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Review: The Best Products for Blinds and Shades in the UK in 2022


In this comparison review, we’ll examine the pros and cons of the popular blinds and shades in the UK. We will also give you our top four picks for each of these window dressings, which you may want to consider.

No matter where you are in the UK, the options for window coverings are almost endless. However, the five that most UK homeowners usually go for are described below:

Blackout blinds

Blackout blinds are covers with thick and opaque fabric designed to block out light from entering the interior of apartments and living spaces. They are usually enclosed in a cassette window system. When the blind is pulled from the cassette, it runs vertically along the side channels to block out window or door light.

Blackout blinds not only provide an excellent level of privacy but also help to reduce noise pollution. Other benefits of using blackout blinds include helping to block out light for a better night’s sleep and preventing UV light from damaging windows and home interiors. Additionally, blackout blinds can help lower your energy bills since they can help keep your home warm in the winter by preventing the entry of cold waves and keeping it cool in the summer by avoiding direct sunlight from entering the room.

Since these blinds are very efficient in blocking out light entry into rooms, you may want to consider other options if you don’t like dark surroundings.

Our top four picks for blackout blinds are:

  • Stella Mustard Lanbury Blackout Charcoal
  • Alessio Darkness
  • Coco Graphite
  • BlocOut™ in Daisy

Shutter blinds

Shutter blinds are an excellent choice, which comes in different colours, styles, and textures. From the kitchen to the bedroom, they can dress up any living space in the home with appealing aesthetics—inside and outside. They can go with both traditional and modern interiors and provide needed privacy, protection, and safety to the interior of your home.

For instance, shutter blinds can prevent insects from entering your home. They can also help you ventilate your room and control the amount of light and heat you allow in and out of your living space throughout the year.

One of the significant advantages of using shutter blinds is that they’re durable and easily cleaned and maintained. There are many types you can choose from, including tier-on-tier shutters, shaped shutters, solid shutters, full height shutters, tracked shutters, and café style shutters.

Although they last very long if adequately maintained, shutter blinds cannot be raised entirely and tend to be more expensive than other types. Another drawback of shutter blinds is that they’re not easily replaced or installed. Therefore, it’s always advisable to hire a professional to get your shutter blinds replaced or installed.

Our top picks for shutter blinds are:

  • House Beautiful Collection (Sky Grey)
  • House Beautiful Collection (Chalk Pink)
  • Hillary’s Black Walnut
  • Hillary’s Elephants Air Shutter Blinds

shutter blinds in living room

Cellular shades

Cellular shades are made from multiple layers of fabrics pleated together to form cells. These covers can have up to three cells in every layer and are available in a wide range of opacities, including sheer, semi-opaque, and opaque.

Cellular shades allow light into your living space and provide adequate privacy, making it difficult to look through the blinds from outside. There are different types, which include continuous cord loop, cordless lift, top-down bottom-up, and motorized.

Cellular shades are one of the best forms of insulation you can get in the UK because they can help you save money on heating or cooling costs. These shades have efficient fabric cells that help trap air and provide insulation.

These blinds help to keep the heat out in summer and the cold out in winter. Cellular shades can have up to three cells in every layer. Usually, the more the cells, the higher the number of air layers and the better the insulating value.

However, cellular shades have some disadvantages. For example, they are prone to trapping dust which can be very challenging to clean because of how the shutters are structured. Light control can also be tough, especially with those that are single-cell blinds. Additionally, cellular shades are usually priced higher than other types of shades.

Although they provide fantastic insulating properties, many homeowners often consider their aesthetics not inviting, fashionable, and stylistic enough. For this reason, these blinds are usually combined with other window coverings to achieve the desired feel and aesthetics.

Another drawback of cellular shades is that they are either up or down. This means that no feature allows the vanes to be tilted to allow for some light or view while at the same time maintaining a little privacy.

Some great cellular shades you may want to consider include:

  • Nightingale Villa
  • Calyx Interiors

Roman shades

Roman shades have been around for a long time and are one of the UK’s most versatile and popular window treatments. Roman shades date back to more than 2000 years ago during the ancient Roman civilization. Yet, it remains relevant and fashionable today, providing soft and modern aesthetics to living spaces.

Romans shades are soft fabric dressings that hang flat against the window in the down position but horizontally fold up neatly when raised. Roman shades are covered with soft fabric that gathers as it rises. They can be bright and cheerful as well as made to blend into the desired ambience. They offer the function of shades combined with the appeal of drapery.

They are available in several light filtering options and various fold types, with each fold type having a unique look. Traditional Roman shades consist of three parts: the fabric panel, cord, and ring system. You can also choose from a variety of materials: grasscloth, polyester, woven woods, cotton blend, and silk.

Roman shades are available in several different and unique styles, but the popular ones are soft/hobble fold, flat fold, batten front, and batten back. No matter your taste, style, and desired aesthetics, you can be sure to find a roman shade that’ll meet your requirements.

However, one of the disadvantages of roman shades is that they are usually not suitable for kitchens. This is because of the fabric roman shades are made of, causing them to get stained and humid easily. These types of shades also tend to require lots of maintenance. 

Below are four great Roman shades you may want to consider for your home:

  1. Linen Blend Stripes (John Lewis)
  2. Strawberry Thief (Morris & Co.)
  4. Shawford Blackout (John Lewis)

Roller shades

Roller shades are window treatments with a solid sheet of materials covering windows and controlled with a roller function. Generally, roller shades ‘roll up’ onto a tube and are operated with a cord loop, a cordless spring system, or even a remote control. When pulled up, the material re-wraps the tube and shortens.

Roller shades are simple, budget-friendly, and sturdy. They come in different colours, fabrics, and designs. Roller shades fabrics range from sheer to blackout, depending on how much privacy and light control you need. The material used for roller shades is solid and cannot be seen through. Roller shades are also some of the easiest covers to maintain.

However, one of the downsides of roller shades is that they may not be suitable for irregularly shaped windows. They also tend to flap under an intense breeze if the window is open. Additionally, the cord loop often used with roller shades may not be safe for children and pets.

Four of our top picks for roller shades include:

  1. Orla Kiely Linear Stem roller shades
  2. Sara Miller Bamboo roller shades
  3. Sanderson Dandelion Clocks Daylight roller shades
  4. Bluebellgray Lomond roller shades

As with everything for your home: choosing blinds or shades often boils down to personal preferences. However, when selecting the blinds you use for your window, you must consider some important details. Maintenance, material, accessibility, your window type, your desired light and privacy control, and safety—all of these should be top of your consideration.

For instance, you should choose fabrics that are moisture-resistant for water-prone areas like kitchens and bathrooms. As regards safety, choose blinds and shades that have safety features for your children and pets. Cordless blinds and shades are especially the way to go if you have children and pets in the house.

Blackout blinds are suitable for bedrooms, and you may want to consider cellular shades and shutters for your sitting room. But again, it all boils down to your preferences. But no matter the blinds or shades you settle for, choose one that fits your style and makes your life easier.

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