A touch of faux fur in our homes offers instant warmth and texture while being kind to our four-legged friends.

Suited to any season, a faux fur rug is an adaptable addition, whether you’re going for a cosy Nordic winter look, or a bohemian summer vibe.

A fluffy rug isn’t just for underfoot: faux furs have the advantage of being lighter than the real deal, making them brilliantly versatile.

Drape them over sofas and armchairs for an inviting layered look, just as you would with a throw. Another advantage of a faux fur rug is its sheen: typically, synthetic fur is made from polyester or acrylic, which offers a glamorous finish to the pile, even in rugs that mimic a usually matte sheepskin.

But of course, this is a matter of taste and for some, only the most authentic look and feel will do. If you’re after a cruelty-free rug that gives real hide a run for its money, look for products that come in an animal skin shape. Most faux sheepskins are designed to imitate a traditional pelt in singular, double or quad options.

We tested a range of rugs, looking for depth and direction of the pile, the quality of the backing, as well as tonal variations for added animal authenticity. And as for those faux furs that don’t pretend to be real? It’s all about the softness.

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Helen Moore oyster faux fur animal rug, small: £130, Helen Moore

Size: 70cm x 90cm

The name Helen Moore is synonymous with luxury faux fur, and this single pelt rug didn’t disappoint. Easily the most realistic of the roundup, its soft, deep pile is beautifully mottled with lighter roots and darker tips creating a dynamic texture. Run your fingers through it and you can see the patterns. The rug is backed with a high quality faux suede, and where most undersides present a raw edge, this has a neat hem, proving it’s not just the quality of the faux fur but the finish, too, that matters.

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The Rug Seller faux fur rug in ‘mauve’: £29.95, The Rug Seller

Size: 60cm x 90cm

A more affordable option comes in the shape of this single pelt acrylic fur rug. Its long, deep pile awards it a shaggy look while variations in the direction of the pile give the impression of an authentic sheepskin. But sheep do not naturally come in this colour – a subtle silvery mauve gives the rug a contemporary edge. Best though is its luxurious sheen, which catches the light beautifully, only adding to its inviting texture.

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Union Rustic glazypeau handmade shag sheepskin grey rug: £113.99, Wayfair

Size: 110cm x 180cm

This sizable rug comes in a quad pelt shape that adds to its animal realism – an arctic wolf, perhaps. With its contrasting black and white colourway, it’s all about the texture. The pile is medium in length but the contrast gives the illusion of extra depth – there’s lots of movement in this one. Lovely and lightweight, this worked just as well draped over our vintage Chesterfield sofa as it did on our polished wood floor.

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Jayley bright pink faux fur harry rug: £94, Jayley

Size: 75cm x 140cm

Where most faux fur rugs strive to replicate their animal origins, others unapologetically celebrate the fake. This ostentatious number from fashion brand Jayley lies firmly in the latter camp. But don’t let the less than natural look fool you: this was surprisingly the softest of the bunch. Shaped into a larger than usual single pelt, its thick, short pile is teddy bear soft, in fact. A statement piece of a rug, this proved a bright, contemporary addition to our bedroom.

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Dunelm supersoft faux fur double pelt ivory rug: £24, Dunelm

Size: 60cm x 180cm

Another rug that’s shorter in pile but luxuriously soft to the touch is this thrifty find from Dunelm. Shaped to resemble a double pelt sheepskin, although it doesn’t pretend to be real, we found its elongated form works best as a runner in the hallway, or as a bedside rug. Sink your feet into one of these each morning and it doesn’t matter which side of the bed you get out of, your mood will be lifted. Affordable and elegant – a perfect combo.

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Asiatic Carpets adorn faux sheepskin floor rug in ‘honey’: £149, Cult Furniture

Size: 140cm x 200cm

We tested the largest version of this plush faux fur, shaped to mimic a quad pelt for added animal authenticity. In warming honey, it gave instant cosiness to our living room. Noticeably the heaviest of the rugs we tried, this one stayed reliably rooted to the floor with its thick faux skin backing that has a bit of a curl to it, just like the real deal. The rug boasts a deep pile, making it gloriously soft underfoot, as well as a glamorous sheen – the kind you only get with faux.

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Flair Rugs faux sheepskin grey rug: From £34.99, Rugs Direct

Size: 60cm x 90cm

Despite its mono hue, this soft and shaggy rug offers light and shade in its texture, perfectly mimicking a real sheepskin. It boasts a longer than usual pile, allowing the fibres to move in various directions. This makes it moreish on the strokability front but more to the point, your bare feet will thank you for it. In soft, silvery grey with a lustrous finish, it makes a luxurious addition to any room.

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Tissavel tundra wolf cream faux fur rug: £70, The Throw Company

Size: 80cm x 100cm

This brand takes faux fur realism to another level, giving us insight into the specific animal our rug purchase would be from – were it not the cruelty-free version. In this case, the beautiful tundra wolf. We loved its unusual shaping: a wolf in wolf’s clothing, not the typical sheepskin form. With its cream roots and brown tips (or guard hairs if we’re being scientific), this dense faux fur was wonderfully soft to the touch.

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La Redoute livio faux sheepskin rug: £129, La Redoute

Size: 110cm x 130cm

With its multi-directional pile and authentic looking tufts, this faux sheepskin is up there with the very best on realism. Only on close inspection will your house guests know they’ve been duped into thinking the rug comes straight off the back of a fluffy Icelandic sheep. And we loved this mock woollyback for its deception. Its long fibres even moved like the real deal.

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Asiatic Carpets Auckland white faux sheepskin: £39, Wove

Size: 70cm x 100cm

For classic chalet chic, there’s nothing like a faux sheepskin in snowy white to warm your cockles. This deep pile rug is a luxury underfoot – and an ideal buy if you’re looking for a smaller bedside carpet, but it works just as well accessorising a rattan peacock chair, or a vintage leather couch, such is its versatility. We found this single pelt fluffy rug to be visibly, as well as tangibly, high quality.

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The verdict: Faux fur rugs

Helen Moore’s faux fur animal rug is a winner for its authenticity. But we were impressed by its craftsmanship and finish as much as its realism. Its warm and mottled colourway awards it a beautiful texture and it feels wonderfully soft underfoot. Jayley’s bright pink faux fur harry rug was also a pleasant surprise, coming top for feel. It really does need to be touched to be believed.

IndyBest product reviews are unbiased, independent advice you can trust. On some occasions, we earn revenue if you click the links and buy the products, but we never allow this to bias our coverage. The reviews are compiled through a mix of expert opinion and real-world testing.