This just in: Rugs don’t have to be all natural

I’ve totally been conned by the interior-design experts, you guys.

For many years I’ve read that the only rug worth buying is one made from natural fibers like wool, cotton, and jute. I’m a natural-fiber lover in general (I usually buy cotton, wool, and linen clothes over synthetics), so I took the bait and decided I could only buy rugs that followed suit.

And I love my natural rugs! They wear well, they don’t stain easily, and they just look rich.

Still happy with this PB rug that’s going strong after five years

But I’ve changed my mind about natural fibers being the only rug option, and here’s why:

Some rugs you don’t want to keep your whole life.

When I was finishing up the master bath, I needed a 4X6 rug. I knew I wanted reds and I wanted Persian style, but I was hesitating big time when it came to ordering a vintage 100-percent-wool rug. It’s one thing to buy something new over the internet; it’s another thing to buy something 100 years old sight unseen. And new Persian rugs made from wool were beautiful but pretty pricey.


I found a Persian rug online that I liked but that was made from—gasp!—polypropylene and jute. I was afraid to pull the trigger because it wasn’t wool. But I liked it, and it was less than $80.

So I did what I always do when I don’t know what to do: I called Mom. And I asked her if she thought a rug in the bathroom needed to be made from natural fibers. She said, “You know, I’ve never spent much on a rug because I’ve never found one I liked enough to keep my entire life.”

I never thought of it that way. Seems to me like the perfect place for a “throwaway” rug would be in the bathroom where it’s going to get wet and otherwise used and abused. I wouldn’t feel nearly as bad getting rid of an $80 rug as I would getting rid of a $360 rug.


After a few months of use, we are loving our polypropylene rug in the bathroom. It looks great and feels great, and when it’s time for an upgrade, I will probably buy another synthetic rug.

Just goes to show there’s an exception for every rule. Happy shopping! •



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