Buyer’s Guide: Shower Curtains

Find a shower curtain that’s the perfect size, style, and fabric for your bathroom.

The Best Shower Curtains, According to Happy Homeowners

Photo: istockphoto.com

Shower curtains are the unsung heroes of traditional showers and tubs. In addition to providing privacy, they bring your bathroom softness and style while hiding the clutter of all those shampoo and body wash bottles.

Let’s be clear: Shower curtains differ from liners. Made of plastic or waterproof fabrics like nylon or polyester, liners are placed along the inner rim of a tub or shower to prevent water leakage. Shower curtains, which vary in terms of material, are placed over the liner—with the bottom section hanging outside the shower or tub, reaching as far as the floor in a stall shower, or several inches above the floor for a tub.

Ahead, we’ll outline exactly what factors we considered and prioritized to develop our short list of recommendations on the best shower curtains—and why they should matter to you, too.

  1. MOST VARIETY: Barossa Design White Stripe Damask Fabric Shower Curtain, various sizes
  2. EASY ELEGANCE: Aimjerry White Striped Mold-Resistant Fabric Shower Curtain, 72″ x 72″
  3. TOUGHEST FLORAL: MACOFE Flower Shower Curtain, 71″ x 71″
  4. FINEST COTTON: mDesign Premium 100% Cotton Waffle Weave Fabric Shower Curtain, 72″ x 84″
  5. BEST HOOKLESS DESIGN: Hookless Jacquard Tree Branch Shower Curtain in Taupe, 71″ x 86″
  6. TRUEST BLUE: DS BATH Ombre Shower Curtain, 72″ x 72″


The Best Shower Curtains, According to Happy Homeowners

Photo: istockphoto.com

What Makes a Great Shower Curtain?

It’s not all about design. Consider the following before you add a curtain to your bag:

Material: Shower curtains are made of both synthetic and natural materials.

  • Synthetic materials like polyester and plastic are durable, waterproof, and wrinkle-resistant. They perform especially well in bathrooms that get a lot of wear and tear—for example, if you have small children. One drawback with synthetics is they can look and feel a bit stiffer and cheaper than natural fabrics. However, these shower curtains clean up easily: simply spray with a shower cleaner or toss into the washer/dryer. Polyester is one of the most popular curtain options. It resembles natural fabric in softness but is more water- and mildew-resistant. Polyester curtains can be washed in cool water in your washing machine and dried on the gentlest setting.
  • Natural fabrics like canvas, cotton, hemp, and linen are both eco-friendly and luxurious-looking. These fabrics can be easily laundered according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Keep in mind, however, that natural fabrics are not waterproof, so you must have a good quality liner to keep the rest of your bathroom dry.

Size: In general, standard shower curtains measure from 70 to 72 inches in width and 70 to 72 inches in height. To determine the right curtain size for your bathroom, however, you will need to measure:

  • For width, measure your curtain rod, then add 12 inches to include the curtain folds to provide full coverage.
  • For height/length, measure from the bottom of the curtain rod to the floor. To keep your curtain as free from dirt and moisture as possible, you’ll want the bottom edge to just touch the threshold. If you have a bathtub, you can subtract up to 10 inches from the curtain length, depending on how long you want it to hang. If you intend to swag your curtain to one side using tie-backs, you will want several inches of additional length, since the curtain will appear shorter when tied back.

Hanging design: Shower curtains are hung from the rod using hooks or hookless grommets. Hooks are the most traditional and popular hanging style. You can find hooks in a range of metal finishes, as well as plastic. Hookless curtains are quicker to install, using grommets that simply snap open and shut around the rod. Unlike metal or plastic hooks, these grommets also slide across the rod more smoothly, with less noise.

The Six Best Shower Curtains

The selections here are based on durable material, attention to detail (like reinforced rings), elegant design, and customer satisfaction.



The Best Shower Curtains: Barossa Design

Photo: amazon.com

1. MOST VARIETY: Barossa Design White Stripe Damask Fabric Shower Curtain, various sizes (starting at $16.99 for 71″ x 72″)

If Barossa Design’s White Stripe Damask shower curtain can stand up to heavy hotel usage, it can surely take the wear and tear of your bathroom. Its heavy-duty polyester material is nontoxic, anti-bacterial/microbial, and a natural mildew repellent. The curtain comes in a wide range of sizes (up to 96 inches) and five different color and pattern combinations. There’s a 90-day money-back guarantee, but Amazon customers seem more than satisfied, giving this curtain 4.7 out of five stars.

Available on Amazon.



The Best Shower Curtains: Aimjerry

Photo: amazon.com

2. EASY ELEGANCE: Aimjerry White Striped Mold-Resistant Fabric Shower Curtain, 72″ x 72″ ($17.99)

The simple design of Aimjerry’s white chevron pattern lends instant sophistication, yet this curtain boasts substance as well as style. The company’s commitment to create “functional art” shows in the sturdy waterproof polyester fabric and 12 reinforced metal rings. Amazon customers give this curtain 4.6 stars, noting its eye-pleasing look, durable utility, and excellent quality for a reasonable cost.

Available on Amazon.



The Best Shower Curtains: MACOFE

Photo: amazon.com

3. TOUGHEST FLORAL: MACOFE Flower Shower Curtain, 71″ x 71″ ($19.39)

Want flower power for your shower? There’s nothing fragile about MACOFE’s polyester curtain, thanks to 3D printing technology that creates vibrant colors and clear images that stand up to machine washing. The fabric and inks are non-toxic, and while the curtain comes with a 30-day money-back warranty, Amazon shoppers are pleased enough to give the MACOFE 4.8 stars, praising its unique pattern and high quality.

Available on Amazon.



The Best Shower Curtains: mDesign

Photo: amazon.com

4. FINEST COTTON: mDesign Premium 100% Cotton Waffle Weave Fabric Shower Curtain, 72″ x 84″ ($26.92)

Fans of all-natural fabrics flock to mDesign’s Premium cotton shower curtain. Its heavy-weight, waffle-weave fabric has a wonderful texture that lends a luxurious look and feel. Fortunately, the curtain will withstand machine washing—with bleach, if necessary. Amazon customers are delighted with the “blanket-like” softness and spa style, giving it 3.8 out of five stars.

Available on Amazon.



The Best Shower Curtains: Hookless

Photo: amazon.com

5. BEST HOOKLESS DESIGN: Hookless Jacquard Tree Branch Shower Curtain in Taupe, 71″ x 86″ ($63.11)

This decidedly pricey curtain boasts sturdy snap-on grommets that make installation a cinch, and it comes complete with a liner. Another superior design touch is the mesh border at the top that lets in maximum light while maintaining privacy. But don’t let the delicate pattern fool you—this easy-care curtain can be tossed in the wash with great results. No wonder customers award it a full five stars.

Available on Amazon.



The Best Shower Curtains: DS Bath

Photo: amazon.com

6. TRUEST BLUE: DS BATH Ombre Shower Curtain, 72″ x 72″ ($21.99)

Add color and depth to your bathroom with this ombre curtain that transitions from a deep ocean turquoise at the bottom to pale sky blue at the top. The manufacturer claims its mildew-resistant 100 percent polyester curtain doesn’t require a liner and can withstand a high degree of water exposure and customers who give it 4.4 stars agree, highlighting the weighted bottom and waterproof interior coating.

Available on Amazon.