Vinyl and linoleum are two different types of flooring that are often mistakenly believed to be made of the same material. Although they do have their fair share of similarities, both floorings have their own unique characteristics. Before opting for either, it makes sense to take a look at the benefits and drawbacks of each:
Vinyl is a type of plastic flooring which rose in popularity in the early 1980s. As it's a type of manmade material, it's not the most environmentally friendly choice as it uses a nonrenewable resource and takes a fair amount of energy to make. It lasts for around 10-20 years, making it fairly durable and long lasting. It's extremely water resistant, making it the ideal choice for bathrooms and other areas that get quite damp regularly and it is simple to install. It's also the more affordable option of the two, but that's pretty much offset by the fact it doesn't last as long. In terms of design the pattern is printed on so there's a huge range of styles to choose from. As the pattern is only printed however, after a while it can fade. It's extremely easy to clean and thanks to its moisture resistance spills are not an issue.
Linoleum is comprised of linseed oil mixed with other renewable materials (cork dust and wood flour for example) making it the more environmentally friendly choice. It's also just as low maintenance as its plastic partner; however it's not as moisture resistant. It can still be used in bathrooms but it will need to be regularly resealed to ensure it doesn't curl up with the humidity.
Installation is a little tougher, but still very doable. In terms of price, it's the more expensive of the two but it does last twice as long (usually 20 to 40 years). It comes in a large variety of different designs, and when it begins to wear (unlike vinyl) the pattern isn't lost as the material colorfast (present all the way through as opposed to printed on).