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Planning to install or renovate your bathroom vanity?
Other than getting the right mirror, tiles, cabinets, sink, and faucet, the lighting of the bathroom vanity plays a big part in the overall beauty of the space.
Did you know that you can save a lot of money if you know about the correct size guide for the bathroom light fixture? Then, you would be able to design the vanity yourself instead of hiring an expert!
I’m sure you want to know more now about what size light fixture over bathroom vanity. So, let’s get to it!
What are Vanity Lights?
Vanity lights are a type of lighting fixture that can be set around the vanity. These lights are not expected to light up the entire room, but just for the vanity.
Since the lights are mounted around the vanity mirror, they are mostly used for aesthetics and less for practical reasons.
Types of Bathroom Vanity Lights – What Light Bulbs are Used for Vanity Mirrors?
There are several options when it comes to bathroom vanity lights. Let’s look at them in detail.
Fluorescent lights are perfect for the incandescent effect we so desire in our bathrooms. They consume less energy and can last as long as possible, 15,000 hours to be precise. In fact, you can save upto $200 a year if you have these lights installed at home.
However, the ultraviolet light from the fluorescent lights exposes you to carcinogenic radiation, which is super harmful. Some people have an intolerance to fluorescent lights as its exposure may cause them eye strain, dizziness, headaches, blurry vision, and lightheadedness.
Halogen lights are bright, utilize low wattage, have a very long life, are lightweight, and require no shielding. Energy consumption is low, they are cheaper to buy, and can last upto 2500 hours! On the downside, these lights can heat up quickly, causing burn hazards. They are extremely sensitive to vibration, and their luminous flux is less powerful than other types of lights.
The initial cost of incandescent lights is low even though the output is very bright. Some people prefer the warmer tones of these types of lights. Switching it off and on is easy, installation is simple, and the applications are controllable.
Although you will save a lot of money on these bulbs, they are unfortunately energy inefficient. The operating cost is high, and can only run for 1000 hours. Its efficacy is also low since it can only produce 5 to 20 lumens per watt.
LED lights also have low energy consumption, contain no harmful ultraviolet effect, and are not intimidated by vibrations. These lights don’t emit heat, are environment-friendly, require low voltage for operation, can withstand frequent switching, and possess a very long lifespan.
To name a few disadvantages, LED lights are pricey, have shorter beams of light, and the scattering range is short. A phenomenon called ‘blue hazard’ in white LED lights is a concern.
Xenon lights are known to use 25% to 30% less energy than halogen lights. Although not as durable as fluorescent lights, these ones can last upto 4000 hours.
Luckily, these lights are resistant to vibration and heat. They are also quite bright and beautiful. But they are quite expensive and consume a lot of energy. Sometimes, you may even have to install energy converters to keep it balanced.
How Many Light Fixture Over Vanity?
You have to choose the number of lights depending on the size of your bathroom mirror and counter. Let’s look at it in detail.
One bathroom vanity light fixture can look good for small vanity spaces. To have more light spread over the area, make sure it’s long horizontally.
- Best for: Small vanity space
- Average Price: $20 to $60
Pro Tips: Don’t get anything bulky, or else it will take away all the attention from the vanity.
For a bathroom vanity that is average in size, 2 bathroom sconces over the mirror should be fine. The lights should cover 75% of the total width of the mirror for the perfect look.
- Best for: Double sink vanities and wide countertops
- Average Price: $40 to $80
Pro Tips: The placement of vanity lights over the mirror must be proportionately spread. That is, depending on the type of light fixture, either place them close to each other at the center or on two sides of the wall just above the mirror.
Having 3 lights over your vanity mirror will look so incredible! If your mirror is wide enough, get a classic set of fixtures to decorate the space.
- Best for: 50-inch mirror, double sink vanities, and wide countertop
- Average Price: $60 to $120
Pro Tips: Having three lights above the bathroom vanity may appear crowded, so leave a space of 2 inches or so between the lights and mirror when you install them.
If your bathroom mirror is big, go big with the lights as well. 4 vanity lights above mirror would give off a lot of light, at the same time, make your vanity space look more luxurious.
- Best for: Mirrors that are 60-inches, double sink vanities, and wide countertop
- Average Price: $80 to $190
Pro Tips: The lights over the mirror vanity pointed upwards are for ambient lighting, whereas the ones pointed downwards are for task lighting.
Your vanity space looks more fabulous the more lights you add. For a large-width mirror, 5 lights are your perfect choice!
- Best for: 60-inches and over mirror, and large countertop
- Average Price: $90 to $300
Pro Tips: Choose soft white bulbs that are around 3000K for the best makeup application experience and other vanity uses.
I was wondering if it was possible to go more, and here we are! The ultimate bathroom vanity light above mirror has 6 bulb light fixtures!
- Best for: 60-inch and above mirror and large countertops
- Average Price: $120 to $330
Pro Tips: Since 6 bulbs can produce enough light to brighten up your vanity space, don’t go adding extra bulbs around the mirror. That will be too much!
How Many Watts for Bathroom Vanity Light?
The general recommended wattage for bathrooms is 120 watts after combining two 60-watt bulbs. But your vanity is not going to settle for something so less. So, get 60 or less wattage for each bulb for your vanity.
How High Should a Bathroom Vanity Light Be?
Ideally, the height of a bathroom vanity light should be 75 to 80 inches from the floor. From the top of the mirror, leave a space of 5 inches to affix the vanity lights.
How Wide Should Vanity Lights Be?
Usually, the experts suggest that the vanity lights should be a third of the width of the full mirror. Moreover, the right vanity light fixture must be three-quarters the width of the whole vanity.
What Size Light Fixture Over Bathroom Vanity- A Complete Guide
Although there is no specific rule of thumb to follow when it comes to affixing vanity lights over the bathroom vanity, this guide can help you get an idea.
24 inch vanity
Q: What Size Vanity Light for 24 Inch Mirror?
Ans: A mirror that is 24-inches in length needs vanity lights that are 3 inches each.
Q: How Many Lights Over 24 Inch Vanity?
Ans: You can have 3 lights over the vanity.
30 Inch Vanity
Q: What Size Vanity Light for 30 Inch Mirror?
Ans: A 30-inch mirror needs vanity lights that are 3 or 4 inches in size.
Q: How Many Lights Over 30 Inch Vanity?
Ans: For appeal, have 3 to 4 small lights fixed above the 30-inch vanity.
36 Inch Vanity
Q: What Size Vanity Light for 36 Inch Mirror?
Ans: A 36-inch mirror can incorporate vanity lights that are 4 inches.
Q: How Many Lights Over 36 Inch Vanity?
Ans: The vanity will look good with 3 to 4 vanity lights.
48 Inch Vanity
Q: What Size Vanity Light for 48 Inch Mirror?
Ans: Your vanity light may vary in size depending on its style. Add 4 small scones or similar of 3 or 4 inches over a 48-inch mirror.
Q: How Many Lights Over 48 Inch Vanity?
Ans: Use about 4 to 5 lights over a 48-inch vanity.
60 Inch Vanity
Q: What Size Vanity Light for 60 Inch Mirror?
Ans: A mirror that measures 60-inches can hold up vanity lights that are 4 to 5 inches in size.
Q: How Many Lights Over 60 Inch Vanity?
Ans: You can affix 5 lights over a 60-inch vanity.
72 Inch Vanity
Q: What Size Vanity Light for 72 Inch Mirror?
Ans: The size of the vanity light can differ between 3 to 5 inches over a 72-inches mirror.
Q: How Many Lights Over 72 Inch Vanity?
Ans: Use about 5 to 6 lights over a vanity space of 72 inches.
Placement of Vanity Light Over Mirror
Where to place bathroom vanity lights? When it comes to placement, there are many ways to get it done.
For example, you can use two vanity lights for the bathroom vanity space. The lights can be on either side of the mirror, leaving a space of 24 inches to 40 inches in between.
This placement will ensure no shadow falls below your chin, cheeks, and eyes. Also for even illumination on the face, the fixture should be placed 66 inches above the floor.
If your vanity lights are scones, you can attach them to the two sides of the mirror. If you have two vanity mirrors over the sink, then you can fix two double lights over each mirror for the best effect. Or you can attempt to have one more between the mirrors.
When attaching the vanity on the sides of the mirrors, mount them 64 inches from the floor. Make sure these lights are 36 to 40 inches apart. The third light should sit symmetrically along with the other two.
Lastly, if your light fixtures have 4 to 6 lights on a narrow platform, opt to hang them over the mirror at the center. However, the fixture can’t be longer than the mirror.
How to Choose Bathroom Vanity Light Fixtures
A number of factors come into play when choosing the perfect bathroom vanity light fixtures. Let’s have a look at what you can expect.
Because the tasks we do in front of the vanity mirror are intricate, like putting on makeup, trimming nose hair, and doing eyebrows, the lighting has to provide the right brightness.
According to the American Lighting Association, 1600 lumens in the recommended lighting output of any fixture in the bathroom vanity. On the other hand, integrated LED lighting can produce 1200 lumens with less input.
Furthermore, if you use dimmable lights for the bathroom vanity, you can have more of the lumens because you can control the light level.
When it comes to style, there are numerous options. You have to make sure that the light fixtures look at home with the design of the bathroom vanity, faucets, and other features of the bathroom.
Recessed light overhead can create shadows over the face, so you can stay away from that. People with limited wall space can utilize vanity light fixtures above the mirror.
Cool tones in the vanity space call for cool-toned light fixtures. On the contrary, warm-toned vanity lights look incredible with warmer bathroom designs.
Rendering and Temperature:
The Color Rendering Index (CRI) signifies how the color of the light fixture render to your eyes. Lightings with a higher CRI make hair, makeup, and skin look incredible.
On the other hand, the color temperature of the bathroom vanity light fixture defines the cool or warm tones of the light. The color temperature is measured in Kelvin.
If you use LED lighting, you will notice that it may have a color temperature of 2700 to 3000 kelvin. Be careful not to get anything over 3500 Kelvin!
Only use lightings that are marked as ‘suitable for wet locations’, specially when it comes to your bathroom vanity. A wet location may be described as an interior and exterior location where water may splash, flow, or drip against electrical components.
Steam and condensation may be an issue in the bathroom after shower. So, to know more about UL rating, check out this article.
What size light fixture over bathroom vanity? Do you have the answer now?
Apart from knowing the size of the right bathroom light fixture, also consider the brightness of different types of lights, energy efficiency, longevity, the length of the mirror, and the number of lights above the mirror.
Although the guide here is objective, there is no problem if you decide to follow your gut instinct to create a beautiful vanity space. There are no rules in art, I suppose. So, please enjoy!