Does My Braided Rug Really Need a Rug Pad? (Spoiler Alert: Yes)


Closeup of Braided Rug Fibers

Braided rugs are the original superstars of “upcycled” décor. Inspired by indigenous weaving techniques, they were first created in Colonial America using leftover scraps of fabric from old clothing, textiles, and sewing projects. Their eclectic, unique aesthetic brought warmth and color to hardwood floors in a practical and eco-friendly manner.

Braided rugs have come a long way since they graced the floors of colonial cabins. Nowadays, braided area rugs come in various beautiful colors, materials, and unique patterns that complement a variety of home styles.

From Modern Farmhouse to Classic Americana, you can choose a braided rug in a single color ombre effect or opt for a bohemian mix of colors to breathe new life into your room.

Once you find the perfect braided rug, you’ll need to take steps to ensure it stays beautiful for years to come. To prevent bunching, slipping, and stitch separation, you need to use a high-quality rug pad underneath your braided rug.

Why you need a rug pad for a braided rug

Closeup of a colorful braided rug

No matter where you place your new braided rug, the smooth backing is not made to adhere to your existing flooring. Natural and synthetic fibers can create slippery conditions when placed over hardwood, vinyl, or laminate flooring.

Rug pads are used underneath rugs to help them adhere to the existing flooring. High-quality rug pads not only prevent bunching and slips but offer additional padding to increase the comfort of your braided rug.

Braided rugs come in a variety of shapes and can enhance any room in your home:

  • Add A Touch Of Warmth To A Country Kitchen With A Braided Runner
  • Use A Large Braided Rectangular Rug To Anchor Your Living Room
  • Offer A Low Maintenance Splash Of Color To Your Mudroom Or Entryway With Braided Small Rugs
  • Use A Large Braided Rug To Protect Your Dining Room Floor From Heavy Furniture
  • Enhance Your Reading Nook With A Circular Braided Rug

Even with a large braid pattern, braided rugs need a non-slip rug pad because they lack a rubber backing.

A good rug pad also extends the life of your rug. Because braided rugs are long ropes of textiles stitched together, they are prone to bunching and curling, which creates an eyesore in your interior design.

An area rug pad will hold the rows of intricate stitching in place, which extends the life of your braided rug.

Many braided rug manufacturers require the use of rug pads to validate the stitching warranty. So skipping a high-quality rug pad may prevent you from benefiting from a manufacturer’s warranty.

It’s essential to choose the right rug pad for your home because cheap rug pads can damage your home’s flooring and lead to costly repairs and ugly stains.

These are the best rug pads for braided rugs

There are many different types of rug pads out there, but not all are suitable for braided rugs.

Because braided rugs tend to have cushioning, they don’t need a thick rug pad made from memory foam like a low profile, thinner rug may need. Waterproof rug pads will prevent plush braided rugs from drying correctly, creating a mildew hazard that will ruin your rug.

Here are the best area rug pads that will prevent your new braided rug from slipping and prevent unnecessary wear and tear.


Superior Lock Rug Pad on Hardwood Floor

Superior-Lock rug pads combine the best low-profile cushion and grip for use with braided rugs. Superior-Lock has a dual-surface with a higher felt ratio. The felt sits on top of a thinner, non-slip natural rubber layer.

The felt is needle-punched and naturally sticks to the bottom of your soft braided rugs to anchor it to its surface without damaging the delicate stitching. It also provides necessary ventilation to allow your rug and floors to breathe properly.

When choosing your Superior-Lock rug pad, you can select from 7/16 inch or ¼ inch thickness depending on the weave of your braided rug.


Contour Lock rug pad on hardwood floor

If looking to maintain a low profile but still want added cushioning underneath your braided rug, Contour-Lock rug pads are the best choice. Because they are ⅛ inch thick, this rug pad offers bulk-free cushioning with a firm grip.

Since braided rugs have uneven backings, a Contour Lock rug pad will easily hold the rug in place while protecting your floor from scratches since it keeps the rug in place.

This choice is a great value for the subtle cushion and reliable grip it offers.


RugPro rug pad on hardwood floor

If you are looking for minimal lift with maximum grip, choose RugPro. This low-profile, highly performing pad works perfectly in high-traffic areas like hallways and living rooms. It also works well in doorways where rug clearance height may be a concern.

RugPro’s design provides more extensive floor coverage and protection than a cheap waffle-style non-slip rug pad.

Its needle-punched felt allows for improved airflow and keeps dirt and pet hair from building up underneath your area rug. This will extend the life of your braided rug and keep it beautiful for longer.

What you need depends on the material of the braided rug

Braided rugs have come a long way since Colonial times when they were woven out of random fabric scraps. Now you can simply order one from Amazon when you want to enhance your interior design with some softness underfoot.

Modern braided rugs are commonly made from one of these materials:

  • Wool: The highest quality material for this rug style, wool feels soft under your feet and offers natural stain and soil resistance. However, wool is not good for damp areas or places with high traffic.
  • Cotton: Cotton is much less durable than wool but is budget-friendly and easy to clean.
  • Polypropylene: Also known as olefin, this synthetic fiber is colorfast, strong, and comfortable. It’s a great wool substitute for damp or high-traffic areas.
  • Jute: The most affordable and durable natural fiber, jute, is braided into thick, coarse outdoor rugs.

Whether you choose acrylic or natural materials, your braided rug will need some added help to provide traction to prevent slips and unsightly bunching. High-quality

When shopping for a rug pad for your braided rug, you need to take a few things into account:

  • Size: Make sure you know your rug size before ordering your rug pad to ensure proper coverage and maximum effectiveness.
  • Air Circulation: Your rug pad should be needle punched to provide proper ventilation for your floors and area rug.
  • Soundproofing: Apartment dwellers know just how important it is to have a thicker pad that offers soundproofing for downstairs neighbors.
  • Cushioning: Braided rugs have a higher profile, so thicker pads may create a tripping hazard.
  • Materials: Avoid synthetic materials and opt for rug pads made from natural sources.

Natural rubber and felt rug pads are an excellent choice for braided rugs because the soft felt gently hugs the rug’s underside, much like velcro. In contrast, the natural rubber helps the braided rug stick securely to your floor without damaging your home. This will prevent your beautiful braided rug from becoming a tripping hazard.

Other things you want to know

Here are some frequently asked questions about braided rugs and rug pads to help guide your decisions.

How long do braided rugs last?

A high-quality braided rug will last for decades, especially when paired with the right rug pad.

How do you care for braided rugs?

To keep your braided rug looking new, vacuum frequently and gently on both sides to prevent breakage. Newer braided rugs may be machine washable. Vintage braided rugs require a dry cleaning solvent. However, you wash your braided rug, dry it flat to prevent curling and puckering.

Do I need a rug pad if my area rug is over carpeting?

Yes. Even if your area rug isn’t placed on a hard surface, layering area rugs will cause damage to the carpet and create a tripping hazard without the use of the correct rug pad.

Should I use a cheap rug pad?

No. Cheap rug pads break down over time, leaving behind a sticky mess that damages your floors and area rug. Additionally, inexpensive rug pads are made from synthetic materials that contain toxic chemicals.

Do I need to clean the rug pad under my braided rug?

Yes. Rug pad care and cleaning are essential and easy to do.

  1. Clean Up Spills Right Away
  2. Vacuum High-Quality Rug Pads Twice A Year
  3. Periodically Shake Our Your Rug Pad To Dislodge Debris And Pet Hair

Can braided rugs get wet?

Typically, it’s safe for braided rugs to get wet. Check the manufacturer tag before subjecting it to water cleaning or placing it in an area where spills may occur.

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