Introduction to Hinoki
Hinoki (檜) is an ancient cypress wood that is native to central Japan. It is one of Japan’s most revered trees for its durability, antimicrobial qualities and unique citrus scent. It is characterised by a lustrous white body and straight grain, with a life span of more than a thousand years. As a prized material that is believed to have purifying qualities, Hinoki has long been used as a classic material in traditional Japanese baths due to its high resistance to humidity and natural oil content which repels water.
How to Treat and Care for Hinoki
While Hinoki is naturally resistant to water and mould, it should not be left to soak in water for long periods of time as this may cause permanent damage. It is advisable to wipe the item with a dry cloth after each use and leave to air dry in a well-ventilated area.
Hinoki wood products are uncoated and untreated to bring out their best features. As a natural material, the wood is subject to expansion and contraction. Avoid exposure to extreme temperatures as it is susceptible to bending, warping or cracking. Leakage may also occur if it is left to dry under direct sunlight. It is recommended to let the wood expand by soaking it in water before use. If treated correctly, Hinoki wood products can last a very long time.
How to Clean Stains
Hinoki wood products may stain if it is left to soak for long periods of time or if it is exposed to harsh colours. If staining occurs, pour warm water on to the area and wipe down the product with a cloth sprayed with alcohol for disinfection. For harsh stains, gently rub away the stain using fine sandpaper.
How to Clean Mold
Hinoki wood is antimicrobial by nature and highly resistant to humidity, but it may grow mould if it is left without proper care and treatment. To remove mould, let the wood dry completely first before gently remove the stain using fine sandpaper in the direction of the grain. To remove mould that has been left untreated, pour a small amount of bleach on a piece of cloth or rag and rub with gentle force. Once the mold spot disappears, wipe away the area with a clean towel. Then rinse thoroughly under running water to remove any excess bleach. Allow the wood to dry completely before use. While this treatment does not damage the wood at first, it should not be repeated more than three times per year.