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Published Oct. 10, 2021

Blackout drapes are a convenient solution to keep a room nice and dark for proper rest. Made from very tightly woven fabric, dense material, or multiple layers, blackout drapes are designed to block natural light from entering a room. Blackout curtains may come in different levels of blackout, indicated by a percent (for example, 50 percent blackout will reduce the amount of natural light in the room by about half). The addition of blackout drapes promotes better rest and helps you to naturally fall asleep.

We need darkness for better sleep. Your internal clock is biologically programmed to produce melatonin, a hormone produced in the brain that sends out the signal that it’s time to rest. Melatonin is released when you’re in the dark, and it promotes quantity and quality sleep. For shift workers, napping children, and time zone travelers, blackout drapes may help encourage slumber. We’ve compiled the best blackout drapes on the market to help you get to sleep faster and longer. 

How We Picked the Best Blackout Drapes

Methodology:

There are many companies that make blackout drapes. In our research, we determined that our picks needed to adhere to certain criteria to be a valuable recommendation. 

As a careful consumer and long-time product reviewer for home, gardening, and health products, there’s more to take into account than a product’s consumer rating. In my tenure as a writer, I’ve researched products and services for Bob Vila, Pacific Yachting, and Cottage Magazine. It’s important to dive deeper than the promises of a product to understand how it works, how it’s made, and whether it will work for you.

Best Style: 

Light blocking: The most important factor of blackout drapes is how well they block out light. There are different levels at which blackout drapes perform, some only blocking only 50 percent of the outdoor light. For our picks, we erred on the side of selecting drapes that blocked most, if not all, natural light.

Construction: Most blackout drapes on the market use synthetic materials. When making our selections, we made sure to choose fabrics with tighter weaves and multiple layers, as these factors influence how much light is blocked out. 

Noise absorption: A major reason people require blackout drapes is for better sleep during the day. Since most people are awake during this time, it increases outdoor noise. We wanted to select products that blocked light but reduced noise, too.

Value: We weighed the cost of each blackout drape with its performance. Most of our picks are quite affordable, however, we selected products that delivered quality results for the money spent. 

The Best Blackout Drapes: Reviews and Recommendations

Best Overall: Nicetown 100-Percent Blackout Window Curtain

Two Layers of Fabric

Substantial light-blocking drapes that are easy to care for.

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Why It Made The Cut: Nicetown was far and away the company with the best customer satisfaction. We also appreciate how these drapes suit a variety of rooms and styles to meet the needs of most consumers.

Specs:

  • Many sizes available from 42 by 45 inches up to 70 by 108 inches
  • Made from 100 percent polyester 
  • Two layers of fabric prevent noise and light from coming in

Pros:

  • Two layers of triple-weave fabric
  • Sewn-in black liner
  • Blackout and insulation qualities
  • Machine washable

Cons:

  • Only comes in solid colors

Nicetown blackout drapes prove that exceptional quality doesn’t have to come with an expensive price tag. Made from 100-percent triple-weave polyester, Nicetown doubles down on the fabric, using two layers of polyester that sandwich a black liner. The result is a completely dark room that’s quieter and thermal insulated. 

The material also buffers temperature, keeping you cooler when it’s hot outside and warmer when it’s cold out. Thanks to the added layer of fabric, these curtains are twice as good at muffling noise than standard blackout curtains that use only one layer of fabric.

Other perks of these drapes include:

  • No chemical coating or formaldehyde
  • Intuitive two-panel design
  • Silver grommets for easy sliding
  • Last many years with proper care

These drapes are available in several solid color selections. There are not any patterns or prints, however solid colors can offer greater longevity should a room get redecorated over the years.

Caring for these curtains is easy, providing you follow the manufacturer’s instructions. These are machine washable, which is especially handy for homes with pets or small children. Keep the water temperature below 86°F and use mild detergent to refresh the drapes as needed. 

Best Value: Amazon Basics Room Darkening Blackout Curtains

Bang for Your Buck

Beautifully made drapes that really block the light at a value price. Amazon Basics

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Why It Made The Cut: The brand is known for creating affordable products that are highly rated. These curtains meet safety standards and are machine washable.

Specs:

  • Many sizes available from 42 by 63 inches up to 52 by 96 inches
  • Rod pocket fits standard or decorative rods
  • Made from 100 percent polyester

Pros:

  • Helps regulate room temperature
  • Variety of colors and patterns available
  • OEKO-TEX certified
  • Machine washable

Cons:

  • Not suited for all wash cycles

Amazon Basics blackout drapes are an economic alternative to other expensive blackout drapes. Made from 100 percent polyester, the design uses a triple-weave construction to prevent light from streaming through. Some may point out that polyester is not the most comfortable of materials, however, the drapes perform very well for their purpose, which is to block out sunlight. These drapes also have a thick, solid color blackout coating on the inside. 

Though budget-friendly, these drapes don’t skimp on quality. They were made in an OEKO-TEX Standard 100 factory, which ensures that the fabric meets high safety and environmental standards.

Because of the construction and the thickness of the material, these blackout drapes create an insulation barrier that benefits home dwellers no matter the season. In cold weather, they help keep heat indoors by blocking it from seeping out the windows. In hotter weather, closing the drapes prevents UV rays from coming through the window pane and warming up a room. An added benefit to the insulating quality of these blackout drapes is that they help reduce sounds from outside.

A few other features of these drapes include:

  • Metal grommets allow the drapes to slide open and shut easily
  • Rod pockets that fit both standard and decorative rods
  • Velcro ties to keep the drapes open when desired

For care, these drapes are machine washable. That said, it’s imperative that users follow the washing instructions precisely, as incorrect washing (or putting the drapes in the dryer) can affect their quality and performance.

Best White Blackout Drapes: Flamingo P 100-Percent Blackout Curtains for Bedroom 

Luxury Feel

The silky triple-weave fabric adds instant elegance to your room. Flamingo

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Why It Made The Cut: Flamingo P makes our favorite white blackout drapes. They appear light and elegant yet still effectively block out sunlight, UV rays, and noise.

Specs:

  • Available in a variety of sizes from 52 by 45 inches up to 52 by 108 inches
  • Made from triple-weave silk satin
  • Double-layer design

Pros:

  • Darken a room as effectively as other drapes
  • Deliver both style and function
  • Material that feels luxurious
  • Safe for the washer and dryer

Cons:

  • May not look perfectly white in some homes

Blackout curtains don’t have to be dark to be effective, as proven by Flamingo P’s pure white blackout drapes. If you have a home that’s light and airy, these white drapes are much better suited to your aesthetic. 

Made from a silk satin fabric, Flamingo P’s blackout drapes feel smooth and luxe without the price tag that comes with genuine silk. They are constructed using two layers of white, triple-weave fabric backed with soft and thick blackout fabric. Using two strong layers gives consumers a stylish and effective solution to block out sunlight, UV rays, and noise, while helping save on energy from its insulative effects.

These drapes are some of the few we found that are safe for both the washer and dryer. As always, follow the manufacturer’s care instructions for washing and tumble-dry only on low.

Each panel comes with eight nickel metal grommets, making it easier to slide the drapes open and closed. The grommets’ inner diameter measures 1.6 inches, making them suitable for both standard and decorative curtain rods, so hanging is a breeze. For the most part, these white blackout drapes look pristine. However, with virtually any white blackout drapes, depending on the light in a room, they may look a little off-white due to the interior blackout fabric.  

Best Patterned Blackout Drapes: H. Versailtex Blackout Curtains

Style and Function

These environmentally friendly drapes bring the look of nature inside your home. H. Versailtex

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Why It Made The Cut: H. VERSAILTEX creates blackout drapes that offer more than utility. While other patterns are geometric or very simple, we appreciated the whimsy and detail of this pattern that truly creates a statement. 

Specs:

  • Three sizes ranging from 52 by 63 inches up to 52 by 96 inches
  • Polyester and polyester blend fabric
  • 90 percent blackout quality and 100 percent UV blockage

Pros:

  • Thermal and noise reduction
  • Different aesthetic than traditional blackout drapes
  • Chemical-free construction

Cons:

  • Only 90 percent blackout for sunlight

If you are looking for curtains to be a showpiece as well as functional, these blackout drapes from H. VERSAILTEX fill the bill. While most other blackout curtains offer choices in solid colors, these add style and spruce up a room. Made from microfiber polyester, these sparrow designs come in three different colors. The fabric uses triple weave technology that incorporates a solid color fabric, a high-density black silk layer, and the outer fabric layer. Benefits of this construction include:

  • High performance on thermal insulation
  • A sound barrier that muffles noise from outside
  • A material that remains breathable and airy

Both visually appealing and soft and smooth to the touch, these blackout drapes are also a healthy addition to a home. Unlike other drapes, these have no chemical coating, they’re vinyl free, and they’re environmentally friendly, making them safe to use in a nursery. 

Not all blackout drapes block out 100 percent of sunlight. These drapes darken a room impeccably, but only offer 90 percent light blockage. The advantage of this is that consumers who wake up in the middle of a sleep cycle can navigate the room without tripping over furniture and other items.

Best Thermal-Insulating Blackout Curtains: LA PALMA Thermal Insulated Blackout Curtains

Regulate Light and Temperature

Thermal insulation keeps you cooler in summer, warmer in winter. La Palma

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Why It Made The Cut: LA PALMA’s blackout drapes have a high-density black middle layer and a triple-weave fabric, creating a thicker curtain that helps keep out light and resists temperature fluctuations from outside. 

Specs:

  • Three sizes ranging from 52 by 63 inches up to 52 by 96 inches
  • 100 percent polyester fabric
  • Eight metal 1.5-inch grommets on each panel

Pros:

  • Noise reducing
  • Machine washable
  • Many colors available
  • No chemical coating

Cons:

  • Only solid colors available

Blackout curtains help you sleep by reducing light, but they can also make your room feel more comfortable to encourage sleep. LA PALMA’s 100 percent blackout drapes are designed to tackle thermal insulation to keep warmth inside on a cold day and prevent summer heat from sneaking in through a window when it’s hot out.

In our opinion, the triple-woven fabric makes these the best blackout thermal curtains. The first layer blocks both light and UV, the high-density black middle layer blocks out most of the light, and then the last layer is the colored layer that matches your decor. We like these because they’re cleanly made without a chemical coating or formaldehyde. Without the influence of chemical products, the fabric feels naturally soft to the touch, and they can go through the wash without damaging any coatings.

Despite their gentle feel and flowy appearance, these blackout drapes are quite proficient at blocking out noise, making them an excellent choice for apartment dwellers, busy neighborhoods, or nearby construction work. 

These blackout drapes come in several colors to match your tastes. One drawback we find is the exclusion of stylish patterns. There are bold color choices available, however, users looking for a modern or unconventional print should select a different product. 

Best Style: Rose Home Fashion 100-Percent Blackout Curtains

Rustic Charm

The look of linen at a budget-friendly price. Rose Fashion

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Why It Made The Cut: Rose Home Fashion’s blackout drapes stood out for the fresh look of linen, affordable price, and ability to completely block out sunlight.

Specs:

  • Several sizes available from 50 by 63 inches up to 50 by 108 inches
  • Made with a polyester fabric
  • Machine washable

Pros:

  • 100 percent blackout
  • Noise reducing
  • Machine washable
  • 1.6-inch diameter metal grommets

Cons:

  • The fabric can show stains more easily than other materials

Rose Home Fashion brings modern rustic style to their blackout drapes for an aesthetically pleasing result. Available in six colors, the fabric mimics the look and feel of expensive linen. Constructed with two layers of triple woven fabric and a 100-percent-white blackout liner, the drapes effectively reflect sunlight and keep it from getting into the room. 

These drapes have been crafted for luxury, but come at an affordable price point. Unlike other drapes that lead with style, these can back up their claims for function as well. The drapes have undergone a shading and sound insulation test, verifying that these block 100 percent of sunlight and reduce noise. 

This design features eight 1.6-inch diameter metal grommets on each panel, which help the drapes open and close with a smooth slide. Standard rods fit perfectly with these drapes, however, check the measurements with specialized rods to ensure they will fit (most should).

If we were to offer a critique of these blackout drapes, our biggest concern is keeping them clean. Unlike other synthetic fabrics or darker colors that can disguise a spill, these drapes will show it readily. The flip side of that is these drapes are machine washable and can be easily cleaned.

Things to Consider Before Buying Blackout Drapes

You’re likely quite excited to add some blackout drapes to your cart, however, there’s a little homework you need to do first. Drapes aren’t one size fits all; you need to assess the space you have, your personal needs, and the style of the room.

Window Size

Every one of the blackout drapes we recommended comes in several sizes. Always start by measuring your window to see which size drapes to order. If you order too small, sunlight will still sneak through the edges and gaps between the window and the drapes. 

Hanging the Drapes

Consider what you need to have in order to hang your drapes. Will they be hung by grommets or rings? If you’re interested in blackout drapes with metal grommets, you need to know whether the rod you intend to use will fit (always check the diameter of the grommets). 

Sunlight Blockage

Tune into your needs. Blackout drapes tend to be less expensive if you get ones that block 50 percent or 70 percent of sunlight instead of 100 percent. However, if you require complete darkness to sleep, make sure you’re ordering blackout drapes with complete sunlight blockage.

Style

Blackout drapes come in many options and patterns to help change up the look of a room. Drapes with patterns or designs add a statement to a room, but they may go out of style faster than a solid color. 

Cleaning

In general, blackout drapes are large, bulky, and can’t be cleaned easily. If you are unsure whether you can put your drapes in the washing machine, you should wash them by hand. Make sure you can follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for care and cleaning before investing in a particular set of blackout drapes.

FAQs

There are many nuances to blackout drapes. Even with the information supplied above, you may still have some lingering questions. We’ve collected some frequently asked questions and answers to give you the information you need to make an informed decision.

Q: Do blackout drapes really work?

When installed properly, blackout drapes will block all light (as long as they are designed to block 100 percent of sunlight).

Q: How can you tell which drapes are best for blackout?

The best blackout curtains are made from densely woven fabric (generally thick polyester) and have an interior blackout liner.

Q: Should you sleep with blackout curtains?

People who need to sleep during the day can fall asleep and get better sleep with the help of blackout curtains. In a dark room, the body releases melatonin, which assists you in falling asleep naturally. 

Final Thoughts

Expect blackout drapes to look thicker than traditional curtains. The bulkiness of the fabric helps keep the light out when you’re trying to sleep. One potential way to make the curtains feel less heavy is to opt for a lighter color. The Nicetown 100 Percent Blackout Window Curtain not only blocks light, it comes in more sizes than any of our other selections and offers a wide variety of color choices as well.

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