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If you are adding timber cladding to your property, one of the key questions you will face is whether to paint your boards or leave them as they are. Do you go au natural or let your creativity take the lead? If you are unsure, our timber experts at EcoChoice have put together some of the pros and cons of each. Let’s jump in!

Keep Things Natural

A lot of people decide to keep their timber cladding in its natural state, especially when it is used inside the building. For exteriors, it is smart to add a protective treatment, such as a stain or oil, and choosing a natural shade will still let the wood aesthetic shine through. But what are the perks of unpainted wood?

Aesthetic Appeal

Natural timber cladding showcases the inherent beauty of wood. The grain patterns, knots and variations in colour are left to steal the show as they adapt to the seasons, creating a more rustic, cottage-core look. If you are using cladding to add more aspects of nature to your home, this is definitely the right option. Many people find natural wood that has weathered (turned silver grey) more warm and comforting, too, creating a cosy, ambient building which reflects the wonders of the great outdoors.


Timber cladding in its natural form is often considered more sustainable. This is because it requires fewer manufacturing processes and chemicals compared to painted cladding. If you are concerned about longevity, you can look into more eco-friendly treatments which will achieve the natural look of your timber without compromising on durability or stability, such as  ThermoWood and OrganoWood.

Remember to opt for FSC-certified cladding boards from EcoChoice, and support sustainable forestry.

Low Maintenance

Natural timber cladding, if properly installed and maintained, can require minimal upkeep. It may develop a silvery patina over time which can enhance its charm. Occasional cleaning and resealing its ends may be necessary to protect it from the elements if your cladding is installed on the exterior of your building.


Natural timber cladding is versatile in terms of compatibility with different architectural styles. It complements modern, rustic and traditional designs equally, making it a flexible choice.

A Pop of Colour

Thinking of painting your timber cladding? Let’s take a look at some of the perks which a coat of colour will bring to your property.

Customise Your Cladding

Painting or staining timber cladding allows you to choose from a virtually endless range of colours and shades! You can also add patterns to your board, e.g creating a stripe effect by painting alternate boards in different colours. This customisation adds character to your space and helps you tie-in your cladding to your own unique style.

Extra Protection

Coating your timber cladding provides an extra layer of protection against UV rays, moisture and fungal growth. This can extend the lifespan of your timber and reduce long-term maintenance requirements, both of which are bonuses you should not ignore.

Uniform Appearance

Painted cladding offers a uniform and contemporary appearance. This can be particularly appealing if you prefer a sleek and clean aesthetic, or if you want to create a contrast with other design elements in the building.

Choosing the Right Option for You

It is clear that both painted and natural timber cladding have their advantages, so which is right for you?

Of course aesthetics plays a huge part, but do not forget maintenance. Be aware that painted timber may need more upkeep than a natural finish to keep that smart, clean finish. Natural timber can get away with a bit more wear and tear without looking shabby.

If sustainability is important to you – as it is to us at EcoChoice – both painted and natural can be done with the environment in mind. Natural, sustainably treated timber is of course an eco-friendly option, but using an eco paint which does not contain so many chemicals can still maintain your building’s green status whilst maintaining a consistent aesthetic.

Find FSC-Certified Timber Cladding

No matter whether you are painting your cladding or leaving it with a natural finish, you always need high-quality timber boards. At EcoChoice, we supply timber cladding boards in a wide range of species and would be happy to help you match your project requirements to the right wood. Simply get in touch with us today and let’s start chatting!

Image: Radoslav Cajkovic / Shutterstock.com


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Timber cladding finishes

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