Whether it’s because you like to jam a little too loud for your neighbors’ taste or whether you want to keep noise out to record, soundproof curtains may be a viable option. But if you’ve been shopping around, you may have noticed that there are different types and you may have seen that they aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Some are expensive, so you definitely want to make sure you get the best sound absorption curtains in your budget.
After reading this article, you’ll have a good understanding of exactly what you want and how it works and how to choose the best for your needs.
What Are the Different Types of Soundproof Curtains
There are two different types of soundproof curtains. The first is curtains that absorb sound from the inside to prevent it from leaving the room. These are called sound deadening or sound absorption curtains. Then you get sound reduction curtains. These curtains help to prevent outside sounds from coming into the room.
Naturally, in a studio environment, you’ll want the sound reduction curtains. If you just want to practice without bugging your neighbors, sound absorption curtains are what you need.
Here are a few other names soundproof curtains go by: acoustic curtains and sound absorbing curtains.
Are Soundproof Curtains Really Effective?
Sadly, they aren’t quite as effective as you may hope. Not that they’re entirely useless, but if you are looking to block noise from outside, curtains alone aren’t going to give you a 100% silent room. You can read all about soundproofing a room here.
In terms of keeping sound in, they do an okay job. But once again, if you’re going to really crank the volume, they’re not going to be super effective. They absorb vibrations and frequencies, but because of the nature of sound waves, they will still travel through somewhat. You may have more luck with high-pitched frequencies, but bass notes will just float right on through. They go through walls too. The waves in lower frequencies are bigger and longer, that’s why you hear the bass pumping from a mile away.
That’s not going to be a huge problem if you’re playing a guitar, especially the higher notes or higher voicings of chords. It’s if you’re playing bass, or you have a band in there with you. And drums, well, those things are rarely quiet when the drummer is passionately going at it.
If you find that your room tends to reverberate because of trucks driving past or a train shaking the building, someone else thumping the bass in your block of flats or whatever, soundproofing curtains will help for that. Even a small reduction in volume may be helpful when you’re trying to sleep or let your creativity free.
So Why Get Soundproof Curtains?
If you’re only slightly too loud or want to reduce vibrations, the curtains could be worth your while. Plus they have a few other benefits:
- Cleaner Mixes: While your room won’t be 100% soundproof, it will be a little quieter and the quieter noises will be absent. Because it takes care of the vibrations too, it acts as acoustic treatment, you’ll hear your monitors more accurately, albeit not as much as you would in a professional studio.
- Thermal Insulation: You’ll have a cooler room in the summer and a warmer room in the winter.
- Privacy: These curtains are thick and because you cover the entire window with them to achieve noise reduction or absorption, no peeping Toms are ever going to see you through them, even at night when you have the light on.
- Darkness: Yip, they are so thick, most of them work perfectly well as blockout curtains.
The Best Soundproof Curtains
Sound reduction curtains, and even sound absorbing curtains come in a range of styles, colors, and sizes. Most, if not all of these curtains have grommets to fit over curtain rods. I haven’t found taped curtains, but if you do have a curtain rail, you may need to purchase a curtain rod. Alternatively, you can insert hooks into the wall and that will allow you to hang the curtains from the grommets.
US Cargo Control Large Sound Blanket (Sound Dampening)
This is a very heavy blanket that can be used on a booth to dampen outside noise or to hang across a window or wall using the grommets. Just be sure that your curtain rod or hooks can handle the weight. It’s not the most stylish, but it gets the job done reasonably well. It dampens out low frequency sounds but has been known to let through some high frequencies. A few people said that the noise dampening is about 10dB. It’s constructed from cotton and polyester and is machine washable.
RYB HOME Soundproof Curtains (Sound Reduction)
These curtains are interesting in that you can choose options with three layers and options with four layers. Specifically, the four layer options are said to provide even better sound dampening as in addition to the detachable felt layer, they also have a melt-blown fabric overlay. This fourth layer also blocks pollution. Both the three layer and four layer curtains are 100% blockout curtains. They come in various lengths and widths of 42 inches and 52 inches per panel. There are different colors but they are all of the more natural and muted variety.
These are machine washable at low temperatures and you can iron them too. Detach the felt layer when washing them. Most people found they work really well for reducing outside noise and feel the provided table showing the noise reduction level for various frequencies is accurate. Bass frequencies come through more. But traffic noise, people talking, and mid and high frequencies are reduced fairly well in volume.
HLC.ME Dakota Complete Blackout Lined Drapery (Sound Reduction)
This curtain looks nice as well as being a good option for noise reduction. Many people say these curtains work very well for that purpose and in some cases better than curtains specifically from soundproofing companies. They also block out light and insulate your room from heat and cold. They come in a few different colors and sizes to compliment your home or studio. These curtains are made from high quality polyester.
BUHUA Black Out Curtains (Sound Reduction)
These curtains would look good in a home setting. You can choose from two main designs, bare branches or branches with leaves. They come in different colors and different lengths and widths. People mainly bought these as blackout curtains, but some do say that they reduce noise from outside. These can be machine washed.
Deconovo Geometric Wave Stripe and Dot Curtains
These curtains will look nice in a home environment, or even a studio provided you like the design. Many people agree that these curtains really do help to reduce outside noise. What some people complain about is that these curtains aren’t proper blackout curtains. But if you’re looking more for curtains to reduce noise, that’s not a big issue. They are available in a range of colors with the same gold or silver foil design and come in various sizes too.
Lazzy Velvet Blackout Curtains (Sound Reduction)
The primary use for these curtains is to block out light, but they are heavy enough to muffle sounds from outside. They are also good for insulating the room. They come in a variety of lengths and there are a few different colors to choose from. If you have very wide windows, you may need to order two sets.
Many people say they do okay at reducing noise from outside. In some cases, the curtains were a bit thin and let light in, and presumably sound too. It seems these don’t have a liner to truly block sunlight. These curtains are machine washable.
StangH Blackout Velvet Curtains (Sound Reduction)
Much like the previous curtains, these are velvet curtains with no lining. They are heavy though and do provide some noise reduction. Specific mentions include reducing traffic noise and absorbing echoes within a room. They come in different lengths and colors to suit your decor and window heights. They are machine washable, dry cleanable, and can be steamed at low heat to remove wrinkles.
Easy-Going Blackout Curtains (Sound Reduction)
These curtains are a good option if you prefer to have a bigger selection of not only lengths, but widths too. The advertising shows around a 20dB drop in sound, but this may be misleading. People who bought them for sound reduction purposes have found improvements, even in neighborhoods with a lot of partying. However, some people found little to no sound reduction. They will block some light and insulate the room. These curtains are machine washable on the cold setting and can be tumble dried and ironed at low temperatures.
Deconovo 100% Blackout Curtains (Sound Reduction)
These are the plain version from Deconovo. These triple woven curtains are designed, as all the others are, for noise reduction, light blocking, and thermal insulation. The people who bought them to help reduce noise found that they do indeed reduce noise from the outside and absorb echoes from within the room. They are available in different lengths, but not widths so if you have very wide windows you may need to purchase more. Choose from nine muted colors, and as with the others, wash, iron, and tumble dry on low.
Deconovo Rod Pocket Curtains
Deconovo makes another appearance on this list, but this time, for those who prefer rod pocket curtains. These curtains are triple woven and so also block out light (darker colors do better), provide thermal insulation, and reduce noise from the outside. Most people agree that they do make some difference when it comes to sound reduction. These are available in various colors and lengths with widths of 42 inches or 52 inches. They are machine washable on the cool setting and you can iron them on low too.
JIUZHEN Blackout Curtains (Sound Reduction)
These curtains are available in various lengths or widths to fit your particular windows. If you’re not a fan of grommets, these just have a sleeve that you insert the curtain rod into. The high density fabric helps to reduce noise, UV light, and provide thermal insulation. Many people agree that these curtains do indeed provide some noise reduction. Wash them on the cold setting in the washing machine, tumble dry and iron on low. If you’re looking to have close to complete blockout curtains, go for the darker colors. Tie backs are included.
DWCN Blackout Curtains (Sound Reduction)
These triple woven polyester curtains are designed to provide noise reduction, thermal insulation, and block light. They come in different colors (dark is better to block light more effectively) and in different lengths and widths. Most people who bought these curtains to reduce noise, did find that they provided around a 5dB reduction in sound from outside. There were however a few people who received thin curtains that let in both light and sound. These could be defects. These curtains are machine washable on the cold setting and can be ironed on low.
NICETOWN High-End Thermal Curtains (Sound Reduction)
Well, I don’t know if these are truly high-end, although they are more expensive than many of the other curtains on this list. These curtains have a black lining that not only completely blocks out light, but helps to reduce noise from outside. This is true no matter which color you select. They also come in various widths and lengths. Reviews are mixed when it comes to sound reduction. Some say it reduces traffic noise and railway noise. Some say it didn’t reduce the noise at all.
BGment Blackout Curtains (Sound Reduction)
If you want curtains that fit in with regular room decor and where you can choose the color you want, here you go. These are blackout curtains that also help to block outside noise. The triple weave technology is what helps these curtains to block light, insulate the room, and to reduce outside noise. These are suitable for machine wash, ironing, and putting into the tumble dryer. Choose from a range of colors. They come in different lengths and widths. Having said that, they do recommend darker colors for blocking out light.
Reviews are mixed when it comes to how well they reduce noise. Some people did experience a reduction in outside noise. Others didn’t.
WONTEX 100% Blackout Curtains (Sound Reduction)
These curtains have a double layer with an additional black liner to block out the sun and other light sources. Due to these layers and how heavy the curtains are, they reduce noise from the outside too. You can choose between various lengths, and two different widths (42 inches or 52 inches). They also come in a few different colors. Reviews are mixed. Some people found that they do dampen sound while others said they don’t reduce noise.
The advert shows the curtains reduce sound by approximately 30dB, but this may be misleading.
BEDSURE 100% Blackout Curtains
There’s not much variety here, in terms of sizes or colors, but if they have what you need, that’s not a problem. The triple woven fabric blocks light, heat, cold, and slightly reduces sound. Some people found that the sound reduction is slight while others found it significant, some even said amazing. I would think it depends what frequencies are in your neighborhood and how loud the noise is. These are machine washable on a cool setting and you can tumble dry and iron on low too.
RYB HOME Blackout Curtains
These are the more affordable option from RYB. These curtains are triple woven and so do help a little with sound reduction. The people who bought them for this purpose did notice they do help to reduce noise from outside and absorb echoes within the room. They are available in various colors, none of them bright. These panels are wide, either 70 inches or 100 inches, but this could be since they only supply one panel. So if you have really wide windows, buy two. They are machine washable and can be ironed and tumble dried on low.
NICETOWN Soundproof Thermal Insulated Blackout Curtain (Sound Reduction)
A cheaper option from NICETOWN, these are said to reduce noise by 10dB to 20dB by the manufacturer. They come in various widths (up to 120 inches) and lengths. Please note, there is only one panel per package. They come in various colors although for light blocking purposes, the darker colors are better. These are machine washable on cool settings and can be ironed on low. The reviews regarding sound reduction are mixed. Most say they block some sound, but it’s minimal. Some people noticed no difference.
StangH Extra Long Velvet Blackout Drapes
If you have really tall windows, here you go. These curtains have lengths of up to 120 inches. They are quite heavy and are said to help with reducing noise. The reviews are mixed, although more people say that they don’t do much for sound from outside. However, people do say they absorb echoes within a room. They are machine washable and dry cleanable. They can be steam ironed too.
Sound proofing is essential for recording, and nice to have for practicing. As mentioned before, to have a truly soundproof room, you will have to acoustically treat the room. While the difference may be small, soundproof curtains can help a little in the interim. They tend to muffle noise from outside and reduce reverberation within a room. There are plenty of options in various prices, sizes, and colors. The additional benefits of blocking out light and keeping the room cool or warm are great too. So they’ll never be a waste.
Cheanné Lombard lives in the home of one of the new Seven World Wonders, Cape Town, South Africa. She can’t go a day without listening to or making music.
Her love of music started when her grandparents gave her a guitar. It was a smaller version of the full-sized guitars fit for her little hands. Later came a keyboard and a few years after that, a beautiful dreadnought guitar and a violin too. While she is self-taught when it comes to the guitar, she had piano lessons as a child and is now taking violin lessons as an adult.
She has been playing guitar for over 15 years and enjoys a good jam session with her husband, also an avid guitarist. In fact, the way he played those jazzy, bluesy numbers that kindled the fire in her punk rock heart. Now she explores a variety of genres and plays in the church worship group too and with whoever else is up for a jam session.