Pros and Cons of a Shag Rug

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A shag rug can really make an interior space look, well…different. The “retro” styling of shag appeals to some home decorators, while others recoil from such a “dated” visual image. Beyond this, there are other benefits and disadvantages for having these kinds of movable interior rugs. Looking at the pros and cons helps in decision-making about just how to soften a room with a hardwood or other unadorned floor.

Here are some of the issues raised by both critics and fans of these longer-weave carpet type rugs. These can be handy when you are at the “carpet store” thinking about not just what will go good in your home, but what’s most practical.

Pro: Visual Appeal

To some, shag carpeting and rugs are positive interior design items. For many people, shag flooring is a sign of affluence or excess that can jazz up a drab interior space. Adding bright colors makes shaggy rugs even more appealing to those who like a more indulgent decorating scheme.

Pro: Comfort

Shag rugs can be extremely comfortable. When they are regularly cleaned and maintained, they can be a very luxurious aspect of a room, where residents can lounge and relax on their well-cushioned surfaces.

Con: Price and Maintenance Cost

Shag rug and carpet pieces can get pricey, since they are more expensive to manufacture than some thinner types of flooring. If you want to keep them in good condition, there can be even more cost involved in regularly cleaning these installations.

Con: Shedding or Unraveling

Some shag rugs can actually unravel over time, leaving small bits of rug around the room. Animals can “eat” a shag rug, which ruins the flooring and poses a health threat to the pets. Small stuff can also get lost in the shaggy fronds, which can be an unpleasant situation to deal with.

Con: Staining

Shag rugs can be much more susceptible to stains because their long fibers are generally more difficult to clean. Spilled a glass of wine all over your off-white shag? Forget about an easy fix. It’s hard enough adding bleaching agents or other solutions to a short-fiber rug, but with shag, there’s that much more to dig into for getting tough stains out for good. At least shag rugs can be replaced, but the staining issue is still a major one for shoppers looking at best floor covering options.

Con: Allergies

For some people with allergies, shag is a bad idea. That’s because the “jungle” of fibers will catch more dirt, dander and debris, making indoor air quality that much worse for residents who are allergic to animals, plants, or even just dust mites.

In a lot of ways, choosing shag rugs is like getting a long-haired dog. Your shaggy pooch might be great to have around, but he or she can come with more maintenance requirements and potential health hazards. Think about all of the pros and cons before installing shag rugs in an interior space, and you’ll have a better chance of enjoying your new floors over the long term.

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