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Lighting your bedroom

bedroom lighting

Figuring out the right lighting setup for your bedroom can be a tricky affair. The bedroom is mainly a space for rest and you may face a tough decision in seeking out elegant lighting.

Here are a few handy tips to help you sort out the right lighting for your bedroom.

What is the best way to light a bedroom?

Figure out the dimensions

bedroom measurements

To implement an effective lighting plan for your bedroom, you need to consider the size and vertical height of the room. 

Take some measurements and do some research on what sizes and types of light fixtures will best fit the dimensions you are working with.

Try to layer your lights

layering lights

Next, figure out what general style will fit your bedroom. Do you prefer:

  • modern lighting fixtures 
  • traditional fixtures, 
  • does a mix of both suit your preferences? 

Consider accessories such as ceiling fans, to which you can seamlessly incorporate illumination.

Experts recommend layering various forms of lighting in the bedroom by having at least three sources of illumination. There should typically be:

  • decorative lighting, 
  • ambient lights, 
  • task lighting.

First, identify any task you are likely to do in the bedroom and mark which zone it would be happening in. You may want to read the occasional book in bed or a reading nook off to one side of the bed. 

The odd desk table is a common feature in many bedrooms after the social toll of Covid-19. Consider targeted downlights for these zones that can be turned on and off without interfering with other parts of the room.

Decorative lighting can be a statement feature that adds some personality to your bedroom. You can choose a bold chandelier or ornate bedside lamps that frame the positioning of your bed.

lighting a bedroom


Ambient lights generally serve the same function as natural sunlight, illuminating the entire room at once so you can see where everything is.

In terms of general or ambient lighting, consider recessed lights which have become relatively popular and therefore inexpensive. Just remember not to overdo them in a way that results in a landing strip row of lights when you look up from your bed. This may be visually distracting and an eyesore when looking up while laying on your bed. The last thing you want is to experience the glare from overhead lighting when trying to rest.

Be mindful of where recessed lights go, and try placing them on the perimeter of the bedroom so that they don’t become too bright and overwhelming.

Designers recommend incorporating several light sources with low wattage compared to one or two bright lights. 

You can add some flexibility to your ambient lighting by fitting them with dimmer switches that you can adjust to your liking depending on your mood and activities.

Remember to add some lamps

bedroom lamps

It is unwise to solely rely on overhead lighting within bedrooms. Bedside lamps are a great way to add another layer of lighting that is both functional and adds to the aesthetic appeal of your bedroom.

You can add lamps to other areas of the bedroom apart from the commonly used bedside tables, such as the reading nook, desk, and even dressers and wardrobes. These lamps pull light into different areas of the bedroom and give the space an even glow all around.

Introduce statement light fixtures

light fixtures


Incorporating joinery and bedroom lighting into one piece is an ideal way of adding a statement feature while introducing a soft and indirect light. 

Consider incorporating LED under-cupboard lights into bedside shelving. A similarly attractive and striking option is by using LED contour strips on the top rear side of the headboard or under a bedside table to create a halo floating effect.

You can create other forms of statement lighting to complement the open shelving that you may have. To create this indirect layered lighting, install warm LED contour lights to have dramatically back-lit shelves that throw up the silhouette of items you have on the shelves.

What kind of lighting is best for a bedroom?

Indirect lighting

indirect lighting


You most likely don’t want bright lights shining down on your weary eyes as you lay down to get some rest at the end of the day.

An innovative way of indirectly lighting your bedroom includes adding discrete LED downlights along the front of your wardrobes. The resulting light will reflect into the room and ensure that you get the light where you need it the most when looking through your clothes, linens, and accessories within the wardrobes.

Another way of providing ample background lighting in your bedroom is by using localized lamps on either side of the bed and at least one or two others at different locations. 

This helps to light the floor and the general space around the bed without flooding the actual bed with bright light.

Warm Light Tones

light bedroom tones

The right temperature of lighting in your bedroom will greatly enhance the quality and calmness of the time spent in this most intimate space. Try out soft white bulbs that give off diffused light. 

They are an ideal choice because they illuminate spaces without feeling sterile while being versatile enough to fit accent lighting, task lights, and ambient lighting.

Soft light bulbs have a color temperature somewhere between 2,700 and 3,000 Kelvin. This range has been found to give off good amounts of light that are gentle to the eyes and highly unlikely to disturb your sleep. 

Warm lights also make the bedroom appear more relaxing and cozier, helping you feel at ease immediately you enter the space they are lighting.

Remember to pick lights that are not too soft or warm, in the same vein that you are escaping bright and harsh bedroom lights. Consider the amount of natural light your bedroom gets during the daytime, particularly if you find yourself engaged in a few tasks during the day.


Lighting your bedroom requires you to strike a delicate balance between having enough light and protecting your eyes from brightness when you look up from your bed. 

Warm light bulbs are an ideal choice that provides enough illumination while sparing your eyes from glare.

The position of the bedroom lights is also as important as the type of lights, and remembering to have them in different zones around the perimeter of the room will add to the comfort factor and elegant appearance.


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