Pleated Shades vs. Cellular Shades

May 4 2010

Pleated shades vs cellular shades, what is the difference? They both look the same, right? Why should you choose one over the other and what we recommend.

Both pleated shades and cell shades are made from similar fabrics and materials so they look the same. Both function and operate the same way. Typically each have a single lit cord but both can be made cordless or with as top down bottom up shades. Both types of shades offer translucent or room darkening fabrics for either light control or light filtration. They also both have different size pleats. Here is what makes each unique and different from the other.

Cellular Shades
single cell shades
Honeycomb Cell Shades
Cellular shades are known as honeycomb shade due to the honeycomb design when looking at the shades from the side. The greatest benefit of cell shades is the insulation they provide. This insulation helps with sound as well as energy. Honeycomb shades are one of the best energy saving window coverings.

Pros of Cellular Shades
  • Better insulation than most window coverings.
  • Small stack height. The shades compress tightly when raised for minimal blockage of the view through the window.
  • Wide range of colors. Because they are made from fabric, cellular shades can come in an unlimited color selection.
  • Optional cordless upgrade for child safety.
  • Pleats retain their shape better over time than pleated shades.


Cons of Cellular Shades
  • Harder to clean. Fabric shades are harder to clean than wood or faux wood blinds.
  • Cost. More expensive than pleated shades.

Pleated Shades
pleated shades
Pleated Shades
Pleated shades look like honeycomb cellular shades from the front. Pleated shades are quality shades but do not offer the insulation of a honeycomb shade.

Pros of Pleated Shades
  • Cost. Less expensive than cellular shades.
  • Small stack height. The shades compress tightly when raised for minimal blockage of the view through the window.
  • Wide range of colors. Because they are made from fabric, cellular shades can come in an unlimited color selection.
  • Optional cordless upgrade for child safety.


Cons of Pleated Shades
  • Harder to clean. Fabric shades are harder to clean than wood or faux wood blinds.
  • Less light control and privacy. Most pleated shades have holes where the cords run although we offer no-holes privacy pleated shades.
  • Not as energy efficient as honeycomb shades.

Both pleated shades and cell shades offer many good qualities and each has their own cons. Hopefully this helps you better understand the difference between a pleated shade and a honeycomb cell shade so you can make an educated decision when placing your order.
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