Initially, we received tons of messages asking us to review Proximity Mills’ vinyl plank products—and now that the company has expanded its offerings, we’re here to review their full catalog.
Below, we’re going to cover everything you need to know about Proximity Mills. We’re going to talk about who the company is, the products they make, how much they cost, plus warranty and installation info. Then, we’ll go through some Proximity Mills product reviews so you can decide whether this company’s flooring is right for you.
If the number of questions we get about Proximity Mills is any indication, it’s one of the fastest-growing vinyl plank flooring brands in the country. And as of this update (January 2022), the company now offers hardwood, carpet, and tile as well.
They advertise themselves as “a better kind of floor buying experience” that’s focused on sustainability, performance, ease-of-purchase, and buying local—which are all things we can get behind.
We would almost compare them to Warby Parker, because they source their products directly from manufacturers—so there’s no middleman or big price markup.
Additionally, they really stress that they only sell their products at certain independent flooring stores rather than at national chains (and again, we’ll talk about that in more detail below).
Why Haven’t I Heard of Proximity Mills Flooring Before?
As a private-label brand (i.e. one that isn’t owned by one of the giant flooring corporations), Proximity Mills has always focused on making the best flooring possible and letting the salespeople sell it (according to their brand representatives).
According to their advertising, they seem to pride themselves on letting their products’ quality speak for itself. And if you’ve read our reviews of some other private-label brands, like Lowes’ SmartCore flooring or Floor & Decor’s NuCore flooring, you’ll know that level of quality isn’t particularly common.
What Products Does Proximity Mills Offer?
Now that we’ve gotten the basics out of the way, let’s talk about the actual products that Proximity Mills sells. While the company started off making just vinyl plank, they now offer 5 types of flooring:
Vinyl Plank (LVP)
According to the brand representative we spoke to, each material has been specifically chosen to offer the highest possible performance at its price point. Let’s start with vinyl and work our way through the list!
Within each Proximity Mills collection, you can find 5–10 different styles. And by that, we mean different colors, different finishes, even different plank sizes. Want faux-wood flooring that comes in squares? How about totally waterproof wide-plank wood flooring alternatives? Or LVP that mimics organic types of tile like porcelain or granite?
Yep. There seems to be a little something for everyone here.
And All Proximity Mills LVP Floors Have an SPC Core
If you’re not familiar, SPC stands for Stone-Plastic Composite. This type of EVP (engineered vinyl plank) flooring mixes limestone powder with its core-layer plastic to make for an incredibly durable and scratch-resistant floor. That’s why SPC is generally recommended for use in areas that see a lot of foot traffic.
And in our opinion, Proximity Mills’ products mimic different types of wood flooring well enough to go in a bedroom, living room, or dining room.
Plus, They’re Entirely Waterproof
Like all vinyl plank, Proximity Mills’ LVP floors are totally waterproof—making them a great water-resistant wood flooring alternative for any rooms that might see their fair share of moisture. We’re thinking bathrooms, kitchens, basements, or even mudroom flooring here.
And They Have Super-Thick Protective Wear Layers (for Extra Scratch-Resistance)
Sure, Proximity Mills floors are pretty. But so are a lot of other floors. And yes, they’re waterproof. But again, all PVC flooring products are.
So what really impresses us about Proximity Mills products? Their super-thick wear layers.
If you don’t know, most vinyl planks feature wear layers that are somewhere between 6 and 20 mils thick. However, we don’t recommend buying anything under 12 mils thick, even for residential use. In fact, we actually used that as our cutoff when we stacked up the best vinyl plank flooring brands.
Proximity Mills LVP products all come with 12- to 22-mil wear layers. And they’re UV-coated, too—meaning you can use them as sunroom flooring without having huge fading issues.
For reference: Home Depot’s LifeProof vinyl flooring—which retails for around the same price as Proximity Mills—only has a 6.5-mil wear layer. So you can understand why we’re impressed by this brand.
Proximity Mills LVP Products are Low-VOC Certified (and Recyclable)
All Proximity Mills products are FloorScore-certified as either low-VOC flooring or entirely zero-VOC flooring, which is pretty impressive. Additionally, Proximity Mills made a point of telling us about their commitment to sustainability, which includes creating products that can be completely recycled.
That might not sound super impressive by itself, but most vinyl products can’t be recycled at all—meaning they end up in landfills.
This question is a little more difficult to answer, since different stores sell Proximity Mills at different prices. In general, though, we’ve seen it sold for as low as $3.50 and as much as $7.00 per square foot. It all depends on where you live, how much you need, and the product you’re getting.
For context, that puts Proximity Mills squarely in the middle of the average cost to install vinyl plank flooring (which is roughly $1.50 to $10/sq. ft. nationally). And for a product with this many perks, we think that’s pretty great.
How Do You Install Proximity Mills LVP?
According to Proximity Mills, their floors can be installed in 3 different ways depending on the product:
Glue-down and loose-lay floors are exactly what they sound like. But what is a floating floor? It’s an installation style that uses tight-fitting, snap-together grooves in the sides of each plank to join them together. That’s why floating floors are sometimes known as “snap-lock” or “click-together” flooring.
Does Proximity Mills Vinyl Plank Need an Underlayment?
It depends on the specific floor. According to the company, all of their floating floors feature an attached “premium cushion underlayment”, but their glue-down and loose-lay products do not.
Translation: if you need a moisture barrier, or want an underlayment to address noise issues, creaking, or any other typical floating floor disadvantages, you’ll have to get one separately.
That said, Proximity Mills is very up-front about this, which we respect. A lot of brands will claim their attached underlayments are all-in-one when they really, really aren’t. See our LifeProof and SmartCore reviews for more info on that.
Every LVP floor Proximity Mills sells is covered by a lifetime limited warranty for residential use.
Obviously, the “limited” in that phrase is important (because there are some exceptions you’ll want to be aware of before you buy), but overall, that’s a super solid warranty compared to the warranties from almost any other vinyl plank flooring brand.
As far as commercial warranties are concerned: one collection has a 5-year warranty, one collection has a 7-year warranty, and the other 9 collections all feature a 10-year commercial warranty.
Again: that might not sound impressive—but if you spend all day researching floors like we do, you’ll know that’s an extremely solid warranty (especially for the price).
Proximity Mills Hardwood Flooring
If you’ve read our reviews of the best hardwood floor brands, you’ll know that most companies sell either solid or engineered hardwood (sometimes both).
Proximity Sells Engineered, or High-Performance Hardwood
What is engineered hardwood, exactly? Well, unlike solid hardwood (which is one solid piece of wood throughout), engineered hardwood is made of two layers: a high-strength plywood or HDF base, and a real wood veneer on top.
The advantage here is that plywood is way more durable and dimensionally stable than solid wood is. This allows engineered wood to go places solid wood can’t, like basements and bathrooms (places with a lot of changes in temperature and moisture).
And Proximity Mills sells 43 engineered wood products across 6 collections.
But They Do It a Bit Differently—With 2 Distinct Types of Engineered Wood
Here’s where things get interesting. As we mentioned, Proximity Mills only sells engineered wood. However, unlike most other brands, they offer it in 2 different varieties:
Why does Proximity Mills do this? Because, according to their website, these two types of wood are crafted to give the highest possible performance in their respective applications.
There are 3 collections of each variety, and they all come in tons of unique wood species and finishes.
Waterproof vs. High-Density Hardwood: What’s the Difference?
As it turns out, the real enemy of wood floors isn’t scratching—it’s compression. Think of it this way: when hardwood gets marked up by pets or furniture legs, it’s not because they’re scratching through the finish layer (at least not with a finish layer as durable as these floors have). Rather, these elements are compressing the wood of the floor itself.
Proximity Mills’ high-density hardwood is specifically created to stand up to these issues by using taking some of the most durable hardwood species in the world (Peruvian teak and strand-woven Moso bamboo) and coating them with layers of an ultra-strong, UV-cured polyurethane + aluminum oxide finish. The result: an exceptionally strong hardwood that is extremely dent-resistant. Did somebody say best flooring for dogs?
To create their waterproof hardwood products, on the other hand, Proximity Mills joins a fully waterproof core with a high-quality wood veneer that’s been coated with layer upon layer of that ultra-strong finish we mentioned a second ago.
The resulting product is a stunning hardwood that’s completely waterproof. And we know what you’re asking yourself…
Is Proximity Mills’ Waterproof Hardwood Actually Waterproof?
It is indeed! The company guarantees that their hardwood will remain waterproof from any side for at least 36 hours, and top-down waterproof for up to 72 hours. If you’ve read our breakdown of the best waterproof hardwood floor brands, you’ll know that’s really, really impressive.
The Products Come in a Variety of Wood Species and Finish Looks
Like we mentioned above, these hardwood products come in a wide variety of wood species and finish options. You’ve got your oaks, your hickory looks, your maple looks—all the standards—plus some really interesting exotics, too.
Two of our favorites: the Peruvian teak and Moso bamboo from the high-density collections. Peruvian teak is one of the most gorgeous (and hardest) woods in the world. Plus, it’s renewable! And Moso bamboo is really interesting as well—it has some of the densest fiber strings of any bamboo species, and Proximity Mills’ Moso products are all made from plants that are at least 6 years old (since that’s the age they need to be in order to get the toughest fibers).
Their Veneers are Flat-Sawn (For a Denser, More Beautiful Appearance)
Fun fact: in general, hardwood logs are cut in a rotary pattern—AKA rotary slicing—which just means that the logs are cut like a roll of paper towels. This is the most budget-friendly way to use hardwood (since you can make flooring out of the entire log), but it robs the wood of a lot of its character.
Proximity Mills, on the other hand, uses flat-sawn slices for a more traditional “cathedral” look. This allows you to really see the wood’s character; it also makes for a denser, more robust veneer.
This might not be the cheapest way to make hardwood, but the Proximity rep we spoke to says they do it because it’s the better way to make it.
All of Their Hardwoods are Low-VOC Certified, Sourced Responsibly, and Sustainable
In keeping with the company’s commitment to environmental responsibility and sustainability, all Proximity Mills hardwood floors are certified as low-VOC products (by FloorScore, GreenGuard, or Benchmark, depending on the collection).
Additionally, they’re all Lacey Act-compliant (meaning they’re responsibly sourced), and some collections are even recyclable!
How Much Does Proximity’s Hardwood Cost?
The price of Proximity Mills’ hardwood is highly dependent on the collection (and who you buy it from; we’ll get into that below), but you can expect to pay roughly $8.00–$12.00/square foot for it.
If you check out the average cost to install engineered hardwood floors, that’s just about dead center for a mid-range product. And given that these are far superior to most mid-range products (exotic species, waterproof qualities, and flat sawn to boot), we’d say that price is a steal—and Proximity Mills hardwood reviews seem to agree.
Proximity Mills Hardwood Warranty Information
Most of the company’s hardwoods carry a full lifetime residential warranty, though it’s 20 years for a couple of products. Additionally, many of their wood floors also have a 10-year commercial warranty, so there’s no question that this stuff can stand up to just about anything.
Proximity Mills Carpet
For those looking for a cozier (though equally high-performance) option, Proximity Mills also sells 22 collections of carpet, comprising roughly 400(!) individual products.
They’re Made of 6,6 Nylon (A Very Durable Material)
If you dive into the world of different types of carpet, you’ll find that they can be made of tons of different materials—wool, polyester, polypropylene, polynomials (just kidding with that last one).
But hands-down, the most durable one of these materials is 6,6 nylon.
Also called “6/6 nylon”, “6.6 nylon” and “nylon 66”, this space-age material was first developed by DuPont and was StainMaster carpet’s claim to fame. It’s soft, it has fantastic “memory” (which means it bounces back into shape after being compressed) and it offers top-of-the-line stain resistance.
All of that to say: every Proximity Mills carpet is made of 6,6 nylon.
Whatever you’re looking for, Proximity Mills seems to have made a carpet for it. That’s really all we have to say about that. There are a lot of styles available.
They’re Durable and Fade-Resistant (Some are Even Solution-Dyed)
Again—and we can’t stress this enough—if you’re looking for the most high-performance carpet around, 6,6 nylon is the way to go.
Additionally, about half of Proximity’s carpets are solution-dyed—which means the color is actually part of the material, rather than just something that goes on top of the material. If you’re looking for fade resistance and durability, this is the gold standard.
How Much Does Proximity Mills Carpet Cost?
Again, it depends on the collection and the retailer—but Proximity Mills carpet is generally priced between $4.00 and $8.00 per square foot, which is on the lower end of what you might expect to pay for a 6,6 nylon carpet. As with the company’s wood products, the Proximity Mills carpet reviews we read were largely positive on the company’s price-to-performance ratio.
Proximity Mills Carpet Warranty
Proximity Mills carpets all sport a 20-year warranty, which is impressive for anycarpet (regardless of the material).
Oh, And Proximity Mills Carpet is Certified Low-VOC, Too
Lest we forget, it’s worth noting that Proximity Mills carpet is also certified as low-VOC flooring by the Carpet and Rug Institute. The CRI Green Label Plus certification (which these products carry) lets you know your carpet is low in VOCs and environmentally healthy!
Proximity Mills Tile
Finally, we come to tile. Proximity Mills sells 48 collections of rectified porcelain tile comprising over 200 individual products.
What is “Rectified” Porcelain Tile, Exactly?
Porcelain is one of (if not the) most durable types of tile out there. It’s made by firing ultra-refined clay at a super-high temperature in a kiln. However, because of this manufacturing process, it’s hard to get the edges of each tile exactly perfect. As a result, porcelain tiles often need larger grout lines to account for these tiny imperfections.
Rectifying is a process done after manufacturing that shapes each tile to the exact same size. As a result, you can get those teenie-tiny grout lines that you’d expect from a much more expensive product.
They Can Go Just About Anywhere (Even Outdoors)
High-quality porcelain tiles have an exceptionally high break strength. This means you can even use Proximity Mills tile as indoor-outdoor flooring!
They Come in Many Different Sizes
Again, owing to their excellent manufacture, Proximity Mills tiles are able to come in formats that you generally wouldn’t find with porcelain—we’re talking tiles as large as 40″x40″. That’s over 3.3 feet x 3.3 feet.
Obviously, this isn’t the norm for porcelain. Extra-large sizing is usually reserved for luxury tiles.
And They Come in Just About Every Appearance (Seriously)
Sorting through the Proximity Mills tile catalog, one thing stands out more than anything else. There are a lot of different looks. Like… a ton.
Patterned, solid color, stone-look, marble-look, black marble-look with white veining—the list goes on and on. This is one of the great things about porcelain—it can be made to look like just about anything, even natural stone.
The Benefits of Porcelain Tile (vs. Natural Stone)
Stone tile is undeniably gorgeous (seriously, who doesn’t love a marble floor). But natural stone also has some issues. For one, its production process carries a much larger carbon footprint than porcelain’s does. For another, its break strength can vary hugely depending on the type of stone used.
That’s why stone-look porcelain is such a great choice: it offers the gorgeous appearance of stone tile with none of the downside.
How Much Does Proximity Mills Tile Cost?
There’s a huge variation in Proximity Mills tile offerings, and the pricing is similarly varied. Some options are as cheap as $5.00 per square foot; others are as expensive as $50!
Proximity Mills Carpet Tile
In addition to their more “standard” types of flooring, Proximity Mills offers something few other companies do: a collection of high-quality carpet tiles. You’ll notice the italics on “high-quality” because, let’s face it, a lot of companies make carpet tiles. But not a lot of companies make good carpet tiles.
Proximity Mills Calls These Luxury Carpet Tiles or LCT (For Good Reason)
If the phrase “carpet tile” has you envisioning the scratchy, low-quality peel-and-stick carpet tiles you’ve seen in just about every office waiting room ever, think again.
Proximity Mills’carpet tiles are made ofquality, tufted residential carpet. Specifically, they’re made of solution-dyed polyester, which is one of the most durable and comfortable types of carpet out there (in addition to being an excellent stain-resistant carpet option). Basically, this carpet feels like the real thing because it is the real thing.
In the world of carpet tiles, these are the luxury option.
Each Tile Comes With an Attached Carpet Pad
Speaking of which: unlike most carpet tile collections (including all of the most commonly available ones), Proximity Mills’ LCTs come with an attached carpet pad. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: the best carpet is nothing without a great carpet pad. Do we say that? Well, we do now.
Anyway, it really is true—these carpet tiles are some of the only ones on the market that come with an attached pad. And that’s a huge deal if you want a comfy, long-lasting surface.
They’re a Cinch to Install (and Remove)
Traditional carpet tiles come with an adhesive backing that you need to stick into place. This creates a few problems.
First, you need to install them perfectly the first time, or you can ruin the adhesive (learning how to install carpet tiles is not as easy as it sounds). Second, they’re difficult to remove—and the adhesive often leaves a sticky residue. Finally, when you do remove them, there’s a good chance you’ve permanently ruined the adhesive backing.
Proximity Mills’ luxury carpet tiles, on the other hand, use special high-tech velcro pads—which Proximity calls friXion pads—to attach to the floor.
And That Means They’re Actually Reusable
Because they don’t have any adhesive, these carpet tiles are actually reusable. You can pick them up and put them back down as many times as you want—nothing’s going to happen to them.
Oh, and when you do decide to remove the friXion pads, you’ll find that the adhesive is specially designed to leave zero residue.
Best of All, These Luxury Carpet Tiles are Machine-Washable
We know we’re hyping these tiles up a lot, but it’s because they’re actually pretty one-of-a-kind. Not a lot of people make tufted carpet tiles; not a lot of people make carpet tiles that include a pad; not many people make carpet tiles that don’t use adhesive backing.
But what really makes these carpet tiles special? They’re machine-washable. As in, you can literally throw them in your washing machine to clean them. Seriously.
Dog made a mess on the carpet? Throw it in the wash. Spilled some wine? Throw it in the wash. Kid decided to play tic-tac-toe on their bedroom floor using a marker? Throw it in the wash. The carpet, that is!
A fringe benefit of being machine-washable: these carpet tiles are totally waterproof! Now, we wouldn’t recommend using them as bathroom flooring or anything like that, but it is good to know that if you do spill something on them, your subfloor won’t suffer.
How Much Do Proximity Mills Luxury Carpet Tiles Cost?
These luxury carpet tiles measure 24″ by 40″ and generally sell for between $4.20 and $4.99/sq. ft. depending on the specific product.
Where to Buy Proximity Mills Flooring
Here’s the thing about Proximity Mills (and depending on who you ask, one of the only downsides to the brand): it’s difficult to find.
Sure, some of that has to do with the company being so niche. But it seems to have more to do with the fact that Proximity Mills doesn’t allow box stores or national chains to carry their products.
And even smaller flooring stores have to meet super-strict criteria in order to sell it.
Why Can’t You Buy Proximity Mills at Box Stores or National Chains?
Well, the company website tells us that it’s their way of ensuring that people actually like their floors.
They don’t want their floors being sold or installed by people who don’t know what they’re doing, because they believe this leads to unhappy customers. So they make sure anyone selling their products meets certain standards for customer satisfaction, installation expertise, and use of technology.
And That Might Be the Most Impressive Thing About Proximity Mills
If you ask us, the company’s dedication to great customer service might just be the best thing about them. We’ve never heard of a flooring company (or any company, for that matter) actually limiting the number of people who sell their stuff.
But like we mentioned earlier, Proximity Mills’s site tells us they’re trying to create a better, easier kind of floor-buying experience—and it seems like customer service and transparency are a big part of that.
So Where Can I Find Proximity Mills Flooring Near Me?
PS: Proximity Mills Makes The Buying Experience Super Easy, Too
It’s also worth mentioning that Proximity Mills makes it super easy to compare their different products with their standardized icon system.
One of the big issues a lot of people have when they’re buying LVP or laminate—or even buying hardwood floors for that matter—is that it’s incredibly difficult to compare the pros and cons of different products.
And when it comes to comparing entirely different types of flooring—like vinyl plank vs. laminate or tile vs. wood—it gets even harder. Every floor has special gimmicks to make it more attractive, and comparing them against each other is like comparing apples and oranges.
With that in mind, Proximity Mills created a proprietary icon system to make comparisons easier. And now that they’ve rolled out different wood flooring types, the standardized icon system has carried over as well.
Proximity Mills Flooring Reviews
Overall, we’re impressed by what Proximity Mills offers—particularly at the price it’s sold.
When it comes to vinyl: the design layer detailing and texture are excellent, with a ton of variation. While the trained eye can tell it’s not a genuine hardwood species when viewed up-close, it looks much more like wood-look tile than it does “fake wood flooring”—so not cheap or plasticky at all.
But the most impressive thing about Proximity Mills’ LVP, we’d have to say, is its wear layer. Usually, even thick wear layers can turn a milky white when they get heavily scraped. Proximity Mills LVP is built to resist this issue, because the wear layer is infused with ceramic beads, which essentially act like ball bearings—making sharp objects slide off the surface rather than gouging it. Either way, color us impressed.
The same themes ring true for the company’s hardwood, carpet, and tile options. There are just so many bells and whistles you would never expect to get for the price here. The waterproofing and exotic wood species; the 6,6 nylon; the rectified porcelain—it’s all high-quality stuff at a not-high-quality cost.
All of that to say: across the board, these products offer a boatload of high-performance features you’d expect to pay a premium for—but at an exceptionally reasonable price.
Conclusion: Proximity Mills is Absolutely Worth Buying
Of all the brands we’ve reviewed over the past year, we’d rank Proximity Mills at or around the top of the pack.
Is it the cheapest brand in the world? No. Is it the fanciest? No. Is it the easiest to find? Probably not.
But: of all the flooring brands out there, we think it offers the best cost-to-quality ratio, the best cost-to-performance ratio, and the best buying experience. So if high-performance flooring is what you’re looking for, we wholeheartedly recommend it.
Plus, we think what the company is doing in terms of sustainability, transparency, and shopping local is really, really wonderful—so we’re happy to support those efforts too.
Associate Director of Content Marketing at FlooringStores (and its parent company, Broadlume), Samuel is a former travel writer, English teacher, and semi-professional trivia host. When he’s not creating content, he can be found doing crosswords, drinking coffee, and petting the office dogs.
This post may contain references or links to products from one or more partners of our parent company and/or subsidiaries of our parent company. For more information, visit this page. May 19, 2022 SPC flooring is marketed as an upgrade to ordinary luxury vinyl plank and tile flooring, but what is SPC flooring? Is it actually […]
Tarkett laminate flooring probably isn’t the first choice that pops up when you look for the best laminate flooring brands. In fact, Tarkett is a rather obscure brand, at least in terms of residential flooring. So you’re probably wondering: is it any good?
That’s exactly what we’re here to find out!
Below you’ll find a comprehensive guide based on thorough research and the input of hundreds of Tarkett laminate flooring reviews.
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