What Flooring Is Best for Allergy Sufferers? (Explored)

Asthma and allergies are triggered by airborne particles like dust, mold, mildew, animal dander, pollen and more. The type of flooring you choose can play a big role in reducing these allergens in your home.

Hardwood floors are great for allergy sufferers because they don’t trap dust, pollen, dander or other allergens. However, you need to consider the VOC levels in your hardwood and choose the right species.


Hardwood floors are consistently ranked as one of the best flooring options for allergy sufferers. They don’t harbor microorganisms like carpets do, and they don’t trap dust, pet dander or other tracked-in allergens in the fibers and padding. Regular sweeping and mopping keep allergens from building up or becoming airborne, significantly improving indoor air quality and reducing allergy symptoms.

Carpets can also retain moisture, which encourages the growth of mildew and mold. These spores can then become airborne and trigger allergies, asthma and other respiratory issues. Carpets are also more difficult to clean than hard-surface options, making them a poor choice for allergy sufferers.

Allergens can hide in a variety of places, including indoor plants, blankets and pillows, mattresses and stuffed toys, soft furniture, pets and damp areas such as basements. But when it comes to the genesis of allergy-inducing irritants, few items are as prolific as household flooring.

The good news is that many allergy-friendly flooring options exist, from hardwood and cork to laminate, vinyl and linoleum. Each has its pros and cons, but none are as effective at reducing allergens in the home than hardwood.

While bare hardwood is ideal, most allergy sufferers prefer to use prefinished or engineered wood for its strength and durability. These products have a stronger finish, making them more resistant to damage and easier to clean. The key to choosing the right product is finding one that is low in volatile organic compounds (VOCs). These chemicals can irritate airways and exacerbate symptoms, but many hardwood floors are natural and free of VOCs. It is also important to select a moisture-resistant product, as this will help prevent mold and mildew growth that can make allergies worse.


Most people think of allergies as a problem that flares up outside the home, but allergens like dust, pollen, mold and animal dander can lurk inside as well. They are often tracked in on shoes and clothes, and they can also be triggered by volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that are off-gassed from paint, finishes and furnishings. Thankfully, there are many healthy flooring options to help allergy sufferers breathe easy at home, such as epoxy flooring. Reputable epoxy flooring contractors can provide further information and assistance.

Laminate is a popular and affordable option that mimics the look of hardwood and other natural materials, but is made from wood composites rather than genuine timber. It is not only easy to clean and maintain, but it doesn’t trap dust and allergens the way that carpet does. It is also extremely durable and available in a range of styles, colors and finishes. The only thing to watch out for with laminate is that it can give off VOCs in the manufacturing process, so choose a low-VOC product.

Hardwood floors, especially those made from fast-growing and renewable sources, are another solid choice for allergy sufferers. Cork and bamboo floors are also eco-friendly and have the added bonus of being comfortable underfoot. However, both of these can produce a certain amount of VOCs, as well as the adhesives and finish that are used to keep them in place.

Tile is a great alternative to carpet and easy to clean, but it’s important to do your research as some of the cheaper versions can be high in VOCs. Alternatively, you could opt for a hybrid tile/laminate plank style that can offer the best of both worlds. Stone and ceramic tile are both great choices, but be wary of textured tiles that may collect dust, pollen and dander, as they can trap and exacerbate allergies.


Most allergists will tell you that carpeting isn’t good for allergy sufferers, but there are now flooring options that give the look of natural fiber without the negatives. Vinyl is a hard surface that makes it easy to keep dust and other allergens away, especially if you regularly sweep or mop the floor. It’s also a great option for areas of the home that are most used, such as kitchens and bathrooms.

When choosing vinyl, however, make sure you opt for high-quality products that don’t contain phthalates, PVC or any other harmful chemicals that can be released into the air. This will ensure that the product is not only a healthy choice for allergies, but it will also last well into the future.

While woven vinyl is the most popular choice for flooring, there are now also options available that look like natural wood planks and tiles.

Tile is a classic look that can provide an allergy-friendly, durable solution for any room in the house. It’s also a good option for kitchens and bathrooms, but it’s important to seal the grout and tiles to prevent mildew and mold from growing.

Hardwood floors add style and value to a home while minimizing the presence of allergens, such as animal dander and pollen. They are also easy to clean and can be sanitized with regular sweeps and damp mopping using a mild household cleaner.


Allergies are caused by a wide range of things from pet dander, dust and pollen to mould and mildew. The best option to keep your home allergy free is to go with hard-surface flooring that won’t trap these allergens and can be easily mopped and swept on a daily basis. Wall-to-wall carpets should be avoided at all costs as they hold on to all sorts of allergens and can release them into the air, triggering asthma and allergies in many people.

Laminate and vinyl are two good options for allergies as they don’t have fibres and so are less likely to irritate your skin or trigger allergies. They are also easy to clean and don’t produce much in the way of odours. They do have the potential to emit high levels of VOC’s however so it’s important to select a laminate or vinyl product that has been formulated with low VOC’s.

Linoleum is another great option as it is a natural product made from linseed oil and other renewable resources such as cork, jute, pine resin, sawdust and ground limestone. It is manufactured using a hot-pressed process to create both plain and inlaid patterns such as marble, and pigments are added for colouring.

Wood, bamboo and cork floors are all natural choices and are good for your health as they can help to control humidity. They also resist mildew, mould and don’t trap dirt as easily as other types of flooring. They are more prone to absorb and release moisture than laminate and vinyl though, so it is important to monitor the amount of dampness in your rooms as they can lead to rot.


As one of the oldest flooring styles around, tile provides a classic look in your home and comes in an infinite variety of styles, colors and textures. It is easy to keep clean and does not trap dust, pollen, pet dander and other allergens as carpet does. However, like other hard-surface flooring options, it is important to keep the grout sealed and the tile cleaned and resealed according to best practices to prevent mold, mildew and the growth of bacteria.

Allergens are found in a wide range of surfaces and items in your home, including walls and floors. Dust, pollen, mold, animal dander and other allergens can be tracked in on shoes or paws, left behind by pets or off-gassed from chemicals used in paint, finishes and furniture. Allergens can also be created by indoor plants, stuffed toys and soft furnishings as well as on your own skin.

Flooring can play a large role in the air quality of your home and can impact how much allergy and asthma symptoms are exacerbated by common allergens such as dust, pollen, mold, dust mites, pet dander, formaldehyde and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Allergy-friendly flooring is made from natural products and does not release VOCs into the air.

Allergy friendly hardwood flooring, linoleum and tile are all good choices for your allergy-prone home. Wood, linoleum and tile do not have any fibers and will not trap dust, pollen, animal dander or other allergens as carpet does. These types of floors should be vacuumed or mopped on a regular basis to keep them clean and free of dust, pollen, pet dander, mold and other allergens. Hardwood floors are also refinishable and can last for centuries, making them a great choice for families with allergies or who have children with asthma.