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Which Carpet is Best for Your Kids?

We love our kids, but they can be a real strain on our households! Crayon marks on the walls, smudges on the sliding door, and spills in the kitchen can all add up to a maintenance nightmare, and we haven’t even touched on carpets yet.

When it comes to carpet, kids can really put your cleaning skills to the test. Spilled juice and muddy feet might be regular occurrences in your house, so you’ll want a carpet that can take the brunt of the punishment and still look great for a decade or more. Don’t worry! We have some solutions.

The Best Material for Kids

If you live in a spill-prone household, natural fibers are off the table. They might look and feel nice, but natural carpet fibers like sisal, wool, and cotton will absorb stains far more than synthetic fibers, despite your best efforts to clean them.

Instead, consider a synthetic carpet fiber for your carpets. They’re just as soft, usually less expensive, and far more durable against stains and normal wear and tear. The three main types of synthetic carpet fiber to choose from are:

  • Polyester/PET — PET is an excellent choice if you’re on a tight budget, so if you have to carpet a large area like a finished basement, it might be perfect for you. It’s less durable than nylon or triexta, so we don’t recommend it for hallways, stairs, or other high-traffic areas.
  • Nylon offers the best balance of appearance, comfort, and durability, which is why it’s been dominating the residential carpet market for decades. Whether you’re looking for soft floors in a baby’s room or maximum longevity in the living room, nylon is an excellent option.
  • Triexta is somewhat new on the scene, but it’s taking the carpet world by storm. With unprecedented durability and built-in stain and soil protection, triexta might be the perfect carpet you’ve been looking for.

What About Carpet Styles?

There are almost as many styles of carpet available as there are colors and materials, so it can be hard to narrow your choices down. Your main three options are cut-pile, loop pile, and cut-and-loop carpet, all of which are good options depending on where you want your carpet to be.

Loop pile carpets are made from thousands of small loops of yarn. Since there’s no exposed end, the loops of yarn tend to hold up better under lots of foot traffic, which is why we recommend them for hallways and stairs. However, the loops are also slightly harder to clean, since they trap dirt and debris. If you wear shoes in the house (which we don’t advise), then loop pile carpet might not be the best for you.

Cut-pile carpet is manufactured in the same way as loop pile, but the loops are cut to make exposed ends in the yarn. This makes the carpet easier to clean, since dirt isn’t trapped in the loops, but less durable as a trade-off. For bedrooms and other low-traffic areas, cut-pile is great!

Cut-and-loop is simply a combination of cut and looped yarns, so you get a compromise between the two. Additionally, cut-and-loop carpets are occasionally arranged in patterns, adding a touch of flair to your floor.

Stain Resistant Treatment

The best kind of stain resistance for your carpet is applied directly to each fiber in the factory, before the fibers are spun into yarn or woven into carpet. This type of stain resistance will never wear off or wash away, even with repeated cleanings, so ask about factory stain resistance when you shop for carpet.

If your existing carpet doesn’t have a factory stain resistance treatment, but you’re still concerned about stains, you can apply a treatment like Scotchgard either by spraying it on or by mixing it in with your carpet cleaning solution, but that’s a temporary solution and not as effective as a factory application.

The Best of the Best

One of the best carpets available on the market today is Sorona Smartstrand, a triexta carpet. It boasts some of the best resistance to wear, stains, and fading of any carpet on the market, and you can get it right here at Sloane’s for less than half of what you’d pay elsewhere! Is triexta ready to take over from nylon as the best residential carpet fiber on the market? You’ll have to come see for yourself.