Overview: Real linoleum is an all-natural flooring option made of linseed oil, cork dust, wood flour, tree resins, ground limestone and pigments, all pressed onto a jute backing. It's long-lasting, easy to clean, and often contains recycled content.
Not To Be Confused With: Sheet vinyl. The word "linoleum" is often used incorrectly to describe any kind of sheet flooring, like PVC-based sheet vinyl, which is a very different product and without any of the eco-friendly, durable qualities of traditional linoleum.
Environmental Impact: Traditional linoleum is biodegradable, non-toxic, and formaldehyde-free, so it won't off-gas noxious chemicals into your home.
Pros: Durable, naturally anti-static and anti-microbial, over 120+ colors and designs to choose from, non-toxic, biodegradable, made from renewable resources, easy to install and maintain, colors deepen and patinas get richer when exposed to sunlight.
Cons: Somewhat porous and susceptible to acids.
Installation: Very DIY-able. Typically sold in sheets or individual tiles, which easily click together when installed over a smooth, flat subfloor.
Price range: $4.40 - $6.50 per square foot
Kitchn Reader Reviews:
We have Marmoleum, which I love - it's eco-friendly, easy to clean and comes in much better colors than the old 70's linoleum patterns. - Sisterrae
SO thrilled to see Marmoleum (linoleum) flooring installed and getting amazing comments. Too often, the hideous vinyl flooring a lot of us grew up with in our parents' kitchens is wrongly pegged as "linoleum" giving it a really bad name. Linoleum is a natural product created from linseed, has an amazingly long lifespan, and great for use in high-traffic areas. I worked on the interior design of the renovated Pasadena City Hall and some of the restrooms had the ORIGINAL linoleum that had been installed in the '20s - in amazing shape with the most beautiful patina. - Dunbar72
Real linoleum here and I'm happy with it. I was going to tile for a color change and going "upscale" but then I got to like the easy to clean (no seams or grout lines) aspect and learned to like the colors (not that bad really, brown/tan/orange). And the fact that it was eco friendly when installed pre-1955 and is eco friendly by still being in good condition is a bonus. - Faith BCK
Readers, do you have real linoleum flooring, either vintage or else made by Marmoleum or another authentic linoleum brand?