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Are Polypropylene Rugs Soft

There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to polypropylene area rugs. Since polypropylene is a synthetic plastic-based material, many fear that the material is uncomfortable or worse--toxic. Fortunately, neither of these things are true. Polypropylene rugs are quite soft, and they are certainly not hazardous. To make you feel more confident in buying a polypropylene rug, read on for more information.

Learn More About Polypropylene Rugs

  1. Understanding Polypropylene Rugs
  2. Texture and Softness
  3. Factors Affecting Softness
  4. Plush Pile Options
  5. Blending with Other Materials
  6. Regular Use and Softening
  7. Comparing Softness to Other Materials
  8. Frequently Asked Questions
Queen Size Runner Rug

Understanding Polypropylene Rugs

Polypropylene rugs may have their base in plastic, but you would never know it by look and feel. However, that base material does have its perks. For one thing, polypropylene is a highly durable material that is incredibly easy to maintain and clean. Plus, since it is manufactured as opposed to harvested or processed, polypropylene area rugs tend to be more affordable than natural counterparts like wool or cotton. That’s not even touching on how comfortable polypropylene rugs actually are.

Texture and Softness

Many people believe that polypropylene rugs aren’t soft or comfortable. That couldn’t be further from the truth! It’s true that the softness of a manufactured polypropylene rug does not compare to the luxurious softness of quality wool, but these rugs are truly comfortable to stand on and step on. They are typically softer than jute or sisal, which tend to be more coarse by nature. It is impossible to describe the texture and softness of all polypropylene rugs though, since there are a few factors that impact their overall comfort.

Round rug for queen size bed

Factors Affecting Softness

First and foremost, the rug’s pile height has a big impact on the rug’s softness. The higher the pile, the more plush and soft your rug will feel. Similarly, if the rug is more densely crafted to have more knots per square inch, then you’ll have more of those soft polypropylene fibers throughout the entire rug to provide that additional comfort. Aside from the physical properties of the rug, the rug’s softness is also impacted by the type of flooring it’s placed on and whether it has a rug pad beneath it. Rug pads provide additional comfort and support to polypropylene area rugs and may make them feel softer and more plush.

Queen Size Runner Rug

Plush Pile Options

Another area for concern are the chemicals used to treat the rug. While it certainly is appealing to have a flame retardant area rug, it does come at a cost. Flame retardant chemicals themselves can be hazardous or toxic if they are breathed in or if they get onto the skin. Breathing in these fumes has been linked to cancer in extreme cases where firefighters have heavy exposure to the chemicals. Limited exposure to area rugs is not nearly the same as a firefighter’s exposure, but even so, it’s worth considering as it is indeed a dangerous chemical and can impact the room’s air quality.

Blending with Other Materials

Some rugs are not completely made of polypropylene. It’s common to see this material blended with others like wool, polyester, or cotton to create unique softness and texture. If the rug includes wool, then you’ll likely feel more softness in the rug’s fibers. Polyester brings in additional strength, and cotton is similarly kno;wn for its own resilience and versatility. These are only a few examples of how polypropylene is blended with other popular rug materials to create the perfect rug.

Round rug for queen size bed

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Queen Size Runner Rug

Regular Use and Softening

One downside to polypropylene is that it is not as resilient or durable as wool. Because of that, it’s beneficial to fluff your rug periodically and clean it to keep its fibers soft and plush. If one portion of the rug is constantly walked over, then consider rotating your rug every six months to a year in order to spread that traffic out over the entire rug. That will improve the longevity of your rug and ensure that one area doesn’t wear down quicker than the others.

Comparing Softness to Other Materials

If you’re looking for a soft, comfortable rug, then a polypropylene rug is a solid choice. But there’s no denying that this synthetic material will never be as soft as wool or cotton. Those two natural materials have their own natural softness because of their fibers and natural construction. However, blended polypropylene rugs and 100% polypropylene area rugs each carry their own level of comfort and softness that’s ideal for casual, high traffic homes.

Round rug for queen size bed
Queen Size Runner Rug

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Polypropylene Rugs Good For Outdoor Use?

Polypropylene rugs are great for outdoor settings! With their natural stain resistance, durability, and ease of maintenance, these rugs can stand up to the outdoor elements with ease. These rugs will not grow mold or mildew unless they are soaking wet for an extended period of time. That’s far better than other natural options that are not stain, mold, or moisture resistant. 

Do Polypropylene Rugs Fade?

No, polypropylene rugs don’t fade. The fibers they are made from and the dyes that they use are specifically crafted to be fade resistant, which is why these rugs are often used in outdoor settings or in rooms exposed to heavy sunlight. 

Are Polypropylene Rugs Stain Resistant?

Yes, polypropylene rugs are highly stain resistant. Whenever you accidentally spill or drop something onto your rug, the rug is less likely to absorb that damage and form a permanent stain. It is still vital to clean and spot-treat your rug as stains arise, but this material is incredibly hardy and able to stand up to life’s little accidents. 

Frequently Asked Questions (Continued)

Do Polypropylene Rugs Shed?

Polypropylene is one of the few rug materials to not shed at all. Typically, synthetic rugs like polyester or polypropylene do not shed. Other natural rugs like wool or jute tend to shed more in their early days, and so if you don’t want any shedding at all, polypropylene rugs are there for you. 

Are Polypropylene Rugs Toxic?

No, there is no substantial proof that polypropylene rugs are toxic. To learn more about why this myth exists and how safe polypropylene rugs truly are, we invite you to read our full article “Are Polypropylene Rugs Safe or Toxic”.

Round rug for queen size bed

Polypropylene area rugs are soft, comfortable, and fitting for today’s homes. With their various designs and practical durability, you can confidently decorate your home with a polypropylene area rug and create a more cozy, comfortable home.


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