is a safe and effective antiseptic agent for both internal and external use. You can use the oil externally to treat boils, sores, pimples progressing into an infection or becoming septic, and acne.

  • Astringent

Consider checking out Sandalwood products when you want the best toner for men. This lumber stands out with its toning effects. Also, it softens the skin and keeps it healthy with its amazing antiseptic attributes. Therefore, you’ll soon boast of an even-toned complexion.

In addition, the abundance of astringent qualities in Sandalwood oil is beneficial in inhibiting cavity-causing bacteria growth. Thus, you can use it for healing minor wounds, treating bleeding gums, cleansing the mouth, strengthening gums, and enhancing salivation by improving secretions in the gastrointestinal tract.

  • Anti-Inflammatory

Sandalwood paste and oil are excellent and strong anti-inflammatory agents. They have a cool soothing effect that gives instant relief in the brain, circulatory, gastrointestinal, nervous, and excretory system due to antibiotics overdose, wounds, fever, or insect bites.

The lumber’s oil soothes the skin when you experience a burning or stinging sensation after a shave. Therefore, you can keep the skin pain-free by using Sandalwood aftershave balms and lotions.

  • Anti-Aging and Antioxidant

People battling with free and aging radicals may need Sandalwood products to provide anti-aging and antioxidant benefits. Further, this lumber enhances the skin by reducing wrinkles and fine lines. Thus, you’ll appear younger even as you age.

Sandalwood oil exfoliates the face to remove impurities. Therefore, the more you use it to clean your skin, you get a superior skin boost.

  • Enhances Beauty

Sandalwood effectively diminishes oxidative damage and free radicals from the skin. In addition, it flushes out the toxins from internal skin layers. Therefore, you’ll enjoy overall skin health.

  • Natural relaxant

Sandalwood works as a sedative against spasms. In addition, you can use it as a natural relaxant for your muscles and nerves. Thus, you do not have to suffer because of persistent spasms and contractions.

On top of that, Sandwood medicinal products are effective in treating colds, cramps, and aches. You can also use them to relax abdominal and intestinal muscles, prevent excess gas from forming in your stomach, and promote gas removal.

  • Lowers Blood Pressure

Sandalwood oil has a hypotensive agent that aid in lowering blood pressure. Fortunately, you can take edible Sandalwood oil with milk or any other liquid to regulate blood pressure. Alternatively, you can apply it externally and still lower hypertension levels.

  • Heals Wounds

The anti-bacterial and antifungal properties in Sandalwood oil are effective in removing germs and bacteria from the body. They also improve healing mechanisms and treat wounds. In addition, this miraculous bark has bioactive compounds that aid in treating various skin diseases like ulcers, sores, and skin fungus.

  • Lowers Stress

Sandalwood oil is popular for promoting calmness. It has a warm and refreshing woody fragrance that helps you soothe and relax your mind. In addition, the oil aids in keeping your emotions under control and promotes peace and harmony.

Luckily, Sandalwood’s application procedure is pretty easy. All you need to do is inhale the oil or apply it to your ankles or wrist. Then, relax and allow your stress and anxiety to diffuse away.

Do Mosquitoes Like Sandalwood?

Mosquitos do not like Sandalwood. More so, they will not spoil your outdoor party when the wood is around. Sandalwood is a natural mosquito repellent that burns like incense. And it keeps pests at bay to allow you to enjoy the pleasant scent rather than shooing aways bugs. 

In addition, science proves that burning Sandalwood mosquito coils reduces the ability of mosquitoes to bite people. Therefore, you will enjoy a beautiful fragrance that deters mosquitos. 

What Smell Is Sandalwood?

Sandalwood smells woody, which comes from the fraction Santol. The smell is also earthly, but you can describe it as rich and creamy. But you may observe sweet, balsamic, and floral notes when you smell the wood alone.

Although Sandalwood is generally a wood type, it is often unique because of its special qualities. For instance, it smells distinctly exotic, creamy, sweet, warm, and smooth all at once.

Besides, you can pair Sandalwood with woody fragrances, such as cedar, rosewood, and other essential oils, like vetiver, patchouli, and vanilla to add warmth, nuance, and complexity.

Sandalwood’s key ingredient is the so-called floral-amber or floral fragrance families combined with various white florals like jasmine, orange blossom, gardenia, magnolia, or tuberose.

Even so, this lumber is a popular mainstay in many people’s fragrances as it functions as a soft and durable woody base for oriental, Fougere, woody, and chypre families. Also, Sandalwood serves as a fixative to improve the longevity of more volatile oils in citrus and floral fragrances.

That said, Sandalwood has a signature scent that is impossible to forget. Its distinct smell receives adorations because it is strong and incredibly long-lasting. In addition, you can easily recognize the fragrance right away as soon as you smell it.

Frequently Asked Questions

 Here are the most commonly asked question:

  • What Are the Common Sandalwood Alternatives?

Sandalwood is quite expensive and may not be available for most people. Hence, it would be best to explore other alternatives such as cedarwood or tea tree oil. They may not mimic Sandalwood entirely, but you’ll have something as good in the meantime.

  • Why is Growing Sandalwood Illegal?

Growing Sandalwood trees in your private territory or land is usually a whole different discourse. Further, most states do not allow individuals to grow Sandalwood trees as they take a very long time to grow and mature.

Besides, Sandalwood is popular for its fragrant oils and therapeutic benefits. Hence, there is a massive demand for it. However, an individual should get a permit from the state forest authorities to grow Sandalwood or even cut the trees down for business purposes.

  • Is Sandalwood a Feminine Scent?

Previously, Sandalwood has been associated with men. More so, it has a strong scent that people consider to be masculine. Thus, you will find it mostly in men’s products. However, you can blend it with base notes like musk, blossom, or floral fragrances to deliver a sweet and more feminine scent.


You may not automatically think of food or furniture when you think or hear of Sandalwood. Instead, your mind will go straight to incense, perfumes, and fragrance. Well, to your surprise, Sandalwood is among the quality woods perfect for furniture processing. So, let’s engage deeper as we answer the query:

Is Sandalwood Good for Furniture?

Yes, Sandalwood is good for furniture as it has fine and straight grains. The wood is also easy to work on and highly durable. However, it is quite pricey because of its high demand and low supply. Therefore, you will find it mostly in luxury furniture projects and musical instruments.

Image of a woodworker wearing hearing protectors for woodworking

Tyron Otieno

Tyron is an avid woodworker and writer. He founded this website to help other woodworkers, whether hobbyists or professionals by sharing his knowledge and experiencie after a decade of woodworking.

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