The bathroom is one of the rooms where proper lighting is most essential. It is a place where we do detailed tasks like shaving and applying makeup, both of which require plenty of light. In addition, good bathroom lighting is also critical to safety, particularly for older adults. After all, 80 percent of falls experienced by adults 65+ occur in the bathroom.
It is important to remember that different areas of the bathroom have different lighting requirements.
- Natural lighting. Daylight plays an essential role in regulating circadian rhythms, which is why the use of natural light in the bathroom, where you begin your day, is important. Many bathrooms achieve this through the use of opaque or obscure glass windows, or one or two traditional windows covered with bottom-up shades. Skylights or sun tubes are also excellent options for letting in daylight while still maintaining privacy.
- Vanity lights. For up-close tasks in front of the bathroom mirror, you’ll want to choose fixtures that can be mounted on either side of it at approximately eye level. Doing this will prevent shadows on the face, like those cast by light bars hung over the mirror. If bracketing your mirror with lights isn’t an option, install them on side walls. Placing a light over the mirror should only be done as a last resort, and it should be a linear style that provides bright light in a continuous band.
- Tub lighting. When it comes to bathtubs, there are actually very strict building codes that must be observed. Hanging or open fixtures aren’t permitted within eight feet above the tub or three feet in front of it. So, unless your bathroom ceiling is higher than average, you’re restricted to lensed damp or wet-rated downlights or spotlights. Of course, if you have enough ambient light, you may not need a separate fixture specifically for your tub or whirlpool. Situating your bathtub under a skylight or window is a good way to light up the area as well.
- Lights in the shower. Showers can get pretty dim, especially if you use a shower curtain. If you don’t want to shower in the dark, you’ll need to install lighting in the shower. Fortunately, there are plenty of extremely bright, open shower trim lights available that you can choose from, as well as gasketed acrylic or glass surface-type fixtures that are approved for use in the shower.
A Few Things to Keep in Mind for Better Bathroom Lighting
In addition to being more energy-efficient, LED lights are also easy to dim. When installing bathroom lighting, it’s best to over light the area by installing bright LED lights that can be dimmed to your level of preference. This is because as you get older and your eyes age, you’re going to need more light. A 60-year-old, for example, needs three times as much light as someone in their 20s in order to see as well. By using LED lights and dimmers, you won’t have to change out your bulbs or fixtures when your lighting needs change.
If you need a remodeling company to help with bathroom remodeling that includes updating your bathroom lighting, call Callen Construction. We can help make your bathroom beautiful as well as functional. Call Callen today at 414-765-2585 for a free estimate.