Choosing an Ethical, Vegan Rug
If you care about animal welfare, the environment and your personal health, making ethical choices is important in all aspects of life - even the ones you wouldn’t normally consider. Those new to buying a rug therefore may not be aware of the materials used in rug production or the chemicals that create the colour scheme or extend the rug’s lifespan. At Rug Mountain, we care deeply about these issues, and want to provide what is best for your home as well as your lifestyle and values. Below we have compiled a selection of the most ethical rugs available, all of which are vegan, so you can be comfortable in knowing you have made the right choice.
Jute is a natural material, which means it avoids using environmentally damaging production methods like synthetic rugs do. It also eliminates the use of chemicals, especially those that are kept as jute’s natural light brown shade instead of being dyed. But what is jute? Jute is a vegetable-fibre that is spun into strands which are then woven together to make a rug or other decor piece. Jute is almost always hand-woven too, so you can rest assured you are not only getting a high quality product made by a professional, but the environmental damage caused by a machine-woven process is also eliminated. We stock plenty of hand-woven and hand-knotted jute rugs, some natural and some with a dyed cotton blend for a more aesthetically diverse range that still minimises environmental impact compared to alternatives.
Sisal is another natural material that is popular in rug production. Sisal rugs are made up of fibres harvested by hand from the cactus plant. This makes them sustainable and creates absolutely no environmental damage or harm to animals. It is also named as more durable than other natural materials like cotton or jute, which can make them slightly more expensive, but definitely worth it for their ability to last a long time under heavy footfall. You may recognise sisal as it is used to make rope, a fact alone that further signifies its strength. Our Hudson range is ideal for those looking for a 100% Sisal rug. Although some may contain borders to prevent fraying, these tend to be hand-sewn on and made of the same material but woven tighter. No adhesives are used in most cases, preventing a toxic, non-vegan element.
Cotton of course is a natural material too, but other materials like wool or viscose are often blended in, making the rugs less likely to be vegan or good for the planet. It is not impossible however to find a 100% cotton rug - for example our Chaval range. Although cotton is more likely to use dye than jute or sisal alternatives, this does make them more stylish for your home, and again is better than using a purely synthetic rug at the very least. Again, look for hand-woven cotton rugs if possible to minimise damage to the planet, and ensure if using a cotton blend that the other material is natural and vegan too.
What About The Quality?
If you are worried choosing one of these options will not be optimal for your home - don’t! In fact, natural materials are renowned for their durability and ability to withstand high footfall, and are easier to maintain in terms of cleaning. The easy maintenance removes the need for toxic stain repellents too. The natural non-dyed versions also go with any decor given that neutral, un-patterned tones like brown and beige do not clash with any other colours, no matter how bold. Also, the lack of chemicals used in the rugs means the air in your home will be much less toxic and more breathable, reducing the chance of illness and disease in comparison to polypropylene, acrylic or polyester rugs. Please browse our full range of vegan and ethical rugs at https://www.rugmountain.com/more/material/natural-rugs.html, and let us know if you have any questions about the manufacturing process or materials used - we will be happy to answer!