Choosing the Right Wet Mop for the Job

Wet Mop Basics

5 Basics of Wet Mop Construction

Construction Type

Cut End Mops

Also called String Mops, Cut End Mops have loose ends (strings).  Cut end mops are less expensive than looped end mops and tend to leave gaps in coverage, lint easily, cannot be laundered and have fewer options of yarn types.

Looped End Mops

Looped end mops are looped at the end with a stitched hem just above the bottom.  Looped end mops cover twice the area in half the time when compared to cut end mops.  They also don’t leave gaps in coverage, lint less, absorb more, (most) are launderable, have more yarn options and the yarn lasts up to 8 times longer than cut end mops.


Yarn is the material used in making the wet mop.  There are five basic types of yarn used in making wet mops.  They are:

Cotton Wet Mops

This is the cheapest yarn available in wet mops.  Cotton mops are very absorbent, but have a break-in period, dry slowly, promote mildew growth, lint terribly and are not a long-lasting choice of wet mops.

Rayon Wet Mops

Rayon mops are generally used for applying disinfectant liquids and floor finish to floors.  Rayon is reasonably absorbent with excellent release, dries quickly, mildew resistant, launderable (but may shrink when laundered), is virtually non-linting, fairly durable with no almost retention and no break-in period.

Synthetic Wet Mops

Synthetic wet mops are usually used on rough surfaces or used in specialty applications.  They are absorbent, have excellent strength and durability, virtually no linting, little retention, dries fairly quickly, are launderable with no break-in period.

Blended Wet Mops

Blended wet mops are made from a blend of different yarns; generally, a blend of cotton with polyesther, rayon or some other synthetic material.  Blended mops are extremely durable and can be laundered numerous times (but may shrink somewhat).  They are also absorbent, perform well in a variety of applications, and need no break-in period.  Some blended mops are sold as pre-shrunk mops.

Microfiber Wet Mops

The most effective form of microfiber wet mop is actually a pad that is specially designed for wet use.  Microfiber has tremendous durability, absorbency (with quick release) and removes up to 95% of bacteria on its own!  These mops can be laundered 100s of times, but require special handles, pad holders and special buckets to soak and wring them out.

Twists and Plies

Wet mops are made from a number yarn plies.  “Plies” are the number of yarn strands twisted together to make each overall mop strand.  Four strands of twisted yarn per overall mop strand would be referred to as having 4-ply yarn construction.  The tighter the twists, the stronger the mop (but less absorbent).


The headband is the synthetic, stitched top of the mop head that is loaded into the mop handle and tightened down.  It is also designed to non-abrasively scrub and dislodge soils that may be stuck to the floor.  There are narrow headbands and wide headbands.  Quality varies in the thickness of the synthetic material used as well as the number and thickness of the stitches.

Narrow Headbands

Narrow headbands are generally 1.25″ wide and used in mop handles with stirrup-style clamps.

Wide Headbands

Wide headbands are generally 5″ wide and used in mop handles with jaw-style clamps.


The tailband is the synthetic stitched area near the bottom end of the mop head.  Quality varies in the thickness of the synthetic material used as well as the number and thickness of the stitches.  This stitched seam is located just above the looped ends of the mop.  The tailband helps increase productivity (floor coverage), increases mop durability and launderability.


The size of the wet mop is generally classified into ounces, while others are in an arbitrarily numbered series.

Sized by Ounces

“True ounce” mops weigh the true amount as called out in the product description, +/- one ounce.

Small mops are generally in the 8-12 ounces range (dry weight).
Medium mops are generally in the 16-20 ounces range (dry weight).
Large mops are generally in the 24-32 ounces range (dry weight).
Extra Large mops are generally in the 32-40 ounces range (dry weight).


Finding the right wet mop for the job isn’t very difficult.  Generally speaking, cotton mops are a poor choice unless you need a mop for a filthy, one-time cleaning situation where shredding, linting, mildew and super clean performance are not an issue.

Rayon is excellent for applying disinfectant liquids and floor finishes.
Microfiber is an excellent choice for use on polished floors that require anti-bacterial cleaning or light, fine everyday soil removal.
Otherwise, choose a blended or synthetic mop for most general cleaning duties.

Look at the quality of construction to get the best overall value.  Consider the thickness of the yarn and stitched bands.  How many plies does the mop have?

Contact us to discuss your situation.  We can help!