All you need to know about cork flooring

Cork is commonly known for its use as a stopper in wine bottles, but have you ever considered using this unique material in your flooring? Cork flooring has been used for over 100 years and has traditionally been applied in commercial and public spaces due to its exceptional durability. It had a bit of a moment in the 60s and 70s before seemingly disappearing out of fashion for some time. However, recent years have seen a rise in the popularity of cork flooring; with a whole variety of advantages, it is not difficult to understand why.

Cork is harvested from the bark of cork oak tree and skilled craftsmen generally carry out the process by hand. It is usually found in the Mediterranean region in southern Europe and northern Africa, with Portugal accounting for more than half of the worldwide production of cork. The primary benefits of cork flooring revolve around function, comfort and environmental factors. In this post we discuss the various pros and cons of cork flooring.



Producing cork is an exceptionally sustainable process, as harvesting the bark actually prolongs the life of the tree. A renewable source of wood, cork trees can regenerate the bark and the harvesting process is heavily regulated to ensure optimum sustainability. Perfect for the environmentally conscious customer, cork flooring is the ultimate biodegradable option.


Soft feel

Cork flooring features small pockets of air that establish a shock absorbent structure. This makes it springy, flexible and therefore soft and comfortable underfoot. Ideal for rooms where you spend a lot of time standing, such as the kitchen, and also perfect for clumsy households in which glasses and crockery are often dropped.

Furthermore, this soft characteristic also makes cork flooring an excellent sound absorber, muffling the noise of clicking heels or stomping feet. It also has a nice warm feel, so no more gasps when bare feet touch a cold concrete floor.



One of the easiest types of flooring to maintain, it can last for over forty years when looked after properly. We recommend that cork flooring is swept and vacuumed on a weekly basis to ensure that dirt and debris do not scratch the surface over time. Although cork’s natural ability to bounce back when compressed makes it pretty resilient to furniture dents, we still advise using coasters or padding underneath the legs to avoid permanent dents forming.

Cork flooring is both child-proof and pet-proof, therefore it is well-suited to busy households. It is also relatively easy to install, as it requires minimal subfloor preparation and underlay is not necessary. Regarding water resistance, the natural waxiness of cork repels moisture, although standing water could cause damage. Therefore we advise against its use in bathrooms, but it would be just fine for a kitchen.



As well as being good for the environment, cork flooring is also good for the home. It is free from all allergens and is naturally antibacterial and antimicrobial, meaning it is resistant to mould, dust and termites. Furthermore, it is naturally fire-resistant, making it a safe choice for a family home.



The look of cork flooring does not appeal to everyone but it is more versatile than people think. There are various styles, colours and sizes available, plus the tiles or planks fit together seamlessly. As with many flooring options, sunlight will fade it over time. However, cork brings a wonderfully warm and cosy feel into any home.



Cork flooring has been around for a very long time but it is only just edging its way into the limelight. With a multitude of benefits, cork allows you to achieve exceptional functionality whilst taking care of the environment. To learn more about this unique type of flooring and whether it is for you, speak to a member of the Hudson Flooring team.