What is polypropylene carpet?

What is polypropylene carpet?

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The luxurious feel of a natural fibre carpet – without the price tag! Polypropylene carpets are a popular choice for modern and traditional interiors alike thanks to their stylish looks and easy-to-clean practicality.

In this guide, we’ll explore everything there is to know about polypropylene carpets – pros and cons, typical price, and performance versus wool carpet, so you can decide whether it’s the right choice for your home.

What is polypropylene carpet made from?

Synthetic carpets have been around since the 1940s, as an alternative to the more expensive and sometimes harder-to-care-for wool carpets. One of the best synthetic carpet materials on the market right now is polypropylene. Like nylon or polyester, polypropylene is ultimately made from petroleum.

Unlike other man-made fibres, polypropylene yarn has a semi-crystalline structure which does not absorb moisture at all: this makes polypropylene carpet water-resistant and quick-drying when washed, as well as exceptionally stain-resistant.

Liquid spills simply can’t soak into the fibre in the first place. That’s why you can even clean polypropylene carpets with bleach. Polypropylene can also be produced in a range of textures, from matte and wool-like to glossy and silky, making it a highly versatile fibre that can offer a variety of popular looks.

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Polypropylene or wool carpet?

Wool carpet is the original benchmark for carpets, thanks to its beauty, warmth, and renowned longevity – so why should you pick a polypropylene carpet over the classic choice? Well, here are some comparison points to consider:

  1. Polypropylene can look almost identical to wool carpet, so if aesthetics is the most important factor for you, then you won’t need to worry about visitors being able to tell the differences between the two.
  2. The costs of raising sheep and then processing their wool are higher, so wool carpet tends to be more expensive.
  3. Moths and carpet beetles cannot eat synthetic fibres, so you can be confident your polypropylene carpet won’t attract infestations.
  4. Wool is naturally more resistant to abrasion and crushing; polypropylene is more resistant to stains.
  5. Polypropylene is resistant to colour fading caused by sunlight, so it’s a great choice in rooms that get a lot of natural light, like sunrooms or conservatories.

What room is best for polypropylene carpets?

There’s such a wide variety of polypropylene carpets available in so many colours and styles, that there is a carpet to suit every room in your home! However, polypropylene does have certain properties that can make it a particularly strong choice in specific rooms. For example, if you’re decorating a kids’ bedroom, price and practicality are likely to be your top priorities.

With a polypropylene carpet, you can be sure that there’s very little your kids can get up to that won’t wash right out. Similarly, if you have a separate dining room you might appreciate the peace of mind when it comes to the occasional dropped glass of red wine!

The one place where we’d hesitate to recommend a polypropylene carpet is the kitchen, as the only exception to polypropylene’s stain-resistant abilities is oil! Any oil-based stains will require a professional dry-clean as they are near impossible to remove with conventional home methods. Even then, however, if you love the look of a particular polypropylene carpet, don’t use a lot of oil and just aren’t very accident-prone… why not?

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Pros and cons of polypropylene carpet

While we love all types of carpets, you might have your preferences of what features you look for in carpets for your home! To help you decide if polypropylene is the right fit for you, we’ve identified the pros and cons of having this type of carpet:


  • Stain-resistant properties for all the mess that life throws at it (except for oil!)
  • Great price for those looking for luxury at a cheaper rate
  • The versatile appearance that can look just like wool
  • Resistant to moths, beetles, mould, and mildew
  • Won’t hold on to bad smells thanks to it
  • Cleanable with bleach thanks to man-made fibres


  • Easily flammable
  • Less resilient than wool carpet as fibres can be crushed by heavy objects
  • Doesn’t deal well with oil-based stains
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How much does polypropylene carpet cost?

Polypropylene carpet prices can vary depending on the colour, quality, design, material, and width of the carpet. Our cheapest option is £5.99 per m2 and with fitting is £5.30 per m2, costing less than £100 to carpet a small 3-by-4-metre room (excluding accessories like underlay, door bars, and grippers).

Visit your nearest Tapi store to get a quote for polypropylene carpets or browse our online collection. If you think that wool carpet could be more up your street, or you’d like to see other options, why not take a look at our extensive range, or explore our carpet guides in the Ideas Hub to find out more?

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Published: 08-08-2022

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