A Guide to the Best Non-toxic Eco-friendly Rugs

Natural fiber rugs have become a popular addition to Australian homes as more people are looking for a sustainable rug option. Braided jute rugs give an natural earthy look which is preferred by many to synthetic fiber rugs. While high quality woven rugs made from wool are durable, hypoallergenic and feel amazing with bare feet.

Benefits of using rugs at home

Natural rugs have become hugely popular due to their unique texture and hand craftmanship. A flat weave natural rug can add character and natural texture to your family room. A statement piece such as an oriental rug can change the feel of a room by adding a unique motif and pop of colour. In addition to the aesthetic benefits, area rugs have a number of positive impacts on your space:

  • Reduced Noise: Rugs can reduce noise and echoes in the home as they absorb some of the sound generated by movement on hard surface.
  • Comfortable under foot: Walking on a rugs is more comfortable as the rug acts like a cushion under foot absorbing the weight of your footsteps, taking pressure off your joints.  
  • Insulation: Rugs fibers can stop cold air from creeping in and help to retain heat. It is a good idea to have rugs in areas of the home which are prone to colder temperatures. Runner rugs can be particularly useful in preventing cool drafts from entering other rooms.
  • Enhances décor: Rugs are a fun way to experiment with your space and create a harmony between your furniture and any decorative pieces such as artworks or statement furniture.
  • Protects wood flooring: Placing a rugs in a medium to high traffic area can provide protection against wear and tear of your floors. 

What are the different types of rugs? 

Choosing a natural rug for your home can help to reduce the production of new plastic required to make synthetic rugs. Alternatively you could choose a rug made from 100% recycled material. Eco friendly outdoor rugs can be made from a wide variety of natural materials like jute, wool or by plain weaving hemp fiber. Here are some of the popular types of eco rugs:

Jute Rugs

Jute rugs have become popular among eco conscious consumers. Jute is made by drying a variety of plant found in parts of Asia and Africa. Jute rug are made from strands of jute which is have been hand woven and spun into warp thread. The durability of these strands allows them to be made into not only rugs but ropes and hessian.

Naturally, jute rugs have a tan shade but can be dyed easily to any other shade as well. The texture of your natural jute rug depends on the kind of weaving technique used. Jute rugs can either be made from pure jute fibres or as a combination of jute and other natural or synthetic fibres.

  • Are jute rugs environmentally friendly?

While you may wonder, are jute rugs environmentally friendly, the answer is in the manufacturer certifications. Look for rugs which are made from sustainably sourced jute which is certified child labour free. Jute is considered to be one of the world’s most environmentally friendly fibres to produce. This is because it is durable, grows quickly without the use of pesticide or fertilizers and can enhance the fertility of the soil. Jute is also 100% biodegradable.

Sisal Rugs

Sisal Rugs 

The sisal fibres used for rugmaking come from a tropical cactus plant called Agave Sisalana. The long, fine fibres can be made into a smooth yarn. Sisal rugs are durable and sound absorbents making them ideal for high traffic areas and apartment living. Sisal is also durable and static resistant making it a good choice for people with pets. They are easy to clean and can be placed in any room.

Zoe Wool Rug

Wool Rugs 

Wool rugs have been loved for centuries for their warmth and durability. They are soft to touch and bring a feeling of comfort to the home. Natural wool rugs are durable and have a water resistance making them easy to clean and resistant to staining. Braided wool rugs can withstand the wear and tear of high-traffic areas and will last when cleaned regularly. It is also possible to have your rug dry cleaned a few times a year. Wool is also a natural insulator and fire retardant so is a safe option for your home.  

Which is better, jute or sisal rugs? 

Both sisal and jute rugs are great for busy homes due to their durability. Both rug types are made from natural fibres which are hypoallergenic and pick for people with allergies or pets. They are biodegradable, so you can rest assured that your beautiful rug is a safe choice for the planet.  

Both rug types are great, the best choice for you will depend on your preferred style and location for your rug. Sisal eco rugs are known to be slightly more hardwearing than jute rugs. If you are looking for an area rug suitable for high traffic areas like hallways, a sisal rug may be a better choice. However, if you are looking for a rug that is slightly softer feel, jute rugs may be for you.

How often do you have to clean a jute rug?

Cleaning of jute rugs is easy if you follow a few simple steps. As a general rule use as little water as possible. Occasionally, in order to increase the lifespan of your rug, it is advised to send it to professional cleaners.

Regular cleaning: We recommend regular vacuuming, ideally twice weekly on a carpet setting to keep your rugs clean. Alternatively, you can hang your rug outside and hit or shake gently to remove any dust or dirt. We do not recommend steam cleaning or machine washing jute rugs. You can use a dry cleaning powder which is designed for natural fibers if required.

Cleaning spills and stains: If you have spilt something wet we recommend spot cleaning immediately with a sponge, soft brush or clean white cloth with a dab of water or club soda. You can use a mild detergent or a 50/50 mix of white vinegar and water to target stubborn stains. Gently dab the stained area with a soft cloth, dry with a hair dryer and vacuum.

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