Insulated window treatments are a great way to improve the energy efficiency of your house, and can actually save you money on your utility bills.
Cell shades are the window shade that will provide the best insulation from the elements, and they are also an extremely popular window shade based on their look and functionality. Cell shades are constructed of 100s of honeycomb cells that are puffed out when lowered, and contract when raised. These honeycomb cells actually provide a level of insulation for your windows, and will keep the heat out in the summer and the cold out in the winter. Cell shades can also be ordered with the cool feature, Top Down/Bottom Up. This feature adds to the traditional method of opening the shade by raising it from the bottom, with the ability to lower the shade from the top.
Sheer shades are another layered shade that will provide a certain level of insulation for your windows. Sheer shades are actually a combination of a window shade, and a horizontal window blind. A fabric horizontal blind is sandwiched between 2 outer layers of material. The sheer shade can be raised like any window shade, but the horizontal slats can also be opened to allow light in, or tilted close to give you complete privacy. Sheer shades can be ordered in 2 configurations. Light filtering sheer shades allow light to filter through the shade, even when the slats are tilted closed. Room darkening sheer shades block out nearly all of the light, making these a natural choice for bedrooms or media rooms.