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Before blackout shades hit the market, your only option for darkening a room was to hang a plastic drapery behind your curtains. But now, blackout shades are common and much more attractive. Single cell honeycomb fabric shades lined with Mylar act as a total light barrier. This blackout fabric is ideal for bedrooms or media rooms because 100% of the visible light and UV rays are blocked for privacy and convenience. One of the best benefits of the blackout shades is the insulating capacity. Blackout shade with R-values of 5.0 will lower your energy costs in cold or hot climates. When you have skylights or cathedral ceilings in your house, this could mean higher energy costs. There are often problems with getting heat down to the lower areas of the home so more energy is used. In these instances, blackout shades are a good idea because skylights cause a small greenhouse effect and the shades reduce the sun keeping the room cooler. High quality materials repel dirt naturally and resist stains. As with other shades, check that the outside is white for a uniform appearance from the street.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|