We pay lots of attention to lighting for kitchens, bedrooms, and other rooms in our houses, but many of us don’t give enough thought to one of the most frequented rooms in the house, the bathroom. Often it’s just an overhead light and a couple of lights over the sink. But there’s much more to lighting the bathroom than you’d think.
First and foremost, we want our bathrooms to be clean and bright, which is where ambient overhead lighting comes into play. But an overhead light that shines directly down on people is harsh and unflattering. Position overhead lights over the walkway area so that the light comes from behind you when you’re standing at the sink. You can use recessed ceiling lights — but use them sparingly. Even the largest of bathrooms don’t need too many recessed lights, and overdoing them breaks up the ceiling and makes it look like it’s full of holes!*
Vanity or sink lighting should have frosted or white glass, to diffuse the light and eliminate shadows. Although clear filament bulbs are popular these days, they tend to give off harsh, shadowy light. And stay away from anything with a fabric shade, which won’t hold up well in the often moist environment in the bathroom. You can use an overhead light, as long as it’s giving off diffused light, or mount sconces on each side of the bathroom mirror. Avoid an asymmetrical light on only one side of the mirror, though — it’ll cast shadows. Today’s LED light bulbs give off a much warmer light than when they were first introduced to the market, so they’re a great choice for good light and energy savings.
Shower lighting is also important. If your shower is 3-4 feet long, one overhead light is fine, and this one should shine directly over you as you stand under the shower, for safety’s sake. If your shower is longer than 4 feet, put one at each end. And install dimmers on all overhead lights so you can create a spa-like atmosphere for relaxing soaks in the tub!**
Yale Lighting Concepts and Design has thousands of stylish and functional lighting choices for your bathroom and for every room in your house! Browse our on-line catalog and don’t hesitate to contact us if you have questions about any of our products.