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How to Flatten a Rug & Get Creases Out

How to flatten a rug and get creases out

After you’ve found your dream rug, it can be very disheartening to discover that it’s become wrinkly, buckled or bent. Whether it is a new rug that has been rolled or folded, a recently washed rug that’s not lying flat, or an old rug that has started to curl up at the edges, there are many reasons why you might be wondering how to flatten a rug and get creases out of it.

Not only can these wrinkles ruin your home’s aesthetic and look unsightly, but a creased rug could also be a trip hazard. For that reason alone, it’s best to address the issue as soon as you notice it. At Rugs Direct, we know all about how to clean rugs and care for them properly, so we’re best placed to talk you through some of the best ways you can keep your rug nice and flat.

In this guide, we’ll cover:

  • How to get creases out of rugs
  • How to remove rug wrinkles after cleaning
  • How to stop rug corners and edges from curling
  • How to straighten a rug
  • How to get kinks out of a new rug
  • How to flatten an outdoor rug that’s curling up

How to get creases out of rugs

Sometimes an area rug ripples instead of providing a smooth, flat surface. So, how do you get the creases out? The easiest way to treat any lumps and bumps is with steam from your iron or a steam cleaner, which can help fluff up and stretch out your carpet fibres again. To avoid burning it (or melting it if you’re trying to get creases out of a polypropylene rug), never put your iron directly onto your rug. Instead, lay a damp tea towel down first and press your iron onto that in short bursts. Doing this means you can benefit from the steam without having to worry about direct heat affecting the condition of your rug.

You can also just use water to treat dents and wrinkles. Mist the area with a spray bottle — don’t soak it. This will distribute the water better and be more effective at fixing your rug, but it will also prevent any dye from running as well. Then, when the area is wet, use your fingers or a comb to lightly manipulate the fibres until they feel fluffed up again. These methods — steam and water — should work a treat if your rug is not lying flat.

How to remove rug wrinkles after cleaning

You may also find that you area rug has buckled after cleaning. A lot of the time, this is due to the rug still being wet and you should find that the creases disappear once it is fully dried. To dry your rug, lay it flat on a clean, hard surface (not carpet) and resist the urge to use heaters or dryers. This process will probably take at least 24 hours.

However, if your area rug wrinkles after cleaning and drying fully, there might be leftover shampoo or product left on the rug that is preventing the rug from lying flat. In this case, you should wash the rug again until the water runs clear, then repeat the drying process.

If you have a sheepskin rug, the creases or buckling that you have noticed could be a result of not washing it properly and they can be difficult to fix. You can follow our how to wash a sheepskin rug guide to avoid this happening in the future.

How to stop rug corners and edges from curling

You might be wondering how to stop rug corners from curling up, especially on carpet. This issue can cause even a new rug to look old and worn, and it could even be a potential tripping hazard. So, to stop the rug from curling up on the corners, dampen the offending corner with a wet cloth or spray bottle and bend it the opposite way it is curling, then leave it to dry for a day or so.

If it’s your rug edges that are curling up rather than the corners, this can also catch you off guard and cause you to trip. Try the method outlined above on the edges and, if it doesn’t work, you can always try fixing them in place with anti-slip underlay. This backing doesn’t just keep your rugs in place but can help them to lie perfectly flat as well.

Another great way to get the edges of your rug to lay flat and stop curling up is to place a heavy object on top for a day or so. Furniture or heavy books can work wonders for this and it’s a method many people use to fix curled rug corners. You could also try straightening the rug fringe with a comb, as it could be this trim that’s causing the edges to curl up.

How to straighten a rug

It can be quite difficult to straighten a runner rug that appears to kink in the middle. This is usually a result of the weaving process and is more common in long antique or handmade rugs. However, in some cases it’s because some of the threads have become stretched, so washing your rug could help. Just be sure to let your rug dry fully before re-assessing whether it’s still wonky or not, as a wet rug usually gets less wrinkly as it dries out.

How to get kinks out of a new rug

If you’ve just bought a new rug for your home, you might be wondering how to flatten it out. Some large rugs may have been stored for a very long time rolled up, others may have been folded. To flatten a new rug that seems to want to return to its rolled-up position, you could try rolling it up the opposite way for two full days, then laying it flat on a clean hardwood or concrete floor. This could help to counter the way the material has been twisted and set, and your rug may lie flatter as a result.

To get creases out of new rug that has been folded, try laying it flat on a hardwood or concrete floor and leaving it to rest for 48 hours. This may allow the fibres to settle and fix the creases themselves. If the wrinkles are persistent, however, you can use the method above to flatten your rug.

How to flatten an outdoor rug that’s curling up

Many outdoor rugs are made from synthetic fibres such as polypropylene, rather than wool or jute, to make them more durable and water resistant — perfect for UK gardens! However, that means that they’re more likely to melt when exposed to high heat.

If you’re wondering how to get creases out of a polypropylene rug, try reverse-rolling or placing a heavy object on it first. If you do want to use steam cleaners or an iron, start with the lowest setting and always put a damp tea towel down to reduce the risk of melting. The melting point of your rug should be quite high, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Now you know how to flatten a rug and get creases out, you can make sure all your rugs look great for longer — as well as reduce the risk of trips and falls in your home. Here at Rugs Direct, we’ve got all sorts of rugs in a huge array of colours, sizes, shapes and styles, including area rugs for living roomsbedroom rugs, and runners. So, no matter what you’re looking for, we’re sure to have the perfect rug to complete your home.

As well as more rug care and cleaning guides, you can find plenty of style inspiration and tips for choosing the right rug in our advice centre. We love to help, so if you have any questions about any of our rugs, don’t hesitate to get in touch. You can call our customer care team on 0330 113 4909, or email us at

Please note that the methods in this guide are suggestions only. Rugs Direct is not liable for accident, injury, or damage to property resulting from this advice.