Last week we hinted at the importance of lighting in creating a mood in your bathroom, by suggesting you keep candles handy for spa nights. While candles are a romantic and cheap way to create mood lighting, there’s more than one way to skin that horse. And quite honestly, stark bright fluorescent light and candlelight shouldn’t be the only two lighting choices you have.
Consider the many functions of a bathroom, from showering to relaxing to applying makeup to, well, you know (catching up on your book-club read at the same time). Clearly general-purpose lighting isn’t the ideal lighting for all of the functions here. Maybe it’s time to add a little variety.
One great way to tune the light to the various tasks in the bathroom is to install a dimmer switch. This is probably the easiest way to get a single bathroom to wear a lot of hats, moving with the turn of a knob from kid-scrub station to spa-like getaway. If you have the space, it’s also not a bad idea to have a separate vanity/mirror that has brilliant lighting—and more of it—for up-close work like shaving and makeup application. (Not enough space? Try an electric lighted vanity that can be stowed when not in use.) Oftentimes wall-mount lighting is just what the doctor ordered. Wall-mount lights are nice because they can be used alone or in conjunction with the vanity lighting, and moreover, they don’t highlight anything in particular. This means they serve as good general-purpose lights, providing a nice middle-of-the-road glow or the everyday brightness of your choosing.
Candles are great, but they’re one-trick ponies. There’s so much more you can do to create better lighting in your bathroom!
When changing up or adding light fixtures, be aware that bathroom lights need to have a minimum Ingress Protection (IP) Rating of 44. This rating measures the degree of protection a given fixture has against dust and moisture (e.g., mold).