The 8 Best Outdoor Curtains to Transform Your Space into a Private Oasis
Privacy is key to making your outdoor space feel like a relaxing retreat, but built-in screens and shades can be pricey. For an easy, inexpensive way to block views around your deck or patio, consider hanging outdoor curtains instead.
Made to withstand harsh sun, wind, and rain, exterior draperies help close off your outdoor living area while providing relief from scorching summer weather, including harmful UV rays. "They're practical for keeping the sun out of your eyes, reducing midday heat, and providing privacy in spaces where you might feel more exposed," says Shannon Schomaker, product manager at the window treatment company Graber.
In addition to practical benefits, outdoor curtains are a decorative element that can add personality to your backyard. They're available in a variety of styles, colors, and patterns; just be sure to select a material that repels water. "Always choose a fabric that is specifically rated for the outdoors, as traditional drapery fabric will absorb moisture, making it extremely heavy and prone to mold," Schomaker says. The best outdoor curtains also offer UV resistance, which helps prevent the color from fading over time. To prevent wear, look for options made from durable fabric with reinforced tabs or grommets.
How to Hang Outdoor Curtains
When deciding where to hang outdoor curtains, look to the existing structures in your backyard, such as a balcony, deck, patio, or pergola, and determine the best placement. "Take into consideration the general direction of the wind, any nearby foliage, and, most importantly, where you need to block the sun in order to get the most enjoyment out of your space," Schomaker suggests. For example, hang outdoor curtains across the western-facing side of your deck to make sunny afternoons more enjoyable.
Where possible, install mounting hardware directly into the side or bottom of wood beams to offer sturdy support for your outdoor curtain rod. If you're looking for a more temporary solution, you can also hang outdoor curtains using a tension rod, which is ideal for outdoor structures made of metal, stone, or other materials. Heavy-gauge wire and eye hooks offer another hanging option that you can even attach to the exterior of your house or stand-alone posts. Consider using wall anchors for a secure hold, and make sure the wire is taut to avoid drooping (for large areas or heavy fabrics, you might need to install additional center supports).
- Best Overall: Exclusive Home Indoor/Outdoor Solid Cabana Curtain Panel
- Best UV-Resistant: Sun Zero Valencia Cabana Stripe Indoor/Outdoor Curtain Panel
- Best Weather-Resistant: Grove Solid 3M Scotchgard Outdoor Curtain
- Best Patterned: Madison Park Everett Printed Palm 3M Scotchgard Outdoor Panel
- Best Sheer: NICETOWN White Outdoor Sheer Curtain
- Best for Privacy: Ebern Designs Haoxuan Solid Outdoor Curtain Panels
- Best Acrylic: Sunbrella Awning Stripe Grommet Outdoor Curtain
- Best for Blocking Sun: BONZER Waterproof Indoor/Outdoor Curtains
Shop our picks for the best outdoor curtains to boost privacy and shade—and make your deck or patio feel like a stylish extension of your home.