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How to Find the Perfect Vanity Lighting for Your Bathroom

By the Vevano Home Team
November 2, 2020

Of all the places in your home where you need good lighting, your bathroom vanity takes the cake. The vanity is where many daily care routines happen, so ample and even vanity lighting is important to make sure your space is properly lit.

There are a few ways to light up your bathroom vanity properly, through different styles and placements of lighting fixtures. Vanity lights in general mount above the mirror or around the vanity area. Here’s how to optimize your bathroom vanity lighting based on the different types and styles of vanity lighting.

Why does your vanity need good lighting?

Whether it’s your morning or evening routine, your vanity is the place for personal care. Whether you are tending to hair care or shaving, skin care or makeup, brushing or flossing your teeth, complete and even lighting will be your saving grace. With all of these detail-oriented activities, bright and even lighting helps you see everything you need to see for your personal care routines.

What type of lighting will you need for your bathroom vanity?

General lighting, or ambient lighting, is the main light of the room and can also include natural light from windows. Sometimes general lighting in a bathroom is placed above the vanity, so it is a nice layer for any other lighting fixtures that will amp up your vanity lighting further. For your vanity, however, you will likely use accent lighting, which illuminates a specific part of the room, or task lighting, which adds targeted light to a working area. You can always play with different types of lighting to achieve a well-lit vanity area.

In terms of light temperature (the tone or color), a bright or neutral light (3,500K to 4,100K) is ideal for vanities, though you may find the most flattering light around 2,700K. You don’t want to miss any spots while shaving or applying your skin care or makeup--bright and even lighting helps you to attend to those details. Visibility is key in vanity lighting.

For safety, make sure to look for lighting that has a damp rating due to the moisture inherent within bathrooms.

Light Fixtures For Your Vanity

Double Up on Single Sconces - Sconces are a very popular type of accent lighting, particularly for bathrooms and vanities. They have the versatility to appear both traditional and contemporary, so they are easily adaptable to various styles. They are available in single fixtures, though you may want to double up to have one on each side of your mirror, or more if you have a double vanity. Sconce lighting fixtures are meant to be installed on the wall on either side of your vanity mirror, at about eye level, or 60-70 inches from the floor, to provide bright and even task lighting around where you’ll be taking care of yourself.

Bright Bar Lights - Meant to be installed above your vanity mirror, vanity bar lights provide from-the-top illumination for your face and vanity. Ideally, bar lights are installed about 75 inches above the floor on the wall. We recommend selecting bar lights that are as wide as, or shorter than, your vanity.

Light-up LED Mirrors - Combining the power of an LED light with a mirror, LED mirrors add an upscale feel to your vanity. LED mirrors have even and focused lighting throughout the length of the mirror, providing great task lighting for your vanity so you can see your face clearly. LED lights are energy efficient and are tested to last tens of thousands of hours, making them a great addition to your vanity.

Overall, wall lights are advised to avoid shadows in your vanity area, though you can play with both ceiling lights combined with wall lights for optimal lighting.

Lighting Styles For Your Vanity

Depending on the finish and fixture of your lights, you can achieve a multitude of styles for your bathroom vanity. Here are a few ideas for finishes or textures to play up your desired vanity aesthetic with lighting fixtures to match.

If you want the rustic farmhouse look for your bathroom, focus on matte black, wood, iron or antique white finishes and textures to achieve that style. For more of the vintage cottage charm, white, wood, and iron touches for your bathroom light will do the trick.

To achieve a timeless look for your vanity, classic lighting styles and finishes include oil-rubbed bronze, iron, brass, or satin nickel.

For a modern bathroom, bold statement pieces and minimalism are the way, with metallic finishes, glass, black, or chrome touches with clean lines. Industrial styles run in a similar vein in terms of boldness and minimalism, though more utilitarian with a clean and open feeling. Popular finishes include black, white, brass, and chrome.

Transitional bathroom lighting can span most styles since it essentially is a blend of various styles to achieve a unique, personal style.

Due to their versatility, sconces are available to match most of the popular styles in order to illuminate the vanity of your dreams. For more inspiration and information, see our Ultimate Guide to Lighting here.

Conclusion

An important thing to keep in mind when choosing lighting for your bathroom vanity is to know who will use the vanity and how it will be used. That can help determine where the lighting fixtures will be best placed for optimal lighting. From there, you can select your desired style and select lighting fixtures that fit around your vanity.

Ultimately, choose lighting that contributes positively to your care routines and fits your desired aesthetic to make the most of your vanity.