Take a look at 5 different types of carpet fibers and their properties

types of carpet fibersAn ideal carpet should add warmth and vibrancy to a room and should provide a sense of softness for anyone who walks over it. While choosing a carpet, two factors should be considered: What is the type of carpet fiber used in the carpet? Whether it is natural or synthetic? And how the fiber loops stick to the underside of the carpet, also called carpet backing. The softness, feel, and look of the carpet are determined by these two factors.

The most common types of carpet fibers are nylon, wool, polyester, acrylic, and polypropylene. The fiber loops are sewn to the underside similar to how a button is sewed on a shirt. The fiber loops are either left as it is or they are trimmed at different angles.  Let us take a look at the different types of carpet fabrics and what are their specific properties.


  • It is one of the most commonly used carpet fibers. Over 90% of residential carpets are made from nylon. It is the preferred choice of carpet makers because it is soft, has a long life, and does not get damaged from stains and scraping with rough surfaces. It can be dyed with relative ease and the color does not leach out. Nylon carpets are usually resistant to mildew, mold, and rot.

Nylon carpets are affordable. They are costlier than synthetic fibers but cheaper than wool. With good care, these carpets can last you 12-15 years.

Polypropylene (Olefin)

  • After Nylon, polypropylene is the most preferred carpet fiber, especially for residential settings. Olefin is a synthetic material but it shares a lot of similarities with natural wool and is usually used as its substitute. It is soft to touch and is stain-resistant. It is easy to clean and can be bleached to reinstate original color and grace.

On the downside, polypropylene can be damaged by soiling and absorbs oil readily. Oils attract dirt, so carpets made from this material can get dirty quickly and may require frequent washing. It is cheaper compared to nylon and is not too heavy on the pocket.


  • It is a hypoallergenic material. Polyester dyes well and has the ability to take on bright colors that don’t fade over time. Carpets made from polyester have beautiful patterns and designs. Some polyester carpets are made by recycling plastic bottles, so it is an ideal choice for environmentally-conscious users.

On the downside, polyester cannot sustain too much load and flattens in areas that receive high traffic. Due to its chemical composition, polyester absorbs oil readily. Hence, oil stains are very difficult to remove which can be quite problematic.


  • The feel and appearance of acrylic are similar to wool, but it is way more economic than natural wool. Due to its similarities, it is also known as synthetic wool. Acrylic is prone to damages from moisture, mildew, staining, and fading.

On the other hand, acrylic lacks durability and is not the ideal choice for areas that receive high traffic. Brown spots may appear when acrylic comes in contact with alkaline chemicals.


  • Wool is a natural material that has a very soft feel and a delightful appearance. Carpets made from pure wool are quite costly but they are worth the cost because they are hypoallergenic and durable. Carpets made by combining wool and synthetic fibers are long-lasting and stain-resistant.

This information has been brought to you by Love Your Carpet. They provide carpet cleaning services in Las Vegas.

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