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Lighting Your Bathroom

One of the most common problems I run into when remodeling is lighting the bathroom. While it can actually be simple enough, it seems almost every bath I walk into doesn’t have sufficient lighting. First of all, consider the use of the bathroom. A powder room can have dim lighting – which can actually add to the mood of the room. Powder rooms are often artistic jewels in the house, and too bright of lighting can be detrimental to the ambiance.

Powder Room with Ambiance

A powder room with ambiance

In the master bath, however, it is imperative to have good lighting. The vanity is of course the most important area to light – as this is where shaving, make-up, and hair are done. While most baths seem to have bright overhead lights above the mirror – this is simply inadequate. Even if the lighting is bright, if it all comes from overhead sources it is going to create shadows on the face that will interfere with shaving and makeup application. Overhead lighting is good to have to create general light- but side lighting at the vanity mirror is very important for daily tasks.

Sconces Add Lighting

Sconces add lighting at the sides of the face

Overhead lights combined with side lighting

Overhead lights combined with side lighting

Task lighting in an enclosed shower is also very important. In a shower the light fixture must be fully enclosed – a can light with a frosted lens is perfect for this. Keep in mind that the lens acts as a diffuser and will make the light quite a bit dimmer – so error on the side of caution and use two if necessary. If the shower does not have a lot of glass, say in the instance of a steam shower, I use two cans for a 3’x6’ shower. If there is a lot of glass and the shower gets a fair amount of general light from the main bath area, then you can opt for one.

Ample shower lighting

Lighting is one of the most innovative specialties in interior design – and new products are constantly flooding the market. Shower systems with integrated lighting and shower heads, body sprays, and even integrated music are now available. Mirrors for the vanity with built in lights help keep a clean aesthetic around the vanity, and also provide great light for the face.

Shower Lighting

Shower lighting

Built-in mirror lights

Built-in mirror lights