Laminate Vs. Allure Flooring: Which To Choose?
Is it the time to replace the flooring in your home? Can’t decide besides laminate and vinyl? Allure flooring is a premium vinyl solution that could convince you to ditch the traditional laminate. But how do these two materials compare?
This guide aims to highlight the differences and similarities between laminate and Allure, or premium vinyl, flooring.
Check out how these two materials perform in terms of style, durability, and application.
What Is Laminate Flooring
Laminate flooring is a type of flooring made of MDF or HDF layers which are stuck together through a lamination process. The material is more rigid than premium vinyl but the laminate is practically made of wood, therefore is prone to moisture and humidity damage.
Laminate flooring is a type of floating flooring. Floating flooring is a term referring to all those floors that don’t have to be fixed to the subfloor with an adhesive.
Installing laminate flooring is easy due to the click and lock assembly, and this makes the solution ideal for the DIY enthusiasts.
What Is Allure Flooring
Allure is the name of a brand and Allure flooring is basically premium (or luxury) vinyl flooring. Now, before you start judging, you should know that premium vinyl flooring is made of PVC and is very different from the traditional vinyl.
The material is firm yet elastic; in technical terms, Allure flooring is resilient, which means it has the ability to compress and expand instead of cracking.
From a visual point of view, Allure flooring is more similar to laminate than traditional vinyl. It is a floating floor which installs in more or less the same way as laminate but it has the advantage of being waterproof and moisture-resistant.
Laminate Vs. Allure Flooring: Style
Because laminate and luxury vinyl look very much alike, many homeowners believe there isn’t much difference between them. Yet, there is an important capability gap between the two.
In terms of style, laminate and premium vinyl are pretty much alike. Both solutions can replicate the look of natural materials and they both come as cost-effective solutions to the noble materials such as hardwood or natural stone.
The main advantage of these flooring solutions is that both are customizable and there is no limit in choosing the desired type and style of design.
However, even if these materials are similar in terms of appearance, homeowners have a clear preference for the laminate. Despite its poorer resistance and durability, it is generally believed that laminate looks better in an environment and buyers tend to avoid houses with vinyl flooring – even if it’s premium vinyl.
So, if the resale value of your home matters, we recommend choosing laminate flooring for the low-traffic areas including the living room and bedrooms.
Laminate Vs. Allure Flooring: Durability
In terms of durability, Allure flooring wins some points. Both materials are strong and stable, but there are some important differences between the two.
Laminate and luxury vinyl are constructed through a similar process. Both materials have a top layer which contains a printed image and a backing system which is either recycled hardwood or PVC.
As mentioned above, the laminate is made of recycled hardwood. High-quality laminate contains high-density fiberboard but most commercial options are made of medium-density fiberboard. Neither the HDF nor the MDF is waterproof and the material is weaker than PVC.
Due to these reasons, laminate flooring may be a poor choice for a bathroom, kitchen, or high-traffic area. Exposure to excessive moisture may also cause the material to expand and contract, and in general, laminate performs better in climate controlled environments.
Premium vinyl, and in particular Allure flooring, is made of a hard material which is water resistant. In fact, premium vinyl planks can be fully submerged in water without consequences. This makes Allure flooring ideal for the high-traffic and high-condensation areas.
Another important difference in the structure. Laminate is a rigid material that has to be laid on a smooth and even subfloor. Otherwise, the flooring may move under foot traffic, or it could puncture or break.
Allure flooring is flexible and while it is recommended to install it on a smooth and even subfloor for aesthetic reasons, the material can easily adapt to the subfloor imperfections without breaking. Allure flooring is also resilient due to its ability to expand and contract.
Laminate Vs. Allure Flooring: Maintenance
Both laminate and Allure flooring have resistant surfaces that are easy to wipe clean and need little to no maintenance. However, laminate requires a little more care.
Because the material is not water-resistant, you’ll have to pay more attention when mopping the area to prevent prolonged water exposure. A sealant can create a water-resistant film on the floor’s surface, but in this case, you’ll have to reseal the surface every six to twelve months.
Vinyl, on the other hand, doesn’t require sealing and is ideal to use in bathrooms and kitchens.
Laminate Vs. Allure Flooring: Applications
Due to the poorer resistance of laminate, this material is only recommended for residential use. Laminate flooring is too delicate to resist heavy traffic. Due to its susceptibility to moisture, laminate flooring also suffers climate damage and it is only suitable for the indoors.
Allure flooring, on the other hand, is flexible and resistant. This type of vinyl is manufactured for indoor applications only but the material withstands heavy footfall. For this reason, Allure flooring finds its place in many commercial applications.
Laminate Vs. Allure Flooring: Costs
Both laminate and Allure have similar prices per square foot, although Allure is more expensive. Nevertheless, both solutions are an affordable alternative to hardwood, ceramic, and natural stone flooring.
Due to their similar costs, choosing one solution over the other is a matter of preference.
In technical terms, Allure flooring is better, as it’s more resistant and more durable. Yet, if you plan to sell your home any time soon, the laminate could be a wiser investment.
So, which to choose between laminate and Allure flooring? It depends! Here’s a summary of their features and specs, to help you make an informed decision.
Allure flooring is made of 100% plastic and has an outstanding resistance to moisture. However, the product is manufactured specifically for indoor use. Yet, you can use it in high-traffic and high-condensation areas including the hallway, kitchen, and bathroom.
Due to a click-joinery installation, Allure flooring is easy to install and is part of the “floating floor” category, just as the laminate. Another advantage is the narrower width of the planks which mimic parquet boards.
Laminate flooring is made of majorly wood and is reasonably resistant to moisture if the planks are locked firmly. However, the water infiltration may cause the hardwood chips to swell. Ideal for the modern homes, the laminate is more attractive than Allure and preferred by the potential buyers.
Both laminate and Allure are easy to install by yourself and are relatively cheap.
When it comes to comfort, Allure is more comfortable when walking barefoot. The flexible material is softer and feels warmer, two features that increase the perception of comfort.
In terms of preference, we’d use Allure in the high-traffic areas of the home and laminate everywhere else. But in the end, it’s up to you. And since in terms of appearance both solutions look very much alike, just invest in the material you like best or that is more suitable for your home.