Curtain lights have been gaining in popularity in recent years, making it easy to decorate a large space with a sea of brightly colored lights. Whether you’re interested in bright multi-color light combinations or soft white light, there are options for every style and size of space. In fact, there are so many different options that you may find yourself feeling overwhelmed.
In this guide, I’m going to look at what factors you should consider when shopping for curtain lights as well as how to properly store your lights to keep them safe year after year. I will also share the best Christmas curtain lights currently on the market according to the Backyard Boss team.
Whatever space you are trying to decorate for the coming holiday season, you’ll find the solution here!
The Backyard Boss Top Christmas Curtain Lights for 2021
|SUWITU 300 LED Curtain String Twinkle Lights with 8 Lighting Modes||Check The Price!|
|HOME LIGHTING Window Curtain String Lights||Check The Price!|
|Blingstar Multicolor Star Curtain Lights||Check The Price!|
|Twinkly Special Edition 210 RGB+White App-Controlled LED Curtain Lights||Check The Price!|
|YEOLEH 8 Mode USB Powered Color Changing String Lights||Check The Price!|
Why You Can Trust Us
Growing up, my mother was always a big fan of Christmas, especially Christmas decorating. She was always looking for new ways to add a festive touch to the house, experimenting with different lighting styles, projector lights, and various types of automation. As a result, our house was always brightly lit and brought a smile to the face of anyone that passed by.
When I moved out on my own, that is when I first learned how much work went into creating these holiday displays. I started experimenting with lighting types that would help to reduce the time it would take to transform my space including large curtain lighting. I started with a cheap set to see how I felt about the wall of light and quickly fell in love. This led me to start exploring other options including RGB color-changing lights and eventually smart home compatible lighting to fit with the rest of the technology that my husband has set up in our home.
To put together this guide, I drew upon my personal experiences with different curtain light varieties and functions, combining that with the knowledge of the Backyard Boss team and the real-life experiences of other customers that shared their opinions in product reviews. Together, this allowed me to paint a clear picture of the options on the market and how to choose the best curtain lights for your space.
Best Waterproof Indoor/Outdoor Curtain Lights
With a beautiful soft white glow and multiple lighting modes, this curtain light is a great choice for everything from Christmas decorating to wedding décor.
Why We Like It: Measuring 9.8 feet by 9.8 feet, this large curtain light makes it easy to decorate a large space with minimal effort. It features a warm white glow which is both a festive choice for a traditional holiday aesthetic as well as a romantic look for your wedding décor.
While the light itself is a single color, the company also offers a bright white and a multi-color option. The curtain lights include 300 highly efficient and environmentally-friendly LED lights along 10 strands of copper wire with a low operating temperature, meaning that it’s safe to touch the lighting at any time when it’s operating, and it will never overheat. This also means that it is safe to hang your curtain lights against a curtain or other surface without worrying about the fire risk that some other lighting options pose.
The lights come with a convenient remote control, making it easy to switch between the 8 lighting modes including combination, in waves, sequential, slogs, chasing/flash, slow fade, twinkle/flash, and steady on. The remote also includes a brightness control and a convenient timer.
The automatic timer runs the lights for 6 hours on and 18 hours off, saving you from worrying about whether you’ve forgotten the lights when you go out or go to bed. This curtain light is USB powered. It can be used with any USB charger to adapt to AC power; however, no USB charger is included. It is IP64 Waterproof rated, meaning that it is safe to use both indoors and outdoors.
Who Should Buy It: If you are looking for a budget-friendly curtain light that can be used indoors and outdoors, the SUWITU 300 LED Curtain String Twinkle Lights with 8 Lighting Modes is a great option.
Best RGB Color Changing Curtain Lights
Why We Like It: With the ability to easily switch between 16 different color choices, this curtain light is highly versatile for any holiday or event from spooky Halloween decorating to festive Christmas cheer and everything in between. It can even be used to match your wedding colors when decorating for your reception.
While the company has listed the lights as waterproof, the USB and adaptor are NOT and should not be exposed to water. For this reason, it is recommended that this set be used indoors where the power supply is protected. The lights are constructed from copper wire, however, unlike most competitors it features 3 wires on each string instead of 2, making the lighting strong and more durable for long-term use.
Using the remote, you can set your choice of 4 convenient 24-hour timing settings to suit needs including 4 hours on (20 hours off), 6 hours on (18 hours off), 8 hours on (16 hours off), or the 24-hour mode where it stays on solid until turned off manually. The remote also features a dimmer function, RBG color controls to move between the 16 different color options, and 4 lighting modes including flash, strobe, fade, and smooth.
The main wire of the curtain light is set up with convenient plastic hooks for easy installation, however, many customers report that the hooks themselves are too small to hook onto a curtain rod meaning that they may not be functional depending on your desired location.
Who Should Buy It: Holiday lovers that want to purchase a curtain light option that can easily be adjusted to suit any holiday or event should consider the HOME LIGHTING Window Curtain String Lights.
Best Curtain Lights with Decorative Ornaments
Why We Like It: A popular choice for adding a fun and colorful feature in a bedroom or indoor space, this multi-colored curtain light showcases 138 LED lights and 12 light-up star ornaments, 6 large and 6 small. While the set is only 8.2 feet in length and 2 feet long, it can be extended by connecting sets, up to a maximum of 3, to accommodate wider spaces.
The lights operate at a low temperature, including the star ornaments, making them safe to use where they may be against a curtain or other surface as well as safe to use with children who may feel inclined to touch the colorful stars along the bottom. Along the top of the main wire, a series of hooks allow you to easily hang the lights from a curtain or tapestry, however, they are too small to hook onto most standard curtain rods.
The lighting set is powered by an AC adaptor. It should be noted that his adaptor is NOT waterproof and should not be left outside exposed to the elements, meaning that this set is better suited for indoor decorating.
A convenient remote makes it easy to adjust the lighting including adjusting the dimmer function, turning on the timer, or changing between lighting modes. The 8 lighting modes include combination, in wave, sequential, slog lo, chasing/flash, slow fade, twinkle/flash, and steady on. However, many customers report that the remote is sensitive and must be carefully positioned to point directly at the plug with no major obstructions in order to work properly.
Who Should Buy It: The Blingstar Multicolor Star Curtain Lights is a great choice for anyone looking to add a little extra personality to their holiday decorations with brightly colored ornaments.
Best Smartphone Compatible Curtain Lights
These fun and colorful curtain lights will connect seamlessly with your smart home assistant, giving you full control from your phone.
Why We Like It: Use your smartphone to create an eye-catching display with these versatile smartphone-compatible curtain lights. These multi-colored string lights connect easily to your phone using your home Wi-Fi network and can be controlled by Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, and Razer Chroma.
With the ability to combine 16 million colors as well as the classic warm white glow, the options are endless. The app allows you to create your own effects, map your lights, and create custom designs with pixel-perfect precision. Download new animations from the online gallery or synchronize your lighting with music to take your decorations to the next level.
The curtain lights are narrower than many of the other options on the list at only 3.5 feet, however, the app allows you to easily sync up to 10 sets of lights together to create a larger display. It should be noted that some customers report that the app is difficult to use for those that aren’t as familiar with technology and there is minimal support available.
The lights are rated with IP44 protection which means that they are suitable for use in both indoor and outdoor decorations. With so many options, these lights are suitable for a wide variety of uses including as a backdrop at your next holiday party, a bright and bold wedding decoration, or as the perfect lighting for your holiday window decorations. If you are a technologically savvy individual, you will never go back to traditional lights again!
Who Should Buy It: Technology lovers that have embraced smartphone technology should consider the Twinkly Special Edition 210 RGB+White App-Controlled LED Curtain Lights.
Best Sound Activated Curtain Lights
Designed to easily sync with any voice or music, these brightly colored Christmas lights can easily be incorporated into your larger decorating plans indoors or outdoors.
Why We Like It: Music lovers, these string lights have been specifically designed with you in mind. They feature 4 different sound settings, allowing you to sync your decorations with any music or voice. If you aren’t interested in incorporating music all the time, they also offer 8 regular lighting modes including combination, in wave, sequential, slo glo, flash, slow fade, twinkle, or the standard steady on.
The set features multi-color light lighting, however, if those colors don’t match your decorating plan, they can also be purchased in a warm white or bright white color. They also feature a timer mode that will keep your lights on for 6 hours, off for 18 hours, without any additional effort on your part.
Featuring a USB interface device, your lights can easily be plugged into a computer, USB charger, power bank, or AC adaptor as a power source. However, it should be noted that there is no USB charger or AC adaptor included. The string lights themselves are rated IP64 waterproof, however, the USB device is not. For this reason, the lights are better suited for indoor decoration. If you do choose to use your lights outdoors, be sure to protect the power supply from the elements to avoid unnecessary complications.
A passive cooling system incorporated in the device allows it to maintain a safe low operating temperature, protecting you and your loved ones from any fire hazards or accidental burns.
Who Should Buy It: These curtain lights from YEOLEH are a great choice for anyone interested in incorporating music into their decorating plans.
Important Considerations when Shopping for Curtain Lights
The first and most obvious consideration when shopping for curtain lights is to choose a set that is the correct size for the space that you have available. This includes both the width of the curtain lighting and the length of the individual string lights in the set. While many curtain lights are designed to fully cover a wall, others are shorter in length to accommodate a window display.
USB Powered, AC Powered, or Battery Powered
There are different options in terms o the power source required for your new curtain lights. Knowing this can help you choose the best option for your space. For example, if you know that you are planning on hanging your curtain light outdoors on a gazebo with no power supply nearby, you may be better suited for a battery-powered light. Meanwhile, a corded electric lighting option can usually be used indoors whether it’s AC powered or USB powered, as the necessary power source will be relatively close.
Another important factor that you should check when considering a new set of curtain string lights is the length of the main cord. Check the distance that you will need to cover between the lights and the available power outlet. This will help you determine if you can cover the distance with the included power cord or if extension cords will be needed.
Indoor vs Outdoor Lights
Lighting that is designed to be used outdoors has been designed to withstand the elements. Check the packaging of the lights you are considering for an Ingress Protection marking (IP marking) which will reveal the protection level of the lights against both dust and water. This is important as any lights hung outdoors may be exposed to rain, snow, and other elements.
This is a controlled rating scale that makes it easier for you to fully understand the ability of your lights to handle the risks that they will face outdoors rather than trying to interpret labels like ‘water-resistant’ and what exactly that means for the product you are purchasing.
Remote Control Capabilities
With the height of most curtain light options, they are often set up in a way that any controls would be up and out of reach. If your string lights offer only a single lighting option with no special features, or if you have no interest in changing the setting after your curtain lights have been hung, this may not be of interest. However, if you do want to have the freedom to make these changes easily, many of these lighting sets include a remote control. Depending on the features available on each set of lights, the remote control can be used to adjust RGB color, dim the lights, turn on or off twinkle or fading settings, and more.
If you are planning on hanging your lights indoors, especially if it is being included in a main living area or bedroom, you may find that the bright, bold lighting is a little too much at certain points during the day. While changing the color temperature to a warm white will help to make the lighting less harsh, many light sets also have the ability to dim the lighting as needed.
Do you have a habit of leaving your Christmas lights on when you leave the room? Over time, we become so used to seeing our Christmas lights that it’s easy to forget that they are draining our electricity, especially when we’re sleeping, and no one is benefiting from them! If this sounds familiar, you may want to choose a curtain light set that includes an automatic timer, shutting your lights off after a specified length of time.
How to Store Your Curtain Lights Without Tangling
Storing standard string lights can be enough of a headache, how are you supposed to store curtain lights with all their individual strings without getting them all tangled before the next holiday season? The easiest way to store your lights is by replicating the way that they were found in the box when you purchased them. This is done by bunching up the lights and then securing them with a cable tie or rubber band.
To bundle a curtain light, you will bundle each of the strings individually. It can then be stored with the bundles sitting side by side or on top of one another without fear of making a mess. Take the first string of your curtain lights from the bottom of the strand. Take the light that is two bulbs away and bring the bulbs together. Continue this process, reaching over two bulbs and bringing them together until you reach the main cord across the top. Secure the bunch around the middle and then move on to the next string.
If you aren’t comfortable with bunching your lights, you can also use cardboard to carefully store your lights. For each light string on your curtain lights, take a rectangular piece of cardboard approximately the size of a standard magazine. Cut a slit at the end of the cardboard and slide the end of the string into it to secure it in place. Carefully wrap the string around the cardboard until you reach the main cord and secure it off by tucking the cord into the same slit that you started with. This can be stored easily by stacking the cardboard bundles on top of one another in a plastic storage tote.
How We Picked
With so many different curtain lights on the market, narrowing the list down to just 5 top choices was a challenge. Especially when trying to incorporate options for different spaces both inside and out.
To start, I sorted the lights into a select few categories to better compare the lights best suited for each situation. From here, I looked at the basic features of the lights including price, size, colors, lighting modes, power source, and outdoor functionality. This helped to narrow the list considerably to the best lighting sets in each category.
From here, I combined my personal experiences with those of the Backyard Boss team. I also read through the reviews left behind by other customers to see how each of these lights performed in real-life settings. This allowed me to select the five best Christmas curtain lights currently available on the market as outlined in this guide.
The Best Christmas Curtain Lights for Your Holiday Decorating
While I am confident that you will be happy with any of the five products featured in this guide, there was one curtain light option that stood out above the rest. Offering a beautiful festive glow at a budget-friendly price point, the SUWITU 300 LED Curtain String Twinkle Lights with 8 Lighting Modes is a versatile option that will work in most homes and outdoor spaces.
The soft white glow of the lighting immediately inspires nostalgia for holidays past by capturing the aesthetic of traditional Christmas decorating. At the same time, it offers a magical backdrop for your parties and events. With an easy-to-use remote control, reliable automatic timer and the included dimmer function, you can adjust the lights to suit all of your lighting needs.