Blackout Curtains: Best Product Reviews And Everything You Need To Know

best blackout curtains

Buying Guide: Best Blackout Curtains

You don’t want to sacrifice the look for the practicality in finding the best blackout curtains you can find. It doesn’t matter if you’re looking for your bedroom or for your living room, because ultimately, what you want is to find curtains that will block the light.

Disclosure: We receive compensation from the companies whose products we review. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own.

Getting to Know the Difference Between Drapes and Curtains

The biggest difference between curtains and drapes is the fabric used. Curtains are typically a single layer and do let some amount of light into a room. 

Drapes, on the other hand, have a layer of blackout fabric on the inside while the outer layer of fabric is a different color. Colors and patterns range much like curtain fabric, but when looking for the best blackout curtains you can find, you want to make sure there is a blackout lining to ensure maximum light blockage.

How to Install Blackout Curtains

how to install blackout curtains

There are multiple types of blackout curtains, and you may think you know how to install them, but you’ll be surprised at some of the suggestions on how to install them.

First, there are grommets. Grommets are the rings that are inlaid at the top of the curtain. Curtain rods typically go through grommets and give curtains a naturally pleated look.

Then some curtains do not have grommets. In times past, people used to push the curtain rod in the opening at the edge seam, but that’s an awfully dated look these days. Instead, people will use clips to literally hang the curtains from the rods.

Beyond hanging the curtains, you need to adjust for length and width to get the best coverage. Ideally, you want the curtains to go approximately 6” all the way around the window to get the biggest decrease in light.

Benefits of Blackout Curtains

The most obvious advantage of purchasing blackout curtains is that they block out the light that would otherwise filter into your room.

Did you know that blackout curtains can also reduce energy costs? It’s true. They reduce energy costs by reducing the sunlight as well as the UV rays that would normally come through your windows.

A pleasant side effect is that blocking the sun also means you’ll preserve your furniture and flooring. That’s a blessing to your wallet because the investment you make in these items translates to an increase in longevity before you’ll have to replace them.

You will likely also sleep better with blackout curtains because blackout curtains’ thickness also acts as a noise dampener. They won’t soundproof a room, but they can help cut down on outside ambient noise when you’re trying to catch some z’s.

Make Your Own Blackout Curtains

By now, you’ve probably realized that blackout curtains tend to be more expensive than regular curtains. There are things you can do to make your own if you can’t afford the blackout curtains that you’ll find out on the market.

As an example, you can purchase blackout liners and hang them via clipping loops to the curtains you already have up in your home. Alternatively, you can hang them on a double rod if you have one.

If you’re handy with a sewing machine, you can also quite literally make your own blackout curtains as the materials are relatively inexpensive if you choose to buy the fabrics instead.

The 5 Best Blackout Curtains That Won’t Break the Bank

We all want the best, but it’s a hard-pressed fact that we also want to not have to pay through the hose to cover certain expenses. It’s a good bet that curtains, even blackout curtains, fall into that category. With that said, here are 5 of the best blackout curtains your money can buy.

NICETOWN Blackout Curtains Panels for Bedroom - 3 Pass Microfiber...
  • ELEGANT DESIGN: 2 panels per package. Each Blackout Curtain measures 52" wide x 84" long. The design of silver grommet...
  • AMAZING MATERIAL: Super heavy and soft Blackout Curtain Panels are very upmarket. Besides, 85%-99% light blocking,...
  • WISE BUDGET: Protect your furniture and floor exposed to the sun, while still helping you save money on heating and...

These curtains from NICETOWN also claim to be noise-reducing in their design, and according to Amazon reviewers, they live up to it exceedingly well.

One reviewer even claims, “We recently moved into a new home, which is about a mile or two from a major interstate. We didn’t realize how noisy it was until night time when all the trucks are going down it. There is just an open field between us and highway. I was skeptical when I purchased these curtains that they would actually block very much sound. I know layering up bath towels can block almost all the sound but its also really ugly. These curtains reduced the interstate noise to just a low hum. I was actually able to get some sleep last night.”

They have a full comparison on their Amazon listing and go to great lengths to show you why they’re the best of the best. You can see right up front the difference in thickness, fabric surface, weight, and shading.

Another reviewer also says that “the gray ones block about 90% of the light.” When installed correctly, the curtains from NICETOWN get the job done in diminishing the overall light that gets into your room.

Deconovo Room Darkening Thermal Insulated Blackout Grommet Window...
  • Available in three different size options (42x63 inch, 42x84 inch, 42x95 inch), these amazing curtains are sold in one...
  • 6 Silver Color Grommets on each Panel. Deconovo blackout curtains can reduce light. The darker the color, the better the...
  • Our grommet blackout curtains are also energy saving/efficient curtains as they are made of materials with thermal...

Deconovo offers these blackout curtains in several different sizes ranging from 63” through 95” in length. According to their Amazon listing, these are also thermally insulated and claim energy efficiency.

Additionally, their description goes into depth about the fabrics used and the various colors that are available. Deconovo also mentions that the fabrics used do not attract dust or mites, which is great for the allergy suffering crowd.

One reviewer states, “I have purchased a total of five sets of Deconovo drapes. I live in Phoenix, AZ, and it is a big deal to me to keep as much sunshine outside of my home during the summer as possible. These things block almost all of the light that would otherwise come in, and I have noticed a huge difference in my great room from the drapes that were there when I purchased my home.”

At an affordable price, you can likely purchase a set of panels for every single window in your home that will match your home décor.

Sun Zero Easton Blackout Energy Efficient Grommet Curtain Panel, 40" x...
  • Blackout technology blocks out most unwanted light while enhancing privacy
  • Energy efficient design reduces energy lost through your windows by up to 40%
  • Thermal properties help keep summer heat and winter chill out of your home

These blackout curtains from Sun Zero have a stellar reputation for doing a good job blocking out the sunlight according to some of the reviewers over at Amazon. They are also incredibly affordable at under $15 per panel.

According to one such review, “I bought these for my master bedroom at my new house. The windows face west so after 4pm every day the sun blasts through the windows. It’s really hot and really bright in there, even with the blinds installed. When I hung these up today, it instantly became dark as night in the room. I have other blackout curtains from JCPennys in my front room downstairs, and these ones are 100x better. I’m very impressed, especially for being so affordable.”

They come in a range of colors and are available on Amazon with Prime shipping if you happen to be an Amazon Prime member.

Royal Hotel Willow Jacquard Charcoal Grommet Blackout Window Curtain...
  • Luxury Willow Jacquard Panel/Drapes Blocks 99% of light and Saves on home heating and cooling costs
  • Thermal Insulated Backing, Triple-Pass foam back layer to enure light blocking
  • Sold in Pairs, 84x108 Inches Pair, 42x108 Inches Each Panel

The blackout curtains from Willow come in several different sizes that range from 63” through 120” in length. Made from polyester and textured with a satin finish, these curtains contain a foam layer that blocks out the light.

As a bonus, these are also machine washable, which makes a difference when shopping for blackout curtains, or any curtains for that matter. Having machine washable curtains makes them easy for you to clean as needed.

If you decide to go this route, do keep in mind that you’ll want to avoid ironing these panels because the could be damaged as a result of the high heat.

As one reviewer states, the curtains are “perfect all the way around and exactly what we wanted. The color matched the pictures, they have a white thermal backing to reflect out heat, we ordered taupe ant [sic] they are totally blackout, they are truly 96” in length, the stitching is of high quality. Both sets of curtains were identical (all four panels) in length and width so they look fine on the two windows on the same wall we put them on.”

Willow’s blackout curtains have fantastic reviews, and you would benefit from reading the various accounts as well as taking a look at customer pictures posted to the site.

5. IKEA Marjun Curtains

ikea marjun curtains

You can find these on Amazon or get them directly from IKEA. They are also relatively inexpensive and are sold by the pair.

Their Marjun Curtains are also machine washable and can be washed in a normal cycle. That means that they’re easy to care for, which is a bonus for anyone that wants to keep dust to a minimum. You can even iron these to make sure they are always looking their best.

Reviews on IKEA’s site indicate that customers are happy with these particular blackout curtains. In fact, one customer claims, “Truly opaque panels! I wanted blackout curtains that could block all external light without additional window treatments (i.e., shades, miniblinds). My bedroom window overlooks a well-lit street, and midnight looks like daybreak with standard curtains. Even other blackout curtain brands that tout a 99% light-blocking effectiveness left the room washed in a glow. I purchased a pair of Marjun panels in Grey, and they successfully lock out all unwanted light. Don’t forget the hem tape – the panels run long.”

There are plenty of good reviews on IKEA’s site, so take a few minutes to read through a few of them to see what you’re looking at if you choose to buy these.

Picking the Best Blackout Curtains for You

There are a lot of options available to you on the market today. Some are more expensive than others, while others are easier on your wallet.

That doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice quality for the price. You should expect the same quality from a lower price tag, but only if you do your research.

When you do your research, there are a few things to look for to make sure you’re getting the best curtains for your hard-earned dollars.

  • Always check reviews. Keep in mind that variances will be there, but be sure to weigh the pros and cons you’ll see. Many times, negative reviews happen because of inappropriate expectations or, in this case, lack of blinds on windows.
  • Measure your windows and remember that extra length and width all the way around. There’s nothing worse when you get your panels, and they’re too short for your windows.
  • Compare return policies. Some of the panels that you might be interested come from manufacturers with easy-to-handle return policies, while others don’t offer returns at all.
  • Check for cleaning instructions. Some are washable, others are dry clean only, and still others say they should be vacuumed.

Your Best Bet

These are all solid choices if you expect quality and price to have a positive correlation. Of course, you don’t have to go with a less expensive option if you’ve got cash to burn, but be sure to weigh your options.

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