If tired days and sleepless nights have you searching for blackout window treatment solutions, you’ve come to the right place! While there are many available blackout solutions on the market, we’ll help you narrow down your options by discussing two of the most popular solutions: blackout curtains and fabric roller blackout window shades. Since both of these window treatments have advantages and disadvantages, most of your decision will be influenced by your needs, preferences, and budget. 


Blackout Curtains

Blackout curtains are made of two layers of opaque fabric (or more) and can block up to 100% of light while providing thermal insulation. These window treatments can be customized to complement your existing furnishings or any pattern, color, or design that you prefer. Blackout curtains exude elegance and are often featured in hotel rooms and movie theaters when maximum light blockage is required. 


Blackout Roller Shades

Blackout roller shades are made of an opaque piece of fabric that smoothly rolls up into a cassette. Fabric roller blackout window shades can block out the majority of external light on their own. When combined with side channels, however, they will completely eliminate light gaps. These window treatments will give your home a modern and sleek appearance but do not offer as many personalization options as blackout curtains.


Important Considerations When Choosing Blackout Window Treatments


Installing blackout curtains requires a lot of space. You will have to install a curtain box or holder brackets that are larger than the window itself. Keep in mind that you will need to add a couple of inches to the sides of the curtain for optimum light blockage. 


Blackout roller shades, on the other hand, are ideal for rooms with limited space. This is because the fabric rolls into the cassette when raised, and when it is lowered, it practically disappears into the window.



Do you prefer modern or luxurious window treatments? In recent years, curtains have become less popular as more homeowners prefer modern interiors. However, classic blackout curtains are unrivaled in terms of sophistication. With so many lengths, styles, and fabrics to choose from, you won’t ever run out of options! 



Blackout curtains tend to block out more light and provide better privacy than blackout roller shades. However, if you’re looking for blackout window treatments for your kitchen, where privacy isn’t the main concern and you still want to receive some natural light, blackout roller shades may be the better alternative. 



Another key aspect to consider when choosing blackout window treatments is the furniture, flooring, and decor in the room that you intend to darken. Excessive exposure to direct sunlight can cause your furnishings to become damaged, bleached, or discolored. If you want to keep your grandmother’s antique furniture in the best possible condition, we recommend using blackout curtains, which can block up to 100% of light when drawn. However, if you have a lot of houseplants that require sunlight, you may want to purchase fabric roller blackout window shades without side and sill channels instead. 



Do you live in an area where it is extremely cold or hot and humid? When selecting blackout window treatments, it is important to consider your location’s weather in order to purchase window treatments that best suit your needs. If you live in New York or New Jersey, for example, purchasing blackout curtains may be the better option because they will help insulate your windows and keep heat in during the long winters. On the other hand, if you live in Florida or California, you may want to consider purchasing blackout shades. Fabric roller blackout window shades are typically made from a lighter fabric that allows heat to escape through glass windows. 


Noise Reduction

Do you live in a noisy area, such as a city center or near a busy street? If you do, you’ll most likely want to choose window treatments that block out as much noise as possible. Fortunately, blackout curtains are quite effective in reducing noise since they are made of several layers of fabric.



We understand that window treatments can be expensive, especially if you’re planning on treating multiple windows! If you have a limited budget, we suggest that you go with fabric roller blackout window shades since they are less expensive. Blackout curtains are luxurious window treatments on the higher end of the market, but that doesn’t mean they are totally unaffordable.


Upkeep and Maintenance

If you have kids or pets, you’ll want to choose blackout window treatments that are easy to clean and that stays out of reach. It is not recommended to use blackout curtains in high-traffic areas since they accumulate a lot of dust (especially if they puddle on the floor) and can be difficult to open and close due to their weight. While some blackout curtains can be machine washed, others have to be dry cleaned. Blackout roller shades are a much better option if you’re worried about your kids ruining your window treatments. Fabric roller blackout window shades can be dusted using a feather duster or vacuum with a dusting brush attachment and wiped down with a wet cloth to remove stains.



There is no doubt that blackout roller shades are considerably easier to install than blackout curtains. Installing blackout roller shades is as simple as installing mounting brackets and attaching the cassette to them. Installing fabric roller blackout window shades is fairly easy and shouldn’t take long.


Blackout curtains, on the other hand, are much harder to install. They require precise measurement and drilling. When taking measurements, we suggest that you add a few additional inches to the length and width of the curtain to get the desired blackout effect. 


If you don’t want to install your blackout window treatments on your own, Royal Window Treatments would be more than happy to install them for you! 



Want to have even more control over your blackout window treatments? Both blackout curtains and blackout roller shades can be motorized; however, due to their weight, motorizing blackout curtains is more expensive than motorizing fabric roller blackout window shades.



As we mentioned above, blackout curtains offer more customization options. You can create completely unique curtains, choosing from limitless designs, styles, and fabrics! For instance, you can select from rod pockets, tab tops, and grommets for your curtain headings, as well as between classic rods, return rods, or track rods for the hardware. Blackout shades are more minimalistic in their design, with fewer design possibilities aside from a large selection of colors and the option of opaque fabric or slats. 


Choosing between blackout curtains and shades can be challenging, but hopefully, this article has helped you decide what you’re looking for in a blackout window treatment and narrowed down your options!