Thermal Curtains Will Keep Your Home Cozy and Warm All Winter—Here Are Our 9 Favorite Options

Plus, learn how these insulating panels actually work.

Luxury bedroom interior blackout curtains
Photo: in4mal / Getty Imagess

Changing seasons mean changing temperatures, and that's true of both inside and outside your home. While you can't control the elements beyond your four walls, thermal curtains can help you maintain a cozy (or cool) environment indoors. These home décor pieces look and are hung like typical curtains, but were ultimately designed to provide insulation.

From colorful and neutral iterations to panels with built-in technology that blocks out the sun, the options you'll see ahead were culled by interior designers and curtain experts alike; they shared their favorite thermal curtains on the market. Keep reading to learn how thermal curtains work, why consumers should consider purchasing these window treatments for their homes, and the best options to shop right now.

Shop the Best Thermal Curtains on the Market

How Thermal Curtains Work

To understand how thermal curtains work, it's helpful to think about how you dress to keep warm during chilly winter weather: You layer articles of clothing, explains a community manager at the Plumbing Lab. "Thermal curtains work the same way, but in our homes," they say. "Curtains are layered to trap air in between the pieces of fabric, creating a barrier of hot air that leads to insulation."

When hung over a window, this "air pocket" and layered fabric "reduces thermal transference," says Angela Boswell, the co-founder of The Drape. "This means that the temperature on one side of the window panel will not have an effect on the temperature on the other side of the window panel," she says. Even if you can see snow outside, thermal curtains keep your space cozy.

The Best Thermal Curtain Materials

When shopping for thermal curtains, you should prioritize certain materials—not the brand. All thermal insulated curtains are made from heavy, thick textiles such as cotton and polyester, says Marco Bizzley, certified interior designer and consultant at HouseGrail: "This prevents air from coming in or escaping through your window."

Not all of these window treatments, however, were created equal—but paying attention to the thickness of the fabric can help ensure a successful purchase. "The thicker and more dense the window curtain fabric, the less transference," says Boswell. "Thermal window panels should be composed of tightly woven fabrics and have more than one layer."

If you're shopping for curtains in person, Boswell suggests examining the fabric through your cell phone camera to check if it is densely woven. "If no light, or minimal light, comes through on your screen, then that is a tight weave that will have thermal properties," she says.

Year-Round Benefits

While thermal curtains are often utilized during winter months, they are just as helpful in the summer, notes Michelle Keldgord, a home designer. "Essentially, they'll keep heat where you want it—either inside or out," she says. "[In the summer], you can keep the heat trapped between the window and the curtain, leaving your home impressively cooler."

Thermal curtains won't only make you feel good because of their temperature-regulating properties—they can also save you money. "Consumers benefit from them because they can help lower their heating and cooling bills," says Bizzley. "Since the curtains prevent air from coming in or escaping, the heater and air conditioner won't have to work as hard." Best of all, these pieces are available in a wide array of colors, sizes, and styles—which is much more aesthetically pleasing than other weatherproofing methods like plastic window insulation, says Boswell.

01 of 09

Nicetown Four-Layer Thermal Blackout Curtains

Nicetown Four-Layer Thermal Blackout Curtains
Courtesy of Nicetown

Since the best thermal curtains are thick and tightly woven, they also feature room darkening properties—which means they often double as blackout shades. "These are some of my favorites," says Bizzley. "Along with the insulating layer, there is additional brown cloth that not only keeps the air in, but the light out." Moreover, these curtains—like this custom option from Nicetown—include another layer that filters particles in the air to improve your home's air quality and cleanliness.

02 of 09

HPD Thermal Room Darkening Curtain

HPD Thermal Room Darkening Curtain
Courtesy of Amazon

Bizzley also recommends this pair. "I love this curtain—it's made from 100-percent polyester and its weighted hem keeps the curtain thick enough to prevent warm air from escaping," he says.

03 of 09

Sun Zero Barrow Energy Efficient Rod Pocket Curtain

Sun Zero Barrow Energy Efficient Rod Pocket Curtain
Courtesy of Amazon

Thermal curtains can have function and form. Keldgord recommends this set; it keeps your space dark and is available in "several great color and size options to suit any style."

04 of 09

MIUCO Two Panels Room Darkening Thermal Insulated Grommet

MIUCO Two Panels Room Darkening Thermal Insulated Grommet
Courtesy of Amazon

Want a little peace and quiet to go with your warmer space? Certain thermal curtains also feature noise-reducing technology. "For those sick and tired of noise coming in from the outside world, these are an excellent choice," Keldgord says.

05 of 09

Moondream Thermal & Blackout Curtain

Moondream Thermal & Blackout Curtain
Courtesy of Moondream

Consider an eco-friendly option. "The first thing I like about Moondream's curtains is that they were produced without any harmful chemicals," Bizzley says. "It's made from 99.7-percent polyester and has a thermal insulated lining to prevent air from coming in or out."

06 of 09

BGment Blackout Curtains for Bedroom

BGment Blackout Curtains for Bedroom
Courtesy of Amazon

These are a "clear winner" for shorter windows, notes Keldgord. And if you think simple fabrics and colors fit better into your home décor style, look no further than these pieces.

07 of 09

Sun Zero Cooper Textured Thermal Insulated Grommet Top Room Darkening Curtain Panels

sun zero cooper textured thermal curtain panels
Courtesy of Target

There are two key reasons to shop these curtain panels: their energy efficiency and chic design. The curtains come in either punchy shades or textured prints—and also reduces energy that's typically lost through your windows by up to 40 percent.

08 of 09

Brookstone "Saville" 84-Inch Grommet 100% Blackout Window Curtain Panel

brookstone saville grommet blackout window curtain panel
Courtesy of Bed Bath and Beyond

These 100-percent polyester curtains feature a woven solid design and blackout dual technology. The thermal component allows you to retain heat in your home and reduce external noise.

09 of 09

Three Posts Ottis Linen Room Darkening Curtain Panel

three posts ottis linen room darkening curtain panel
Courtesy of Wayfair

You can either hang these versatile thermal curtains with a rod pocket, back tab, or hook belt to keep out excess light and noise while maintaining your home's internal temperature. The weighted hem keeps the panels from shifting once you hang them up.

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