Cork Flooring vs Marmoleum By: DuoBuilding

October 6, 2010
Flooring, Green Products, Renovation Products

If you’re not familiar with either of these two products, they are great sustainable flooring options for your home renovation. We were asked at the Parade of Renovations this past Sunday by many which would be better for kitchens. As we have used both cork tile and Marmoleum in many kitchen renovations, they both have their strengths but we found this comparison via TreeHugger. Check it out…

“Cork flooring can be great for bedrooms, bathrooms and kitchens, but should not normally be used for high traffic areas or where furniture might be moved or slid. You also want to keep cork out of continuous direct sunlight because it will turn yellow. Cork is beautiful when installed correctly and is very nice and comfortable to walk or stand on with bare feet. Even so, if you use cork in a kitchen, you will probably want a rug over it to protect it from dents and dings when you drop pans and dishes. Do not use wet mops to clean a cork floor as finishes are typically acrylic.”

What does this mean? Although rich in colour and texture, cork is not the best material for high traffic. As kitchens and kids might not be the best pairing, use this in the living room and bedrooms. Advances in Cork flooring are made every year and products have come a long way in the last 10 years. If you select a cork, make sure you pick something with a 1/8″ or more so that your floor lasts for years to come.


Cork comes in various colours and tile sizes


“Marmoleum is available in just about every color and pattern under the sun. It is much more durable than cork and can be wet mopped, but do not let liquids stand for an extended period. Colors for marmoleum go all the way through and so do not show scratches as readily as veneer cork. Marmoleum is used in hospitals, restaurant kitchens and other high traffic areas. Marmoleum can be installed in sheets, which are more resistant to liquids, and in tiles, which are much easier to install. Marmoleum is not as easy on the feet (not as spongy to walk or stand on) and gets harder as it gets older, but that makes it more durable.”

What does this mean? Originally designed for commercial settings, this material is great for high traffic areas and handles water well. Kids can run over this all day and it really hides dirt well with its patterning. Better yet, if you nick its surface it can be fixed easily with some wood glue and elbow grease.


Marmoleum comes in 30 colours. Shown here is shitake.


via: TreeHugger discussion on Cork Flooring vs Marmoleum