Most people know that when companies market products, they will often toss in buzz words to make products much more appealing than they actually are. Much of the time, these buzz words aren’t always representative of the actual product.
Curtain manufacturers certainly are not an exception to these marketing methods.
Blackout curtains are often marketed as “soundproof” or “sound-reducing” making them seem perfect for someone that wants to both keep their room pitch black AND soundproof. For anyone that wants to create an ideal sleeping environment to block out outside disturbances, curtains such as these might seem like a great investment.
However, blackout curtains are often not as effective at reducing noise as soundproof curtains made specifically to block noise. Often, blackout curtains are not strictly designed for soundproofing purposes BUT because of their thickness, they can still muffle outside noise.
That being said, there may only be a slight difference in soundproofing effectiveness between these two types of curtains.
Blackout curtains and noise reduction
Blackout curtains by design are most often not intended for sound reduction.
These curtains are thicker than your typical curtains in order to block light. In turn, one would assume that these curtains would naturally be soundproof. However, the degree which blackout curtains insulate against noise varies.
Some more expensive blackout curtains on the thicker side will have a better effect in reducing sound entering your home. However, do not expect anything near-total noise cancellation when using blackout curtains. To be fair though, even soundproof curtains aren’t effective enough to block 100% of the noise outside either.
Blackout curtains vs soundproof curtains
When refurnishing your home with new fixtures and appliances, understanding how these curtains will look in your home is important. Both blackout curtains and soundproof curtains are quite thick and as a result, can make a room feel functional and utilitarian as opposed to lighter weight curtains that might give off a more elegant and dainty tone.
Generally, both of these curtains have a wide price range depending on the quality of the curtain you might want. Of course, more expensive curtains are often better at blocking light or reducing sound.
However, some super heavy duty soundproof curtains can be significantly more expensive than even the more expensive blackout curtains.
For instance, there are some soundproof curtains made from premium material that velcro to the sides of your windows, thus insulating your room significantly more effectively from outside noise than most other curtains. Of course, the price of curtains like these reflects the effectiveness of the curtains.
Although these two curtains are often designed slightly differently for their intended purposes, blackout curtains and soundproof curtains often provide the same benefits.
For instance, as mentioned before, because blackout curtains are often quite thick, they naturally muffle some noise from the outside like soundproof curtains. On the other hand, because soundproof curtains often snuggly fit your windows in their entirety to block all sound, and since they are also made of thick material, these curtains, in turn, are often effective blackout solutions as well.
For this reason, companies often label their curtains as both blackout and soundproof for better marketability.
Other benefits of both blackout curtains AND soundproof curtains (besides blocking light and sound)
Yes, the benefits of blackout curtains and soundproof curtains often go hand in hand. However, these are not the only benefits that these types of curtains often have in common.
Easy to install and maintain
Curtains of these types are also often not overly complicated or difficult to set up and upkeep.
Curtains like these are often no different than traditional curtains in terms of how you install them into your wall. You simply need to bring out a little bit of your inner craftsman to drill the brackets into your wall, insert the rod and put your curtains up.
Keep in mind that although some curtains are light enough so that they can be upheld by tension rods or command hooks, blackout and soundproof curtains are most likely a bit too heavy for these alternative solutions.
As far as cleaning these curtains goes, these curtains often can be machine washed on a low setting with a touch of detergent.
Save energy, save money
Often times, one of the greatest perks of blackout and soundproof curtains is that they are also thermal insulating by design.
How does this save money you might ask?
First of all, although your homes windows are likely structurally sound, they still allow air to flow both in and out of your house. This, of course, is not really a good thing.
In the winter, heated air from your home escapes through the windows and cold air can creep in through your windows as well. In the summer, cool air can escape from your windows and hot air can infiltrate your house from the outside as well.
This causes your heating system to work much harder than it needs to in the winter to compensate for the heat lost through your windows. On the other hand, your air conditioner demands more energy than it needs to in the summer to compensate for the cool air lost through the windows as well. This vicious cycle means more money out of your pocket.
Ultimately, blackout and soundproof curtains help to reduce the amount of hot and cool air wasted that escapes through the windows. These curtains, and any thick curtains really, act as an added layer of insulation that prevents air from escaping out your windows. In turn, this means that your heating and air cooling systems don’t need to work as hard, which means more money saved.
Style and decor
Sometimes when people think blackout or soundproof curtains, they instantly think of bland, and boring pieces of thick fabric designed purely for utility.
However, you don’t need to sacrifice style for functionality. There are many models of both blackout curtains and soundproof curtains that are designed to look quite aesthetic in appearance. Curtains such as these often come in a host of different colors as well to match the décor of your living space.
Ultimately, blackout curtains are often not designed specifically to block out noise, although they are often advertised that they still do. The thickness of these curtains however still allows them to dampen noise from outside.
In turn, although many blackout curtains that are additionally advertised as “noise-reducing” might not be as effective at blocking noise as heavy-duty soundproof curtains, they still will likely provide some soundproofing benefit.