Innovative Materials for Modern Handrails: A Look at New and Sustainable Materials Being Used in the Industry

The handrail industry has seen significant advancements in recent years, particularly in the materials used for construction. Traditional materials like wood and metal are now complemented by innovative and sustainable alternatives that offer enhanced durability, aesthetics, and environmental benefits. We stay ahead of industry trends to provide our clients with the best options for their handrail needs. Here, we explore some of the most innovative and sustainable materials currently making waves in the handrail industry.

Bamboo: The Eco-Friendly Marvel

Bamboo is one of the most sustainable materials available for handrails. This fast-growing grass can be harvested in just a few years, making it a highly renewable resource. Bamboo is incredibly strong and flexible, often compared to steel in terms of tensile strength. Its natural resistance to pests and moisture further enhances its appeal as a durable handrail material.

Bamboo handrails bring a unique aesthetic to any space, offering a warm, natural look that complements both indoor and outdoor settings. Additionally, bamboo’s light weight makes it easy to work with, reducing installation time and labor costs.

Recycled Plastics: Turning Waste into Beauty

Recycled plastic is an innovative material gaining popularity in the handrail industry. Made from post-consumer waste, such as plastic bottles and packaging, recycled plastic handrails are an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional materials. These handrails are highly durable, resistant to weather and UV damage, and require minimal maintenance.

Recycled plastic handrails are available in a variety of colors and finishes, mimicking the look of wood, metal, or even stone. This versatility allows property owners to achieve their desired aesthetic while making a positive environmental impact. By choosing recycled plastics, you’re contributing to waste reduction and promoting a circular economy.

Glass: Modern Elegance with a Sustainable Edge

Glass handrails are synonymous with modern elegance. They provide an unobstructed view, making spaces feel larger and more open. Advances in glass manufacturing have introduced tempered and laminated glass options, which are incredibly strong and safe for use in handrails.

In terms of sustainability, glass is fully recyclable and can be reused multiple times without losing its quality. Additionally, glass handrails can be combined with other sustainable materials, such as recycled metal frames, to create a truly eco-friendly installation.

Stainless Steel: Durability Meets Sustainability

Stainless steel is a classic choice for handrails, known for its strength, durability, and sleek appearance. What many people don’t realize is that stainless steel is also a highly sustainable material. It is 100% recyclable and can be repurposed indefinitely without degradation in quality.

Stainless steel handrails are ideal for both indoor and outdoor applications due to their resistance to corrosion and extreme weather conditions. They require minimal maintenance, making them a cost-effective and environmentally friendly choice in the long run.

Composite Materials: The Best of Both Worlds

Composite materials combine the best properties of various substances to create superior handrail options. A popular composite material in the handrail industry is WPC (Wood-Plastic Composite), made from a blend of recycled wood fibers and plastic.

WPC handrails offer the natural look of wood with the durability and low maintenance of plastic. They are resistant to rot, splinters, and insects, making them perfect for outdoor use. The use of recycled materials in WPC further enhances its sustainability, making it a smart choice for eco-conscious consumers.

Aluminum: Lightweight and Recyclable

Aluminum is another innovative material gaining traction in the handrail industry. It is lightweight, strong, and resistant to rust and corrosion, making it ideal for both indoor and outdoor applications. Aluminum handrails are available in various finishes, including anodized and powder-coated options, which provide additional protection and aesthetic appeal.

One of the key benefits of aluminum is its recyclability. Aluminum can be recycled indefinitely without losing its properties, making it a sustainable choice for modern handrails. The production of aluminum from recycled materials also consumes significantly less energy compared to primary production, further reducing its environmental footprint.

Natural Stone: Timeless and Sustainable

Natural stone handrails offer a timeless and luxurious look. Materials like granite, marble, and limestone are not only aesthetically pleasing but also incredibly durable. Stone handrails can withstand extreme weather conditions and heavy use, making them ideal for both residential and commercial properties.

From a sustainability perspective, natural stone is an excellent choice. It is abundant and requires minimal processing, reducing the environmental impact of production. Additionally, stone is a long-lasting material, meaning that stone handrails have a lower lifecycle impact compared to other materials.


The handrail industry is evolving with a strong focus on innovation and sustainability. Materials like bamboo, recycled plastics, glass, stainless steel, composites, aluminum, and natural stone are leading the way, offering property owners a wide range of options that are both eco-friendly and aesthetically pleasing.

At Hurst Fence Company, we are committed to providing our clients with the latest and most sustainable handrail solutions. By choosing innovative materials, you can enhance the safety and beauty of your property while also making a positive impact on the environment. Whether you’re renovating an existing space or designing a new one, consider these modern materials for your next handrail project.

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