What’s the difference between natural and synthetic fibers?

What’s the difference between natural and synthetic fibers?

They each have different compositions with natural fibers, such as plants and animal fur; wool carpeting would be an excellent example of natural fiber. Synthetic fibers, such as nylon or polyester, are manufactured with a manufacturing process.

Both are good options, so, ultimately, the choice will come down to how much you value specific characteristics. For example, those with environmental concerns might prefer a natural fiber. Others, especially kids and pets, see synthetic as the more practical choice because they tend to be more stain-resistant.

Come into our showroom, where we offer brands, including SmartStrand and EverStrand, in our carpet store for a more thorough explanation.

About natural fibers

Wool’s the most common natural fiber used in carpeting; others, such as silk, jute, sisal, etc., don't perform well in broadloom (wall to wall), so they are used in area rugs.

Wool is durable, resilient, and fire retardant. Wool also has excellent soil resistance because of the natural oils and tiny scales that repel dirt. It is absorbent, however, so wipe spills immediately.

About synthetics

Nylon is probably the most common fiber, accounting for over 50% of all carpets. This is known for phenomenal strength, producing a floor covering that can stand up to kids, pets, and heavy foot traffic. It also has good stain resistance when a protectant is used.

Polyester is the clear winner when it comes to stain resistance; it's hydrophobic, meaning that it doesn't absorb. It is, however, better for moderately heavy foot traffic–one or two-person homes with no kids or pets. Olefin (polypropylene) is budget-friendly, durable, stain-resistant, and often used in Berber (looped) styles. Triexta is relatively new to the market but has already captured the attention of both consumers and retailers. It's super strong and has permanent stain resistance built into the fiber.

"If you're not happy, our work isn't finished." That's our philosophy! Our friendly and knowledgeable staff will help you find the right carpet flooring for your style and needs and give you a free quote. Our showroom is in Cloquet, MN, and we service Duluth, Sturgeon Lake, Pine City, and Superior, WI.