If you’ve ever seen slabs of mango wood and acacia wood, you might have wondered if they were the same thing under different names. Both types of wood have similar irregular grain patterns and beautiful, rich tones. In this article, we’ll compare acacia wood vs mango wood, discussing the pros, cons, and uses of each.
What You'll Learn Today
Is Mango Wood the Same as Acacia Wood?
Mango trees are different from acacia trees; therefore, they do not produce the same wood. Both mango and acacia are excellent wood choices for a variety of uses, but each type of wood is unique and has its own set of pros and cons.
Let’s explore those pros and cons below.
Pros and Cons of Acacia Wood
- Luxurious: Though not one of the most exotic woods out there, acacia has a more luxurious and exotic appearance than many hardwoods native to the Americas, such as oak, maple, and walnut. It is prized for its irregular grain and pleasing appearance.
- Hard and durable: Acacia is an exceptionally durable hardwood that will last years longer than many American hardwoods. It is so durable, in fact, that many people consider it worth the extra cost because it will outlast most other types of wood.
- Water resistant: Acacia is often used for outdoor furniture and other uses because it is exceptionally water resistant. Of course, treating it with wax or weather stain will make it even more resistant, but it does quite well on its own at resisting water damage.
- Expensive: Acacia wood is not as expensive as rarer, more exotic hardwoods, but it costs significantly more than common American hardwoods. It is an investment that not everyone feels comfortable in making, and for some, the qualities of the wood simply aren’t worth the cost.
- Heavy: Acacia is noticeably heavier than many other wood types, which makes it hard to move around and work with. Some people love the heaviness because they want a piece of furniture that can’t be moved around easily; but others consider it a major inconvenience.
- Heat-sensitive: Though acacia is highly durable and weather resistant, it does have some sensitivity to heat. It may crack or bow if exposed to constant heat sources, such as direct sunlight or fireplace heat, over a period of time.
Check out this video to learn more about working with acacia wood:
Pros and Cons of Mango Wood
- Soft for a hardwood: Though technically considered a hardwood, mango wood is relatively soft. This makes it more lightweight than expected, and it is easy to shape and carve for a multitude of uses.
- Durable and water resistant: Despite being lightweight and soft, mango wood is also durable. Its natural water resistance makes it a good choice for outdoor furniture.
- Inexpensive: Mango wood is far less expensive than acacia wood and is considered an inexpensive wood type. This makes it a good choice if you’re on a budget or looking for a classy-looking wood without breaking the bank.
- Prone to fungus and insects: Mango wood is somewhat more prone to woodworm and fungus infestations. For this reason, it must be properly treated to guard against these infestations.
- Relatively weak: Because mango wood is so soft, it lacks a bit in the strength department when compared with other hardwoods. Because of this weakness, it isn’t the best choice for certain large weight-bearing pieces of furniture.
- Discoloration: Mango wood tends to fade or go dark over time, especially after prolonged sun exposure. If you’re purchasing mango wood for its original color and appearance, you will want to be aware of this.
Check out this video to learn more about mango wood:
Which Wood is Better?
Acacia is an excellent hardwood for beautiful furniture that seems to last forever. It is used for everything from dressers to bed frames to tables and wardrobes.
But, as noted above, acacia is expensive, so you can expect to pay a pretty penny for any acacia furniture pieces you buy or build. Acacia is also quite heavy, so it would not be a good choice if you’re looking for more portable options such as chairs and patio furniture.
Mango wood is much better for lightweight and portable furniture pieces. It works great for patio chairs and tables, and it’s an excellent choice for all your outdoor furniture needs since it is water resistant and isn’t as heat-sensitive as acacia.
Mango is not as good for large, weight-bearing furniture such as wardrobes and bed frames, as it is too soft and may break or bend over time.
As you can see, it all depends on what you want.
If you want heavy, long-lasting, luxury furniture for use inside your house, acacia is an excellent choice. If you want lightweight, portable, weather resistant furniture that is cheaper but may not last as long, mango wood is the best choice.
Both acacia and mango are used to make flooring, and both are excellent choices. Both can be similar in appearance depending on stain and finish, as both have irregular grain patterns.
Again, acacia is more luxurious, and because of its hardness, it may hold up better and longer than mango wood. That said, it may buckle or become damaged near fireplaces, heater vents, and areas that receive full sunlight.
Mango wood flooring will be cheaper, and it is fairly durable, but it may need to be redone sooner than acacia wood because it is softer and more prone to damage. Being walked on constantly may prove challenging for mango wood floors.
So acacia may have a slight advantage here; it is also more commonly used than mango wood for floors.
According to this article from Ukulele World, mango is sometimes used for musical instruments, though not as commonly as it used to be. Mango is a good choice for instruments because it is soft and easy to shape, lightweight, and inexpensive.
Both acacia and mango can be used for kitchen products such as cutting boards and wooden dishes. They are both excellent and aesthetically-pleasing choices for various pieces of home decor.
Acacia wood contains essential oils that smell a bit like honey. These oils can be pressed from the wood and used medicinally, as well as in perfumes, makeup, and skincare products.
Mango and acacia are two different types of wood that come from different trees. Acacia is heavy and durable, but expensive and heat-sensitive; mango is lightweight and inexpensive, but weaker than acacia and more prone to bugs and fungus.
That said, both woods are excellent choices for a variety of furniture, flooring, and other uses.