Carpet fiber and carpet options from National Floors Direct

The Different Types of Carpet Fiber: Which One Is Right for You?

Carpeting used to be thought of as only a decorative addition. Today, carpets now serve as one of the fundamental home components that may even influence a home's value!

The ability of a carpet to provide a soft, warm surface underfoot is its main selling point as a flooring material. The type of natural or synthetic fiber used in the construction and the pile, or how the fiber loops attach to the carpet backing, are the two main factors to take into account when choosing a carpet.

There are many different types of carpet fiber used today. As you can imagine, each type of fiber provides a different feeling, look, and softness to a carpet. To learn more about the different types of carpet fibers, keep on reading this article!


Nylon is incredibly soft, strong, and stain- and abrasion-resistant. By far, nylon is the most widely used carpet fiber.

Most people associate nylon with durability. It is the hardest synthetic carpet fiber, which makes it resistant to wear and abrasion. Generally speaking, a carpet made of nylon will last longer than one made of another type of fiber.

Additionally resilient, the fiber recovers quickly from bending. Excellent yarn "memory" enables it to maintain its twist.

Compared to many other carpet types, nylon carpets are less likely to exhibit indentations after being contacted by furniture. It also maintains its newness longer than most fibers.

It is easily dyed and maintains its color well. It has good resistance to wear, mold, mildew, and rot. It is typically reasonably priced; it is more expensive than other synthetics but less expensive than wool.

These carpets are the most durable made of synthetic fibers and, with proper care, can a very long time.


Another common carpet fiber is polypropylene, which is almost as soft as nylon and is used in both commercial and an increasing number of residential settings.

Polypropylene fibers are referred to as olefin, and they are comparable to natural wool and are frequently used as a synthetic wool substitute. Although this fiber is extremely stain-resistant, it is also prone to soiling and retaining oils, both of which attract dirt.

However, cleaning it is not too difficult; in some instances, bleach can even be used. Since polypropylene is less resilient than nylon, loop-style carpets frequently use nylon instead of polypropylene. While more expensive than polyester and acrylic, polypropylene is slightly more affordable than the majority of nylon carpets.

Olefin works best in areas with little traffic. Due to its stain resistance, it is suitable for rooms like the family room where kids and animals may spill things.

It works well in damp spaces like patios, basements, and changing rooms for swimming pools. Because it doesn't produce static-electric charges as nylon does, it's also a good option for computer rooms.


Polyester carpets are prized for holding intense, fading-resistant colors. The fiber is also more hypoallergenic than some others because it is man-made. Polyester/PET, a particular kind of polyester carpet, gets made from recycled plastic bottles and is thus environmentally friendly.

Polyester's primary flaw is that it is prone to flattening out under weight, which makes it an unwise choice for high-traffic areas.

Additionally, oil stains, which are very difficult to remove from polyester fiber, can be prone to occur.


Because it offers the feel and appearance of wool at a fraction of the cost, acrylic is occasionally marketed as "synthetic wool."

Acrylic also has good resistance to static electricity, moisture, mildew, fading, and staining. However, it is a weak material that doesn't hold up well in areas with a lot of traffic.

It can occasionally be combined with wool. Acrylics occasionally turn brown when exposed to certain alkaline chemicals, like those present in cleaning supplies.


The softest carpet fiber you can find is made of wool, a natural, opulent material that lasts a very long time. Unfortunately, low-quality wool is more easily stained, and high-quality wool is very expensive. Some manufacturers create carpets that combine the advantages of wool and synthetic fibers. Blends of wool and acrylic are particularly popular.

Because pure wool carpet is made without any chemicals or additives, it is a great option for people who have chemical sensitivities or allergies. Wool can be harmed by mold and mildew, which feed on organic materials because it is a natural material.

Therefore, wool is not a wise choice for locations where high humidity and moisture are problems.

How to Choose the Right Carpet Fiber

Now that you've learned about the different types of carpet fibers out there, it's time to figure out how to choose the right one for you. What are your desires and needs?

Consider the fiber in light of the other characteristics of the carpet you are considering. For instance, certain fibers work best with carpets that have a low pile or low loop. Some call for more yarn twists or denser yarn.

Another thing to think about is the carpet's dye method. Some fibers can be solution dyed, meaning the color gets incorporated into the fiber during production. With stock dying, the color gets applied later and does not penetrate the fiber.

Solution dying typically yields a smaller palette of colors but greater fading resistance.

Keep in mind that not all fibers of a given type are the same. Every type of fiber comes in a variety of grades and qualities. No matter the fiber, a low-quality, poorly made carpet might not be worth it.

Now You Can Choose the Right Carpet Fiber For Your Needs

Are you ready to choose the perfect new carpet? Now that you're aware of the different types of carpet fiber and how to know which is right for you, you are ready to make a more informed and confident purchase!

You can browse our wide selection of carpets by clicking here. Whether you're searching for a fabulous wool carpet or a durable nylon carpet, we'd love to provide you with the best carpet shopping experience possible.