top of page

The importance of good lighting at home…and at work

Effective lighting is vital for safety, comfort and making your home feel homely

It’s the beginning of November, the clocks have gone back, and winter feels like it’s already arrived. For the next four months, we’ll be travelling home from work under cover of darkness, relying on lamps to get us through the long nights and increasing our domestic electricity consumption.

Lighting is something many of us take for granted. We turn on a ceiling light without considering how inefficient it is asking one bulb to illuminate a whole room, or we rely on a low-wattage table lamp that makes it hard to read unless we’re sat beside it. Effective lighting can transform the feel of a room, as well as its practicality – it also gives dirt nowhere to hide when it’s time to clean…

Let there be light

Effective lighting is arguably most important in kitchens while slicing and dicing, reading recipes and studying cooking instructions. If your kitchen doesn’t have pelmet lighting under wall cabinets, buy some stick-on LEDs which will make your countertops far brighter. They’ll also illuminate dirt and crumbs, which our Queen of Gleam team will remove if you’re not in the habit of wiping down worktops every night. This is good practice, to prevent bacteria or insect/pest infestations.

Safety first

It’s crucial to ensure your home is bright enough to move around safely. Motion-activated magnetic light bars inside wardrobes and walk-in cupboards ensure you won’t get tangled up in hidden clutter. Lamps at the top and bottom of your staircase allow you to see where you’re going and minimising the risk of falls. Cheap plug-in lamp timers boost security by suggesting an empty house is occupied, and they also make it nicer to come home after sunset; motion-activated outside lights do the same.

The eyes have it

Reading in the dark becomes increasingly hard as we get older. If you have a favourite reading nook, position a lamp beside it to ensure light reaches the pages. In the bedroom, avoid thick shades on beside units using traditional bulbs – they block so much light that you might end up with a headache trying to read. At this time of year, full spectrum lamps replicate the serotonin-generating powers of summer sunshine – buy one for your home office to feel its full mood-boosting effects.

Office politics

Best practice at home also extends into the workplace. If you spend your nine to five at a desk, ask your employer for a full spectrum bulb – the larger E27 style fits many screw-in lamps. If fluorescent strip lights are too bright or create unwelcome reflections, ask for some of them to be removed. Employers need to ensure their staff aren’t being exposed to eyestrain or headaches, while flickering fluorescent lights must be replaced before any risk of triggering migraines or epileptic seizures.

Invest in the best

The steps above are all free or cheap, but it’s sometimes worth investing in effective lighting. LED lights on stair tread risers increase safety with minimal running costs, while LEDs in kitchen kickplates show up crumbs that you (or we) can then eliminate. Multiple downlighters brighten a space far better than a single bulb, higher wattages reach far corners more effectively, and ambient or adjustable lighting helps to set (and maintain) a favourable mood during the long winter evenings.


bottom of page