When you are choosing your next rug, of course you will look for the one you consider more beautiful and accordingly to your taste, but other factors will also influence, such as quality. Anyway, you normally dont know about the technical specifications nor you have the obligation to know about this stuff, which doesnt mean that you cant know some basic information that might help you when choosing your rug, such as the difference between natural and synthetic fibers. Why? Well, because then you can decide which type is the best for your home.
The fibre is the type of material from which the strands of carpet are made, and each one has its own characteristics:
Natural fibre The materials are found in the nature, harvested and processed into fibres. Although the materials are many, wool is the most common in carpeting. Others such as cotton, sisal, jute, silk, seagrass, and coir are more often used for rugs-making.
Synthetic Fibre Not found in the nature; they are machine-made from chemical compounds. Nowadays the majority of carpets are made of this type of fibre. The most common ones are: nylon, polyester, olefin, triexta, and polypropylene.
What you should observe regarding both and how to choose: We are not here to say that one is better than the other; both have qualities, so it is more about what you are looking for. About stain resistance, synthetic fibres usually are more resistant; wool is a very tough material and works as a good protective barrier. However, this does not mean it is 100% stain-proof; once the substance penetrates the barrier it is nearly impossible to be removed. Regarding practicality and cost, synthetic is also more practical and cheaper. On the other hand, natural fibers are more eco-friendly and they do not release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) gases that the synthetic ones do. There are people who also say that they like more the beauty of rugs made of natural fibres, whereas synthetic rugs look more artificial. Last but not least, durability is also important, and this really depends: cotton does a good job, but wool is more resistant to foot traffic; nylon is very durable but olefin handles better low foot traffic. So, now it is your choice.