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Best vinyl flooring 2023: Transform your floors with affordable, easy-to-fit vinyl

Best vinyl flooring

Simple and easy to clean, this is the best vinyl flooring for every room and budget

Vinyl is having a bit of a moment, and it’s not hard to see why. The best vinyl flooring is quick to install, affordable, hardwearing and looks great, making it ideal for everything from a full house renovation to a quick room refresh.

Vinyl flooring is also the renter’s best friend. While some needs to be glued down, other types can be stuck down with non-permanent adhesive or placed straight onto existing floors, with no glue at all. This means it’s a great non-permanent way to cover unsightly or outdated floors.

However, as more vinyl flooring hits the market, the more confusing it becomes to pick out the best of the best. To help you choose the perfect vinyl for you, we’ve put together a comprehensive list of the various types and finishes currently available, as well as a quick guide to installing and maintaining.

Best vinyl flooring: At a glance

How to choose the best vinyl flooring for you

There are four main types of vinyl flooring.

Luxury vinyl tiles: More commonly referred to as LVT, these tiles are among the most popular vinyl floorings. Incredibly hardwearing, LVT is made from multiple layers, including an underlay, a rigid core, a high-quality image layer, a strong wear layer and a UV layer to protect the colour from fading. LVT is available in a huge range of finishes, including wood, stone and tile effects.

Click vinyl: While most vinyl tiles or planks are lined up edge to edge, with each piece glued down, click vinyl slots tightly together, creating a near-seamless sheet of vinyl. In smaller rooms, click vinyl can also usually be “floated” – installed straight onto the floor with no adhesive.

Self-adhesive vinyl: This style is not as common, but is brilliantly easy to install. Instead of requiring glue to be applied carefully onto the floor, these tiles comes with an adhesive layer included. Simply pull off the backing sheet and press down hard, and your floor is laid – no sticky mess, and no drying time.

Roll vinyl: Instead of individual tiles or planks, roll vinyl is pretty much what it sounds like – a wide roll of vinyl that is either floated or glued down to the subfloor. Vinyl flooring on the roll is ideal for bathrooms and other areas that might get wet, as there are fewer joins in the floor for moisture to creep into.

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How hardwearing is vinyl flooring?

The best vinyl floorings are incredibly hardwearing, and should stay looking perfect for years. Quality vinyl will have a decent thickness and a good wear layer – the latter being the top layer of the vinyl, which protects the pattern or colour underneath.

In addition to the quality of the vinyl, how long your flooring lasts will also depend on the quality of the installation. A well-prepped subfloor, good adhesive application and gapless tile joins will serve you well and should stop any premature lift or warping.

Does vinyl flooring need to be installed by professionals?

This depends on a few key factors: your general DIY skills, the complexity of the room shape and the state of the subfloor.

Prepping the subfloor – that is, the floor that you’re laying vinyl onto – is the first major task of vinyl flooring installation. In newer builds or floors with existing vinyl, this can be easy enough.

Just make sure it’s clean and dry. For older, more scuffed floors, you’ll need to prep these so they’re smooth and blemish-free before attempting to lay anything. Some felt-backed vinyls can be a little more forgiving of subfloor imperfections, but big bumps or gaps can still cause the vinyl to warp or lift.

Measuring and cutting can be very fiddly and always worth taking time over. Not only will inaccurate measuring waste material, poorly fitting vinyl will look bad and age quickly. If your room is large, has an unusual shape to it, or has a number of pipes and fittings to navigate, a professional installation will save you from a huge headache and leave you with a better result.

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How do you care for vinyl flooring?

As well as being hardy and long-lasting, most vinyl floorings are also stain-resistant, making them ideal for messy or high traffic areas such as hallways and kitchens. A regular wipe clean should keep them looking fresh but with bigger stains, it’s best to try to clean them as soon as possible and use gentle abrasive if required. As a last resort, you can carefully cut or lift the vinyl away and replace it with any spare, but this is best done by a professional fitter to ensure it doesn’t end up looking worse.

To minimise any denting or tearing on softer vinyl flooring, you should take care to not pull or push any heavy furniture over the floor, instead lifting where possible. For anything moved regularly, such as kitchen chairs, it’s worth applying felt floor protectors to the legs, to avoid unsightly grooves or scrapes.

The best vinyl flooring you can buy in 2023

1. Tapi Risan Cinder LVT Flooring: Best budget luxury vinyl tile flooring

Price: £17/m² | Buy now from Tapi

This LVT plank flooring is the perfect choice for those who want a quick and cheap renovation that looks like it took a lot more time and money to achieve. At well under £20 per square metre, this vinyl flooring from Tapi boasts slip resistance, water resistance and high UV resistance, making it ideal for everything from high traffic areas to bathrooms and conservatories.

As it’s only available online, you’ll have to do the measuring and installing yourself. However, Tapi provides a guide and calculator on the website to help with the measuring and installation is a breeze, as the vinyl is easy to cut and glue down.

We love this elegant and understated grey wood effect, but the full Risan range includes quite a few different finishes, including more traditional dark woods and simple stone.

Key specs – Thickness: 2mm; Wear layer: 0.3mm; Type: LVT planks; Application method: Glue down; UFH Compatible: No; Guarantee: 25 years; Features: Water-resistant, anti-slip, high UV resistance, textured surface

Buy now from Tapi

2. WallPops Comet Peel and Stick Floor Tiles: Best self-adhesive vinyl flooring

Price: £15 (10 tiles) | Buy now from Amazon

While not as hard-wearing as LVT or thicker rolls of vinyl flooring, these stick-on vinyl tiles are still a great option for refreshing a smaller floor space without too much faff.

The eye-catching pattern would look great in a downstairs loo or small kitchen, but the non-slip, easy-to-clean surface makes them a good choice for almost any room in the house.

Installation is as easy as cleaning the floor, peeling off the backing, and sticking them down firmly – no need to mess around with glue or underlay. The small size of each tile also makes them really easy to cut to shape with nothing more than regular scissors.

Key specs – Thickness: 2mm; Wear layer: Not specified; Type: Vinyl tiles; Application method: Self-adhesive; UFH Compatible: No; Guarantee: None; Features: Water-resistant, washable

3. Tapi Sagano Piatra Click LVT: Best click vinyl flooring

Price: £28/m² | Buy now from Tapi

While laying vinyl flooring is absolutely not something you should rush, using click LVT is the dream for any home improvers who are short on time. Coming with a built-in underlay, these planks slot together along bevelled edges and don’t have to be glued down. No professional installation is required.

This vinyl flooring doesn’t just win big for its ease of installation, though, it also looks fantastic. The textured surface and great colour variation give it a top-of-the-range, luxury feel without the price tag to match.

With water resistance, slip resistance, high UV resistance and a 0.3mm wear layer, it can be installed anywhere in the home, including in high-traffic areas.

Key specs – Thickness: 5mm; Wear layer: 0.3mm; Type: Click-fit planks; Application method: Click-fit; UFH Compatible: No; Guarantee: 10 years for domestic use; Features: Built-in underlay, anti-slip, high UV resistance

Buy now from Tapi

4. Karndean Van Gogh Country Oak: Best wood-effect vinyl flooring

Price: £40/m² | Buy now from Flooring Supplies

Karndean rules supreme in the vinyl flooring world and this timeless oak-style LVT is one of the best wood-effect floorings you can buy. Not only is the rustic oak imaging highly realistic, complete with knots and colour variation, it’s also thick and hardwearing. Compatible with underfloor heating and water-resistant, it can be installed in any room, including bathrooms.

Karndean recommends that you opt for a professional installation for this vinyl, but confident DIYers should be fine to give it a go. It comes as large individual planks with square edges, meaning nothing needs to be slotted together, and you can play around with the layout as many times as you like before gluing down.

Key specs – Thickness: 3mm; Wear layer: 0.55mm; Type: Vinyl planks ; Application method: Glue down; UFH Compatible: Yes; Guarantee: Lifetime for domestic use; Features: Water-resistant, textured surface

Buy now from Flooring Supplies

5. VC4401A Stone Effect Vinyl Flooring: Best stone-effect vinyl flooring

Price: From £38 for 1.5m x 2m | Buy now from Amazon

Stone-effect vinyl flooring is timeless and versatile – ideal for both a simple, contemporary look and classic rustic farmhouse setting. Not only is the pattern and colouring on this vinyl roll high quality, it’s affordable, easy to install and impressively hard-wearing. And unlike some vinyl flooring, it’s also compatible with underfloor heating.

It can be installed by anyone with a knack for simple DIY and helpfully comes in a huge range of sizes, including custom dimensions, meaning fiddly joins will be few and far between. We love the simple and timeless stone effect, but it’s also available three other finishes, including an elegant black tile.

Key specs – Thickness: 2.0mm; Wear layer: Not specified; Type: Vinyl roll; Application method: Glue down; UFH Compatible: Yes; Guarantee: None; Features: Anti-slip, anti-static, stain-resistant

6. Tapi Encanto Deco Black Vinyl: Best tile-effect vinyl flooring

Price: £27/m² | Buy now from Tapi

This black, geometric, tile pattern vinyl has everything: it’s eye-catching, elegant, affordable and durable. The dark tile and rose gold accents look great together, providing a splash of glam without overdoing it, and this simplicity means it’s ideal for both smaller areas as well as bigger, open spaces.

Not only does it look fab, it’s also slip-resistant and water-resistant, so it can be used in bathrooms. With stain resitance and a five-year wear guarantee, it should stay looking great for years to come. Installation can be DIY, although Tapi offers an installation service on this product. Unlike many other tiles and vinyl rolls, the Encanto range is also felt-backed, meaning it’s a little more forgiving of uneven subsurfaces.

Key specs – Thickness: 2.6mm; Wear layer: 0.2mm; Type: Vinyl roll; Application method: Glue down; UFH Compatible: No; Guarantee: 5 years; Features: Anti-slip, water-resistant, stain-resistant, suitable for wet areas

Buy now from Tapi

7. Cairo 01 Geometric Black and White Cushioned Vinyl: Best geometric pattern vinyl flooring

Price: From £41 for 1.5m x 2m | Buy now from Amazon

If you like the idea of vinyl flooring but aren’t sold on the more traditional wood- and stone-effect finishes, this gorgeous geometric pattern is the ideal alternative.

It’s affordable and quick to install, and comes in three different sizes. Not only is it non-slip, water-resistant and nicely cushioned, it’s also compatible with underfloor heating, making it ideal for pretty much any room in the house. It comes with a five-year guarantee, which is a big win given the price.

Key specs – Thickness: 3mm; Wear layer: 0.2mm; Type: Vinyl roll; Application method: Glue down; UFH Compatible: Yes; Guarantee: 5 year; Features: Anti-slip, water-resistant

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