Quality/Ease of Use: 16/20
Peace of Mind: 20/20
Let me preface this review by saying that finding a rug suitable for my baby-turned-toddler has been a bit of a struggle for me. When my son was just a few months old, I heavily researched the toxin-free benefits of 100 percent wool rugs and invested in one at the suggestion of an influencer I follow on Instagram. Close to two years later, I’m still filling my vacuum canister with loose fibers. (No joke, this rug WON’T STOP SHEDDING.)
But at least it’s “pure”—i.e., free from harsh chemicals that, according to scary mom blogs I read on the internet, he’d be inhaling constantly while playing (something even the American Lung Association warns about)—which is why I didn’t return it. Still, those floating fibers can’t be great for his little body either. Cue the conflicted mom.
That’s why I was thrilled to learn about Ruggable, a nontoxic brand known for its machine-washable rugs (making them even more kid-friendly) that come in a range of gorgeous (and quite high-end looking) designs. Even better, they’re available at a lower-end price point—we’re talking a 5' x 7' as low as $127—so I could invest in an 8' x 10' without breaking the bank.
Here, all about my experience testing it out, from the setup to my son’s yogurt spillage.
Laying it out is the hardest part. The biggest selling point of Ruggable is that you can toss it into the washing machine (instead of shelling out to get it professionally cleaned). But the reason this works is because every rug comes with two pieces: 1. A nonslip pad with a grippy bottom and 2. A lightweight cover featuring the design. (This is the part that can be machine washed.) So, we watched this crystal-clear demo video, and then seized the moment during my son’s afternoon nap since my husband and I’d both have our hands free for about 90 minutes. But…we still struggled a bit to get the rug lined up. I think it might be the 8' x 10' size, but the nonslip pad was so grippy that it clung to the rug cover at every touchpoint, making it hard to cheat it even a tiny bit to make sure everything was straight. This cost Ruggable a couple of points in the “ease of use” category. Still, we figured it out (and I ended up using a coffee table book to smooth out any bubbles that cropped up as we got everything aligned).
The finished look is gorgeous. The design I went with is a classic Persian rug style with gray and bluish undertones. We laid it out in our bedroom and, later that week, had friends over for wine. As they used our bathroom, they breezed past our open bedroom door. “Where did you get that rug?” they exclaimed as soon as they came back. They were floored when we told them and mentioned the fact that it’s both nontoxic and machine washable. (Also, worth noting that the 8x10 size is just $399. Not bad.)
Yes, machine washing was a success. Obviously, I wasn’t super eager to spill on my brand-new rug. But my toddler took care of that in the first day of use with a yogurt pouch that he had full control over in his hands—until he suddenly didn’t. Yogurt went all over one of the corners, and a wet paper towel still left a bit of a congealed mess. I also worried it would smell. So, I detached the cover and tossed it into the machine. I have a standard-size washer and it fit just fine. My favorite part was that it’s totally a-OK to tumble dry on low. (Line drying seems like a nightmare given its size.) It came out good as new, and I reattached it to the nonslip rug pad. Thankfully, it was easier the second time around since I felt more practiced with Ruggable’s setup suggestions, but also more skilled with my coffee table book.
One note about the rug’s thickness: It’s not a rug that’s super soft or padded, which is always a “nice to have” when little ones are making their first attempts at crawling or walking. Still, it’s a pretty—and functional—design that allows me to rest easy knowing my family isn’t breathing in potentially harmful gases. And the fact that I don’t have to stress about toddler spills? A bonus.