In the context of fragmented global forest governance, Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) has gained force as a strategy to improve forest conditions and livelihood outcomes. Accordingly, SFM related ideas and norms are translated across different environmental domains, levels of governance, and social-ecological systems. This article discusses how SFM related rules, norms, and discourses are translated from the global to the domestic level of Brazil. Results show how international forest governance is translated to multiple forest policy contexts of Brazil. First, international conventions related to forest lead to specific translations of SFM into national policies. Second, international discourses on SFM have failed to have much influence on the main piece of domestic forest legislation, the Brazilian Forest Code. Third, the confluence of international ideas and norms of SFM with the social-ecological systems of different Brazilian forest biomes produces a set of very different SFM translations on the domestic level. We conclude that translations of SFM, from the global to the domestic level, are shaped by domestic policy and social-ecological systems. Thus, the role of domestic policies and the specificity of forest ecosystems deserve more attention in global forest governance than is currently the case.