Give your windows a new look that’s practical, functional and stylish with the best blinds
Blinds are a great way to add colour and texture to your windows but they can also perform a number of functions. As well as looking good, the best blinds can give you a layer of privacy – ideal if you live on a busy road or have nosy neighbours – as well as filter daylight to reduce glare or cut it out altogether so you can sleep better. Blinds can even keep your home cooler in the summer and warmer during winter – saving on those energy bills.
That’s why it’s a smart idea to choose the right blind for every room of your house. They come in different styles, from slats to multi-layer designs and fabrics, and have clever features to suit different spaces. We’ve selected some of the best blinds you can buy – as well as pointing you in the right direction when it comes to features to look for. Below, you’ll find our buying guide to help you select the best blinds, or you can scroll on for our top picks.
Best blinds: At a glance
- Best blackout blinds | Palmetto Autumn Roman Blind
- Best bathroom blind | Sara Miller Birds Roller Blind
- Best blind on a budget | Kala Corded Natural Striped Day and Night Roller blind
How to choose the best blinds for you
What types of blinds are available?
There are many different styles available but some of the most popular include:
Venetian: These slatted horizontal blinds can be tilted to filter the light coming in from outside, raised up for full sun or closed completely. They’re ideal for kitchens, home offices and living areas.
Roller: A single piece of material that rolls up to let the light in using a cord pull. They’re available in a range of colours, styles and designs and often have a protective coating, making them suitable for humid rooms, such as kitchens and bathrooms. They’re also generally available as blackout blinds for bedrooms too. Opt for cordless versions if you have young children or pets, though.
Roman: Similar to rollers in that they’re operated with a pulley mechanism, Romans fold up with a concertina effect. Usually made of fabric, they provide thermal insulation when down, keeping draughts out and trapping warmth in, making them good for bedrooms and living spaces.
Vertical: Similar to curtains, these hang from a track and slide along to open and close. However, as they can be tilted like Venetians, they give greater control of the light. Ideal for large or floor-to-ceiling windows and usually drawn with a wand.
Pleated: Often fitted within window frames, making them good for bi-fold and French doors, these have an accordion-style fabric design that’s thermally efficient, providing ventilation in the warmer months and insulation when it’s cold outside. Also known as cellular or honeycomb shades, they’re easy to maintain but can accumulate dust inside the folds.
Day and Night: Ensuring privacy as well as light, these chain-operated blinds have sliding horizontal blocks and sheer fabric strips. As you roll the blind down, the block strips either line up for maximum light, overlap for a bit of light or sit side by side to block out light. They’re great for rooms with lots of windows that need privacy and are also known as zebra, switch or silhouette blinds.
Will the type of window affect the blind I choose?
Different types of windows may need a specific style of blind so bear this in mind when choosing. For example, large or wide windows may need multiple blinds instead of having one large one. Similarly, if there’s no recess to fit a blind, you may need to factor in a larger blind that fits outside of the window area rather than within it.
How much should I spend on blinds?
Roller blinds tend to be the most affordable, starting from around £8 for the smallest standard sizes, although you may also find pocket-friendly PVC Venetians. Ready-made blinds are best if you’re on a tight budget, as made-to-measure blinds start at around £35 for small sizes and can increase dramatically in price in line with the size of your window and materials used.
The best blinds to buy in 2023
1. Palmetto Autumn Roman Blind: Best blind for bedrooms
Price: From £35 for 35 x 35cm | Buy now from Swift Direct Blinds
Bedroom windows can often be odd sizes, which is where a made-to-measure Roman blind comes in. This pretty painterly botanical design can be handmade to sit in the recess or an exact size, with controls at the left or right. Plus, as it can be upgraded with a thermal or blackout lining, it’s perfect for keeping your bedroom at the right temperature and welcoming all year round. You can even add motorisation, although that raises the starting price to £104.
While this Autumn colourway is just right for adding a shot of warmth to balance out grey skies, the Palmetto design is also available in other shades, ranging from the cool, blue-greys of Ocean, to the soothing earthy tones of Merlot. There’s even a child safety clip included in the box and a five-year warranty on them
Key specs – Type: Roman; Other colours available: Yes, five; Sizes available: Made to measure; Blackout: Yes (10% extra)
2. Sara Miller Birds Roller Blind: Best blind for bathrooms
Price: From £35 for 60 x 168cm | Buy now from John Lewis
Bathrooms look great with a splash of colour to liven up all that white ceramic and this printed blind featuring Sara Miller’s popular Birds design doesn’t disappoint. It’s practical too, as it’s moisture-resistant and 100% polyester, so any marks can be wiped away. There’s also a side chain for easy operation.
The downside is that there’s only five standard sizes – so if you’re looking to cover an odd-sized window, you might be out of luck. It’s also not a blackout blind, so would need to be combined with another window treatment if you’re planning on using it in a bedroom.
Key specs – Type: Roller; Other colours available: No; Sizes available: 60, 90, 120, 150, 180 x 168cm; Blackout: No
3. Hayden Empire Vertical Blind: Best blinds for large windows
Price: From £29 | Buy now from Blinds By Post
Vertical blinds once had a reputation for poor materials and construction but have come on leaps and bounds in recent years. These sleek Hayden verticals are a case in point: made from woven-effect polyester, they’re available in a choice of neutral shades, including this deep silvery grey. What’s more, as they’re made to measure, there’s lots of choice for personalising your look, including chain colour and material (or chainless), where the blinds bunch and options for fixings.
Hayden’s fairly wide slats (8.9cm) make it easy to filter the daylight coming into a room, making them especially suitable for kitchen-diners and living rooms. While they’re suitable for bedrooms, it’s probably best to combine with another window treatment for complete darkness.
Key specs – Type: Vertical; Other colours available: Yes, five; Sizes available: Made to measure; Blackout: No
4. Habitat Elliott 50mm Wooden Tape Venetian Blind in Salvage: Best blinds for kitchens
Price: From £35 for 60 x 160cm | Buy now from Argos
Whether your taste is modern or traditional, wooden blinds are a timeless addition to any window. Equally timeless are these Elliott Venetian blinds. Designed with coordinating tape and wide, 5cm slats to give the effect of shutters, they work well in any room where the daylight needs to be filtered such as a kitchen, living room or bathroom. All you need to do is twist the rod to alter the angle of the slats.
In addition, they have a safety cleat to keep the cord in place, making them child-safe. While they come in four standard sizes, it’s possible to trim them to fit your window perfectly asthey\re made from wood.
Key specs – Type: Venetian; Other colours available: Yes, one; Sizes available: 60, 90, 120, 180 x 160cm; Blackout: No
5. Kala Corded Natural Striped Day and Night Roller blind: Best blind on a budget
There’s not much choice of colour for the Kala Day and Night blind – natural or grey are the only options. However, it’s still a great choice for a room where you need a mix of privacy and light, such as one facing onto a street where a traditional roller blind wouldn’t be suitable. Its translucent and opaque layers make it easy to filter the light without constantly altering the angle of slats.
While it’s available in a good choice of standard sizes, it’s worth bearing in mind that it can’t be cut to size – so you might end up with light peeking in around the edges if it’s not a perfect fit. It’s not UV-resistant either, so probably not suitable for a south-facing room, as it could fade over time.
Key specs – Type: Day and Night; Other colours available: Yes, one; Sizes available: 60, 90, 120, 160, 180 x 180cm, 60, 90, 120, 160, 180 x 240cm; Blackout: No
6. Swish Storm Cloud Cordless Insulating Pleated Blind: Best energy saving blind
Price: From £35 for 60 x 160cm | Buy now from Dunelm
Windows are one of the biggest reasons why your home loses heat in the winter and gains it in the warmer months, so it makes sense to add an insulating covering. If thick curtains aren’t your thing, consider a pleated blind, such as this Swish cordless design. Available in a wide range of ready made sizes, and four neutral colours – including this dramatic Storm Cloud shade – its soft fabric insulates and reduces ambient noise. Moreover, as it’s cordless, it’s safe for homes with kids and pets too.
Another good reason to choose this Swish blind is versatility. Cellular blinds can be used with bay windows, bi-folds, in conservatories and more. Probably the only room to steer clear of is the bedroom. While the Storm Cloud blind is dark, it won’t keep out all the light.
Key specs – Type: Pleated; Other colours available: Yes, three; Sizes available: 60, 70, 80, 90, 100, 110, 120, 130, 140, 150, 160, 170, 180 x 160cm; Blackout: No