Blackout Blinds vs Curtains: Choose the Best for Total Darkness!

Photo of author

Written by: Mohammad Sameer

Published on:

The choice between blackout blinds vs curtains can make all the difference when it comes to window coverings and window treatments. Finding the right window treatment solution, such as custom draperies, is key.

Both custom draperies and blackout shades offer effective light control, but understanding their differences is crucial in selecting the right window treatment for your needs.

Custom draperies are made with opaque fabric, while blackout shades are designed specifically to block out light, similar to a blackout blind.

Blackout blinds are a popular window treatment solution that uses opaque fabric to block out natural light, creating a full blackout effect. These window coverings are often used in bedrooms or media rooms where complete darkness is desired.

Custom draperies can also be used as an alternative window treatment option for achieving a similar effect.

Blackout shades, draperies, and blackout blinds are installed within the window recess, offering maximum darkness and minimizing light exposure. These window coverings are made with opaque fabric.

On the other hand, blackout curtains use thick materials and opaque fabric linings to prevent light from entering through the windows. These curtains are like shades or blinds that create a recess, ensuring darkness in the room.

While shades may not achieve full blackout-like window coverings, they still provide significant darkness, making them a great window treatment solution for any window recess.

Whether you prioritize complete darkness or prefer some natural light in your space, this article will guide you in choosing between blackout blinds and curtains for your sleep sanctuary.

For example, if you want to block out all light and create a dark atmosphere, blackout blinds are the perfect solution. They can be easily installed in the window recess and provide complete darkness.

On the other hand, if you prefer some natural light while still maintaining privacy, curtains are a great choice. They come in various shades and can be customized to fit your window recess perfectly.

Effectiveness Comparison: Blackout Blinds vs Curtains

Effectiveness Comparison: Blackout Blinds vs Curtains

Blackout curtains provide superior light-blocking capabilities

Blackout curtains, also known as shades or blinds, are exceptional at blocking out sunlight. These blackout curtains are made with a special lining that prevents light from entering the room, creating a dark and cozy environment.

The blind is perfect for those who want complete darkness and privacy. The thick fabric and multiple layers of blackout curtains effectively absorb and block sunlight, making them an excellent choice for bedrooms, nurseries, or any other space where you want to eliminate external light. These curtains are a great alternative to shades or blinds.

Blackout blinds offer precise light control with adjustable slats

On the other hand, blackout blinds offer a different approach to light control by providing optimal shades.

Unlike curtains, blackout shades have adjustable slats that allow you to regulate the amount of light entering the room. By simply tilting the slats, you can achieve varying levels of darkness or brightness.

This feature provides more flexibility in controlling natural light during different times of the day. Whether you prefer a completely dark room or just want to reduce glare while still enjoying some natural light, blackout blinds offer precise control over your lighting preferences.

Comparing the effectiveness of blackout curtains and blinds in blocking out sunlight

Both blackout curtains and blinds excel in their ways. While blackout curtains provide complete darkness by absorbing and blocking incoming light, blackout blinds give you the option to adjust the slats according to your desired level of brightness.

However, it’s important to note that even though blackout blinds can significantly reduce incoming sunlight when fully closed, they may not be able to achieve total darkness as blackout curtains do.

Understanding how blackout curtains and blinds can enhance privacy

In addition to their light-blocking capabilities, blackout curtains and blinds also enhance privacy within your living space. The thick fabric used in blackout curtains prevents outsiders from seeing into your home during both day and night time.

Similarly, when fully closed, blackout blinds create a barrier that protects your privacy while still allowing some natural light to filter through the adjustable slats.

This makes blackout curtains and blinds an ideal choice for bedrooms, bathrooms, or any other area where privacy is a priority.

The benefits of noise reduction, quality, and result

Apart from their light-blocking and privacy-enhancing features, both blackout curtains and blinds offer additional benefits. One such benefit is noise reduction.

The thick fabric used in blackout curtains helps absorb external sounds, creating a quieter environment inside your home. Similarly, the materials used in blackout blinds also contribute to reducing outside noise.

Both options are available in a wide range of materials and styles. Whether you choose blackout curtains or blinds, you can find high-quality options that will last for years with proper care.

In terms of the final result they provide, both blackout curtains and blinds are effective at fulfilling their intended purpose – creating a darkened space by blocking out sunlight. However, the choice between them ultimately depends on personal preference and specific needs.

Factors to Consider: Choosing between Curtains and Blinds

Factors to Consider: Choosing between Curtains and Blinds

There are several factors to consider. Evaluating these factors will help you make an informed decision between curtains and blinds that aligns with your personal preferences and practical needs.

Personal Preferences

One of the first things to consider when choosing between curtains and blinds is your personal preference. Think about the style and aesthetic you want to achieve in your space. Curtains can add a touch of elegance and softness, while blinds offer a sleek and modern look. Consider the overall theme of your room and how each option fits into that vision.

Style, Maintenance, and Budget

Another important factor to evaluate is the style, maintenance, and budget associated with each window treatment option.

Curtains come in a wide variety of fabrics, colours, patterns, and designs, allowing for greater customization options. On the other hand, blinds offer versatility in terms of materials such as wood, aluminium, or fabric.

Maintenance requirements should also be taken into account. While curtains may require occasional washing or dry cleaning, blinds can be easily cleaned with a damp cloth or vacuumed.

Consider your budget as curtains can vary greatly in price depending on the fabric quality and design complexity.

Impact of Window Size and Shape

The size and shape of your windows play a crucial role in determining which window treatment will work best for you. If you have large windows or floor-to-ceiling glass panels, curtains can enhance their grandeur by adding drama and depth to the space.

Blinds are better suited for smaller windows or irregularly shaped windows where precise light control is desired.

Installation vs Customization Options

Consider whether easy installation or customization options are more important to you when making your decision. Blinds generally offer straightforward installation processes that can be done without professional assistance.

On the other hand, curtain installation may require more effort, including measuring, drilling, and mounting hardware.

However, curtains provide greater flexibility in terms of customization. You can choose the length, width, and style of curtains to fit your windows and match your interior design perfectly. Blinds may offer limited customization options depending on the type you choose.

Pros and Cons of Blackout Curtains

Excellent Light-Blocking Properties

One of the main advantages of blackout curtains is their ability to block out light effectively. These curtains are specifically designed with a thick lining that prevents sunlight from entering the room.

The opaque fabric used in blackout curtains ensures that even the brightest sunlight is completely blocked, creating a dark and cozy environment inside. This feature is particularly beneficial for individuals who work night shifts or those who have difficulty sleeping in bright rooms.


  • Blocks out sunlight effectively
  • Creates a dark and cozy environment

Limited Design Choices

While blackout curtains offer excellent light-blocking properties, one potential drawback is the limited design choices available compared to other window treatments. Since these curtains are primarily focused on functionality, they may not offer as wide a range of patterns, colours, or textures as regular curtains or blinds.

However, there are still various options available in terms of fabric types and solid colours that can complement different interior styles.


  • Limited variety of patterns, colours, and textures

Noise Reduction for a Peaceful Environment

In addition to blocking out light, blackout curtains also provide benefits in terms of noise reduction. The thick material used in these curtains helps to absorb sound waves coming from outside sources such as traffic or neighbours’ activities.

This can be especially advantageous for individuals living in busy urban areas or near noisy environments. By reducing external noise levels, blackout curtains create a more peaceful and quiet atmosphere within the room.


  • It helps absorb sound waves
  • Creates a peaceful environment

Higher Cost Compared to Regular Curtains

While blackout curtains offer numerous benefits, it’s important to consider their cost when making a purchasing decision. These specialized curtains tend to be priced higher than regular curtains due to their unique features and materials.

However, it’s worth noting that investing in blackout curtains can lead to long-term savings by reducing energy costs associated with temperature regulation inside the room. The enhanced privacy and improved sleep quality they provide may outweigh the higher upfront cost for many individuals.

Pros and Cons of Blackout Blinds

Precise Light Control

Blackout blinds are designed to offer precise light control through adjustable slats or panels. This means that you can easily adjust the amount of light entering a room by simply tilting the slats or raising and lowering the panels.

Whether you want complete darkness for sleep or just a little bit of filtered light during the day, blackout blinds give you the flexibility to achieve your desired level of brightness.

Difficulty in Cleaning

One potential downside of blackout blinds is that they may be more difficult to clean compared to curtain fabrics. Depending on the type of material used for the blinds, dust and dirt can accumulate between the slats or panels, requiring more effort to remove.

However, regular maintenance and cleaning routines can help mitigate this issue and ensure that your blackout blinds stay fresh and free from allergens.

Space-Saving Features

One advantage of blackout blinds is their space-saving features, which make them particularly suitable for small rooms or windowsills.

Unlike curtains that require additional space for draping, blackout blinds fit neatly within the window frame, maximizing available space in a room. This can be especially beneficial if you have a limited floor area or if you want to maintain a minimalist aesthetic in your living space.

Reduced Insulation

Another consideration when choosing between blackout blinds and curtains is insulation. While thick curtain materials provide excellent insulation properties, some types of blackout blinds may not offer the same level of thermal efficiency.

This means that heat loss during colder months or heat gain during warmer months may be more pronounced with certain types of blackout blinds.

If energy efficiency is a priority for you, it’s important to carefully consider the material composition and insulation capabilities of different options before making a decision.

Space Considerations: Not Suitable for Small Spaces

Blackout blinds may not be the ideal option. These blinds can be quite bulky when fully extended, which can pose challenges in terms of space.

One drawback of blackout blinds in smaller rooms is their bulkiness. When these blinds are fully extended, they take up a significant amount of space. This can make it difficult to fit other furniture or decor in the area, leading to a cramped and cluttered feel.

Another consideration is the size of curtain rods used with traditional curtains. These rods can also take up valuable space in smaller rooms, making them less than ideal for limited areas. The protrusion of curtain rods into the room can create an obstruction or limit the available space for other essential items.

Fortunately, there are alternative solutions that are more suitable for limited spaces. Roller blinds offer a sleek and compact design that takes up minimal room when fully rolled up. They can be easily fitted within recesses or above windows without encroaching on valuable space.

Mini curtains are another option worth considering for small spaces. These curtains have a shorter length compared to standard curtains and do not require bulky curtain rods. Mini curtains provide privacy while still allowing natural light to filter through, making them a practical choice for compact living areas or tiny windowsills.

When choosing between blackout blinds, roller blinds, or mini curtains for small spaces, it’s important to consider both window size and room dimensions.

A larger window may require wider coverage, which could limit the available options due to space constraints. Similarly, if the room is already crowded with furniture and decor, selecting a window treatment that takes up less space becomes crucial.

In terms of costs and budget considerations, blackout blinds can vary significantly depending on factors such as material quality and brand reputation.

Roller blinds and mini curtains tend to be more cost-effective options while still providing adequate light control and privacy.

In some cases, noise reduction may be a concern for small spaces. Blackout blinds are known to provide some degree of sound insulation due to their thick fabric and close fit against the window frame. However, roller blinds and mini curtains can also help reduce noise levels to a certain extent.

Blackout blinds excel in blocking out sunlight and preventing heat from entering the room. This can be particularly beneficial during hot summer months or in rooms that receive direct sunlight. Roller blinds and mini curtains may not offer the same level of thermal insulation but can still provide some barrier against heat transfer.

Ease of Installation: Curtain Rods Made Easy

Installing curtain rods for blackout curtains is a simple and convenient process. Let’s explore the ease of installation and highlight the advantages of using adjustable rod lengths.

Simplicity of Installing Curtain Rods

One of the key considerations is the simplicity of setting up curtain rods. Unlike blinds that require precise measurements and mounting brackets, curtain rods offer a much easier installation process.

Adjustable Rod Lengths for Various Window Sizes

One major advantage of using curtain rods for blackout curtains is the convenience of adjustable rod lengths.

This feature allows you to customize the fit for different window sizes in your home. Whether you have small or large windows, you can easily adjust the length of the curtain rod to ensure a perfect fit.

Mounting Curtain Rods Without Professional Assistance

Another benefit of using curtain rods is that they can be mounted without professional assistance. With basic tools such as a drill, screws, and a level, you can easily install curtain rods yourself.

This not only saves you money but also gives you the flexibility to choose where and how to mount your blackout curtains.

Comparing Installation Ease with Blinds

When comparing installation ease between blackout curtains and blinds, curtain rods come out on top. While blinds may require more complex measurements and specialized brackets, curtain rods offer a simpler solution. The straightforward process of installing curtain rods makes them an ideal choice for those seeking convenience and ease.

Final Thoughts on Blackout Blinds vs Curtains

After comparing the effectiveness, factors to consider, pros and cons, space considerations, and ease of installation between blackout blinds and curtains, it is clear that both options have their advantages and disadvantages.

Blackout blinds are more effective than curtains. They provide a tight seal against the window frame, preventing any light from entering the room.

However, if you prioritize style and versatility, curtains offer a wide range of designs and fabrics to choose from.

When deciding between blackout blinds and curtains, it’s important to consider your specific needs and preferences. If you’re looking for maximum light control in a small space or want an easy installation process, blackout blinds may be the better choice for you.

On the other hand, if you value aesthetics and want the option to change the look of your room frequently, curtains might be more suitable.

In conclusion (oops!), remember that both blackout blinds and curtains serve their purpose of providing privacy and blocking out light. Consider your specific requirements before making a decision. Whether you choose blackout blinds or curtains ultimately depends on your personal style preference and practical needs.


Can I use blackout blinds with curtains?

Yes! Combining blackout blinds with curtains can provide an even greater level of light control in a room. The combination allows for flexibility in adjusting the amount of sunlight that enters while still maintaining privacy.

Are there any alternatives to blackout blinds or curtains?

Yes! There are alternative options such as window films or shades that can also block out light effectively. Window films adhere directly to the glass surface while shades are made of fabric that can be rolled up or down as needed.

Do I need professional help for installing blackout blinds or curtains?

It depends on your level of comfort with DIY projects. Both blackout blinds and curtain rods can typically be installed by homeowners without professional assistance using basic tools like a drill and screws. However, if you’re unsure or prefer to have someone else handle the installation, professional help is always an option.

Can blackout blinds or curtains help with noise reduction?

While both blackout blinds and curtains can provide some level of noise reduction, they are not specifically designed for that purpose. If noise reduction is a priority, consider using additional soundproofing materials such as acoustic panels or double-glazed windows.

How do I clean blackout blinds or curtains?

The cleaning method will vary depending on the material of your blackout blinds or curtains. For fabric curtains, check the care instructions provided by the manufacturer. Most can be machine-washed on a gentle cycle or hand-washed. Blinds can usually be cleaned with a damp cloth or vacuumed using a brush attachment. Be sure to follow the specific cleaning recommendations for your chosen product.

Sharing Is Caring:

About Mohammad Sameer

My name is Mohammad Sameer, the founder of SoundproofGears. My hypersensitive hearing turned me into a lifelong seeker of silence. After years of research, I've become an expert on soundproofing techniques and materials. In November 2022 I launched this site to share my knowledge and help others find acoustic sanctuary. About More