What is Linoleum?

In 1855, English inventor Federick Walton noticed a sticky, stretchy material settled on top of a can of oil paint. It was linseed oil, and Walton quickly used the substance to invent linoleum flooring, which was durable, flexible, and easy to manufacture. By the 1950s, linoleum was an international sensation and a staple in homes, schools, and shops across the globe. It was waterproof, easy to install, and came in an endless array of colors and patterns

Asbestos was used in the manufacture of vinyl sheet products up until the mid-1970s. After its use was banned, remaining stocks of asbestos-containing flooring continued to be sold into the late ’70s or early ’80s, so there is a possibility that the vinyl floor in a house built in 1981 could contain asbestos.

But like all design trends, linoleum fell out of favor…hard. The very traits that had propelled its popularity were now seen as liabilities. Its durability backfired, the flooring looked dated, and builders started to use vinyl instead.

Linoleum is making a Comback!
The “new” linoleum is made of renewable natural ingredients such as linseed oil, jute, cork, and tree resins.  Because of the new way of manufacturing linoleum and the fact that it offers durability, design options, and is budget-friendly, linoleum is having a resurgence. 
Linoleum vs Vinyl
Although they often get lumped in together when people are talking about flooring, linoleum and sheet vinyl are not the same product. Linoleum is made from natural materials with the color and design throughout, while sheet vinyl is composed of manmade materials with the design printed onto it.