All Types of Flooring - What To Go For And Why

Confused and need to know what your floor should be made from? Here's our nifty little guide to choosing the right flooring for your space.

Solid Wood Flooring

If you want to go natural then solid wood flooring is the way to go, each board consists of a single piece of wood that is machine-cut to size.

 High End - Richmond European Rich Solid Oak  (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

High End - Richmond European Rich Solid Oak (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

 Mid Range - Westco Black Onyx Oak  (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

Mid Range - Westco Black Onyx Oak (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

 Low End - Trade Choice Solid Oak  (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

Low End - Trade Choice Solid Oak (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

PROS: Incredibly durable and available in wide variety of finishes. Eco-friendly and can be restored to its original qualities - a fantastic classic look.
CONS: It's not a very cost-effective material and it requires professional expertise to be installed. 

COST: 5
DURABILITY: 5
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 5
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 2

Engineered Wood Flooring

Engineered wood flooring is made up of two or three layers of wood. Composed by combining a veneer top and a core board, it is then made up of either one or two layers of plywood bonded together. Truly a high-tech version to go for if you want ingenuity and class. 

 High End - Richmond Engineered Walnut  (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

High End - Richmond Engineered Walnut (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

 Mid Range - Trade Choice Engineered American Black Walnut  (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

Mid Range - Trade Choice Engineered American Black Walnut (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

 Low End - Burnbury Engineered Farmhouse Oak  (Image: poshflooring co.uk)

Low End - Burnbury Engineered Farmhouse Oak (Image: poshflooring co.uk)

PROS: More cost-effective than solid wood and is very easy to install. Engineered wood also comes in a big variety of finishes.
CONS: Not a good choice for a room with constant damp conditions like a bathroom.

COST: 4
DURABILITY: 3
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 2
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 2

Laminate Flooring

The most popular option on the market and gets a bad rap though are some great versions of laminate out there if you're prepared to look. Composed of multiple layers, so the composite material achieves improved strength, stability from the use of differing materials but allowing to keep its appearance.

 High End - Trade Choice French Oak Laminate  (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

High End - Trade Choice French Oak Laminate (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

 Mid Range - Supernatural Boulder Oak  (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

Mid Range - Supernatural Boulder Oak (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

 Low End - Original Kronofix Royal Oak  (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

Low End - Original Kronofix Royal Oak (Image: poshflooring.co.uk)

PROS: The most cost-effective solution for low budget projects. Laminate comes in a wide variety of styles and looks and is also highly resistant to mould, bacteria growth and is also scratch resistant.
CONS: It doesn't have the longest lifetime, and doesn't have the same premium look and feel of solid wood and can't be sanded or refinished as it gets damaged.

COST: 1
DURABILITY: 3
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 1
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 1

Travertine Tiles

Travertine tiles are square solid pieces manufactured sedimentary stone. Characterised by pits and voids on the surface which gives it an aged natural appearance. Great for bathrooms!

 High End - Amouage Maxi Plank Tile  (Image: Topps Tiles)

High End - Amouage Maxi Plank Tile (Image: Topps Tiles)

 Low End - Cappadocia Travertine  (Image: Topps Tiles)

Low End - Cappadocia Travertine (Image: Topps Tiles)

 Mid Range - Sandalwood Unbrushed and Unfilled Tavertine  (Image: Topps Tiles)

Mid Range - Sandalwood Unbrushed and Unfilled Tavertine (Image: Topps Tiles)

PROS: A hard-wearing and durable material which improves with age. It does add an earthy aesthetic to homes and places.
CONS: Quite expensive option which requires quite a labour-intensive installation and can also get quite slippery when wet.

COST: 5
DURABILITY: 4
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 5
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 3

Ceramic and Porcelain Tile

These two types of tiles are thin rectangular slabs of glazed and baked clay used for covering floors, walls or other surfaces. You can get some incredible designs going for this option.

 High End - Stadia Cliff Tile  (Image: Topps Tiles)

High End - Stadia Cliff Tile (Image: Topps Tiles)

 Mid Range - Jamari White Tile  (Image: Topps Tiles)

Mid Range - Jamari White Tile (Image: Topps Tiles)

 Low End - Mottistone Grey Modular  (Image: Topps Tiles)

Low End - Mottistone Grey Modular (Image: Topps Tiles)

PROS: Durable, cost-effective and come in wide variations of colours and designs, easy to keep clean and replace.
CONS: Rigid, hard and cold to the touch, almost all brittle items and likely to break when hit it.

COST: 2
DURABILITY: 5
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 4
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 1

Wood Effect Tiles

Looks like wood but in fact made of clay! Very cunning. These tiles are thick rectangular slabs of baked clay used for covering floors with a top finish that replicates a wood effect.

 High End - Amazonia Natural PAR-KER Tiles  (Image: Porcelanosa.com)

High End - Amazonia Natural PAR-KER Tiles (Image: Porcelanosa.com)

 Mid Range - Longmore Grey Tile  (Image: Topps Tiles)

Mid Range - Longmore Grey Tile (Image: Topps Tiles)

 Low End - Batura Tile  (Image: Topps Tiles)

Low End - Batura Tile (Image: Topps Tiles)

PROS: Durable, water resistant and cost-effective, these are easy to keep clean and replace when chipped and provide the same warm and welcoming effect of real wood.
CONS: Although they look comforting they are in fact cold to the touch. Quite brittle and likely to break if struck with something heavy.

COST: 2
DURABILITY: 
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 4
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 1

Slate Tiles

Slate tiles always remind me of country cottages in Wales and are square solid pieces manufactured from an original shale-type sedimentary rock.

 High End - Eris Reflection Mosaic Tiles  (Topps Tiles)

High End - Eris Reflection Mosaic Tiles (Topps Tiles)

 Mid Range - Calibrated Black Slate  (Image: Topps TIles)

Mid Range - Calibrated Black Slate (Image: Topps TIles)

 Low End - Sheera Natural Slate  (Image: Topps Tiles)

Low End - Sheera Natural Slate (Image: Topps Tiles)

PROS: They are hard-wearing and durable, pretty resistant to water and stains have a natural, sometimes old-school appeal them.
CONS: It is a highly expensive material and due to its nature and is more likely to chip. 

COST: 5
DURABILITY: 4
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 4
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 3

Vinyl Flooring

Vinyl is a synthetic polymer flooring with pigmentation added for colour, flexible and non-porous.

 Contemporary Orange Vinyl  (Image: Carpet Right)

Contemporary Orange Vinyl (Image: Carpet Right)

 Mid Range - Goliath Agrego Marble Vinyl  (Image: Carpet Right)

Mid Range - Goliath Agrego Marble Vinyl (Image: Carpet Right)

 Low End - Artesia Patterned Vinyl  (Image: Carpet Right)

Low End - Artesia Patterned Vinyl (Image: Carpet Right)

PROS: It is a highly functional material, affordable and easy to install. Highly resistant, easy to clean and versatile. It comes in a wide range of colours and finishes too.
CONS: It isn't an eco-friendly material and it cannot be refinished so when it is damaged it needs to be removed and replaced.

COST: 1
DURABILITY: 2
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 1
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 1

Nylon Carpet

Nylon carpet is made of polyamides which have been melt processed into fibres.

 High End - Geneva Saxony Plain Carpet  (Image: Carpet Right)

High End - Geneva Saxony Plain Carpet (Image: Carpet Right)

 Mid Range - Pastel Peach Carpet  (Image: Carpet Right)

Mid Range - Pastel Peach Carpet (Image: Carpet Right)

 Low End - Amberley Twist Plain Carpet  (Image: Carpet Right)

Low End - Amberley Twist Plain Carpet (Image: Carpet Right)

PROS: It is an elastic material and abrasive resistant. It creates a comfortable atmosphere and it works also as a noise damper. It comes in many colours, designs and patterns
CONS: As it is almost always acid dyed it can have problems with bleaching, fading, urine reaction.

COST: 4
DURABILITY: 3
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 2
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 5

Polyester Carpet

Before you turn up your nose, you may be surprised how versatile this option can be! Polyester is another synthetic polymer made of purified terephthalic acid, melt processed into fibres.

 Mid Range - Grace Carpet  (Image: Carpet Right)

Mid Range - Grace Carpet (Image: Carpet Right)

PROS: Creates a comfortable atmosphere, works also as a noise damper and is very easy to install. Polyester also comes in many colours, designs and patterns.
CONS: Not very resistant to oily stains and is likely to loose crimps. 

COST: 4
DURABILITY: 2
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 2
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 5

Wool Carpet

Cosy and warm under foot, wool carpets are made by the textile fibre obtained from sheep and other animals.

 High End - Thaxted Carpet  (Image: Carpet Right)

High End - Thaxted Carpet (Image: Carpet Right)

 Mid Range - Resident Striped Carpet  (Image: Carpet Right)

Mid Range - Resident Striped Carpet (Image: Carpet Right)

 Low End - Zanzibar Deluxe Loop Pile  (Image: Carpet Right)

Low End - Zanzibar Deluxe Loop Pile (Image: Carpet Right)

PROS: Creates a comfortable atmosphere, works also as a noise damper and easy to install. Comes in many colours, designs and patterns, so very versatile.
CONS: Carpets as we know, stain very easily compared to other flooring and is difficult and costly to keep clean. 

COST: 5
DURABILITY: 2
INSTALLATION DIFFICULTY: 2
CLEANING DIFFICULTY: 5

Marble Flooring

Heavy but unique and oozes sophistication. A hard crystalline metamorphic form of limestone, typically white with coloured mottling or streaks, which may be polished.

 High End - Honed White Marble  (Image: Topps Tiles)

High End - Honed White Marble (Image: Topps Tiles)

 Mid Range - Marbmix Mix Modular Tiles  (Image: Topps Tiles)

Mid Range - Marbmix Mix Modular Tiles (Image: Topps Tiles)

 Low End - Serac Honed Tile  (Image: Topps Tiles)

Low End - Serac Honed Tile (Image: Topps Tiles)

PROS: Creates a beautiful and unique look for any space as well as reflecting a lot of light.
CONS: An expensive material that is fairly high maintenance. Even though this can be a very luxurious look, it's cold to the touch and can easily stain.

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Love Omar x