When you’re choosing to finish a hardwood floor, you can choose a water-based finish or an oil-based finish.
Water-based finishes are fast-drying and thus must be applied quickly to avoid lap marks and imperfections. Water-based finishes are preferred for exotic woods. They’re considered more environmentally-friendly and are better to let the natural color of the wood come through.
Oil-based finishes add a depth of color to the wood. They take anywhere from 12-24 hours to dry, so they allow for more forgiveness when it comes to application.
Each finish gives a different feel to the floor, so do your research before you choose!