How to buy blinds: a guide for choosing the perfect window covering

Are your windows naked? Save yourself from awkward moments with the neighbors and cover ‘em up!

It’s hard to know what you need in a window covering and how to get the best bang for your buck.  To save you weeks of research and shopping around, we’re bringing you everything you need to know to find the perfect blinds or shades for your home.

If you absolutely have no idea where to start try the Blind Finder tool from

Like an old school teen magazine quiz, you answer questions that help you figure out what’s most important to you in a window treatment. But, instead of telling you what the perfect sunglasses are for your face shape, it narrows down their extensive inventory to about 15 choices that meet your criteria.

Guide for Buying Window Treatments:

When you want your window treatment to give you adjustable light control, buy blinds.

  • Window coverings with slats like aluminum blinds, wood blinds and faux wood blinds allow you to let in natural light, or see outside while still maintaining privacy and blocking some light.
  • They’re also easy to operate and give windows a classic look.
  • The flip side: Slats are great for darkening a room but they don’t keep out light perfectly. A little bit of light will always be coming in even when slats are closed. Try a shade if you want complete darkness.

When you want your window covering to give you privacy, but let in some natural light, go with a shade.

  • Shades cover windows completely, so they give you full privacy when they’re pulled down.
  • Cellular, roller and woven wood shades are all available in light filtering or room darkening versions, so you can let in lots of light or none at all.

When you want your window treatment to keep out all light, then get a blackout shade.

  • If you have a non-traditional sleep schedule, or need complete darkness for a nursery or media room, blackout shades are the way to go.
  • Window shades are offered in three fabric types; light filtering which lets lots of light in without glare, room darkening which keeps out most light, and blackout which is lined with mylar and block all light and heat from coming in to your home.
  • Blackout fabric often bumps up the price of your shade, but it doesn’t disappoint in spaces that need to stay dark. It’s available with cellular shades, woven woods and draperies.

When you want your window treatment to shrink your energy bill, try one that insulates.

  • 25% of your home’s energy loss happens through windows and doors. An insulating window treatment can drastically improve your home’s efficiency so your AC system doesn’t have to work so hard.
  • Shutters, cellular shades and wood blinds are the top picks for insulation. Cell shades are the best performers because they trap air in fabric pockets that acts as a barrier between your home and the window.

When you want your window treatment to be inexpensive, but get the job done, try mini blinds.

  • Aluminum blinds may not be the most fashion forward choice, but they’ll last a long time and give you light control and privacy when you need it.
  • Plus, most modern blinds are made with an anti-static coating that keeps away dust.

When you want your window covering to be safer for kids, try a cordless shade.

  • Window cords can be a strangulation hazard for kids and pets. You can retrofit old blinds, or switch to window treatments with a cordless system that you operate by pushing and pulling on the bottom rail.
  • If you’d like to update to safer window coverings, a cordless option is available for nearly all styles. But be aware that it’ll cost you a little more.

Even if you’re a confident DIYer in other areas of your home, you may want to consult an expert before you pull the trigger on an important purchase like this one. Our Designers are available to assist you by phone (800-505-1905), email and live chat. No pushy sales pitch or designer invading your space, just a real connection to help you make the best choice for your home.

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