Lighting is such an important aspect of bathroom design that it deserves some time and planning when doing a bathroom renovation. These bathroom lighting basics will form a starting point, to help you when developing your lighting plan.

The size of the room is an important basic when planning the lighting in a bathroom. A larger room will need more lights than a small room. It is important to provide sufficient lights to avoid the room looking dark and dim.

Consider the different types of lighting when looking at the needs of the people who will be using the bathroom. Most bathrooms are fitted with a central light and this is fine for lighting the room during general use. However, in general, single light fittings don’t provide adequate directed light for tasks such as shaving and applying makeup. A central light also tends to cast shadows which can make some bathroom activities difficult. Recessed lighting is a popular alternative to the common central light.

Halogen lights give bright, direct illumination to specific areas of the bathroom and are popular along the top of the vanity and above the shower recess. Here they provide good clear light for activities such as shaving and doing makeup, both of which require good lighting if you are to get the job done well. You might also consider having halogens fitted down the sides of a mirror over the vanity.

Take the position of the window into account when planning the lighting in the bathroom, so you can take advantage of natural light. Think about replacing a small, old-fashioned window with a larger modern one to increase the amount of light coming into the room; this will help you save on electricity costs.

If you enjoy the atmosphere of relaxing in a warm bath surrounded by candles and dim lighting, you might like to use dimmers on the central light and whatever lighting you install over the bath. These will allow you to set the lighting to suit whatever mood you are in at the time.

Halogens and LEDs provide brighter light than conventional light globes but you need to use more of them because of their small size. However, they also tend to be more energy-efficient. You can further save on power costs by using the new energy efficient light globes, by having each light or bank of lights independently switched so you only turn on the lights you need and encouraging everyone in the household to turn off the bathroom lights when they leave the room.

Take the time to research the different types of lighting you could use in your new bathroom, as well as the huge range of light fittings and fixtures that are available. You are certain to find the style and design that is just right for your application. Avoiding costly mistakes at the start will save a lot of headaches later on.