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What can I put on my window to block light?

Author: May

Mar. 07, 2024

65 0

Tags: Lights & Lighting

Having a brightly lit room is an achievement until it becomes a nuisance while you’re trying to sleep. 

A good night’s sleep is as crucial as eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly, and poor sleep negatively impacts your hormones and brain function. 

Cutting out light in a room has been said to aid in fast melatonin production, thus getting quality and adequate sleep with zero interruptions to the body clock. For the body to adapt and not wake up when the sun rises, it is essential to expose your body to darkness.

In the modern world, many people have jobs that require them to work for long hours or at night, meaning they have to sleep during the day. 

Light in the bedroom can hinder you from getting enough sleep and is also uncomfortable, and while permanent modifications such as adding curtain rails and blinds made to your bedroom to make it possible to sleep during the day, not everyone has the privilege of owning a house, and those who rent don’t have the freedom to do these modifications.

So, does that mean people who rent their home can’t do anything to block the sunlight? 

The short answer is no. 

3 Ways to Blackout Windows without Curtains

There are short term ways to blackout windows without using curtains that might come in handy for this group. 

Here’s how to blackout windows without curtains.

Using A Blackout Travel Blind

Blackout travel blinds are made from an opaque blackout fabric and come with strong suction cups that allow them to be attached to the window glass or self-adhesive attachments for the frame.

They block and cut out all light around window edges, therefore, creating total darkness, shade, and privacy whenever needed. These blinds give you the desired pitch black room that induces a relaxed feeling leading to sound sleep.

Since blackout blinds are temporary solutions to achieve a dark room, they are ideal for travellers looking to blackout a holiday apartment window, and are portable, lightweight, durable, and very simple to install. 

However, they’re also a perfect option for nurseries and kids’ rooms, shift workers, and light sleepers looking for a quick and easy solution to blackout their sleep space.

Blackout blinds guarantee you a good night’s sleep regardless of where you are, home or away on holidays and vacations.

Sleeping With An Eye Mask

Sleeping with an eye mask is almost the best way to completely blackout light. You can use it alongside a blackout blind or tin foil to achieve your desired dark room, and it’s a cheap option to go for as you only need only one to serve the purpose.

Eye masks are also convenient as they don’t affect other people you may be sharing the room with, especially during the day when you wish to take a nap. 

Eye masks prevent us from the temptation of looking around the room for distractions hence accelerates melatonin production. They also trick our brains into believing it’s bedtime and is low-risk, non-chemical alternatives to conventional sleep aids but just as effective, and compared to other methods of blocking light, eye masks are an inexpensive option.

But, are eye masks safe for your skin? The simple answer is yes – provided you use eye masks made of high-quality materials, you are all sorted. 

However, using eye masks made of cheap and low-quality materials can cause allergies and irritations to the skin if you have sensitive skin, so it’s important to check the manufacturer label for potential irritants if you have sensitive skin.

Eye masks are affordable, easy to use and can be your travelling companion wherever you go. You need not worry about not getting quality sleep even away from the comfort of your bed.

Using Tin Foil Or Cardboard

Tinfoil, or aluminium foil, is a common and inexpensive way to blackout your window. 

It’s a great option to go for as it’s airtight and there’s no way to see through it, so covering your window with tin foil is an effective way to achieve total darkness for easier sleeping during the day. Another advantage of the foil is that it’s malleable thus easily conforms to different window shapes.

Foil is a safe material to use as it doesn’t emit any toxins. Many people believe that prolonged exposure to sunlight can melt tin foil, but that’s far from the truth. 

Foil has a high resistance to heat, its melting point being higher than the average summer temperatures. Besides, it’s also the same foil used in ovens to cover up foods while baking or grilling, so you shouldn’t worry about it melting or releasing toxins.

Another option, if you’re in a bind and have some leftover boxes from some online shopping, is to use cardboard to blackout your windows.

Cardboard not only shields you from UV rays but also keep out cold from your room, however, it might not be particularly the best way to go during summer as it provides insulation, thus keeping the room warmer.

These options are a great option if you’re in a bind, and although not particularly decorative, tin foil and cardboard are a practical choice for covering up your windows.

The Bottom Line

Natural sunlight has numerous health benefits and creates a desirable ambience in a home, but too much light becomes a problem if you’re trying to catch a few hours of sleep. 

The ways above give the solution of how to blackout windows without curtains, and all three methods are cost-effective and temporary solutions that can come in handy for people that rent.

Out of the three, using a blackout travel blind is the most effective long term solutions.

Blackout travel blinds are designed to keep the light out of a room on a temporary or longer-term basis, and will not damage windows or walls when being used. They also offer flexibility as they can be moved from one room to another, or taken away on holiday to ensure a good night’s sleep while you’re away from home.

Sleeping with an eye mask is also a great option, as they give the illusion of darkness and prevent one from opening their eyes to look around the room, whilst not affecting others in the room that might require light. 

However, they aren’t right for everyone and can be uncomfortable to wear during periods of hot weather or become dislodged if you’re a restless sleeper.

Using tin foil or cardboard can block out light completely, but it isn’t a desirable method to use in your room or apartment, and should only really be used as a last resort.

If your home has windows that provide a lot of natural light, you may be looking for a way to balance a comfortable amount of light in your home while still enjoying the view outside. While window shades, curtains and blinds are often the first thought for light control, they might obstruct the outside view or conflict with the room’s aesthetics.

Window film is a popular alternative to shades or blinds for solar control. It’s a thin laminate you can install on your home’s interior or exterior glass surfaces. Offered in various shades and reflectivity options, these films provide flexibility in controlling the sunlight coming through your windows. 

Here are a few of the many options Madico®, Inc. offers to help you control sunlight in your home:

Types of Darkening Window Film

Window film is an affordable solution that provides UV protection while letting in varying degrees of light depending on your preferences. At Madico, we offer a range of decorative and UV-protective window film options that can filter light without changing your décor.

Solar Control Film

Solar control window tint films come in a range of colors and darkness levels. They allow for some visible light to pass through the glass but will also absorb and block the rest to decrease the brightness and glare in a space. The film also blocks the harmful UV rays that travel through windows during the day.

Solar window film cuts down on summer heat and reflects light to your home in the winter to keep you warm, which will reduce your energy bill too. Madico offers solar control window film in several shades and hues to match your home’s style.

Black Out Film

For rooms you want to be even darker, blackout film is an excellent choice. Great for home theaters, bathrooms or bedrooms, Black Out film by Madico blocks 99% of light transmission and 99% of UV rays. This room-darkening film also results in a 99% reduction in glare. This film can create privacy, add style or block unsightly views outside of your home.

Whiteout Film

Adding privacy and softening visible light without creating total darkness, whiteout film is another solution to darken a bright room. White Out film by Madico will only transmit 9% of visible light and works to soften and diffuse the light that comes in. The result is a darker space with less glare that still looks well-lit from the windows. This film makes glass more opaque and is an excellent option for bathrooms, doors and glass room dividers.

Reflective Window Film

Reflective film is another effective way to darken a room while lowering energy costs. This type of film minimizes the glass’ interior reflectivity, which creates more natural nighttime views. Meanwhile, the exterior surface is highly reflective, which blocks more light coming in to reduce glare and reject heat. If you are looking for improved privacy and reduced glare, Optivision® Reflective window film by Madico might be the choice for you. It offers heat reduction, glass breakage protection and many styles to pick from.

Other Simple Ways to Darken a Room

While solar films offer a simple solution without changes to your home’s décor or your daily routines, other solutions can also help you darken a bright room without installing curtains or blinds.

Turn off Extra Lights

Light in other rooms can often pass through cracks in doors and lighten a room. Turning off any unused lights will prevent this and help save electricity and the environment. If you’re looking for soft light, night lights or decorative lamps can offer a higher degree of light control.

A dimmer switch can also help. Fluorescent and LED bulbs produce a brighter, cooler light than some people prefer. Installing a dimmer switch makes it easy to soften that light for enhanced eye comfort. You can also choose how dim you want your room to be and even change it to set the mood for different occasions. 

Block off Door Bottoms

In the same vein, blocking off the bottom edges of the doors in your house will stop light from coming through the cracks. National retailers sell draft-stoppers for under doors that can help block light as well.

Add Plants and Decorative Objects

To dim a room and add some décor, you can put a shelf up across your windows to place books, plants or knickknacks on. As a bonus, this will increase your home’s storage space, too!

Don’t want to put up a shelf? If your windowsill’s size allows, place a potted plant or two in front. Or, put a taller houseplant on the floor directly in front of the windows. Some light will still filter in through the leaves while the plants block a great deal of it. Even better — you can combine this technique with window film, as many plants grow even better next to heat- and light-diffusing sun control films.

Use a Non-Reflective Color Scheme

Many interior decorators will tell you to paint your walls white to make a dark room look brighter. If you’re looking to darken a space, darker, light-absorbing colors are your friend. Depending on your preferences, you can paint your walls a charcoal gray, an earthy brown or any other number of darker paint colors.

If you like your white walls, furnish your room with non-reflective décor. Pick dark-colored sofas or throw pillows, dark wood floors and other accents that will absorb light. Avoid mirrors, which may make the space look brighter.

Try Room Dividers

Room dividers are another way to darken a room without completely blacking out the space. Depending on your desired light level, room dividers can be solid, translucent or perforated, allowing varying light levels to get through. Strategically using room dividers can break up an expansive room and block some light from reaching the rest of the room.

A bookshelf or floor-to-ceiling cabinets can add storage while blocking light. For a less dramatic effect, frosted glass partitions can diffuse some natural light. Folding partition screens can feature perforated or solid panels, while others have translucent rice paper. Each of these options can block a different amount of light to give you your desired effect.

Increase Aesthetics and Energy Efficiency With Madico

All Madico solar control window films can block the sun’s glare and harmful UV rays from your home while enhancing its appearance. With the added benefit of energy efficiency, these films are an excellent choice for many residential homeowners. 

Besides blocking visible light along with the sun’s UV rays and heat energy, window film offers even more benefits. Many solutions include decorative window frosting. Meanwhile, filtering out solar energy helps slow the fading of your interior furniture, flooring and décor. By reflecting the sun’s heat, solar window films decrease your cooling costs in the summer.

Browse our solar control films to find the choice best suited for your home, or find a dealer near you to start planning an installation.

Find a Dealer

What can I put on my window to block light?

How to Darken a Room Without Curtains or Blinds

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