Most important when buying a rug is knowing the type of material the rug is made from.
Different materials have both benefits and drawbacks, so making sure you buy the one that will be perfect for your needs is important.
This post will discuss the pros and cons of natural fiber rugs made from wool, cotton, jute, and hemp:
Here’s How Soft Natural Fiber Rugs Are:
Seagrass, jute, and wool are very soft, with wool being the softest one among the others. Wool is considered softest due to its fluffy, fur-like feel. The natural curl to the hair keeps it wavy and silky. These natural materials are soft, durable, and don’t shed harmful plastics or dyes.
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Why are Natural Fiber Rugs Best?
Natural fiber rugs are considered one of the best quality rugs while offering a lot of variety in terms of style, design, colors, and sizes.
There are a few types of natural fiber rug materials. They differ in terms of sources, which also gives them different characteristics.
Here are the types of natural fiber rug materials:
Each material has some characteristics that make it different from the rest – some are more textured than others. Some shed, while some do not, and they also vary in softness.
Softness is an important characteristic of a rug. A soft rug feels comfortable and plush underfoot. They offer some cushioning and are great to have in living spaces.
Here are the softest natural fiber rug materials:
Seagrass rugs are made from fibers sourced from the seagrass plant, which is native to Southeast Asia. Seagrass fibers are known to be very strong and resilient. Apart from making rugs, seagrass fibers make furniture, coasters, placements, and other home decor items.
Seagrass rugs are one of the softest natural fiber rug materials out there.
While seagrass rugs are not quite as popular as other rugs, like jute and sisal, it is one of the most durable, despite being very soft.
It is usually bound to cotton to make it even softer, and it naturally comes in light green. With prolonged exposure to sunlight and UV rays, seagrass rugs fade to a color that resembles khaki or light brown.
When placing a seagrass rug, you would not need a rug pad as it often comes with a latex backing to help keep it in place and make it skid-proof. However, placing a rug pad is always a good idea as it has many other benefits, such as adding softness and plushness to the rug and protecting its backside.
Seagrass rugs are generally resistant to water, but it does not mean that they are waterproof and suitable for outdoor use. Seagrass rugs are great to place in the kitchen and bathroom, where some exposure to moisture would not destroy them.
Avoid placing them outdoors as they can be damaged when exposed to different weather conditions.
Another upside to seagrass rugs is that they are easy to clean. They also have a natural waxy coating that helps them naturally repel dirt.
This means that dirt, dust, and debris do not cling to the fibers and do not accumulate over time.
Jute fibers are made from the jute plant, which is very abundant in Asia. Jute rugs are one of the trendiest and most in-demand rugs nowadays. They easily add warmth and texture to a space. They also have a certain earthy and rustic feel a lot of homeowners look for, as the rustic theme is becoming very popular.
Jute rugs are also one of the softest natural fiber rug materials. These rugs are softer than seagrass rugs.
While jute fibers resemble burlap, they are naturally soft. When they are brand new, jute rugs tend to shed a lot, but after a few weeks of having it, the shedding would eventually stop, and the result is a much softer rug.
Even though they look like burlap, jute rugs are incredibly soft and durable, making them perfect for any space with lots of foot traffic. They are great, even if you have little kids and pets running around the house.
Jute rugs are coarser than wool, but they are quite versatile. Jute rugs can come in different shapes, sizes, and weave patterns. They can also come in different colors as jute fibers can be dyed using natural dyes. However, the more popular ones come in their natural color.
These rugs are also quite low-maintenance. They are very easy to clean. They must only be vacuumed once a week to remove any dirt and dust and prevent these from building up in the fibers.
One of the cons to having jute rugs is that they are very absorbent and can get stained in case of liquid spills. This is why in case a spill happens, and you need to spot clean it as soon as possible.
Jute rugs can also be prone to mold and mildew, like all other natural fiber rugs. This is because their fibers are the perfect breeding grounds for mold and mildew when they get wet. So if your jute rug gets wet, clean it immediately and let it dry completely.
Undeniably, wool is one of the most popular natural fiber rug materials.
Wool is sourced from animal fur, typically sheep, that goes through some processing to create wool fibers. A wool rug can add a lot of warmth to a space and make it look luxurious because of its soft and plush texture.
Among all other natural fiber rug materials, wool is the softest one out there.
Wool rugs have high piles and thick fibers, making them feel soft and plush underfoot. Wool rugs also have a natural wavy texture to them that gives them a silky feel.
These rugs are great to use in living spaces, providing lots of cushioning, as they hold up well even in high-traffic areas. These rugs are also very good insulators, especially in cold weather, as they can keep your feet warm during chilly months.
Even in the early days of rug making, wool has always been a popular and widely-used material. They are versatile as they come in many colors, patterns, and designs. Wool fibers are often dyed with natural dyes, which can be used to create many designs.
While wool rugs are incredibly soft but also incredibly strong and durable, lasting longer than other types of rugs.
Take oriental rugs as proof of how durable wool rugs can be. Most oriental rugs are made from wool or a combination of wool and silk, and these rugs are known to last for decades. The really well-made wool oriental rugs can even last for generations and can be passed down as a family heirloom.
One of the cons of owning a wool rug is that it is high-maintenance and can get dirty easily. Because these rugs are thick and fuzzy, they tend to collect dirt, dust, and debris. These things can easily settle in the rug’s fibers and build up over time. This is why you must vacuum wool rugs at least twice weekly.
Wool rugs also need to be washed every once in a while. Since these rugs are delicately made, you cannot just throw them in the wash. To thoroughly clean and wash a wool rug without wearing it out or damaging it, you need to bring it to a professional rug cleaner.
If you do not clean wool rugs regularly, they can get very dirty and may even start to smell musty over time. They are also quite prone to mold and mildew growth.