Blackout Shades

So What Are Blackout Shades?

Blackout shades refer to window coverings that are designed to fully block out light. There is no single “type” of blackout shade; the term can refer to many different product types as long as they are designed to stop light entry. 

The two most common types of blackout blinds are roller shades and cellular shades

We will now take a closer look at both these options! 

Recommended Option A: Blackout Roller Shades

Roller blackout shades/blinds consist of a single fabric that rolls up and down on a tube mounted at the top of the window frame. 

They can be made from polyester, vinyl, or similar materials. They can be mounted inside a window frame or outside (over) a window frame. 

Many homeowners prefer outside mounting for blackout roller blinds to prevent glare around the edges. Some light leaking can happen more easily with inside mounted shades. They can be corded or cordless. They can be motorized for convenience. They come in a wide number of colors, including black, white, and patterned.  

bright room with large blackout roller shade lowered over half a large window

Recommended Option B: Blackout Cellular Shades

Although most people think of cellular shades as the best option for insulation, they are also an excellent choice for blocking out light. 

Cellular shades can be designed with blackout fabrics that are as effective at stopping light and UV rays as custom roller shades

Cellular shades are naturally cordless, and they can be outfitted with “bottom up/top down” functionality. This means you can pull them down at the top to cover just the bottom of the window, pull them from the ends to just cover the middle, or lift them from the bottom up as one would with traditional window treatments.

top down bottom up blackout cellular shade in a nursery

Should I Choose Roller Blackout or Cellular Blackout Blinds? 

This question is one that requires a lot of thought on the part of homeowners. Both types of blackout shade offer a lot of unique advantages. We will explore the pros of each to help you decide which is best for your home. 

Advantages of Blackout Roller Blinds 

Let’s start by taking a look at roller blinds, the simpler and more durable option.

  • Pro: Easier to clean. 
  • Pro: More affordable. 
  • Pro: Options for dual (zebra) shades.
  • Pro: More durable and less prone to damage. 
  • Pro: Bigger selection of styles (with some brands).  

Advantages of Blackout Cellular Blinds 

Now, let’s explore cellular shades, which are the more expensive and versatile option.

  • Pro: Versatile bottom up/top down options.
  • Pro: Offer better (exceptional) insulation. 
  • Pro: Better for harsher climates.
  • Pro: Easier to install to eliminate gaps where light can sneak in.
  • Pro: Generally more visually appealing.



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Blinds FAQ
Which blinds are best for privacy?

Blackout blinds provide the most privacy. These window treatments black out all light and can come in various materials and colors, including aluminum and faux wood options. Vertical blinds are another cost-effective, privacy solution for covering large windows like sliding glass windows.

Which blinds are easiest to clean?

Due to their vertical hanging slats, vertical blinds are least likely to gather dust when compared to other custom blinds. If vertical blinds aren’t your style, faux wood blinds are a stylish, easy-to-clean option. Click here to learn more about how to clean faux wood blinds.

Which blinds are best for kids?

Cordless and motorized blinds are the safest option if your home has children. We suggest removing all corded window treatments from your child’s play area and nursery. If you cannot install new window treatments, check out our blog for tips on how to child proof your living space’s window treatments.

Do you have honeycomb blinds?

Yes! We offer offer a selection of honeycomb blinds (also known as cellular shades). These multiple layered coverings are a popular choice for their ability to trap drafts of air and add insulation to windows. They offer a lot of options for customization as well.

Why should my blinds be professionally installed?

Blind installation services make the process of getting new window treatments much simpler. Our professionals will precisely measure your windows and ensure your blinds are made to the appropriate width and height. Our blind installers will supply their own tools such as a steel tape measure, screwdrivers, an electric drill, and a ladder, so you won’t need to buy any of these for a one-off home improvement project.

Ready to Visualize it? See Your Choice in Your Room Window Visualizer


Alternatives to Blackout Shades 

If you aren’t sure if blackout shades are exactly what you are looking for, there are other window treatments that offer their own unique value. 

Do you want less light without total darkness? You may want light filtering blinds (solar blinds) that reduces UV light but doesn’t totally obstruct it. 

Do you want something with more traditional style? You may find that roman shades offer the elegant style you would prefer while still blocking out most light when closed. 

Do you want something made from bamboo? Perhaps you may find woven wood shades a better choice for their natural look. (Blinds like woven grass or bamboo blinds can be outfitted with a light blocking layer). 

With Hundreds of Styles, We Offer the Perfect Look for You 

If you are concerned about finding the right color palette or pattern, fear not. The premium brands we sell offer hundreds of options to choose from. For example, Alta Window Fashions has 179 styles of blackout cellular shades and 137 styles of blackout roller shades alone! Our design consultants will guide you through your choices and help you find the perfect fit for your bedroom, office, nursery, living room, or home theater.

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