GOTTA KNOW: The Importance of Proper Bathroom Lighting
For the room you rely on most for light, your bathroom is often overlooked in the lighting design department. From children’s bathrooms, to powder rooms and even the master bath, every bathroom requires a certain amount of light to fit the mood.
Children’s bathrooms require task lighting at easy to reach heights. Think overhead, recessed lighting to ensure their getting their teeth properly brushed, with a funky decorative pendant light over the tub to make bath time more enjoyable. We love the wide variety of whimsical lighting over on Wayfair.
Powder rooms can rely more on mood lighting, as guests are quickly in and out. However, if your powder room doubles as your overnight guest’s bathroom, make sure to include task lighting as outlined below.
For master baths, we’ve outlined the necessities to keep in mind when lighting the room. With three tiers of lighting, functional or task, mood or ambient, and accent lighting, your bathroom will suit your needs throughout the day.
From guest rooms to the master suite, vanity lighting should be the focus of attention because these fixtures work the hardest to illuminate the head and face for grooming. Often, bathrooms will only have overhead lighting, casting harsh shadows around your face, making grooming and styling more difficult.
Vertical fixtures or sconces mounted on either side of the mirror are best for countering the overhead lighting shadows. Sconces should be placed 60-66” up from the floor and at least 36” apart. If wall space is limited, consider mounting the sconces directly on the mirror. All vanity lighting should contain at least 150 watts - spread over fixtures totalling 24 inches in length, washing light evenly across your face and hair.
When natural light is limited, ambient lighting works as a substitute. Choose a pendant lamp or chandelier installed from the middle of the room. Another option is “cove lighting” — rope lights hidden behind a molding dropped several inches below ceiling height — which adds a soft glow around the perimeter of the room, which is especially nice for early morning bathroom visits.
Install a recessed spotlight directed at a piece of decorative art or a beautiful powder room basin to add another layer of light, particularly appropriate in places like a guest powder room when task lighting is less necessary. Also, recessed shower fixtures can be angled (most can be tilted up to 35 degrees at installation) to add some sparkle to beautiful shower fixtures or tile details.
With Austin resources for lighting like Lights Fantastic and Alexander Merchant, finding the right pieces for your space is easy. Online retailers such as Restoration Hardware and West Elm have collections even more extensive than what’s available in their stores.