Are vinyl wallpapers better than paper wallpapers?

Updated: Aug 25, 2021

You can buy wallpapers from any decor or interiors shop in the world, but vinyl wallpapers are harder to come by so does that mean We shouldn’t use them?

Paper wallpaper

The most well known of the papers and refers to a wall covering make from a printed pattern/design straight on to paper without any coating on it. Because of the lack of coating it can get easily damaged and is difficult to clean. If you try and clean it with a damp cloth or sponge it will more than likely tear. If the ink used is not UV protected, it is also more likely to fade in direct sunlight.

Vinyl coated wallpaper

Vinyl wallpaper is composed of a paper layer on which the design is printed. The paper is then coated (with either acrylic

Squark Design samples of laminated and textured wallpapers
Luxury wallpaper and textured wallpaper samples

vinyl or polyvinyl chloride coating) which then makes the material resistant to water and water vapour, making it suitable for kitchens, bathrooms and playrooms. The great thing about vinyl coated wallpapers/decals is that it can be cleaned with soap and water or cleaning sponge.

Coatings may also contain chemical additives such as dispersants and resins to give water resistance and wet strength to the paper or to protect against sunlight. Coatings can also give extra qualities to the wallpaper such as surface gloss, smoothness or reduced ink absorbency. 

Coated fabric (textured) wallpaper

Instead of printing on paper, the design is printed on a coated fabric. Unlike the vinyl coated paper (where the coating goes on top of the design), coated fabric has the design printed on top of the coating - not the fabric, therefore not giving your wallpaper as much protection as the vinyl coated. Coated fabric is a beautiful product and should be used in rooms which you entertain in (living rooms or dining rooms). I would not advise you use them in bathrooms or kitchens.

If you order your vinyl products through Squark Design, please let us know which room you plan to use them so we can ensure you have the right product for your space.


Need further help?

Still not sure what to do? Have some questions? Just ask us. We would rather you ask the question before you peel off the backing paper.

Phone: 01476 245052




If you feel these instructions are not thorough enough, or could be better presented, please email us at and let us know so we can create a better service for future users of the Bespoke Wall Art Knowledge Centre. Thank you.