By Suzanne Fred. Bathroom Lighting. Published at Wednesday, February 14th, 2018 - 06:33:00 AM.
In the master or guest bathrooms, use fixtures that provide at least 75 to 100 watts of illumination, says Randall Whitehead, a well-known lighting expert and author of Residential Lighting, a Practical Guide.
Downlights are perhaps the worst type to use for task lighting in the bath, although they are fine for ambient or accent lighting. Also, downlights are usually incandescent, which is the least energy-efficient form of lighting-—only 10% of the energy used by a typical incandescent bulb comes out as light, the other 90% is wasted heat.
And even though they still sell “Hollywood” light bars in the big-box stores, try to refrain from using them, especially with clear bulbs, as they produce glare and leave shadows under the brow, nose, and chin. If the space doesn’t allow fixtures on the sides, it’s OK to place one over the mirror. Just try to select a linear model with a continuous band of bright light.
Nothing beats natural daylight for brightening your mood and setting the circadian rhythms that regulate wake/sleep cycles. There’s a huge and growing body of scientific literature around this phenomenon. That’s why it’s ideal to design a bathroom with as much natural light as possible. If planning to include one window, why not have two?—especially if they can be on adjacent or opposite walls to balance the illumination. To circumvent the common issue of large windows over the tub that are always covered to provide privacy, why not switch to bottom-up shades so you have daylight and views with privacy?
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