This is a question most consumers have when they are furniture shopping, but rarely know how to answer.  Knowing the difference between solid wood furniture and other materials can help you select the quality and durability needed for your specific needs.


Solid wood furniture will be more durable, maintain its natural beauty longer and will cost more than veneer or laminate.  Here some characteristics of each furniture type:



Veneer is a thin layer of hardwood, usually less than 1/8”, that is bonded or glued to a cheaper composite material hidden underneath

If you see flaking or peeling on the corners it is veneer

Finishes will be smooth to the touch

These finishes can peel and be easily damaged



Laminate is made with synthetic materials sometimes including wood chips

Laminate finishes have a shiny appearance and are often found on low-end pieces of furniture because it is cheaper to produce than either veneer or wood

Finishes will be smooth to the touch

These finishes can peel and be easily damaged


Solid wood

Solid wood is denser than composite material so will be heavier, the exception being light wood like pine

You can feel the grain on solid wood

If the furniture has carved details it is solid wood….veneer or laminate cannot be carved


Look for these characteristics when you shop.  Of course, you also can ask the store associate about the furniture materials.  Then determine the combination of quality, durability, and price that best meets your needs.


George’s Furniture & Mattress has been serving the great families in Napoleon and Northwest Ohio area since 1962.  Our Worry Free Guarantee gives customers peace of mind and our Low Price Guarantee ensures the lowest price in the marketplace.  Come browse our selection of mattresses, living rooms, dining rooms, and bedrooms the next time you want to decorate or redecorate your home.