Designing With Light For The Bathroom

In the bathroom, you need plenty of even, shadow-free lighting for shaving, grooming, and applying makeup. In small bathrooms, mirror lights will illuminate the entire room, but in the larger bathrooms, an additional ceiling fixture is needed for general lighting. A recessed infrared heat lamp will give you added warmth on chilly mornings.

For small mirrors, decorative wall brackets on each side will illuminate both sides of your face evenly. You can also mount a wall bracket across the top of the mirror. Fixtures equipped with incandescent bulbs behind glass or plastic diffusers provide the most flattering light. If you opt for more energy-efficient fluorescents, choose warm white tones. They come closest to the color of incandescents.

Theatrical lighting strips around your bathroom mirror will give you the same excellent lighting the stars enjoy in their Broadway dressing rooms. Use frosted bulbs to reduce glare.

Tub and shower enclosures can be adequately lighted by placing an enclosed damp-location recessed downlight in the ceiling. These downlights are also recommended over whirlpool baths or in saunas.

One of the new trends in bathroom lighting is the use of low voltage MR16’s in conjunction with sconces or bath bars. They provide crisp white light for accent or reflected task lighting above vanities.