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There are a million different ways you can choose to renovate your space, but, as any home guru will tell you, many can quickly add up to a whole lot of time and money. You don’t have to go for broke to spruce up your dwelling, however. In fact, giving your home a quick makeover can be as easy as plopping down a new rug. Whether you’ve got solid, hardwood floors or carpeting you’re looking to layer over, there’s an area rug out there that can take your living quarters from drab to fab like that.
How to Choose a Rug
When it comes to choosing a rug, there are several main factors you’ll want to consider, beginning with size. A large area rug that either covers your entire flooring space or leaves enough room for guests to walk through is best, as experts agree that bigger is better.
“Small rugs look a little bit lost and unfinished,” London’s Rug Company marketing director Susanna Joicey-Cecil told the New York Times earlier this year. “It can feel like a postage stamp, which is not so pleasing for the eye.” Interior designer Celerie Kemble echoed Joicey-Cecil’s sentiments in the article, quipping, “I usually want to use one rug, and make it as big as I possibly can.”
Once you’ve nailed down the size, you’ll want to take other elements, such as thickness and material, into consideration. Those seeking to implement a comfortable, luxe ambiance will likely prefer a “high-pile” fabric loop — a term that refers to the height and tightness of a rug. The greater the pile, the taller and more plush the rug’s material. If you’re looking to keep dirt at a minimum, however, you may want to opt for a lower-pile rug, as the short, tight loops of its fabric will make it difficult for dust to penetrate.
Material is also hugely important, depending on your usage needs. If you have allergies, for instance, a natural, hypoallergenic fabric will be best for keeping dust-mites and other irritants at bay. If you plan to use your rug outdoors, you may need to want to go with something slightly more durable, such as polypropylene, which is known for its stain-resistant properties.
Then, there are the patterns and prints. The perfect area rug will not only catch your eye, it will work well with the rest of your décor.
With hundreds of thousands of options to sort through, finding the right one for you can quickly become a headache, which is exactly why we’ve gone ahead and done the hard work for you. Keep reading for FIRST’s picks for the 10 best area rugs for every type of home!
We write about products we think our readers will like. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the supplier.
Best Rug for Dogs and Cats — Vowell Area Rug
Where to buy: From $91.99, Wayfair
If you’ve got pets, you already know that keeping up with their messes can be a real challenge. A durable nylon material, like that of this Vowell area rug, will do wonders to keep the wear and tear to a minimum. As an added bonus, its busy (and chic!) print will conceal any lingering stains from unsuspecting eyes.
Nacoda Area Rug
Best Rug for Hardwood Floors — Rugs USA Nacoda Area Rug
Where to buy: From $60.97, Rugs USA
When it comes to hardwood floors, wool is king due to its durable and easy-to-clean properties. This textured rug from India is made with 100 percent wool and can be delivered with a pad — something that’s recommended for non-carpeted floors to protect it from scratching or slippage. With 29 sizes and five colors to choose from, you can get one for every room of the house!
Best Area Rugs for Allergy Suffers — Rugs USA Chalet Herringbone Rug
Where to buy: From $79.22, Rugs USA
If you suffer from allergies, keep dust and other allergens at a minimum is of the utmost important. The best way to go about that is with a low-pile rug made from natural fabrics that won’t add to your irritation, such as cotton, sisal, jute, seagrass, or hemp. We like this no-pile, 100 percent cotton version from India, which features hand-loomed weaving. In addition to three color choices in a mix of bold and neutral shades, it is available in eight different sizes, ensuring the right fit no matter your space.
Anthropologie Whipstitch Rug
Best Large Area Rug — Anthropologie Whipstitch Rug
Where to buy: From $128, Anthropologie
When selecting a large rug for your living space, you'll need something that’s neutral enough to blend in with the rest of your décor and feels nice on your feet. Anthopologie’s hand-knotted whipstitch rug delivers on both fronts, with soft, muted tones that won’t overpower the rest of the room and a .75-inch thickness that provides just the right amount of cush.
Winston Blaisdell Shag Rug
Best Shag Rug — Winston Porter Blaisdell Rug
Where to buy: From $54.99, Wayfair
Low-pile rugs are great for functional spaces that you need to be free to move about in, such as your kitchen or laundry room. But high-pile rugs, like this Winston Porter shag find, are preferred for living spaces, because they go a long way in making things cozy. Who wouldn’t want to luxuriate in the soft, plush twisted yarn fibers this handmade rug provides?
Nu Loom Cowhide Rug
Best Cowhide Rug — nuLOOM Brazilian Devour Cowhide Rug
Where to buy: From $339.74 (Originally $637), Overstock
If you love the opulent look of leather, this cowhide rug from nuLOOM will be your best bet. Handmade with an eye-catching bespectacled print, this head-turning piece will command instant attention in any room of the house. With a high-quality, hand-tanned material to prevent curling or stains, you can also be sure it will hold up through the years.
Unique Loom Sofia Collection Rug
Best Rug for High Traffic — Unique Loom Sofia Collection Rug
Where to buy: From $22.81 (Originally $78), Amazon
When it comes to high-traffic areas, a durable, stain-resistant material is optimal, and polypropylene is one of the best. Nearly impermeable to spills, this material will give you the confidence to place your rug anywhere you so choose. This Unique Loom Sofia Collection piece is waterproof, mold, and mildew-resistant, essentially rendering it kid, pet, and klutz-proof. Hallelujah!
Best Modern Rug — Safavieh Monaco Driskoll Abstract Rug
Where to buy: From $55.99, Walmart
Take a décor risk with a bold, contemporary print, like the one featured on this Safavieh Monaco Driskoll rug. Power-loomed in Turkey, this piece provides just the pop of color you need to make any space look brand new overnight. It’s also made of polypropylene fabric, meaning it won’t stain easily (although Walmart does recommend keeping it out of the sun to prevent fading).
Urban Outfitters Rug
Best Outdoor Rug — Urban Outfitters Jasmine Reversible
Where to buy: From $89, Urban Outfitters
For a colorful rug you can bring outdoors, look no further than Urban Outfitters’ reversible Jasmine rug. This little beauty has a vivid, vintage-looking pattern and weather-resistant construction that make it every bit as ideal for back patios and porches as it is for living rooms. It’s also eco-friendly, thanks to its recycled polyester, plastic, and rubber makeup.
Nu Loom Moroccan Blythe Area Rug
Most Durable Area Rugs — nuLOOM Moroccan Blythe Area Rug
Where to buy: From $13.96, Amazon
Amazon shoppers can’t get enough of this über budget-friendly floor cover from the rug gurus over at nuLOOM. Not only is it extremely attractive (choose from eight versatile shades), purchasers say it’s incredibly resistant to stains.
“I am absolutely in love with this rug. Seriously. If I could marry a rug, it would be this one,” one of the more than 1,500 reviews read, with the shopper reporting that it had easily withstood wear and tear from her three roughhouse children.
Another purchaser with six dogs had a similar experience, writing, “I don't know what kind of genie magic they placed over this bad boy before shipping out, but this thing WILL NOT STAIN. I honestly don't know how that's even possible considering it's an off-white color, but good Lord am I happy!"
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