The 10 Best Thermal Insulated Curtains
This wiki has been updated 24 times since it was first published in December of 2016. If you want to keep things dark and quiet, and/or maintain comfortable temperatures throughout your home, you'll need thermal insulated curtains on your windows. Made from a variety of materials, these drapes trap heat in during the winter and keep it out in the summer, to help reduce energy costs, while protecting furnishings from light damage and blocking outside noise. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
September 25, 2019:
Thermal insulated drapes can be just as stylish and attractive as regular window curtains, but they’re also capable of blocking out daylight, reducing noise from outside, and regulating room temperatures in hot or cold seasons.
The Sebastian Total Blackout comes on board as a reliable choice known to black out virtually all light, so it might be your best bet when you have a strong sensitivity to light, or if you or a little one need some precious daytime rest. They’re available in several colors and lengths, and are well suited for those who prefer a glossy fabric in their drapes. Their lining consists of a thick layer of woven polyester, which is what makes them so effective. In addition to bedrooms, they’d be great for a home theater room or den where you enjoy watching movies frequently.
Another new addition is the H. Versailtex Draperies, which are available in an array of eye-catching fabric patterns, including red and taupe, teal and taupe, brown and taupe, navy and gray, and mustard and gray. They’re soft to the touch and feature sturdy, 2-inch hems. They’ll block out up to 90% of sunlight and will also repel UV rays.
Leaving the list today are the Flamingo Darkening, due to a lack of availability, and the Driftaway Abigail, which is not effective at blocking light or providing thermal insulation.
Before making your purchase, always measure twice to make sure you order the correct size panel, and be sure to pay attention to whether one or two panels are included for a given product.
Silvana Grey Silk This panel is lined in light-blocking polyester, with linen yarns added in for texture. It looks great in both casual and formal rooms, and comes in your choice of neutral colors like ivory, gray, blue, and more. It offers a 48-inch width, in length options of 84, 96, and 108 inches. It sports an easy-to-install rod-pocket design with a three-inch bottom hem. crateandbarrel.com
Joss & Main Freemansburg This single curtain panel fuses fashion and function, as it comes in a variety of attractive colors – neutral shades of gray, white, and blue – and is sure to both insulate and darken any room. It features a rod pocket design and is made for dry cleaning only. jossandmain.com
Using Curtains To Keep Warm
You simply install them as you would any other set of curtains, and they will keep particularly drafty windows from stealing heat from your home.
It happens every year. The sun starts setting just a bit sooner. You find yourself using your air conditioner less and less. Then it’s the fan that goes. The leaves shake themselves loose from their branches and litter the ground, so, you clean them up. Then, you hear your heating system kick on late one night, just as you were about to reach for that sweater you hadn’t worn since late last winter. Children show up at your house demanding candy. You refuse and they cover your house in toilet paper.
Someone says something about the holidays and you snap at them. The next thing you know, you have a list of presents to buy that’s a mile long, and no time to do it. Then, you begin to receive bills from the gas company that are higher than they'd been for the past eight months. And they seem to only get higher as the days get shorter and colder.
The last thing you want to deal with when wrestling your way through all the food temptation, awkward family conversations, and seemingly endless travel of the winter season is the stress of higher heating bills. Perhaps, when you were younger, you simply toughed it out, setting your thermostat at a balmy 52 degrees and shivering your way through the winter under a pile of blankets. Now that you’re older, and hopefully a little smarter, you’ve probably found a few good ways to help insulate your home. But one way you may not have considered is the thermal insulated curtain.
Thermal insulated curtains work on a pretty basic principle. They are often made from linen or polyester, and woven in such a way as to increase their weight and to prevent the transfer of heat from one side of their construction to the other. Practically, this makes them incredibly easy to deploy. You simply install them as you would any other set of curtains, and they will keep particularly drafty windows from stealing heat from your home.
Thermal insulated curtains are not just useful in the winter, however. Due to their insulating properties, they also do a wonderful job at keeping cold temperatures in when it’s hot outside. If you’re the type of person who doesn’t like to run their air-conditioner all day and night, these can be a great boon to your energy saving ways. With a few sets of these curtains installed, you can run your AC only until it’s comfortably cool, and enjoy that cool temperature for longer without having to turn the unit back on.
Beyond Temperature Control
Even if you live in a temperate climate where it rarely gets too hot or too cold, you may still find additional uses for a set of thermal insulated curtains. For starters, you can’t be sure that it’s always going to be nice and cozy outside. Even some weeks in the winter in Southern California drop to bitterly cold temperatures, and freak heat waves can show up just about anywhere. With a few insulated curtains hanging in your home, you’ll always be ready for such an event, and they won’t detract from your comfort when the weather is fine.
One significant advantage of most thermal insulated curtains is that they also serve as blackout curtains, meaning that they prevent light from entering through your windows. This is one of the primary ways in which they help keep a space cool in the summertime, but it also serves to darken the space whenever you need it. Perhaps you worked a long night shift, and you’ve decided to reward yourself by sleeping in. Well, that bright sunlight has other plans, and it wants you to wake up. The blackout function of your insulated curtains can come between you and this harsh sunlight, allowing you to sleep in peace. This is also great feature to enjoy for movie watching in the middle of the day, as it drastically cuts down on glare bouncing off your television.
Due primarily to their thickness, thermal insulated curtains are also wonderful for reducing incoming noises. If that construction project a few doors down is disturbing your peace and quiet, these the curtains can block out a significant majority of that noise. That way, you’ll be back to that deep transcendental meditation session in no time.
Choosing Your Thermal Insulated Curtains
More than likely, your choice of thermal insulated curtains is going to be an aesthetic one. Even if one brand proves to be superior to another in build quality, thermal insulation, light blocking, and other areas, you’re not going to want to bring it into your home if it’s ugly. And whether or not something is ugly is, more or less, entirely subjective. If two or more models suit your decor, however, you might want to think critically about a few of the differences among them.
Another important aspect to pay attention to is the cut of each curtain.
Most people don’t want black curtains hanging up in their spaces, but they may want curtains with the ability to block the majority of incoming light. To do this, manufacturers usually apply a black layer in the middle of two design layers. In some cases, however, that design layer is only applied to the inside of the curtains, with a plain layer applied to the side that faces out. If you’re concerned with how your home appears from the outside, and you want that splash of color or the design that caught your eye to shine on both sides of the curtain rod, look for a model with a fully encompassing design pattern.
Another important aspect to pay attention to is the cut of each curtain. You’re going to want your curtains to extend from the rod to the space just below the windowsill, so break out your measuring tape. If you want your curtains to extend all the way to the floor, either because you have full-length windows or because you like the way it looks, try to measure from the curtain rod to a single centimeter above the floor.