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Motorized, white roller shades are featured in a modern living and dining room

Design Decisions: Roller Shades vs Cellular Shades

Deciding on the best window coverings for your home does not have to be overwhelming. Most homeowners can narrow their options by personal style, popularity, and budget. We’re here as professionals to weigh in on the roller shades vs. cellular shades debate. 

Cellular shades are structured like a honeycomb; they’re neatly folded and stacked at the window’s top instead of rolled. Roller shades, on the other hand, refer to simple window treatments that are made from a single material and use a rolling mechanism to adjust. With the basics sorted, let’s get into a detailed comparison to guide the decision-making process.

Differences Between Roller Shades and Cellular Shades

Let’s begin the roller shades vs cellular shades discussion with a look at the primary differences between the two.

Design Options

Cellular shades commonly allow for single- and double-cell design, bottom-to-top and top-to-bottom adjustments, along with a wide range of cell sizes, colors, and corded options. 

In contrast, roller shades offer a single, sleek shade in a variety of textures like woven, coarse, smooth, and shiny. With most modern roller shades, you’ll enjoy motorized operation and reverse or standard roll methods.


While cellular shades are typically made from spun lace, roller shades can feature woven, polyester, or vinyl fabrics. Spunlace is a flexible polyester material that has a fragile feel. Due to their thinness, they’re susceptible to tearing and punctures. Woven roller shades are most commonly constructed with densely woven fabric that allows light filtering or provides full, blackout privacy. Whether woven, vinyl, or PVC roller shades are substantially easier to clean. When the ease of cleaning roller shades is paired with the durability of the production materials, value is easily realized. 


Construction is one of the areas where roller and cellular shades are most glaringly different. The multi-layered honeycomb construct of cellular shades requires an attached piece of thick plastic at the bottom to enhance their stability. Roller shades, however, are made from one fabric piece that allows them to hang flat and roll up rather than fold.

Pros and Cons of Cellular Shades

Cellular shades remain fairly popular because of the following advantages:

  • Numerous fabric choices 
  • Light filtering and privacy control 
  • Variable positioning with top-down, bottom-up shades 
  • Less drilling during mounting

As within anything, cellular shades come with their fair share of disadvantages.  They include:

  • Susceptible to wrinkles and tears depending on the material 
  • Limited ability to adjust natural lighting levels

Pros and Cons of Roller Shades

Roller shades may be your best bet for window coverings, depending on your location, lifestyle, and personal preferences. Studying the benefits and disadvantages of roller shades below will help you determine if it’s the right choice:


  • Solar roller shades work efficiently to control heat
  • Easy maintenance
  • Excellent light filtering features 
  • Motorized features for easier operation and control
  • Numerous textures, patterns, and colors
  • Significant customizable feature


  • Possible light gaps when an inside mount is required
  • May require customization for Victorian windows

The Bottom Line

With this breakdown, we hope you know everything you need to know about roller shades vs cellular shades. Have you decided to stick with roller shades? The AAA Blind & Shutter Factory team is here to ensure that you don’t regret that decision. From blackout to light filtering and motorized shades, there’s always something for you when you shop with us. Contact us today for a complimentary in-home consultation!

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