Best Blackout Curtains

Learn how blackout curtains can save your sleep even when the sun has other plans for you

By Andrea Pisani Babich

How does the sun affect your sleep? Well, it’s more than just the jolt of light shining in your eyes. The sunlight actually prompts a chemical response in the brain that makes it hard to relax and sleep. Here’s how it works: the production of melatonin, a hormone that prepares your body for sleep, is triggered when daylight fades to darkness. Since darkness falls several hours later in the summer than in the winter, your melatonin levels will increase much later, making it difficult to fall asleep at your preferred bedtime.

When the sun rises, your melatonin level falls to almost nothing, signaling to your body that it’s time to be alert and awake. But if the sun rises long before you need or want to wake up, you may be in for a rude awakening. Your melatonin level will drop and rouse you from your slumber long before your alarm goes off.

Simply put, more daylight means less melatonin and less melatonin means less sleep.

The solution? Put blackout curtains in your bedroom. By eliminating the sunlight streaming through your windows, you can get your recommended 7 to 9 hours of sleep no matter what season it is. Even in the winter, people who sleep light and don’t want to rise with the sun, work the night shift, or need to nap during the day, will find that blackout blinds are life-altering.

But, wait, there’s more. Blackout curtains do more than prevent the sun from disturbing your sleep. Insulated curtains can reduce noise pollution by as much as 40%. That means no chaotic street noise, mewling cats in heat, or booming thunder will keep you awake. Additional benefits include reducing your energy bill and protecting your furniture and carpets from fading caused by the sun.

7 Blackout Curtains You’ll Love

Sebastian Blackout Window Curtain Panels

Some people are super sensitive to light exposure. Some people work the night shift and need to sleep, and sleep well, during the day. For these people who need total darkness for sleeping, the Sebastian Rod Pocket Insulated Total Blackout Window Curtain Panel is an answer to your prayers.

Lined with a thick, tightly woven polyester, these panels block 100% of outdoor lights, reduce outside noise pollution, and help you save money on your energy bill by reducing heating cost in winter and cooling costs in summer. Moderately priced ($35 – $90), and available in six neutral earth tones and a wide range of lengths, these top choice winners are easy to add to your home décor.

Just the facts

  • Each panel sold individually
  • Machine washable
  • 50″ wide panels available in lengths 54″, 63″, 72″, 84″, 95″, 108″, 120″, 132″, and 144″
  • 6 colors
  • Cost: $35 – $90

Customer reviews

4.6 stars with 191 reviews

“You’ve read the reviews. So many of the complaints are the same….”they don’t completely black out the light”. Well, these do (Sebastian Rod Pocket). The blackout lining that is stitched onto back side (two other layers of drape….white on one side, black on the other), make this product what it claims to be, irrespective of the color you chose….the blackout effect is the same for a black drape or for the light blue. Granted, depending on how you mount them, light will leak in at the top, and in between the panels. So when they say to double the width…..DO IT !! If you’ve got 50 inches of window width, you need 100 inches of panel width. I’m very, very pleased.” –Mark

“These curtains do an amazing job of blocking out heat and light. My bedroom gets really, really hot during the day and used to be one of the hottest rooms in the house. Now my bedroom is one of the coolest rooms in the house. I noticed a difference immediately after I put these curtains up in place of my old curtains. They also look elegant and I love the look of my room now. They seem to be a really nice quality and they don’t retain wrinkles. Many curtains I have purchased retain wrinkles that don’t even come out with an iron; these curtains don’t do that.” –Ilikeproductsthatwork

“After repainting our open living, dining, kitchen and TV area, it seemed no color drapery would work. White too stark, ecru looked dingy, blue commanded attention, and then finally we came upon this shimmery charcoal that is chameleon-like, seeming to adjust hue based on whatever color it’s near, without really seeming to be there at all. The blackout feature isn’t required in these spaces, but provides an extra level of noise absorption that is a welcome surprise. The room is now complete, soothing, relaxing and quite lovely, we think.” -Burnel

Deconovo Total Blackout Curtains

Triple-weave premium quality polyester gives these total blackout curtains the look and feel of silky satin. With a black thermal-insulated liner secured to the back, these curtains block 100% of outdoor light and significantly reduce noise to help sensitive sleepers get the rest they need. The dual-layer design provides a drapable heft and helps to regulate room temperatures no matter how much sunlight hits the window or how strong the cold winds of winter blow. The extra wide width (52″) provides ample coverage to keep light from seeping around the edges. Silver grommets lend a clean, contemporary look that is understated enough to perfectly complement most decors.

Just the facts

  • Panels sold in pairs
  • Machine washable
  • 1.6″ inner diameter of grommet
  • 52″ panels available in lengths 54″, 63″, 72″, and 84″
  • Color: White
  • Cost: $39.99 – $44.99

Customer reviews

“Love them. They’re blocking the light 100% and they’re perfect for the nursery.” -Matthew

Total blackout curtains! Fabric was shinier than I realized but otherwise great!” -Amazon customer 

“Best buy ever!! I’m not going to lie when these curtains arrived I was worried, they came in cheap plastic and were so shiny they looked tacky; but after I hung them, they have an almost satin finish which I love. I would buy these again for another room, and they completely black out.” -Kristian

Liz Claiborne Trio Grommet-Top Curtain Panels

JCPenney combats the industrial look of many blackout curtains with these color blocked panels in a wide range of classy color trios. Brushed-nickel grommets top off the luxurious contemporary look. The polyester/cotton lining significantly filters out light and lends an elegant drapability. But don’t let their good looks fool you – these panels work hard not only to block out outdoor light but also dampen noise from the neighbor’s dog, the airport down the road, traffic on the highway, and any other nuisance noise that can keep you awake. And you’ll sleep better knowing you’re saving on heating and cooling costs by regulating indoors temperatures year-round.

Just the facts

  • Each panel sold individually
  • Machine washable
  • 1.5″ inner diameter of grommet
  • 50″ wide panels available in lengths 63″, 72″, 84″, 95″, 108″
  • 6 colors
  • Cost: $70 – $120

Customer reviews

4.6 stars with 750 reviews

 “If you are looking to add more glamour and luxury to your space, YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED by the fabrics texture and quality. If you are looking to add a bit of color and elegance to a room, DON’T HESITATE to choose these. I am quite pleased and wish I had more rooms to decorate. I would definitely choose these! They are the BEST for Less!”  -GlamGirl75 

“In a day where quality is often lacking in fabrics, these drapes excelled my expectations. I bought them for a large dining room at a lodge we own, and they transformed the look of the room. It went from being a large space with tables and chairs to an elegant dining room suitable for hosting wedding receptions and the like.” -lodgelady 

“I ordered my curtains online after viewing in store and I love them. They are very durable and the quality is great. The grommet tops are very stylish. Also, it was handy to have the directions included in the wrapping to tell me a quick, easy way to get the shipping wrinkles out!” -shangc

Emery Rod Pocket Insulated Total Blackout Window Curtain Panels

Emery has solved the problem of light streaming through your bedroom windows with panels that look relaxed and classy while they work hard to block out sunlight and UV rays. Insulated with a 100% total blackout liner, these curtain panels will help you sleep better by reducing noise, light exposure, and energy costs. Panels are available in two different types of fabric: one has a smooth, satiny sheen and the other a textured weave pattern for a slightly casual look.

Just the Facts

  • Each panel sold individually
  • Machine washable
  • 3″ diameter rod pocket
  • 50″ wide panels available in lengths 54″, 63″, 72″, 84″, 95″, 108″
  • Available in a range of neutral colors
  • Cost: $32.99 – 89.99

Customer reviews

4.6 stars with 162 reviews

“I bought these curtains for my son’s room because he gets direct sunlight in the morning and street lights at night. Since he has a half moon arch on the top of his window I first tried a custom wood blind to fit in there, but light was still coming in. So, I tried other curtains but they were only light blocking not totally block out. These are perfect. There are no grommets at the top and they are lined. Not too heavy for 95 length curtains.” -Paula 

“I ordered 3 for a large window in my son’s room with direct sunlight during the day. The curtains are heavy and thick doing the job they were ordered for. The heat and sun stay out and the cold is kept out too. The color is pretty much what I expected and am pleased with how it looks whenever I walk by the bedroom.” -Lizzy

“These curtains are amazing, definitely hotel room blackout quality. They have 2 layers of thickness, one that makes them look pretty and the other to block out total light, they are a bit pricey but worth the money. I would buy again!” -Aimeriana

Best Home Fashion’s Thermal Insulated Curtains

Amazon shoppers love Best Home Fashion’s unlined blackout curtains – all 5,000 of them! That’s right; more than 5,000 very satisfied customers give these blackout panels 4.6 stars. And it’s no wonder. There’s a lot to love about these curtains. Enjoy the freedom to sleep late on a Saturday morning (or any morning) with nearly 100% of outdoor light blocked by these panels’ triple weave polyester fabric. (Darker colors will block more light than lighter hues.) They protect your home furnishings from harmful UV rays and your home environment from severe outdoor temperatures all without a liner. Available with back tab, rod pocket, or grommet (1.6″ inner diameter) headings. They’re also available in a wide variety of colors and sizes (see below) and are affordably priced to fit comfortably in all interior designs and budgets.

Just the facts

  • Panels sold in pairs
  • Machine washable
  • Back tab, rod pocket, or grommet tops
  • Sizes:
    • 40″w x 63″l
    • 40″w x 84″l
    • 52″w x 54″l
    • 52″w x 63″l
    • 52″w x 72″l
    • 52″w x 84″l
    • 52″w x 96″l
  • 28 colors
  • Cost: $31.99

Customer reviews

4.6 stars with 5,197 reviews

I LOVE the abundance of natural light I get in my bedroom, but sometimes a gal needs to sleep in! These curtains are very nice, super soft and effectively block early morning (or mid-afternoon) light so I can sleep even when the sun is up. I bought more in a different color for my living room, as well.” -Jenny 

“Gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous!!! These are some of the best curtains I have ever purchased. I got the purple curtains for my living room & just ordered the burgundy ones for my dining room. I had to get the 72″ length for both orders, which is just about impossible to find in stores. The purple color is beautiful & I know my burgundy ones will be beautiful too. Thanks guys for putting out such a quality item! Love my curtains!” -Phyllis 

“I love the way these curtains block out the sun light. I’m finally able to sleep in late on the weekends.”  -Secoya

NICETOWN Thermal Insulated Grommet Blackout Curtains

These are another Amazon favorite. More than 4,000 Amazon shoppers agree that NICETOWN blackout curtains are the bomb. Super affordable and available in a bunch of colors, these single- ply curtains are triple woven with light-blocking fibers for panels that feel soft and silky but are substantial enough to do the job. Blocking 85% – 95% of light, these panels are best described as light-filtering rather than total blackout curtains, with darker colors blocking significantly more light than softer hues. Because the panels are smaller than many other curtain panels, you may need more than two for complete window coverage. But for people who want an affordable way to filter the rising sun in the morning, these curtains fit the bill.

Just the facts

  • Panels sold in pairs
  • Machine washable
  • 1.6″ inner diameter of grommet
  • 42″ panels available in lengths 63″ and 84″
  • 15 colors
  • Cost: $21.95 – $25.95

Customer reviews

4.6 stars with 4,330 reviews

“So I bought these for my toddlers room. I was getting really sick of waking up at 430AM EVERY morning because the sun would wake him up. I decided to invest in some blackout curtains! Only problem is that his room is mostly grey. You would not believe how hard it is to find grey black out curtains. Luckily I just happen to find these beauty’s on Amazon. Let’s start with quality. Thick but with a very smooth feeling. Blocks out all the light WHICH MEANS MY SON HAS BEEN SLEEPING TILL 7am every morning!!! You can definitely tell they are going to last awhile because this quality is fantastic! I would buy again in a heartbeat!” -Jewlz 

“These did just the trick for my theater room, as I was in dire need of blacking out light seeping in from the edges of my roller shades. In a projector setting, any natural or other lighting can be your worst enemy and easily ruin an otherwise amazing experience. I paid about $22 for a set of two 42×63 black curtains and couldn’t be more pleased with the price–these could easily go for double, if not triple that amount. Again, they’re perfect for my needs and completely eliminated the remaining natural light I had coming in. A huge plus in my case is that I didn’t have to iron these out, they were perfect out of the box. Highly recommended!!” -Ron

“I love my new drapes! They are just what I wanted. I don’t really have drafty windows so I can’t comment on the “thermal insulated” part. But as far as helping keep the light out of my room, they are great! The color is just what I was expecting too. I would say that some of the past reviews mentioned getting lighter colored drapes and it not really blocking that much light out and I would say I’m not surprised. These aren’t super thick blackout drapes so I can see the lighter colors not working like typical blackout drapes but my dark blue ones work wonderfully especially for the price.” -Anna

Lullabi Solid Thermal Blackout Curtains

Lullabi has found a way to create curtains that block 99.5% of light, 100% of UV rays and still remain soft and supple. The heavy-weight, single-ply polyester blackout fabric darkens your room as much as lined curtains, so your curtains look as good as they feel. Wider than most blackout curtain panels, these curtains offer ample coverage and draping for maximum light blockage with a sophisticated look. You’ll sleep better in a darkened room with better temperature control and a 40% reduction in outdoor noise. Perfect for late sleepers, night shift workers, and anyone who believes in the power of a good siesta. And if you’re not 100% satisfied, Lullabi will refund your money, no questions asked.

Just the facts

  • Panels sold in pairs
  • Machine washable
  • 1.6″ inner diameter of grommet
  • 54″w x 84″l
  • 5 colors
  • Cost: $25.99

Customer reviews

4.6 stars with 183 reviews

“This is excellent blackout curtain. It improved my sleep quality. They worked very well of blocking out the light and keeping the room dark. As you can see it in my pictures (I took these pictures at 1pm when I had the direct sunlight to the window), it does not block 100% of direct sunlight, nothing will, but it will give you perfect darkness for day-sleeper. At night, the curtain will give you total darkness. I sleep much better now.” -M&M K 

“I bought these curtains because I just started to travel overseas frequently for business, and my sleeping pattern is off. I put the curtains up and the room became dark as a cave, so I can extend my sleep a little bit more in the morning. These curtains look great and do the job. The fabric is very soft and drapes nicely from the rod.” -Tucker 

“Works well at blocking light. The darker the color of the curtain, the better it blocks light. Happy with the price and quality.” -Sis

Hang Blackout Curtains High

The secret to hanging blackout panels is to make sure they are wide enough and long enough to prevent light from escaping through the gaps between the panels and the window frame. To eliminate this “halo effect,” Berek Awend of recommends adding 24″ inches to the width of the window frame (allowing 12 additional inches on each side) as well as at least 12″ above the top of the frame. For panels that don’t touch or skim the floor, allow at least 12″ beyond the bottom of the window frame. You can virtually eliminate the halo by using a wraparound rod that will bring your panels as close to the wall as possible. And installing a rod close to the wall will also help to close the gap between window and blackout curtain.

We love hearing success stories. Drop us a line in the comments to let us know how much better you’re sleeping after installing blackout curtains in your bedroom.

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