A Guide to Different Types of Ropes

Ropes have been used for thousands of years; they were just not as advanced as they are now, but they served the same purpose. They are a combination of yarns, plies, fibers, and strands twisted and woven together to make a more firm and stronger structure. 

Due to their high tensile strength, you can use ropes for dragging and lifting things. They are thicker and stronger than a regular cord or string. 

Over the past few years, many manufacturers have been producing different types of ropes for a wide range of applications. Each rope has its advantages and disadvantages; some ropes are far more suitable for specific jobs than others. 

Let us help you find the rope that you’re looking for, according to your needs.

Different Types of Ropes

Where to Buy
Propylene Rope
Manila Rope
ProManila Rope
Nylon Rope
Polyester Rope
Kevlar Rope
Poly-Combo Rope
Jute Rope
Cotton Ropes
White Polypropylene Ropes

1. Propylene Rope

Propylene ropes are synthetically made and have many distinct properties. These ropes are suitable for near water usage because they are water-resistant and do not decay easily. They are also available in various colors, making them a popular choice as obstacles in golf courses, parks, and even power plants.

Propylene ropes are also used to identify swimming lanes in pools because they stay afloat. The fishermen use these ropes in crab and lobster lines and the sea for buoy moorings, aquaculture, and net lines.

2. Manila Rope

Manila ropes have become the standard due to their excellent rope strength and overall functionality. These are made entirely from natural hemp fibers, giving them an attractive appearance. They are widely used for decorating fences or other landscaping applications. 

Due to its moisture absorption and UV radiation resistance, the rope owner should be careful when maintaining tension on the road, especially when exposed to different elements. The absorption quality of these ropes makes them the first choice for demanding sports that need direct rope handling. 

These ropes absorb sweat and provide an excellent grip for activities like tug of war, climbing, obstacle courses, and stage rigging. If these ropes get broken, they will not snap back like other synthetic ropes. 

3. ProManila Rope

ProManila is not a usual tan rope; it is made of unique propylene strands that give it the impression of a worn-out natural Manilla rope. These ropes give you a classic look and feel of a Manila rope without its drawbacks. 

These ropes last for a longer time, especially in wet or humid conditions, and they also don't shrink when they come in contact with water. Hence, it means that you won't have to deal with ugly mold or mildew on the rope, which may cause various problems. Furthermore, ProManila rope is more resistant to various contaminants and feels considerably smoother in hand than a regular Manila rope. 

4. Nylon Rope

If you are looking for a rope with high strength and extraordinary stretching qualities, nylon rope might be the right choice for you. It is stronger than the Manila and polypropylene rope and is commonly used to pull the highest loads and bear the most weight.

Nylon's exceptional strength, smooth surface, and abrasion resistance make it suitable for pulley systems and winches. These ropes are also used in making various fall prevention systems and rescue line assemblies. The strength and subtleness of nylon ropes are the most helpful in these applications.

5. Polyester Rope

Polyester rope is an all-purpose rope; it is the best choice you can go for when you need a tough heavy-duty rope. These ropes are great for general industrial and rigging applications since they come in handy in harsh environmental conditions. 

Moreover, these ropes are used in marine applications to tie down the lines or hold back the boats. Some common uses of these ropes are winches, dock rigging, blocking, and simple household applications. These ropes are also commonly mistaken with nylon ropes due to minor differences. The most significant difference is its resistance to chemicals.

6. Kevlar Rope

Kevlar ropes are made from synthetic fibers. These ropes are commonly used in construction, marine environments, and recreational purposes. They are also used in mooring lines for ships and recreational watercraft as furniture components, hauling utilities, and various other applications. 

Kevlar ropes are strong and capable enough to support the weight of suspension footbridges. Also, they are stronger than steel, having high strength, low elasticity, and excellent chemical resistance. 

Other uses of Kevlar rope include mine sweep cables, riser tensioners, oil rig moorings, utility truck winch lines, helicopter slings, etc.

7. Poly-Combo Rope

Poly-Combo ropes are unique as they have polypropylene on the inside strands but polyester on the outer strands. This type of rope is extremely light and feels soft and smooth in the hands. Such ropes have many uses and are mainly used in outdoor applications. 

They are durable and can withstand rough weather conditions easily. These ropes make an excellent choice if you are searching for a rope for gardening, exercising, hanging a swing, or building rope rails around your property.

8. Jute Rope

Jute rope is made with a different form of natural fiber that looks similar to hemp but has several differences. It is incredibly lightweight, rough, and rigid-looking, but also soft. Because of the unique shine of the material, decorative knots look much better and prettier than knots with other types. 

Furthermore, the jute stays in its place due to the traction outside the rope, but it can be a bit more slippery than the hemp ropes. A tip to keep in mind is that if you want to prevent your jute rope from shrinking, be sure to dry and spread it out under the stain; otherwise, it will shrink drastically.

9. UHMWPE Rope

UHMWPE stands for Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene. The ropes made of UHMWPE are extremely strong and firm. They can survive in water and won't be affected by exposure to water. Besides that, it is already water-resistant, making it an excellent choice for outdoor usage, particularly for boating or fishing. 

The two most common types of UHMWPE ropes are Spectra and Dyneema. They are abrasion, UV, and chemical resistant, and since they are so light, they float effortlessly. However, there are a few problems with these types of ropes: they are very slippery and difficult to knot. Once knotted, the knots can slide out of place. 

Furthermore, due to their low melting point, they can easily be damaged by intense heat. If the ropes are coated, they will slightly bend under large weights; therefore, you should be careful when buying a UHMWPE rope.

10. Cotton Ropes

Cotton ropes are commonly used in children's toys, pet toys, and backyard toys. The cotton rope fibers are softer and gentle on the skin. These ropes are also used for crafts and camping. 

Cotton ropes are not as durable as synthetic ropes and are can easily get damaged by humidity and wetness. However, cotton is not as troublesome in hot environments because it does not expand or slip.

One advantage of using cotton ropes is for outdoor toys. Furthermore, because cotton is lightweight, it is easy to carry. If you use cotton ropes in damp conditions, you should be prepared for hard knots that can tighten and become hard to unfold due to humidity and moisture.

11. White Polypropylene Ropes

The white ropes stand out and are easy to notice, but you should be careful because they can easily stain and become discolored if you use them outside for an extended time. If you are looking for an easier rope to see in a natural setting, white will be an excellent choice for you. It is also perfect for use on a boat as it will mix in with the white sails, making it appear clean and bright.


Several different types of ropes are available in the market to cater to different uses. It entirely depends on your needs and requirements which one to go for. Some are great for heavy-duty usage, some are great for underwater applications, while others are good for all purposes and weather conditions. 

You shouldn’t just choose a rope based on its looks; you should also consider the materials they’re made of to determine their usage. Hence, considering the above, you should be able to choose the best rope according to your requirements.