So, here's an honest review of my new Ruggable - let's put it in perspective...
If you have seen the Ruggable commercials, you see a woman neatly and easily picking up her rug topper, putting it in the wash, and then gently laying it down to roll it back out on her floor when it's clean (cue angels singing.) Um, no. Let's ask ourselves how many of us enjoy moving all the furniture out of the way, wrangling a rug, getting it rolled out, getting it into the right spot, positioning all the furniture on top of it, and then sitting down with a glass of wine to celebrate your domination of said rug. Pretty much only that last step is enjoyable.
So, now imagine a rug that you can conveniently do that with every couple of weeks. Yeah, I'm gonna grab another glass of wine now.
I have to say before I go any further into my review that I have one of their new shag rugs, not the original low-pile ones. I've not dealt with one of those, but I hope it's a better experience than the one I have - although the steps involved are identical, so I'm not sure how it could be. I have a 6' x 9' white fuzzy rug with a gray diamond lattice pattern. When we first got it, it looked lush and silky soft like the pictures on the website and I was so excited to finally be able to own a white rug - 'caus, you know, it's washable! And then we stepped on it.
I don't know if this particular product is only half-baked, but I really don't believe the material they used is meant to be stepped on. It is an absolute dirt magnet. Within a week, it looked like construction workers had been trekking through my bedroom on a regular basis. And no, vacuuming didn't help. But, yes it's washable! So, to the washing machine we went... after lifting my BED off of the thing to get it off the floor.
The two part system is really genius, and I can only guess that the original low pile rugs come on and off better. However, this topper is like a thick floppy quilt and the backer is your toddler who doesn't want their blankie washed tonight. It's a hook and loop system and if you've ever accidentally put something with Velcro in the wash with your favorite sweater, you can imagine the struggle to part the two things. And Oh My God, trying to get it back together is a whole other odyssey.
The actual washing of the topper is probably the easiest part, it easily fits into the washer and there you go. Unfortunately, when you take it out of the washer the first time it does not resemble the texture it went in with. After wash one, it looked like a ratty old stuffed animal that's been kicking around for a long time - a bit like a matted teddy bear. I don't particularly mind it - mine looks a bit like a flokati rug I used to have, but if you were really excited about how it looked online, you're going to be really disappointed. I have washed mine several times now, and it doesn't seem to get any worse the 4th or 5th time around, but the jury's still out for a year from now.
Remember I said the fibers are a dirt magnet? Sadly, washing it twice didn't get all the dirt out, so my rug had this dingy traffic pattern. Perhaps washing it 3 or 4 times in a go, it will have a better result. The first time we washed it, I just turned it 180 degrees so the dirt would be under the bed where we wouldn't see it as much, but that's not really a sustainable solution. This last time we washed it, the whole thing came out with this sort of a uniform-ish dingy look that could be mistaken for an all-over tan. I don't have real high hopes for how long it will take before it needs another trip to the washer.
Drying it is another matter. The low pile rugs can be dried in the dryer - the fuzzy ones can't. You have to lay your 6' x 9' rug out somewhere for at least a full day for it to air dry. I have never made it in less than 2 full days and thankfully it hasn't rained. So, this turns what would be a 4-5 hour turn around time into an event you will need to pack a lunch for.
Now, for the worst part of owning this rug, trying to get it back together. And, mind you, you have to have cleared out a space big enough to do this. The best analogy I can come up with is a bit like untangling Christmas lights. You know that somehow these things can straighten out, but it 'aint gonna be easy. The hook and loop system that holds the rug topper to the non-skid bottom is only about 1" smaller than the topper all the way around, which means you'd better get that thing stuck on there straight if you don't want to see the backer peeking out. A one inch tolerance over nine feet is pretty narrow. The topper itself is quite floppy, so it's really hard to get it to roll out flat. Tip: you MUST watch the video of how to put the two pieces back together or you will never get it right; ask me how I know. As you roll out this not-quite-flat floppy thing on top of another not-quite-flat floppy thing that sticks to it instantly, you have to keep tugging and pulling and coaxing them to go together in a uniform way. I have gotten pretty close, but I've never been able to get it completely lump-free.
And finally, you put the rug back in place as described at the beginning of this blog post. All the while, hoping as you lay it down that you haven't dislodged it from the backing in a way that makes it lumpy (again.) You may now step back and admire your clean rug and then flinch whenever someone walks on it like it's a time bomb ticking down before you have to do it all over again.
Final verdict: Never would I ever buy one of these rugs again. For the nearly $500 I paid for it, I would have expected it to be of much higher quality, last longer between washings, and wash up better. The difficulty of actually washing it, which was the reason I bought it in the first place, is beyond aggravating. I guess I'll just have to chalk that $500 up to an unfortunate learning experience.
Do you have a Ruggable? What do you think of yours?
UPDATE: 2/21/21 I had the pleasant surprise to find out their customer service is worlds better than this product. I wrote them and explained the quality issue. The offered me a partial refund and also agreed to send me another rug topper. I asked if they could send one of their "chenille" covers and they made an exception to their replacement policy which allowed me to get a different product. I am currently waiting to receive the new rug topper and I'm excited to have the opportunity to review that one too! Stay posted...
UPDATE: 2/21/22 Soooo... I got the new rug topper and put it down, and it is fairing better than the first, but I won't be purchasing another one of these. Ever. The "Chenille" rug topper is literally a thick piece of something akin to upholstery fabric. It is not soft underfoot and it can't in any way shape or form be called plush. It's really not a rug; it's more of a floorcloth. Which is fine, just don't bill it as a rug. Just because a textile can be put on the floor, doesn't mean it qualifies as a rug.