Which Fabric Is Best for Curtains? In-Depth Research.


Not only do curtains comfort at home but they also protect you from the street dust, hot or cold air, street lights and the sunlight. That is why it is very important to get the right curtains for every room. The first and most important factor that should be taken into account is the fabric of your curtains.

Which Fabric Is Best for Curtains?

Even though the market has a lot of different fabrics to offer, the best fabrics for curtains are cotton, silk, faux silk, linen and polyester because they are durable, easy to wash and maintain. However, all of these fabrics have their pros and cons that you should pay attention to when choosing the fabric of the curtains for your house. 

Now let’s dive into all these curtain material and see what their pros and cons are.

How To Choose The Correct Fabrics For Your Drapes

Cotton Curtains Pros & Cons

Cotton Curtains Pros:

  • Cotton curtains are strong and durable and can last up to 7-10 years if properly looked after depending on the thickness and density of a particular material.
  • Cotton curtains have good hygroscopic properties.
  • Сotton curtains are soft and pleasant to the touch.
  • Cotton curtains provide good air circulation.
  • Cotton curtains are easy to clean and iron.
  • Cotton curtains are inexpensive.
  • Cotton curtains are 100% natural and hypoallergenic, so if someone in your family is allergic to anything, it is better to opt for cotton curtains.
  • Cotton curtains are antistatic, so they are resistant to the formation of static electricity.
  • Cotton curtains have high heat resistance that ensures the ease of maintenance. Cotton curtains can be washed at high temperatures or ironed with a sufficiently hot iron and they will not be burned.
  • Cotton curtains remain clean longer than other curtain materials. Cotton is a material that does not electrify and does not attract dust particles. This means that the curtains stay clean longer.

Cotton Curtains Cons:

  • Cotton curtains have low elasticity and they crumple fast. 
  • Cotton curtains fade in the bright sun that is why you should now hang cotton curtains in the rooms that face the south.
  • Cotton curtains can shrink if they are washed in very hot water.
  • Cotton curtains may shed during washing but if you adhere to specific rules for the care of cotton, shrinkage and deterioration of colour can be avoided.
  • Cotton curtains may become yellow if you dry them in the sun. That is why you need to always dry cotton curtains in the shade.

Are Cotton Curtains Good? The Bottom Line

Cotton curtains are 100% natural that is why cotton curtains are a good option for any room in your house. Firstly, cotton curtains are very strong and durable and they have good hygroscopic properties. Secondly, cotton curtains are soft and pleasant to the touch and they perfectly let air and heat into the room. Thirdly, cotton curtains can be washed in hot water and ironed easily.

However, cotton curtains crumple a lot and have low elasticity. Also, cotton curtains can shed and shrink, so make sure you follow all the advice on how to wash and iron your cotton curtains. Cotton curtains should be drycleaned to keep them looking good for longer. In general, cotton fabrics are easy to wash and can be pre-soaked. Do not forget that cotton curtains do not tolerate bright sun, so you need to hang your cotton curtains in the rooms that do not face the south.

Cotton fabric made from plant fibres can have different thickness and textures. There are over 60 different types of fabrics that are made from cotton threads. When sewing cotton curtains manufacturers use the fabrics such as calico, cambric, satin, chintz, calico, poplin and others. The density of the cotton fabric depends on the characteristics of the weaving of the threads. Mercerized cotton is considered to be the most durable and well-absorbent cotton which also has a beautiful soft shine.

Since you can apply various patterns to cotton fabric, cotton curtains will look beautiful in any interior and any room — you can hang cotton curtains in the kitchen, bedroom or a living room. Cotton fabric is often used in the manufacture of roller blinds, roman blinds, Japanese panels and classic curtains.

Cotton curtains are ideal for the summer months. They are very light and bright. Cotton curtains protect the room well from sunlight and allow the fresh air to pass through. In the winter season, cotton curtains will keep the heat in the house and create a cosy atmosphere.

Silk Curtains Pros & Cons

Silk Curtains Pros:

  • Silk curtains are fairly durable as they last for at least 5 years if properly stored and washed.
  • Silk curtains are hypoallergenic. Silk curtains have bactericidal and hypoallergenic properties. Silk prevents bacteria growth, absorbs unpleasant odours and does not cause allergies. This is why it is often used to make clothes and bedding.
  • Silk curtains do not wear off in the sun and they have a high density and resistance to vinegar and alcohol. Only a concentrated solution of acid or alkali can damage the material.
  • Silk curtains are soft and beautiful. It is by far the cosiest material that will bring comfort to your home. SIlk curtains are very popular and can be found in many colours and patterns.
  • Silk curtains will not catch fire. The fabric is not subject to combustion: when a spark hits a silk product, it begins to smoulder spreading the smell of burnt feathers.
  • Silk curtains remain clean longer than other materials. Due to their natural origin, they do not electrify and practically do not attract small particles of dirt or dust.
  • Silk curtains are safe for health. All kinds of fungi, mould do not multiply on them and a dust mite does not live in them. Natural silk glue sericin is an excellent prophylactic agent against these parasites.

Silk Curtains Cons:

  • Silk curtains are fairly expensive. Silk curtains are much more expensive than polyester or even cotton curtains. However, silk curtains last long and do not fade in the sun, on average, silk curtains last for 5 years.
  • Silk curtains require special care. Silk curtains must not be washed in hot water or ironed at a high temperature.
    Silk is a delicate fabric that requires careful wear and gentle care. The main recommendations for the care of silk curtains are as follows:
    Silk curtains should be hand-washed at a temperature not exceeding 30°C or in a washing machine in the “Delicate Wash” or “Silk” mode;
    • Do not use ordinary alkaline powder for washing: you will need to purchase a cleaning agent labelled “for silk”. Do not use bleach and fabric softener for your silk curtains;
    Do not wrinkle, twist and squeeze silk curtains strongly so as not to spoil the structure;
    • When you need to dry silk curtains, it is advisable to wrap them in a big towel and allow excess moisture to be absorbed, and then put the thing on a horizontal surface and leave it to dry;
    • You can iron silk curtains in the “Silk” mode without steam. Ironing silk curtains when they are wet is prohibited.
  • Silk curtains may change the colour if exposed to bright sun. 
  • Silk curtains stain easily.

Are Silk Curtains Good? The Bottom Line

Silk curtains are a very good choice when it comes to deciding which fabric is best for curtains. The first advantage of natural silk is undoubtedly its appearance. The material is pleasant to the touch and has the ability to gently reflect light. At the same time, the fabric does not have a steel glossy shine inherent in synthetic materials, but only soft overflows.

Due to the lint-free smooth thread, silk absorbs dyes better and the fabric is literally saturated with colour. Silk drapes excellently, so it can be used to create complex curtain structures. Silk is also considered to be one of the most durable materials and can serve as a decoration for a room for more than a dozen years. Silk thread has great strength, which makes even thin weave fabrics durable.

The only drawback of silk curtains can be the ability to quickly lose colour when exposed to sunlight. That is why it is advisable not to hang silk curtains in the rooms that face the south. However, this problem can be easily resolved with a lining. Also, curtain silk fabrics can be made with an admixture of synthetics, which increases the resistance of curtains to UV radiation. Other than that, silk curtains can be hung in the kitchen, living room or a bedroom.

Anyway, silk curtains have many advantages over other textile solutions as natural silk is an environmentally friendly material that has a smooth texture and therefore does not collect dust. Silk curtains doe snot electrify like synthetic fabrics and is also not susceptible to fungus.  Low flammability of the fabric makes the curtains fireproof. If you are looking for beautiful and durable fabric for your curtains, you should opt for silk curtains. 

Faux Silk Curtains Pros & Cons

 

Faux silk is synthetic fibres which are similar to natural silk in properties and characteristics. According to the marking used in the textile industry, artificial silk is usually called acetate silk, viscose or simply viscose, depending on the fibres used to make the material.

Faux Silk Curtains Pros:

When it comes to appearance, faux silk resembles a natural fabric, but in terms of its chemical and organoleptic properties, faux silk is similar to cotton. This is not surprising since the basis of both viscose and cotton fibres is vegetable cellulose.

  • Faux silk absorbs moisture well, its hygroscopicity is twice as much as that of cotton.
  • Faux silk is easy to maintain and it is soft and smooth.
  • Faux silk ensures good air circulation. Faux silk’s breathability is the same as that of cotton, lower than natural silk, but higher than that of synthetic.
  • Faux silk does not condense static electricity, unlike synthetics.
  • Faux silk drapes well.
  • Faux silk does not fade and does not get stained easily.
  • Faux silk is hypoallergenic unlike its synthetic analogues, it does not cause skin irritation and allergic reactions.
  • Faux silk is more durable than natural silk and cotton since faux silk can last up to 15 years.
  • Faux silk does not wrinkle and does not require special maintenance.
  • Faux silk is relatively cheap.

Faux Silk Curtains Cons:

  • The air permeability of faux silk is lower than of natural silk.
  • Due to the presence of amino acids, natural silk has a bactericidal effect while faux silk does not have this feature. 
  • Faux silk crumples more than natural silk that is why synthetic fibres are often added to its composition (more often polyester, less often polyamide or polyester).
  • Wet faux silk may deform or lose its elasticity that can lead to tearing. That is why it is important to quickly dry your faux silk curtains in the shade after washing.

Are Faux Silk Curtains Good? The Bottom Line

Due to its excellent qualities, beauty, durability, very few drawbacks and a lot of advantages, faux silk rightfully takes a leading place among the most popular and demanded fabrics.

However, viscose silk, unlike natural silk, is easily wrinkled. Of course, it depends on whether the synthetic fibre is added to it. When wet, it can stretch, tear as it loses its strength and elasticity. Compared to natural material, viscose is less air permeable, has higher thermal conductivity (heats less), and it also does not have bactericidal properties.

Linen Curtains Pros & Cons

Linen curtains are a light and durable material. This fabric is used to create an eco-style interior, to add cosiness and lightness to the house. This material is widely used not only in residential buildings and apartments but also for the decor of cafes and restaurants, for office premises, for schools and kindergartens. Linen curtains are affordable, look attractive, and go well with various interior styles.

Linen Curtains Pros:

  • Linen curtains are eco friendly as linen is a natural raw material that does not cause allergic reactions and can be used even in children’s rooms.
  • Linen curtains are durable and have high wear resistance. The appearance of the linen curtains does not deteriorate for a long time with careful attitude and care. Linen curtains last up to 20-25 years.
  • Linen curtains are resistant to pollution. Linen products practically do not accumulate dust. The dirt on linen curtains can be easily washed off at home without resorting to special chemical treatments.
  • Linen curtains are resistant to ultraviolet rays as linen almost does not perceive solar radiation, sometimes the material even absorbs ultraviolet light.
  • Linen curtains have good hygroscopicity. Due to low moisture absorption, linen fabrics quickly absorb water and dry just as quickly after washing.
  • Linen curtains have good air permeability. Linen curtains are perfect for rooms that face the south as linen makes it easy to breathe even when it is hot and stuffy in the room. By the way, if your house is stuffy and you do not know what to do, go check out my article on useful tips on how to keep a house from being stuffy.
  • Linen curtains do not accumulate static electricity. This is a big plus if the curtains are next to household appliances.
  • Linen curtains have a variety of shades. Linen curtains can be natural shades as well as bleached or painted in a different colour.

Linen Curtains Cons:

  • Linen curtains may change slightly in size. Linen curtains may shrink after washing. So it is best not to use aggressive cleaning detergents for washing linen curtains. It is necessary to select powders and gels intended for things made of linen.
  • Linen curtains wrinkle easily and are very difficult to iron.
  • Linen curtains are fairly expensive. 

Are Linen Curtains Good? The Bottom Line

Linen curtains are a good choice as linen is a natural and environmentally friendly material. So you can safely hang linen curtains in your home without worrying about your health. Linen curtains give the home an atmosphere of cosiness, freshness and cleanliness.

You will not need to wash linen curtains often as they do not collect dust and are quite durable lasting for 10-15 years. Linen is a very strong and durable material, resistant to repeated washing.

Linen has a low thermal conductivity that will keep your home cool in summer and warm in winter. Linen also has bactericidal properties which allow maintaining normal microflora.

Linen curtains can be easily selected for any room or room in an apartment or house. In the living room, floor-length linen curtains will look not only stylish but also expensive and elegant. Pleasant diffusion of light and soft tones will add calm and cosiness to the atmosphere of the room.

Due to its thermoregulatory properties (keep it cool in hot weather and protect from drafts in windy weather), linen curtains are perfect for a bedroom, promoting a comfortable sleep.

Linen curtains are a good option for a kitchen, too. You can also pick up curtains shortened along the window sill with or without an ornament corresponding to the interior, especially in combination with a linen tablecloth and other decorative elements for your kitchen. Such a solution will be practical, since due to the special interweaving of threads inherent in linen, this fabric practically does not get dirty and can be easily washed, does not absorb unpleasant odours and dust.

And laconic Roman and Japanese curtains will be an excellent solution for decorating windows on a balcony, loggia or terrace. Due to the peculiarities of its fibrous structure, linen resists sunlight and does not fade.

Having considered all the pros and cons of linen curtains, taking into account the versatility of their application, it is easy to conclude that everyone who cares about the health of their own and their loved ones, who appreciates comfort, naturalness and practicality combined with beauty and sophistication, should opt for linen fabric to decorate the interior of your home.

Linen curtains, correctly selected in style and colour, will become an original decoration of any room. In addition, high-quality natural linen curtains will last a very long time and will give only positive emotions.

Polyester Curtains Pros & Cons

Polyester is one of the most popular types of fabrics used for curtains. It is so practical that more and more people are trying to give preference to this particular material. And this is completely justified, because it has a number of positive characteristics, suggesting a variety of colours and durability. Polyester curtains will help you to create a comfortable atmosphere at home.  They are also widely used not only in residential buildings but also in office buildings.

But, like any other fabric, polyester has certain disadvantages that you should be aware of before making a purchase.

Polyester Curtains Pros:

  • Polyester is the most durable fabric for curtains. Polyester curtains last up to 20-25 years without losing their properties and an impeccable appearance.
  • Polyester curtains are UV resistant. When exposed to sunlight, polyester curtains do not fade and protect you from stuffiness at home and your wallpapers from fading in the sun, too.
  • Polyester curtains are lightproof. That is why you can hang polyester curtains in any room whether it faces the north or the south.
  • Polyester curtains have a high level of light absorption which prevents excess heat from entering the room. This fact means that the room will always maintain a comfortable temperature, despite the hot weather.
  • Polyester curtains do not wrinkle. It significantly makes your life easier and saves a ton of time because you do not need to iron polyester curtains after washing. 
  • Polyester curtains are easy to clean and maintain. Such material can be washed at a temperature of 40 degrees and more. You also do not need to use a dryer because they dry out quite quickly. Moreover, sometimes you can simply use a vacuum cleaner to remove the dust from polyester curtains.
  • Polyester curtains are presented in a variety of colours and patterns. You will find suitable polyester curtains for any design. Do you want simply beige curtains or more sophisticated ones with patterns? It is not a problem at all. Any local curtain shop will offer you a great number of polyester curtains.
  • Polyester curtains are light and airy, that is why you will not need a fancy curtain rail.

Polyester Curtains Cons:

  • Polyester curtains have low air permeability. Polyester really saves from unwanted stuffiness, but at the same time, they are not that great when it comes to the natural oxygen exchange. There is a need for frequent ventilation of the room.
  • Polyester curtains are not very nice to the touch. Unlike natural fabrics, synthetic fibres are quite rough to the touch. And even after several years of use, it retains its properties and does not become soft and elastic.
  • Polyester curtains accumulate static electricity. As you know, prolonged exposure to static electricity energy poses a danger to human health. This is facilitated by the presence of household appliances in everyone in the apartment and also electrified curtains made of polyester have an additional effect.
  • Polyester curtains emit toxic fumes. Polyester curtains protect well from light but they also have an unfavourable property. When the sun shines through a window, it heats up plastics and other synthetic materials very much. Thus, the process of gas evolution is accelerated and can have a bad effect on well-being.
  • Polyester curtains collect dust. Since polyester tends to accumulate static electricity, it attracts dust particles using magnetic waves. This is another nuisance for allergy sufferers, and not everyone likes having a small source of dust in their home.
  • Polyester curtains are flammable. If there are heating devices next to polyester curtains, then there is a high probability of fire. Therefore, you always have to be careful when using flammable items.

Are Polyester Curtains Good? The Bottom Line

Even though there is a stereotype that synthetic fabrics are bad for you, polyester curtains are very popular nowadays. Polyester curtains are very good for those who do not want to buy expensive curtains and look for something durable. If you decide to get polyester curtains for your house, you need to take into account all the cons of them such as low permeability and dust collecting.

You need to make sure you are buying good-quality polyester curtains which do not contain dangerous chemicals. You should immediately pay attention to the manufacturer to prevent the purchase of a Chinese counterfeit or low-quality product.

To prevent the polyester curtains from becoming a source of dust, they need to be periodically vacuumed and, if necessary, washed. After all, they do not take much time to dry. If you have polyester curtains, you should ventilate the room more often so that carbon dioxide does not accumulate in it.

Modern technologies are developing intensively, so polyester curtains become practically safe for use. This material has many possibilities, ranging from colour to the complexity of the model. If you get good-quality polyester curtains, they will create a cosy atmosphere in your home. Polyester curtains are suitable for any room in your house.

Kateryna

I am passionate about making my home a better place and I want to share all my knowledge with you.

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