What Type Of Rugs For Hardwood Floors? [5 Great Options]

Hardwood floors are somewhat of a status symbol among homeowners, and they also happen to be ready for rug usage. Rugs on a hardwood floor serve two purposes: they protect the floor and also help add a nice touch of personalization to your home. Of course, some rugs are better on hardwood floors than others. But, which rugs are best? We researched this to see what the home decorating experts had to say!

Virtually any type of rug is a suitable rug for the right hardwood floor, but some are better than others. The following rugs are best for hardwood flooring:

  • Persian Carpets/Traditional Carpets
  • Cotton Carpets
  • Woven Wool
  • Plant Fiber Rugs
  • Cowhide

Getting a better bead on what you should buy for your hardwood floor can be rough, but we're going to make it easy for you. This guide will give you the scoop you need to make the best choice for your home.

A bohemian living room interior with beige colored furniture and wooden elements, What Type Of Rugs For Hardwood Floors? [5 Great Options]

What Type Of Rugs Are Best For Hardwood Floors?

There is no "best" type of rug for a hardwood floor, per se. Every rug is a good rug here, but the thing is, some tend to work better than others. We're going to take a look at the most versatile carpet types out there, genre by genre.

Persian Rugs/Traditional Carpets

Most people are well-aware of what a typical rug looks like. It's a woven pattern usually made of a blend of wool, silk, polyester, and/r cotton. Persian rugs are known for being very durable, not to mention versatile. Along with looking exotic, this classic rug style gives your room a little bit of sophistication through the use of its intricate patterns. 

The cool thing about traditional rugs is that you can find them in almost any color and that they work in virtually every type of room. These tend to be best in bedrooms and living rooms, though!

Click here for a Persian rug from Amazon.

Cotton Carpets

Though Persian rugs can be made of cotton, we tend to mean the cotton-based "area rug" style of carpeting that is typically seen in contemporary, modern, and industrial room designs when we say this type of rug. These carpets are excellent with hardwood floors and also tend to be single-color in most cases. Oh, and did we mention they come in a variety of textures, too? It's great. 

If you're struggling with finding a single-color rug that goes with green walls or you want to feel the luxury of a shag rug under your feet, this is the best choice for you. These carpets work in virtually all rooms and are remarkably easy to clean. 

Click here to get a cotton/poly blend shag rug from Amazon.

Woven Wool

Are you looking for an easy way to add a rustic touch to your home? Do you like carpets and rugs that have a slightly rugged look to them, possibly in a neutral color? Then wool rugs are right for you. Thin, flat, and somewhat country in appearance, most woven wool rugs come in a shade of grey, white, beige, or tan. 

A grey carpet or beige carpet can be a fantastic addition to your home. Wool rugs aren't always solid color, though. It's possible to find them in some pretty cool patterns, including patterns with sweet geometric looks. If you want a modern carpet that can get a little "cowboy," this is it.

Click here to get a woven wool rug from Amazon.

Plant Fiber Rugs

With all the emphasis on going green these days, it comes as no surprise that people are beginning to get more interested in plant-based carpeting and rugs. Traditionally, this meant rugs that were made from cotton. However, for the sake of this article, we're going to focus on some of the newer rug materials making it to mainstream use: jute, bamboo, and straw.

These rugs tend to have a very tropical, coastal, or otherwise woody look. That makes them amazing for living rooms that have an oceanic vibe. If you have a home with a sauna or spa, these types of rugs are the best for that room. They don't mold as quickly as other types. 

Click here for a pretty jute rug from Amazon. 


Are you a fan of the country farmhouse look? Maybe you have a cabin in the woods that you want to have decked out in all its lumberjack-like glory. We totally understand it. If you are open to having a rug that's entirely animal-derived, this might be a good match for you. These rugs are statement-makers that work best in living rooms and bedrooms. 

Of course, we understand how much animals matter. That's why we're happy to announce that there are totally vegan and pretty lifelike cowhide rugs, too. 

Click here for a faux cowhide rug from Amazon. 

Do Area Rugs Ruin Hardwood Floors?

Of course not! If anything, area rugs help protect your hardwood floors from exposure to additional wear and tear. They absorb the impact from footsteps, protect your floors from dust, and shield parts of your floor from UV rays. No matter how you look at it, area rugs are a great investment in protecting your flooring. 

What Rug Backing Is Safe For Hardwood Floors?

All rugs are going to need a backing if they are going to stay put in your home. Technically, any backing that doesn't glue the rug to the floor will work out well. However, that doesn't mean that choosing just any backing is a wise decision. The best rug backing for area rugs is genuine natural rubber. 

Plastics and other synthetic materials can leech VOCs and other fumes into the air, causing an air quality problem for people who live in the house. Moreover, some anecdotal evidence suggests that they can also harm rugs and flooring over several years. If you cannot get rubber backing, silicone is a close second. 

What Color Rug Goes With Hardwood Floors?

The best color rug for your home doesn't just depend on the flooring. Instead, it depends on the other colors that are around the room. To get a better idea of how to coordinate your rug, look at your wall color, textiles, as well as the color of the furniture in your room. Most of the time, a good rug color becomes self-apparent this way. 

Of course, sometimes certain rooms prove to be particularly difficult to coordinate. If you're in a position like this, going for a neutral color like grey or tan tends to be the smartest move. Neutrals go with everything and help pull the focus to something a little bolder, like your artwork. If you still lack inspiration, talking to an interior designer can help. 

In Closing

Hardwood flooring and area rugs go together like peanut butter and jelly. They are a staple in the interior design world and help protect your home from the damage that comes with daily use. That's why most designers insist on adding an area rug in high traffic homes. It's just a matter of protecting the investment that you made when you bought (or rented) your house!

In terms of rug choice, the possibilities are endless. Simple cotton rugs, Persian rugs, jute rugs, and more exotic options are all on the table. It's up to you to determine which rug is best for your room. Don't rush your rug selection. After all, shopping around for newer home additions is all part of the fun. 

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