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Top Window Shades: Pros, Cons & Best Uses for Each Style

cellular shades | types of window shades

Table of Contents

Installing window shades is one of the simplest ways to transform any room. With a various options to pick from, it can get overwhelming to choose the shades that best fit your needs and style. Here, we break down the pros and cons, as well as the ideal uses for four top styles of shades.

Roller Shades

Best Uses: Roller shades work well in most rooms where you want an affordable, low-profile shade option. Best fits for contemporary spaces. Good choice if noise dampening is not a priority.

roller shades | types of window shades


  • Cost-effective
  • Easy to install and operate
  • Sleek, minimalist style
  • Good light filtering
  • Many fabric choices and colors
  • Can be noisy when operating
  • Don’t provide the best insulation
  • Less customizable

Cellular Shades

Best Uses: Ideal for windows where you want light filtering along with privacy and insulation. Provides a warmer, cozier feel. Great fit for living rooms, bedrooms, and home offices.

cellular shades | types of window shades
  • Excellent insulation
  • Soft, aesthetic look
  • Many colors and materials
  • Provides both privacy and light filtering
  • Pricier than basic roller shades
  • Cells can collect dust
  • Limited width options

Roman Shades

Best Uses: Perfect for classy spaces where you want a decorative shade with upscale appeal. Ideal over beds, accent windows or on bay windows. Choose less delicate fabrics if in high-traffic areas.

Roman Shades | types of window shades
  • Sophisticated, elegant aesthetic
  • Customizable styles and fabrics
  • Allows you to control the light gaps
  • Easy lift operation
  • Most expensive shade option
  • Fabric can be delicate
  • Pleats prone to collecting dust

Bamboo or Woven Wood Shades

Best Uses: Great environmentally friendly choice that works well in most casual settings. The natural material works nicely in bedrooms, kitchens, dens and offices. Best installed inside versus direct outdoor sunlight exposure.

woven shades | types of window shades
  • Sustainable, eco-friendly option
  • Provides good UV protection
  • Natural material to regulate temperature
  • Affordable cost
  • Let in light from the sides
  • Limited color/style options
  • Subject to wrinkling or sagging

Customized Shades for Unique Needs

Many homeowners also utilize made-to-measure shades tailored to their exact window dimensions and functional needs. Custom shades allow you to pick specialized features like blackout fabrics, top-down/bottom-up functionality, motorization and more. Work with a shade professional to create customized window treatments unique to your space.

Window Shades FAQs

Here are answers to some common questions on shades:

Roller shades provide a more minimalist look, while cellular shades have a softer, more decorative style. Cellulars also provide better insulation, given their honeycomb structure that traps air. Roller shades are generally cheaper in cost.

Use a handheld vacuum with a soft brush attachment to gently remove dust and debris from the folds and channels. You can also take down the shades and lightly shake them outside. Spot treat stains by dabbing gently with a small amount of warm, soapy water.

Blackout roller shades or blackout cellular shades allow virtually zero light to pass through, giving you complete darkness. They feature specially engineered fabrics and side channels to prevent light leakage. These are ideal for nurseries or bedrooms when darkness is a priority.

Transform Your Windows With Shades from The Window Design Studio

As you evaluate top shade types, consider attributes like aesthetic style, functionality, durability, pricing, and customization options. Hybrid shades like solar screens can optimize certain benefits too. Window shades make an easy yet high-impact update.

Work with our team at The Window Design Studio to select shades that upgrade aesthetics, efficiency, and comfort. Contact us for help determining your best shade solutions and special installation offers.

Michelle Nielsen

Michelle Nielsen

A seasoned professional with three decades of industry experience, and a warm and reliable personality. She brings expertise in window coverings and personalized design solutions.

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