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Pros and Cons of Paper Bag Flooring : 14 Factors Discussed

Pros and Cons of Paper Bag Flooring

Last Updated on December 10, 2022

Paper bag flooring is a type of flooring made from paper bags or grocery bags that are glued to the subfloor. It is a widespread DIY project because it is relatively easy to install and affordable. But there are some drawbacks to this flooring.

It is not as durable as other flooring types and can easily be ruined by water or moisture. It can also be tough to clean the flooring and may require special care and treatments. If you are considering this flooring for your home, carefully evaluate the pros and cons of paper bag flooring thoroughly before making a decision.

These floors will provide your property with a unique, rustic look and be customized to match any décor. To elaborate on this, let’s discuss the positives and negatives associated with grocery bag flooring.

Pros and Cons of Paper Bag Flooring : Detailed Analysis

ceramic tile

Floors made from paper bags are unique and come with both advantages and disadvantages. It is an environmentally friendly option for those looking for an alternative to traditional carpet or hardwood floors. The material is made from recycled paper that is turned into a pulp, then formed into sheets. Take a closer look at paper bag flooring’s pros and cons:

Pros of Paper Bag Flooring

Eco-Friendly Option:

This is an eco-friendly alternative to traditional flooring options such as carpet, hardwood, or tile. This flooring is created by recycling paper and having it pressed and treated to create a durable yet attractive flooring material.

It is also hypoallergenic and resistant to mold and mildew, making it a good choice for homes with allergies or asthma. For these reasons, paper bag flooring is an excellent eco-friendly option for any home.

Easy to Install:

This flooring is made of, you guessed it, paper bags. One of the best things about flooring is that it is straightforward to install; you can do it yourself in just a few hours. You simply glue or staple the paper bags to the subfloor and then seal them with a layer of polyurethane. This makes this flooring a great option for DIYers or anyone who wants to save on installation costs.

Very Affordable:

Of course, the cost is always a significant concern when considering flooring. This flooring may be perfect if you’re trying to find the flooring that won’t break the bank.

This process can be time-consuming, but it is relatively inexpensive and easy to do. It can give your home a high-end look without the high-end price tag. Best of all, it is affordable, making it an excellent option for budget-conscious homeowners.

Give a Unique & Rustic Look:

Paper bag flooring is a relatively new type, but it has already gained a lot of popularity due to its many benefits. One of the enormous benefits of this flooring is it gives any room a unique and rustic look.

It is a type of floor that uses paper bags to create a distinctive and antique appearance with a more natural feel. Unlike other flooring types, paper bag flooring has a naturally mottled look that can add character to any room.

Customizable to Match Any Décor:

When it comes to the pros of paper bag flooring, one of the most frequently mentioned is that it can be adapted to any décor. Unlike wood or tile floors, which often have a limited range of colors and patterns, this flooring can be stained or painted to fit any aesthetic.

You can also add patterns or designs to create a true one-of-a-kind look. So if you’re looking for a flooring option that looks great and does good, paper bag flooring may be the perfect choice for you.

Cons of Paper Bag Flooring:

Not So Durable:

One of the biggest drawbacks is that paper bag floors are not very durable. They are prone to staining and wear and tear, and they will eventually start to show their age.

Unlike tile or hardwood, pets and heavy foot activity can easily scratch or damage paper bag floors. Additionally, they tend to stain easily, so spills should be cleaned up promptly.

Also, if not installed correctly, paper bag floors can buckle or ripple, creating an unsightly appearance. Overall, this flooring is a less durable option that may not be ideal for homes with kids or pets.

Easily Damaged by Water or Moisture:

The flooring is also vulnerable to damage as a result of moisture and water. This can be a massive issue in areas where spills are likely to occur, such as kitchens and bathrooms.

If you spill even a small amount of water on paper bag flooring, it will immediately start to absorb the water and swell. This can cause the paper bags to break and tear, leaving your floors looking ruined.

Difficult to Clean:

Although these floors have several advantages, one potential downside is that they can be challenging to clean. Because the paper bags are glued down, getting into all the nooks and crannies can be tricky to remove dirt and debris.

And if the floor gets wet, the paper bags can swell and become even more difficult to clean. In addition, because these floors are light-colored, they may show dirt and stains more easily than darker floors. As a result, homeowners who opt for paper bag flooring should be prepared to do some extra cleaning.

Not as Comfortable to Walk on Barefoot:

Paper bag flooring is uncomfortable to walk on barefoot compared to other flooring materials. This is because paper bags tend to be thinner and less padded, for example, carpet or hardwood floors.

As a result, they may not provide the same level of comfort, particularly for people who spend a lot of time walking around barefoot in their homes. Additionally, these floors can be pretty slippery, especially when wet. This can make them dangerous to walk on, especially for young children and the elderly.

So these are some of the pros and cons of using paper bags for floors. Considering this type of flooring, thoughtfully contemplate the pros and cons to decide if it’s the right choice.

When to Choose Paper Bag Flooring Based on Pros and Cons?

plastic bag

As an environmentally friendly and low-cost flooring solution, paper bag flooring has pros and cons. Many people choose this type of flooring for their homes because it is made of recycled material and is easy to install. However, there are a few things to consider when choosing this flooring:

Level of Activity in the Area:

If you live in an area with a lot of foot movement, paper bag flooring is probably not the best choice for you. This type of flooring is not so durable and can’t withstand heavy use and abuse.

But it is also relatively inexpensive, making it a great choice for families on a budget. Also, it is not as comfortable as other options, such as carpet or hardwood, and it can be difficult to clean. You may not want to install flooring made from paper bags if you have pets or small children.


This flooring can be a great option for many homes and businesses. A significant disadvantage of this flooring is that it does not last as long as other floor coverings. It also can be stained easily and is not as easy to clean as different types of flooring.

It is also more difficult to clean than other options and is more likely to stain. But this flooring can have an appealing look for a while, and it can be installed without much difficulty.

Overall Aesthetics:

While paper bag bedding isn’t the most conventional type, it can create a beautiful and unique look for your home. The brown paper bags can be arranged in various patterns and colors so that you can get creative with this type of flooring.

Some people love the unique look of paper bag flooring, while others find it too eccentric for their taste. However, this flooring is less durable than other options, so you might have to replace it more often.

Installation Process:

The process for laying paper bag flooring is pretty straightforward and can be done by a DIYer without professional experience. You can either glue the bags or staple them to the subfloor (if the subfloor is a wood floor). These floors are also not as resistant to water damage as other types of flooring, so keep that in mind if you live in a high-humidity area or are concerned about potential flooding.


One of the most significant advantages of paper bag flooring is its affordability. It’s the most inexpensive type of flooring on the market. They can be much cheaper than alternatives such as hardwood or tile.

Then they can be stapled or glued down, making them a great DIY project. However, you may frequently have to replace them due to wear and tear, so it might not be the most cost-effective option in the long run.

The Process of Installing Paper Bag Flooring


It is a remarkable and eco-friendly way to finish a floor. It is a simple process that can be performed by most DIY enthusiasts. Although it may seem time-consuming, installing this bag flooring can be accomplished on the weekend. Below are a few steps to follow on how to install paper bag flooring in your home:

Step 01. Crumble and Tear the Paper:

One of the first steps in installing paper bag floors is crumpling and tearing the paper. This helps create random shapes 6 to 8 inches in size. Once the paper is crumpled and torn, it is ready to be installed on the floor.

The random shapes and sizes contribute to a more natural look for the flooring, and the smaller pieces are less likely to shift or move during installation, giving your floors an elegant marble look. When crumpling, avoid smaller pieces, as they will be challenging to work with later.

This step is crucial for ensuring a successful installation, so be sure to take your time and create a variety of different size pieces. Once you have a good amount of strips, you are ready to move on to the next step.

Step 02. Mix & Apply the Glue by Brushing it On:

To install these floors, you’ll need to mix three parts of water with one part of white school glue. Once the glue is mixed, brush it on generously, making sure to cover the floor’s entire surface.

You’ll then need to wait for the glue to dry before moving on. This process is vital in ensuring that your paper bag floors will last many years. Try to work in a small section so that the glue does not have a chance to dry before you can apply the paper.

By preparing the surface properly, you can be confident that your new floors will look great and stand up to wear and tear.

Step 03. Apply the Paper & Smooth it Out:

After the glue has dried slightly, you can start applying the paper to the floor. You can achieve this by overlapping the torn bags for an organic look or by placing them to fit neatly together.

Begin by placing a strip of paper in the center of the room and then working your way outwards. Once the bags are in place, smooth any wrinkles with a roller or your hands.

Be sure to apply pressure evenly so that the bags bond together well. If there are gaps between the bags, fill them with spackle or joint compound. Allow the spackle to dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

Step 04. Let it Dry and Fix Any Imperfections:

When you have laid down all your bags and sealed them, you will need to let them dry for at least 24 hours to continue. This will give the adhesive time to set and help ensure a stronger bond.

Once the bags are dry, you can begin to fix any imperfections. If there are any gaps or tears, simply apply a small amount of glue and press the sides of the bag together until they adhere. You may also need to trim any excess paper that extends beyond the edge of the bags.

Following these steps, you can easily install paper bag floors in your home. Although the process may seem time-consuming, the result is worth it. These floors are not only beautiful but also easy to care for.


You may be wondering what some of the most common questions about paper bag floors are. Here are some answers:

Q: Are Paper Bag Floors Durable?

Yes, paper bag floors are quite durable. They can withstand a fair amount of wear and tear and are also resistant to staining. However, they are not as durable as hardwood or vinyl flooring and will only last up to five years. If you are looking for a more durable flooring option, you may want to consider one of these options instead.

Q: Can You Do a Paper Bag Floor on Concrete?

Absolutely, a paper bag floor is a fantastic way to add style and personality to a concrete floor. There are a few different ways to do this, but the most popular method is to use glue to secure the bags in place, then simply paint or seal the bags for protection. This entire process can be completed in a single day, and you’ll love the results.

Q: How Do You Clean Paper Bag Floors?

Cleaning paper bag floors is relatively easy. You can either vacuum them or sweep them with a broom, and then mopping with a damp cloth is all needed to keep them looking their best. If you spill something on the floor, cleaning it up immediately is important to prevent staining.

Q: Are Paper Bag Floors Slip-Resistant?

The floors made of paper bags are slip-resistant. Adding a paper bag floor to your home is a great way to add some slip resistance, particularly in areas where you need it most. This is because they are textured, which provides extra traction. However, caution is still important when walking on them, as they can be slippery when wet.


Paper bag floors are a beautiful and affordable way to add personality and style to your home. If you’re thinking about installing this flooring in your residence, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of paper bag flooring before making a final decision. On the plus side, it is inexpensive and easy to install. Additionally, it’s highly absorbent, making it ideal for areas prone to spills or moisture.

The downside of this flooring is that it is easily damaged and has a shorter lifespan than other flooring options. It’s also important to note that paper bag floors will likely need to be replaced more frequently than other floors. We hope this article helped give you some insights into paper bag flooring.

Pros and Cons of Paper Bag Flooring : 14 Factors Discussed

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