Good lighting is an essential part of any successful room design, and the bathroom is no exception. Here, three experts share their top tips for lighting your bathroom right – from practical task lighting to those beautiful finishing touches.
The number one thing you need in a bathroom is shadow-free task lighting at the mirror. Many of us live in homes with poor bathroom lighting, and we all know how frustrating it is to find something’s been missed in the shaving or make-up process when we’re out. Ambient lighting is most effective when it’s located close to the walls. This allows for great reflectance of light within the space, keeping it bright end avoiding a ‘cave-like’ feel, which is the classic effect you get with four ceiling down lights in a grid pattern, where the floor is lit and the walls are dark. Make sure there is light between your face and the mirror when you’re at the vanity. Too many bathrooms end up with lights in the middle of the ceiling that don’t offer great lighting. Showers that are behind nib walls or tucked into corners need to be lit – you may not want a spotlight in there, but you also don’t want dark corners. We’re seeing a lot of white opal spherical lights in bathroom designs at the moment. They give a gentle light to a room and sit well with grey tiles. Beware though, these don’t necessarily give you sufficient illumination for task lighting at the mirror, and are better used as ambient lighting.
Hollywood got it right with their lighting for applying make-up to the stars, with lighting above, below and on either sides of the face. If this is not possible, then lighting either side of the face is the next best option as lighting from directly above with down lights will result in shadowing over the eyes, lips and chin. When it comes to the right mounting height for lights on either side of the mirror, aim for mid-face level.
The second layer of lighting you need is subtle, ambient lighting for using the bathroom for short visits. A night light is an excellent thing to include too. And, depending on the style of your bathroom, you may also need a decorative layer of lighting for luxuriating in the bath. Consider adding LED strip lighting in shower nooks and under the vanity. Keep an eye on glare and brightness. We rarely see dimming in bathrooms and as it’s a room we all use a few times a day, making sure it’s always comfortable is important. If you need it to be brighter, perhaps consider a dimmer so you can change the lighting level and ambience to suit. You could even select a fitting that allows you to colour shift between warm white, cool white and even daylight.
Accent lighting is another optional extra you may want to consider if budget permits. It allows you to highlight specific features in the bathroom and will add character and personality to the space. Install accent lighting on a larger wall, over the bath or in a corner next to the basin in a splash-free zone – it really is the icing on the cake. Be sure that wiring rules are met to ensure safety. When you’re choosing decorative lighting, make sure it is IP-rated and safe for a damp/wet environment.
Common Mistakes To Avoid
- Decorative wall lights that don’t produce any functional light. Your bathroom may look beautifully styled, but you’ll struggle to use it for its daily purpose.
- The absence of good mirror lighting. When this isn’t considered as part of a design, the result is often a light source centrally located in the room, which puts light behind the person at the mirror and essentially creates ‘anti-task’ lighting.
- Downlights directly over the basin, which cast shadows onto your face. If you have to use a downlight, opt for a gimble, a light fitting that rotates, so you can adjust it to focus on the mirror rather than above your head.
- Using fluorescent lights in a bathroom for make-up and other grooming activities – it will wash out your complexion.
When selecting bathroom lighting, consider the ceiling height, the other finishes in the room, the style of your home and the purpose of the light fitting.Did you know that every client gets an electrical consultation with our process manager and our electrician? A copy of your floor plan is projected and we go through room by room ensuring that the right lighting and situation of all switches and power points are perfectly suited for their function and your lifestyle. Just another reason why we are considered Waggas best builder. To find out more about the building process and our current Wagga House & Land Packages that are available contact us on 0438 692 962 or click here and fill out our contact us form.
For more tips from the Houzz experts visit Houzz.com.au