As well as the decor, each room in the house matches a particular floor. There are several types, colors and sizes, not to mention the place where the floor will be applied. Is it a more intimate space? Will there be a lot or little movement of people? Will it have contact with moisture? And the climate in the region? Warmer places go with cool floors like porcelain, marble and granite; while cooler areas are compatible with wood and vinyls, which are better suited to temperatures.
Everything must be taken into account when choosing the ideal floor to ensure a beautiful, practical and functional environment. You need to consider more technical details as well, such as installation, maintenance and durability, without neglecting your style. “I always think about beauty, comfort and quality”, adds the architect Juliana Vasconcellos.
You walk over it to and fro, but you don’t always pay attention to details such as what type of floor covers each room in your house. The coating must be combined according to the environment to make it more practical when cleaning or more cozy when relaxing.
Discover the ideal floor for each environment
Whether to renovate or buy a new property, as the floor is not changed as often as furniture or a decorative object, it is worth investing in models that meet the needs of the different environments in the house.
REPRODUCTION | HOLLY MATHIS | OGAWA FISCHER | BRADLEY VAN DER STRAETEN
In the kitchen, the best option is to opt for tiled floors, such as ceramic and porcelain tiles, or, if the idea is to give a more modern and laid-back touch, cement. The main factor you should take into account is durability, in addition to practicality for cleaning. “The ideal for the kitchen is a floor that is resistant to heavy cleaning, preferably polished so as not to accumulate grease, and is not very porous. I usually recommend the use of granite or new materials on the market that mix stone powder with resin, such as Silestone or similar materials”, adds the specialist.
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION | JANET MALLORY | REBECCA HAYES | NOVELL
In the living room, the preferred floor is porcelain. This is because the coating has several finishing options, shapes and sizes, in addition to being resistant, which is good for an environment that tends to have a lot of circulation, and still easy to install. “I prefer to use porcelain tiles with a rectified edge and larger dimensions, because of their beauty”, teaches Juliana Vasconcellos. The architect complements the tip, taking into account the climate of her region: “for colder regions, I like wood, preferably solid wood for its beauty and durability. For warmer regions, natural stones can come with a matte finish, which is very elegant for a room”.
REPRODUCTION | SUMMER THORNTON | LEIVARS | DARA ROSENFELD
In the bathroom, the same logic used for the kitchen is valid, since both are considered wet areas and go well with ceramic tiles, porcelain tiles and glass tiles. What must be taken into account first of all is maintenance. Non-slip floors can also be a great choice for this environment. “I usually use marble or porcelain. Marbles are more porous and less resistant than granites, but they work very well in the case of bathrooms”, highlights the professional. Models with light, neutral colors or with discreet textures complete the look.
REPRODUCTION | CHRISTINE KELLY / CRAFTED ARCHITECTURE | ENVIRONMENTAL DYNAMICS | OGAWA FISCHER
In the bedroom, the first concern should be with a floor that is cozy, after all this is the environment where you will relax after a day at work, whether outside or with household chores. Wood laminates and vinyl floors are usually chosen for the environment due to their thermal comfort and durability. “I like using wood, preferably solid. We have great choices of laminates and PVC floors these days that are easy to maintain and look great. For children’s rooms, the rubberized floors are safe and comfortable, very suitable for playrooms and for younger children”, says Juliana.
5. Outdoor Area
REPRODUCTION | CARLTON ARCHITECTURE | URRUTIA | ZAKRZEWSKI + HYDE
For outdoor areas, you must evaluate some questions before choosing the floor. Will it always be exposed to the sun? Will it be waterproof? Are there elderly or children in the house? Places that have a swimming pool, for example, blend well with cementitious coating, which is non-slip and does not absorb heat, stones or wooden decks. “Stones with a rustic or rough finish are the first options, followed by rustic porcelain tiles intended for the external area so as not to slip. Give preference to light floors, as they heat less”, he recommends.
7 frequently asked questions when choosing the floor
REPRODUCTION / TONI SABATINO
No matter how much you research and read about the different types of flooring for each environment, when buying, there is always a question. To avoid indecision knocking on your door, check out the FAQ below on what to consider when choosing the right flooring for each room in your home.
1. How to know the amount of material needed?
Before going shopping, the ideal is to measure the place where the floor will be installed and ask for advice at the store where you are going to buy or from the professional who will install it. Some online stores offer a calculator to simulate this amount. Typically, the recommendation is that you take an average of 10% more if the coating is applied straight, or 30% more for diagonal placement, as more cuts may be required.
2. How to choose the right grout for each floor?
The grout occupies the small space between the covering pieces, which are placed in series when installing the floor, and serves to support the union between them, preventing cracks or breaks, accumulation of dirt and infiltration, in the case of wet areas. The grout must produce a harmonious effect in the environment, appearing as little as possible and leaving the area to be coated uniform. Therefore, the ideal is to choose with the floor nearby to get the closest color.
3. How to choose the footer?
The baseboard is a small decoration detail, but it deserves the same attention as the other items, as it will be decisive to give that finish and still make your home more beautiful. There is no ideal model, but there are different ways to use it. You can bet on the most basic style and match the color or even the material of the floor, choose a combination that works in harmony with the doors and thresholds, or invest in a model that contrasts with the wall.
4. Should I use the same material throughout the house? Do environments need to match each other?
In the past, it was quite common to find houses with the same floor in all environments. With the wide variety offered by the market today, the decoration has become broader and more functional, as it takes into account the needs of each environment before applying the coating. Even the weather started to count as a decisive factor for the choice. What has been used most in practice is the combination of laminates in bedrooms and porcelain tiles in other environments. If you want to combine, you can choose the same floor, changing color and texture according to each room.
5. How to choose the color of the floors?
Although the market is quite eclectic when it comes to color combinations, pastel shades are still preferred. They are versatile, easy to clean and still give you that feeling that the room is always airy. In addition to helping to enhance the ambience, for being discreet, the light floor highlights other decorative elements in the environment and, combined with mirrors, add elegance and sophistication. If you prefer dark floors, you’ll be choosing a classic, especially when you opt for wood. Along with light walls, they can also convey the idea of spaciousness. Regardless of the choice, the idea is to integrate.
6. How to choose a good professional to install the floor?
It is important to hire a qualified professional to install the floor, as the quality and beauty of the environment depend on the good placement of the covering. When choosing, take into account the experience, the knowledge about the type of floor that will be installed and the whim of finishing. It’s always good to follow the work closely to ensure that your house will look beautiful and that you won’t have a headache from a poorly placed piece.
7) What is PEI?
The acronym refers to the PEI Index (Porcelain Enamel Institute), which is the classification of ceramic coverings according to the resistance of the piece’s enamel and abrasion wear, based on the amount of traffic it will receive. Inmetro’s website has five levels. The lower the number, the lower the resistance and the higher, the greater the capacity to support the movement of people and time.
- PEI 1: recommended for residential environments where you walk with slippers or bare feet. Example: residential bathrooms and bedrooms without doors to the outside.
- PEI 2: recommended for residential environments where walking with shoes. Example: all residential facilities, with the exception of kitchens and entrances.
- PEI 3: recommended for residential environments where you walk with some amount of abrasive dirt other than sand and other materials harder than sand (all residential rooms).
- PEI 4: recommended for residential (all premises) and commercial environments with high traffic. Example: restaurants, stores, banks, entrances, preferential paths, sales and exhibitions open to the public.
- PEI 5: recommended for residential and commercial environments with very high traffic. Example: restaurants, steakhouses, cafeterias, stores, banks, entrances, corridors, exhibitions open to the public, offices, other facilities.
Advantages and disadvantages of each type of floor
REPRODUCTION / MJK HOMES
While each environment demands a type of floor, each coating requires or does not require certain care during maintenance. Cleaning, conservation, changeover time, price, everything must be analyzed to make the right choice. That way, you will take home comfort, practicality and beauty. So check out the advantages and disadvantages of each type of floor below.
Used only indoors, as contact with the sun and water can damage it or even make it slippery, laminate floors are among the most sought after. Similar to wood, its installation is quick and easy, with no need for finishing. It is scratch and stain resistant. Cleaning only requires a damp cloth.
Hypoallergenic and highly durable, wooden floors match any environment in the house, especially living rooms and bedrooms, and serve as a complement to the decor. Maintenance is very easy and only requires a broom or vacuum cleaner. They are vulnerable to moisture, so they are not recommended for kitchens and bathrooms, and require some touch-up from time to time to maintain the shine.
With different colors and sizes, vinyl floors can be easily installed, do not stain, do not retain dust, are very resistant and have high durability. The coating is also hypoallergenic and doesn’t make as much noise when you walk on it. To clean it, just a damp cloth. It is not suitable for outdoor areas or areas that have a lot of contact with water, such as bathrooms and kitchens.
Although the installation is a little more messy than other floors, after all, all the old coating has to come out, porcelain is a resistant ceramic coating, has high durability and requires little maintenance. There are several options for colors, sizes, textures and prices. It can be applied on the floor, wall, indoors or outdoors. It is more prone to cracking and chipping.
Ceramics are resistant, have high durability and have a wide variety of models, from vibrant tones to more sober colors, but they can stain over time. They are cost-effective and installation is simple, as well as maintenance, requiring only some care with delicate parts. Cleaning can be done with water and neutral detergent after sweeping.
Marble is an expensive coating and requires care when cleaning, but it is extremely elegant, noble and sophisticated. Helps reduce the feeling of heat in tropical climate locations. It can be used both indoors and outdoors. As it is highly absorbent and porous, it can stain with grease, wine or other products. Cleaning must be frequent, with products based on muriatic acid.
Ideal for those who want a quick job, cementitious floors are easy to install and can be applied both indoors and outdoors. If not well placed, it may have cracks. Also, blemishes can appear over time. To extend the durability, you should apply an acrylic-based resin over the wet mass.
Used in any environment, both on the floor and on the wall, hydraulic tiles combine very well with all coatings and colors. It is very versatile and resistant, but it is expensive and requires specialized labor for installation. To preserve it, it is best to use neutral soap and wax regularly to preserve the shine and protect the coating.
The ideal floor for every environment in practice
Now that you know what types of flooring are on the market and which ones are best for each environment, it’s time to find some inspiration to start transforming your home. In the gallery below, you will see how coatings are applied in practice in different rooms. The images will serve as a complement for you to choose the ideal floor to enhance your decor.
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / GIL WALSH
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / SARAH GREENMAN
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / MARC-MICHAELS
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / TEXAS CONSTRUCTION
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / HOLLY MARDER
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / DILLARD PIERCE
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / HANNOTTE
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / DEBRA TONEY
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / CHRIS DYSON
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / ALISON KANDLER
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / WHITTEN
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / MODERN HOUSE
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / AUHAUS
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / SPINNAKER DEVELOPMENT
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / ROSELIND WILSON
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / PANGAEA
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / WOHN FEE
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / RAFE CHURCHILL
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / KIA
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / JIMMIE MARTIN CALIFORNIA
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / LOVE THOMAS
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / JANET PAIK
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / PRENTISS
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / CAROUSEL MEDIA
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / JEANNIE BALSAM
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / JESSICA LAGRANGE
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / SAM CRAWFORD
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / TG STUDIO
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / ELAD GONEN
PHOTO: REPRODUCTION / ONE SMALL ROOM
These images can be your starting point or inspiration for new ideas. What really counts is finding your ideal floor, which matches your style and conveys your personality to every room in the house. This is the most accurate combination to guarantee comfort, practicality and beauty.