The modern bathroom is one multi-operational space, and it’s the place where most spend a good deal of time making sure they’re ready to go out into their daily lives. The bathroom is also often moving from functional to a calming retreat within a day's time.
But bathroom lighting often goes neglected, and a poorly lit bathroom can be a really bad way to start each day. Properly positioned vanity lights emit soft, diffuse light that reduces shadows and makes it easy for you to look your best. Considering all of the factors that go into a properly lit bath; like the size of the fixtures, where they are placed, what bulbs are used, there are quite a few things to tweak and perfect.
Today, we are going to look at a few tips to getting your bathroom vanity light just right, as well as a few dos and don’ts of having the perfect vanity lighting.
1. Surround the bathroom mirror with lights.
General ceiling lights in the bathroom will suffice for ambient light, but aren’t up to the task for beauty and grooming tasks. In fact, lighting from above can create shadows, which will leave lines across your face while shaving or putting on makeup. Ideally, you should have your lighting along the side of the mirror, which will provide you with the best lighting for more detailed tasks. A pair of vertical sconce lights like the Boly 1-light Vanity Light is perfect for the task.
2. Try to follow the lighting from daylight.
There is nothing quite like natural light, right? The true color of our face, hair, makeup and clothes is best represented in the daylight, so this is the quality of light you'll want to follow in the bathroom.
First, go for bathroom lighting fixtures with white shades; either frosted or clear works great. The Poleis 2-light Chrome Vanity Light is a great example of this. Second, use light bulbs that render colors appropriately for the room. The bulb type can help to determine the best kind of lighting for you. Incandescent bulbs (with warm white or cool white indicated) and LED bulbs work the best here.
3. Create lighting layers
Bathrooms need to move from bright light for morning rituals to a soft mood light if you're taking a soak in the tub. Thankfully, there are several creative ways to easily move from one atmosphere to another. For example, install a dimmer switch to control the intensity of your vanity lights. These days, there are dimmers available for incandescent, fluorescent and LED lighting.
If you have the space, choose a decorative fixture for your ceiling light. Small chandeliers and semi-flush ceiling lights can set a relaxed and romantic mood when the other bathroom lights are turned off. The Leon 3-Light Bathroom Light is a great fit to create the mood you want.
Now that you know what kind of bathroom vanity light you’re going for, here are a few dos and don’ts for you to follow in order to select the best light fixtures for your bathroom.
1. Make sure the lighting is even.
Light fixtures, pendants or sconces on both sides of a mirror will give you even lighting to your bathroom vanity mirror. Consider adding a light to the middle of it, while adding lights on both sides of the mirror.
2. Make sure the height is right.
Once you’ve decided on the perfect light fixtures for the sides of your bathroom mirror, it’s important to get the height right. A general rule is to hang the fixture at eye level, usually somewhere between 65 and 70 inches from the floor. The exact height to hang your fixtures will depend on who uses the bathroom most.
3. Use backlights.
Backlighting illuminates shoulders and hair, making it easier to see clothing and shapes. This comes in handy when checking yourself out in the mirror, so consider placing a light behind and above where you’ll be standing.
4. Use dimmers.
When it comes to lighting, dimmer switches are your best friend, especially in the bathroom. Adding a dimmer to the lights around your bathroom vanity will result in an easier transition as you start your day and a more relaxing finish at night.
1. Don’t use clear shades
Avoid clear glass shades or exposed bulbs in the bathroom because of their harsh glare. The Poleis 2-Light Rubbed Oil Vanity Light is great because of its frosted shades, whick keeps the glare at a minimum.
2. Don’t spotlight the floor
One of the most common lighting mistakes is to position recessed downlights over bare spots on the floor, which will create unnecessary shadows and glare. Instead, position downlights over countertops and other working areas that could use the extra light.
3. Don’t rely completely on backlit mirrors.
The soft glow emitted from a backlit mirror provides a contemporary look and a stylish alternative to nightlights. But backlit mirrors usually add more light to the wall than to your face, which is where you need it most. Therefore, consider adding sconces like the Boly 1-light Vanity Light or pendants to both sides of a mirror for functional lighting.
4. Don’t use fluorescent lighting.
Flurorescent lighting can be harsh, a little too much for the bathroom. Instead, opt for incandescent lighting instead as this is visually much more forgiving than fluorescent lighting.
Strategic bathroom vanity lighting can create the perfect accent for your bathroom. Dimmers, chandeliers and decorative wall sconces can bring a stylish look to your space. Style is important, but keep in mind that light is bound by the laws of physics. If you want to shine all day long, it’s important to get your vanity lighting right.
Explore your options for a custom vanity lighting solution to make your bathroom vanity shine and set your bathroom’s look to perfection!
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