Best Outdoor Portable & Free-standing Privacy Screens

Updated: May 02, 2024

An outdoor privacy screen not only blocks prying eyes, but it also shields wind, sun and unattractive views in your backyard, too.

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10 Best Outdoor Privacy Screens For Decks And PatiosVIA MERCHANT

Adding a privacy screen to your yard is a great way to make your space feel more secluded and serene. “Unlike a fence, privacy screens can be placed strategically to create a visual buffer. They come in a wide variety of colors, patterns and sizes, and they can be installed individually or as sets,” says Joe Raboine, Vice President of Design at CRH Americas. “The great part is that they usually don’t require a permit as they are not considered fencing. They also allow some light and wind to pass through, so they maintain a feeling of openness.”

Privacy screens are not a one-size-fits-all purchase. There are many options to choose from. We’ve gathered some of the best to fit every scenario.

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Metal Outdoor Privacy Screen
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Best Metal Outdoor Privacy Screen

Miruo Metal Privacy Screen Fence

Looking for an aesthetically pleasing way to shield your space from prying eyes? We’ve found it. This freestanding metal outdoor privacy screen is made of tough, galvanized steel that gently filters out direct sunlight, less attractive structures or, most importantly, the scrutiny of neighbors. Line up two, three or more geometric-patterned screens end-to-end to create your private backyard retreat.

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Retractable Privacy Screen
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Best Retractable Privacy Screen

clihome Retractable Folding Side Privacy Screen

Be the master of your backyard universe. The smooth-operating sliding panels on this retractable polyester privacy screen roll open and close to create a windbreak or privacy fence whenever you need it. Made of high-quality polyester material and available in beige and dark gray, this flexible screen is also terrific at thwarting ultraviolet (UV) rays.

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Backyard Trellis Privacy Screen
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Best Backyard Trellis Privacy Screen

Vita Vinyl Colonial Trellis

Grow vines and flowers up a stand-alone garden structure for a lively privacy screen with this lattice panel trellis. The yard divider has 48 separate trellis cells to hold a variety of climbing plants. It’s made with weather-resistant vinyl that’s maintenance-free and built to last.

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Eco Friendly Outdoor Privacy Screen
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Best Eco-Friendly Outdoor Privacy Screen

Backyard X-Scapes Natural Reed Fencing Decorative Screen

This decorative fencing is made from a freshwater reed that grows abundantly along riverbanks, wetlands and estuaries. These budget- and eco-friendly panels are perfect for covering up old fencing or unsightly areas while adding diffused shade and privacy along with a tropical vibe. For optimum privacy, add a second layer.

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Green Privacy Screen
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Best Faux Greenery Privacy Screen

Mercury Row Polyethylene Privacy Screen

No need to have a green thumb when you can create the appearance of a vertical garden with this privacy screen. The faux living wall is made of polyethylene, which is lightweight and super realistic. Each panel has connectors that interlock for an easy DIY installation. This maintenance-free green screen is ideal for apartment dwellers that crave a touch of nature without the hassle.

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Outdoor Privacy Screen to Grow Plants On
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Best Outdoor Privacy Screen with Planters

Yardistry Fusion Planter Cedar Privacy Screen

Gain solitude and a beautiful vertical garden with the ultra-sturdy cedar privacy screen. This option provides privacy, and the natural look blends seamlessly into the landscape. It’s sturdy and well crafted from exterior-grade cedar, and you can add an extra dose of greenery to your yard, thanks to the two wooden planter boxes at the base. Place the screen on a flat surface, weigh down the boxes with potting soil and the screen stands on its own.

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Portable Outdoor Privacy Screen
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Best Portable Outdoor Privacy Screen

Proman Products Galaxy Outdoor/Indoor Room Divider

The portable outdoor/indoor room divider easily moves around your yard and turns in any direction, which is ideal for soaking up some rays or catching a little shade. The large screens are made of lightweight, water-resistant fabric framed in double-hinged metal tubing. Remove the foot pedestal, and this outdoor privacy screen folds up in a flash for storage.

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Outdoor Privacy Screen Diy Kit
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Best Outdoor Privacy Screen DIY Kit

HOFT Aluminum Outdoor Privacy Screen

Create a custom oasis on your deck or concrete slab with the Hoft DIY kit. With its easy-slide installation system, anyone can build a 6-foot-high privacy screen. The kit is expandable and customizable to create any configuration you’d like. Choose your own lumber or composite deck boards to match your style. Each kit includes one end post and the brackets, anchor plate, post cap and spacers. So be sure to buy two end kits and additional posts, if needed, to erect your privacy screen.

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Freestanding Pergola With Privacy Screens
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Best Pergola with Privacy Screens

Backyard Discovery Modern White Metal Freestanding Pergola with Canopy

Get the privacy and shade you need with this modern steel cabana. This heavy-duty, freestanding pergola with integrated composite privacy screens provides an instant makeover for your backyard. It’s easy to assemble and comes with a shade canopy. With its galvanized steel and powder-coated stainless steel hardware, this pergola is maintenance-free and comes with a five-year warranty. Plus, it weighs 470 pounds, so it isn’t going anywhere—and neither will you once you’ve settle in. 

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Chain Link Fence Screen
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Best Chain-Link Fence Screen

NCSNA Black Hdpe Chain Link Fence Screen

Add privacy to your chain-link fence with a polyethylene knitted fence cover. The fabric allows plenty of airflow through your space and provides 85% UV protection for you, your pets and plants. Available in black and dark green, each screen fits a 6-foot-by-12-foot chain-link panel. It is outfitted with metal grommets on all four sides and is easily secured with zip ties.

What to Consider When Buying Outdoor Privacy Screens

Before purchasing a privacy screen, think about the height, material and pattern or shape that will work best in your space. Some factors that could play into those considerations would be if you have a lot of yard space or an apartment balcony that you’re looking to add more privacy to, or if you live in a mild climate versus one that sees a lot of wind and rain.

Why You Should Trust Us

I am a shopping editor at Family Handyman and have expertise in product reviews, interior design and gardening. I help readers find well-designed products to enjoy their time spent at home. I used my expertise in gardening to find the best outdoor gardening screens for various outdoor spaces.

We consulted Joe Raboine, Vice President of Design at CRH Americas, America’s largest building company, on what to consider when locating the best outdoor privacy screens.

How We Found the Best Outdoor Privacy Screens

We researched hundreds of outdoor privacy screens, considering the different materials, costs and styles. Then, we spoke to a construction professional to clarify what makes a privacy screen high-quality. Finally, we combed through user reviews to see how real people interact with these outdoor privacy screens.


What is the best material for an outdoor privacy screen?

If you want durability, go with a metal or wood privacy screen. Since it will be outside, you want to make sure to pick a material that will stand up to the elements. However, that doesn’t mean that metal or wood are the best materials for a privacy screen. It really depends on what you’re looking for. For example, going with a faux greenery option would be the best if you want something more natural-looking. It’s important to look for a material that fits your space and style and will do well in your climate.

How do I secure my outdoor privacy screen?

This will depend on the type of material your privacy screen is. Since these are portable options, they’re meant to be moved around, but there are some things you can do to secure your screen. If you’re worried about the screen moving or getting damaged from the wind, secure it with bolts, either to the ground or your railing, or if it’s a lighter material, you can use zip ties to keep your screen stable. Most screens will come with extra materials to secure them properly.