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Blinds Vs Shades: How to Choose Based on Features, Needs, and Cost

May 19, 2022

Blinds Vs Shades: How to Choose Based on Features, Needs, and Cost

It can be confusing when you’re shopping for new window treatments and the words blinds and shades are used interchangeably. While they are both window treatments in function, they differ in style and operation.

ShadeMonster is here to help you understand the difference between blinds and shades and to choose which one is best for you. 

Faux-wood blinds white in a nordic style bedroom

What are Blinds?

Blinds are window treatments with either horizontal or vertical slats. They are typically made from a hard material, such as wood, PVC, or aluminum. Blinds can adjust their slats to let in light. Horizontal blinds can also be raised or lowered, vertical blinds can be pushed back or spread out. 

What are Shades?

Shades are window treatments that are made from one or multiple pieces of material. They come in many different colors, textures, and fabrics. Some even have prints and patterns. Shades are raised or lowered to adjust for light and privacy.

White solar shades in a classic style living room

What is the Difference Between Window Shades and Window Blinds

The difference between window shades and window blinds is how they operate. Blinds have slats that tilt to control light and privacy. If you want to let in a little light or a lot, you can adjust the amount of light by tilting the blinds to your exact needs. The majority of shades can only be adjusted by rolling the shades up or down. Depending on the fabric of the shades, you will have to roll the shade all the way up to be able to see out the window. Zebra shades offer the best of both worlds as they have alternating horizontal light filtering and room darkening stripes, so you can adjust the amount of light and privacy without rolling the shade all the way up or down. 

ShadeMonster’s Tips to Buy New Blinds and Shades

  • Durability - When making the decision to buy new blinds or shades, there are a few other key features to consider: Durability - Typically made from harder materials, blinds are especially durable. Made from PVC, faux-wood blinds last even longer than real wood blinds due to their water-resistant fabrication. They won’t crack, bend, or warp from water damage which makes them great for high moisture areas, like bathrooms and kitchens. ShadeMonster’s roller shades are made from durable high-quality vinyl, making them long-lasting as well. 
  • Privacy - Both blinds and shades offer privacy in varying amounts. Blackout shades are the ultimate choice for maximum privacy and room darkening. Their opaque fabric allows no light to pass through the shade and no eyes to peer through either. 
  • Light control - Solar shades offer a variety of transparencies that allow you to see more or less through your windows. While still allowing light to pass through, your space will be bright without glare. The lower the percentage of the solar shade, the less you can see through.
  • Room function - The function of the room you are installing new blinds or shades in makes a difference. Bedrooms require more privacy and room darkening, while it is important to have water-resistant fabrics in the bathroom. Keep in mind how your window treatments should complement your room to decide which option is right for you. 
Zebra Shades installed in 5 windows in a living room

Blinds vs Shades Cost

Window treatment cost comes down to customization and fabric. Blinds are typically less customizable than shades and therefore can be the cheaper option. While basic shades are quite affordable, the price can rise when you add motorized lift, high quality fabric, dual shades, or other customizable options. 

Whether you are cost conscious or not, ShadeMonster has the right window treatment for you. Our high quality materials at affordable prices means that you won’t have to break the bank to design your space. Contact us today to get started on your dream blinds or shades. 


Why Trust ShadeMonster With Your Window Treatment?

ShadeMonster boasts over 25 years of experience creating custom window treatments. Our products come directly from our local factory guaranteeing high quality customizable materials, competitive pricing, and quick turn around. Contact us today for your free estimate, and have your new shades in less than 7 business days! 

Still Need Help Deciding On Your Window Treatment?

ShadeMonster’s team of experts are happy to assist. Call now for free consultation: (866) 206-8056




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