Why Viscose is A Carpet Cleaner's Nightmare and Why You Shouldn't Buy It

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The most beautiful carpets on the market are made of silk. Silk is soft and shiny and, very luxurious. But unfortunately, silk carpets do not fit everyone’s budget and, that’s why some consumers decide to buy the cheap “artificial” silk carpet - viscose. 

Viscose carpets are made out of natural plant-derived fiber from cellulose. The most common fiber used is viscose rayon but it can be manufactured from lyocell, tencel, faux silk, artificial silk, etc. Viscose carpets are professional carpets cleaners’ worst nightmare, and they are often called the “sausage of the fiber world” since you don’t want to find out how it’s made and you can never know exactly what it consists of!

The rayon manufacturing process involves using toxic chemicals which pollute the environment. This is why rayon production is banned in the US and has moved to China and India. Rayon is toxic for consumers as well since it emits substances that cause headaches, nausea, chest pain, insomnia, and vomiting. So if you’re opting to get an eco-friendly carpet, viscose might not be the best choice for you. If you are a person who appreciates a stain-free clean look of your carpet, or if you own pets or have children, then buying a viscose carpet can be a tremendous source of stress for you.

Viscose carpets are extremely hard to clean and most carpet cleaner services will avoid taking up that challenge. Here are some of the issues of cleaning viscose carpets that you should be aware of:


If you accidentally spill a glass of water on your viscose carpet this will result in a yellow stain that is impossible to get rid of! This is because the carpet’s material is derived from cellulose. When cellulose chemically reacts with water it produces a yellow color. Any amount of moisture or humidity can turn viscose yellow or brown. It’s only chemistry and, professional carpet cleaners can do nothing about it. That’s why if you decide to buy a viscose carpet you can forget about steam cleaning your rug. You should also avoid using water-based carpet cleaning solutions since even the smallest amount of water can ruin viscose carpets. Steam cleaning is the best option for cleaning pet stains and odors. Pet stains can hold bacteria, allergens, and dirt. Getting a new puppy might even mean accidents in the house. Having an extremely hard-to-clean viscose rug means that you might have dog urine in the fibers which can be tricky to get rid of.

Bleeding and fading

Rayon doesn’t hold dye and over time it bleeds. That’s why it can be difficult for cleaners to safely clean the rug without ruining it. Every time you clean the rug you will remove some of its dye. So, you’re left with the choice of having a rug a few shades lighter or a dirty one. In case you decide to call a rug cleaner, remind them to do a dye test beforehand.


Since we are always walking around our rooms, it makes sense that our rugs should be able to endure being stepped on. But this just simply is not the case with viscose carpets. Viscose is a very weak fiber and it easily breaks and sheds. Just walking on it and regular vacuuming leaves it looking shaggy and old. This is why viscose carpets are called “disposable”. Scrubbing them can make them look like a cat scratching post. They are not recommended to be put in high-traffic areas, so it’s best to not use them as living room decorations. If you have a baby, it’s best to try to put your baby away from the carpet since it has tiny broken fiber hair on the top which your baby might lick. Strength tests of different kinds of fiber have proven that wool fibers can be bent 10,000 times without breaking. Silk fibers can be bent 2000 times until they break while viscose fibers break after only 70 times of bending! If you want your rug to last more than a month, it’s just better to avoid buying viscose or use it as a decorative wall hanging.


Even though viscose carpets are made to imitate silk, and when you buy them they are soft like silk, this softness does not last. Cleaning makes them look blotchy and flat very quickly. Vacuuming causes damage that might be irreparable. This can cause huge disappointment for consumers since their rug which they expected to be pleasant to the touch and soft like silk turned into cardboard.

Bad Insulation

Viscose carpets do not trap heat and they are not suitable for winters. This can be a downside if you want to lay on a warm carpet.


Viscose carpets are overpriced for their value. Even though they’re cheaper than silk, they are more expensive than wool rugs. When you consider the fact that they’re short-lasting and you might have to buy a new one after a few months, you end up spending more money than you initially thought.

Hard to Clean and Maintain

Viscose carpets are essentially the hardest carpets to clean and maintain, even for professionals. That’s why you’d get charged more than if you owned a wool or silk carpet. On top of that, viscose carpets need professional cleaning at least once a year. This makes them very expensive to maintain.

If you’re still considering purchasing a viscose carpet, even after learning all of this information, we might have some advice on how you can clean and maintain it. You should have realistic expectations and you should remember that some of the damage to the carpet is irreparable and it’s never going to get the look it had the first day you purchased it. One of the most important things you can do is to apply a rug protector treatment. Since the fibers lose 50% of their strength if they come into contact with water, anything that can minimize moisture from getting into them will keep the carpet looking better for a longer time. You can use specialized carpet shampoos which are designed for use on rayon fibers. When using detergents avoid using bleach or water-based carpet cleaning solutions and stick to acid-based detergents. You can also use upholstery tools. Remember to clean the backside of the rug, since it accumulates dirt and crumbs. You can minimize the need for cleaning by placing it in a low-traffic area. Avoid scrubbing and carefully vacuum every three or four weeks. This process can be long and frustrating for you and, because of the weakness of the fiber, you might cause more damage and leave it looking worse than before. That is why we recommend contacting your professional carpet cleaner service to treat your viscose carpet.

This is our Advice

Our best advice for you is to save your money and time and avoid buying a viscose carpet altogether. Viscose is the worst material on the market when it comes to cleaning and we believe you can make a better choice. Consider buying another material if you want to own a clean, fresh and durable carpet that will leave you feeling satisfied.  

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