The title of my blog was an article written by Randall Whitehead who is a professional lighting designer. I met him in Dallas years ago and while he is witty and loves to tease and laugh, he knows lighting and he is very serious when discussing it. I learned much from him. In his article he wrote about bathroom lighting. I want to expand a bit on this.
As we age, we need more light. I am often asked where bathroom lighting should be placed for best results when applying makeup or shaving. The best lighting for illuminating your face at a mirror is side lighting. This is also referred to as cross illumination. This could be two fixtures either scones or pendants mounted 36 inches apart. Your bathroom fixtures should be mounted 66 inches above the floor which is eye level. If using sconces or pendants, having a center fixture in the ceiling will provide general illumination which complements the task lighting. If your contractor or builder only plans to wire for a fixture above the sink, you may want to ask for side light wiring as well. Using a fixture above the mirror and over the sink only provides illumination for your forehead and you end up tilting your head to see the lower half of your face. Having recessed fixtures over the sink can create harsh shadows.
Is natural light ideal for applying makeup? Yes, especially if you’re heading out during the day. Have you ever stood by a window to tell the difference between navy and black? The same idea applies here. Have you ever tested makeup in a store? Most often you are looking in a mirror that is illuminated with halogen lighting. This isn’t the color of normal lighting nor is it the color of natural light so it may look different when you take it home. Ask the salesperson if you can take it to a window before purchasing to make sure it’s the color you desire. When you hear daylight LED’s, which are set at a higher Kelvin temperature, you may think of the color of the sun. However, real daylight is a combination of sunlight and the color of the sky which is a crisp blue. Let us help you select the correct Kelvin temperature LED bulbs and see if you can see the difference in your reflection.