Choosing the right type of rug for your home may be a tricky job! It is a lot more than just picking something that ‘looks good’ or ‘feels nice.’ More than mere color and texture, when picking the ideal rug, you must also consider softness, maintenance, quality, warranties, and many other things. Whether a house calls for functional rugs to provide insulation during the cold winters, or a bunch of trendy rugs to add a pop of color, there are endless options! It is easy to feel lost and confused.
So, in today’s Sukhi blog, we will answer one of those burning questions for you: how to decide if you need a high pile and low pile rug? We’ve tried to make this decision easier for you in today’s post. Let’s start with understanding what rug pile actually means, how a high pile and low pile rug differ and ultimately which one you should be choosing!
Let’s jump right in.
What is rug pile?
Rug pile is a term used to convey a rug's standard and measurable size as well as the density of the rug fibers. The difference in pile means the difference in density and measurements. Based on this difference, rugs are categorized as low pile, medium pile, and lastly, the high pile.
If you take a closer look at your rug, you'll notice the fabric loops that form the rug – that is what we generally refer to when we talk about rug pile. Rug fibers can be natural, synthetic, or a blend of both. Irrespective of their fiber types, colors and texture, the pile of the rug serves an important purpose. And high pile, although very popular, might not always be the best option for your home needs. To help you figure that out, let’s look at the main differences between high pile and low pile rugs.
A high pile or a low pile rug: what’s the difference?
On the other hand, low pile rugs are made of short-sized fibers and contain more tight fabric loops. Some common examples of low pile rugs are Saxony rugs and flat weave rugs. Interestingly, low pile rugs are the first choice for decorating houses, offices, and even hotels. Indeed, picking the right type of rug can drastically elevate the look of a place and improve the comfort level it provides.
Who should get a high pile rug?
For those looking for comfort
If it is comfort and coziness that you are searching for, then picking a high pile carpet is the best thing. They are so soft and offer a luxurious feel, like you are stepping onto a cloud! Based on this merit, all high pile rugs mostly go well in houses with bigger families with young children. Usually, in these types of households, comfort comes first to style or design. Choosing something plush and warm to walk on, something that gives a soft, soothing feeling, makes high pile rugs the ideal choice here.
For family activities
Similarly, high-pile rugs are best suited if you want to enjoy some relaxing family-time. We all love spending time with our loved ones. High-pile rugs allow us to do exactly that and indulge in family-type activities like sitting together playing games, doing a puzzle or maybe even cartwheel! The reason is that these types of carpet have more of an ‘inviting’ appeal, which attracts people to them instantly.
To add a luxurious touch to your space
Lastly, rugs are more attractive and give a luxury look, which is definitely a plus point in room décor. For a deep, drastic, and calming touch, pick a rectangle high-pile rug or a round-shaped one, depending on the area and space. If you don’t want to experiment too much, pick a more versatile rug that goes well with the high-traffic areas.
Who should get a low pile rug?
For those looking for low-maintenance rugs
Low pile rugs don’t provide the exact same comfort level as high pile rugs do but, to make up for this, they’re the best in other departments! These types of rugs are more affordable, simple, and require almost no maintenance compared to high pile rugs.
For the sensitive ones
Allergies and breathing difficulties are sometimes associated with rugs. For an allergic person, the first thing that a doctor recommends is to throw the rugs out. It is because the fluffy rugs trap allergens roaming in the air, and without proper cleaning, they are highly likely to trigger an allergic reaction.
While high pile rugs can be a no-no for a person with allergies, low pile carpets may be a great alternative! This type of rug is free from contaminants in them, so there are minimum chances of causing an allergy. You can get your favorite interior design preference without having to sneeze your way out through the day!
As mentioned before, the least maintenance is needed for low pile rugs. If you’re busy as a bumblebee, this rug is for you! Those who don’t have time to clean the house should go for low pile carpets because they require minimum aftercare. The short fibers and loops low pile rugs are least likely to get stains, dirt, and mud. Even if they do, cleaning them takes only a few minutes!
A trendy option among low pile rugs is sheep wool, flat weave rugs which make a perfect addition to anywhere. Wool carpets give an organic feeling to any room, and besides, they are never out of fashion.
Which rug is better: the high or low pile?
Both high and low pile rugs have their own advantages and disadvantages. The low pile option is simple, affordable, requires less maintenance, and has more variety in terms of designs and colors. Adding it to any room gives it a more natural touch. Cleaning them requires almost no effort and if you are someone who frequently moves, or changes their room’s fashion, dealing with low pile rugs is comparatively easy. Coming to durability, despite being more affordable, low pile runners and rugs are super durable. Anyone looking for interior design at a budget price, more durability, and less maintenance, then the low pile is the right choice for you.
High pile rugs are supreme for people living in big family setups and are looking for more warmth and comfort in the house. They look inviting in shared rooms, allowing all family members to enjoy the long fibers and fabric loops by touching, walking, or sitting on them. However, these rugs tend to be a bigger financial investment and require more maintenance than their low-pile counterpart. All in all, high pile rugs suit people with a comfortable budget and the preference for a lavish lifestyle.
Tips on picking the right rug
Now that you are clear about the differences between the high pile and low pile, here is something that will help you make a decision on buying them. Remember these four things before choosing any rug or carpet:
Measure the space and pile height
First, measure the space where you want to place the rug. After that, check the pile height and see which fits best for the given area. Generally, less than 6.35 mm is considered low, between 6.35 mm to 12.7 mm are considered medium, and between 12.7 mm to 19.05 mm are considered high pile rugs. Some plush rugs may even exceed this height measurement.
Thickness doesn’t guarantee more comfort
Thick and fluffy rugs are comfy and soft- they're excellent daybeds. However, this doesn't mean that low pile rugs aren’t comfy! Low pile rugs can be as soothing as a bed of roses. Picking the right type of rug depends more on your usage, room décor and personal preference. If you prefer comfort, don't limit your scan to high pile rugs- you might miss getting the rug that suits your needs best.
Shorter fibers are durable
Low pile rugs are made of small fibers that are often stronger than bigger fibers. That’s why they require less attention and last longer. No wonder why they hold their original shape, texture and the softness for years! If you keep your rug well-maintained, it will mostly likely just grow old with you.
Don’t ignore the furniture
Although high pile carpets are softer and snugly, they are also susceptible to stains, dirt, and, more importantly, furniture placement. If you happen to use them underneath a table or chair, there are chances for legs to crush or mark the rugs, leaving them to look uninviting.
Bonus tip for pet owners
If you have pets in the house, such as dogs or cats, long looped rugs are not suitable for your house. Pets like to scratch carpets, and their nails can get caught in your beautiful decorative rugs. It may cause an injury to your furry friend too, and we wouldn’t like that to happen at all. For households with pets, read our tips on picking a pet-friendly rug on our blog.
The right rug provides both comfort and aesthetic
Buying a rug is an investment that improves the visual aesthetic of your entire household. Adding it to a room can instantly transform its look. They can either blend well or make a room bland and boring, depending on the choices you make.
If you need some more rug inspo, make sure to follow us on Instagram or tag us on your favorite Sukhi rug look. We’d love to see how creative you are! We hope this guide was helpful for your decisive self. May the best rug win a spot in your sweet home, happy shopping!