Bathroom Lighting Guide - Boyel Living
Dec 28,2021 | Vicky
How to create the best lighting conditions for your bathroom by considering and selecting lighting types, fixtures and layouts.
When doing interior renovations and referring to lighting, bathroom lighting is probably the least of most people's considerations for all rooms in the house because they would say, leave the focus to the living room or kitchen. I have learned that many home bathrooms today have inadequate lighting for mirrors or vanities that only meet the criteria of being "visible" because often these bathrooms have only one ceiling fixture to do all the work of bathroom lighting.
In fact, ample and good bathroom lighting helps create an environment that allows you to relax and recharge. When done right, it pays off in a big way. After all, this is the space where you start and end your day, and it should be important to you.
So what type of lighting is best for a bathroom?
A good lighting plan should have a series of lighting levels: that is, sufficient light is placed in areas with specific needs or tasks such as showering, shaving or makeup, while other light sources are used to enhance the overall mood of the room.
Task (functional) lighting
Vanity lighting should receive the highest consideration because these fixtures illuminate your head and face at the nearest, most direct and best angle for grooming. Nowadays, vanity LED mirrors are becoming an increasingly popular choice, including its adjustable brightness and color temperature, as well as its anti-fog feature, which does provide good lighting, but it is not enough. Vertical fixtures or wall sconces mounted on either side of the mirror are a great addition, and they can cast an even light on your face.
But given the size and location of some vanity mirrors, sidelights may be impractical (mounting directly on the mirror is always an option, but requires greater planning and cost). If a light fixture is installed above the mirror, it should be placed 75 to 80 inches above the floor and have at least 150 watts of power - preferably spread over at least 24 inches long so that the light shines evenly on the hair and face. The most common mistake people make is to place recessed ceiling fixtures directly over the mirror. These fixtures can cast shadows on the face, making daily grooming more difficult.
Proper Lighting Reference for Vanities
Stand in front of the sink with your eyes at eye level with the bathroom light on the mirror.
To eliminate shadows under the chin, eyes and cheeks, fixtures should be mounted 36 to 40 inches apart on either side of the vanity mirror (or on the face of the mirror if it is large). The center of each fixture should be approximately level with the eyes, or about 66 inches from the floor. This will ensure even lighting across the face.
The shower is a secondary area for functional lighting. If your bathroom is relatively small and features a clear glass door, it may not be necessary to use a dedicated fixture. Otherwise, I recommend using recessed lights with a glass lens (the plastic will yellow). Similar recessed fixtures work well on freestanding tubs.
This "fill light" is more like supplemental natural light. It is most often provided by a central fixture, usually a surface-mounted ceiling light would be the choice. But I encourage being more creative in your choice, for example by considering a chandelier, or another option is "cove lighting" - rope lights hidden behind moldings a few inches below ceiling height - that can add some soft light around the perimeter of the room.
This type of lighting usually acts as a sublimation, providing a spotlight for the lighting throughout the bathroom. Using a small recessed spotlight aimed at a piece of decorative artwork or a beautiful supply, for example, not only creates another layer of light in the bathroom. It also highlights these beautiful fixtures or tiles and makes them shine.