By: Erica

What do you think of when someone says blackout shades? Do you think of something that gives you privacy, not allowing anyone to look in your windows or see any shadows or silhouettes? Do you think of cave dark where no light or visibility comes through the product what so ever? Well black out can mean a variety of things to each individual person, but I will define what it really means!

Blackout shades make your room, cave dark, and are being widely used in many homes. These products have the ability to create rooms of complete darkness for sleeping or media purposes. I would assume every home has a bedroom, so these style shades can make you forget what time of the day it is. Really, you could sleep through the entire day, and not even realize that you missed it! Blackout shades will solve sleeping problems, and can actually create a visually appealing space for the window too!

Now when it comes to different styles of blackout shades, there are a ton. But not all options are as effective as others. There are decorative shades that you can add backings to that create complete darkness but still allow light through pinholes – this is called room darkening – not blackout. There are also blinds that you can get to close tighter – light will get in through the slats – they are not blackout.

If you’re looking for something to completely blackout, you want to stick with cellular (honeycomb) shades or roller shades. I personally am biased and prefer the cellular shades to the roller shades due to their additional insulation properties. Energy saving blackout shades are created with cells rather than with flat pieces of fabric. The cell shape is what provides both the light blocking and energy saving ability. This is a great product if you want to save a little bit more money, not only in the summer but in the winter too!

Another style that is considered blackout is fabric or vinyl roller shades. They can come in a wide variety of colors, styles and textures to fit your room style and decor. Now roller shades are exactly what they are called, shades on a roller. They can either come with a cord or on a spring and are a very basic product. The main consideration when trying to get complete blackout with these shades is the best mounting option is an exterior mount on the frame or wall. Due to the fabric on the roll being shorter than where the mounting brackets fall, you need to make sure you are overlapping the fabric over the window opening to get complete blockage and no large light gaps. If you prefer to have them mounted inside the frame, I would suggest also getting some panels/curtains for each side and maybe a valance on the top to cover and finish this product off. Between the two styles to give you blackout, they both vary in price. If you’re looking for something to do the job and are on a budget, the roller shades will get the job done. Good luck and good night!