Tips for Lighting your Bathroom

In this third post in the Lighting Tips Series, Jill Connors writes hints for lighting your bathroom.

With its emphasis on personal grooming that requires viewing oneself in a mirror, the bathroom requires careful consideration of lighting placement. Too many bathrooms feature a central ceiling-mounted fixture that casts shadows on a person standing in front of the mirror. “One of the best improvements you can make in a bathroom is to light both sides of the mirror,” says Patricia Rizzo of the Lighting Research Center. In small baths, where one may have to choose between a wall-mounted fixture on the side of the mirror or an overhead fixture, lighting designers say to always go with the wall-mounted placement. “You don’t want to cause shadows in a bathroom,” says Rizzo.

A common lighting design for older bathrooms may feature a central ceiling-mounted fixture plus a fixture above the mirror. An improved lighting plan would eliminate those fixtures and replace them with three wall sconces, two on either side of the mirror, and one on an opposing wall (offset from mirror position).

Lumens: Ambient lighting in a bathroom should be 4,000-8,000 lumens, with task lighting at the mirror a minimum of 1,700 lumens.

1 thought on “LIGHTING TIPS FOR EVERY ROOM (Third in a Series)”

  1. WP: Bathrooms are one of my favorite places to light. It’s a personal space that you use every single day. You use it in the morning, you use it when you get home from work, you use it if you’re going to go out at night. It is your personal space, so you want to light it properly and also have some fun with decorative lighting. Function goes at the top of the list, so you’ve got to have task lighting, like a pair of sconces, for shaving or putting on makeup, and then you want the overall room to feel bright enough so you don’t have dark corners. And as I said, you want something decorative that’s beautiful and attractive, because you use that room every day.

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