Ideas + Inspiration

Bathroom Vanity Lighting Ideas

Despite its name, the bathroom vanity isn’t all about ego. This space is likely used day in and day out, multiple times a day, for multiple tasks, but multiple people in your home. Which makes your choice in bathroom vanity lighting ever more important. We’ve got a few ideas for making the space best work for you.

Rule of Twos

A go-to for lighting a bathroom vanity is two vertical fixtures flanking either side of the mirror. Using two ensures even, ample illumination for grooming and other everyday tasks. We recommend lights are placed at least two feet apart, and about 60 inches off the floor so the light is even with your face (depending on your height, of course).

Image via @beckymshea

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Rule of Thirds

If you have more than one mirror over a double vanity, tripling your vertical fixtures will ensure each space is getting the right light. Follow the same rules of thumb—place the fixtures roughly 2 feet apart and around 5 feet off the ground—and flank each mirror with a light.

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Fixture Finishes

Bathroom vanity lighting with a metal finish can easily match with the finishes on your other bath fixtures, like faucets, towel bars, drawer pulls and other. The result is a coordinated look that looks ultra clean and put together without too much effort.

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For the Minimalists

If you find vanity fixtures clunky or cumbersome, alas—there’s a vanity light for that. Fixtures like this one are super slim and sleek without sacrificing the illumination that the bathroom vanity needs. With a close placement to the mirror, the design is practically seamless for a very contemporary look.

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LED All the Way

Even though LED is taking over the way we light our homes, there are still plenty of decorative options for the bath that aren’t LED. But, we’d argue that the bathroom is a great place to start making the switch the LED. These lights boast a long life (no changing bulbs!), save a ton of energy and are ultra thin, allowing the design to take on super sleek, minimal shapes.

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Pick a Pendant

Your bathroom vanity doesn’t require an actual vanity light. For guest baths or powder rooms, a pendant you love provides illumination and an element of design in a space you might not need bright, utilitarian light for everyday grooming. Hanging just one or two will provide enough pleasant light for the needs of your guest bath.

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Get Decorative

If your bath isn’t one that’s used heavily for make-up application, shaving, teeth brushing, etc., we highly recommend having some fun with the design of the space. Choose a fixture that fits your design scheme, or even that fades into the background so other fun visuals can take center stage.

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Light the Mirror

If you’re short on space or just like a streamlined look, a lighted mirror is a great option for a modern bath. These double-duty fixtures provide more light than you might assume, and the combination of light and reflection can make a small space feel bigger and more open.

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Layer That Light

If you have an extra-wide mirror over a double vanity, consider breaking up the space with a decorative fixture in between each sink station. Putting the two on different controls means you can move from task to ambient light with ease, but the addition of a chandelier adds some extra style to the space.

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A lighted medicine cabinet is another triple threat in functionality. It has all the benefits of a lighted mirror (minimal, great for small spaces) with another all-too-elusive feature: storage! This one includes a defogger and a host of other features, making it a total workhorse in an itty-bitty bath.

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Like any space in your home, lighting your vanity should start with a quick evaluation of what you’ll use the space for. You can seize the design freedom of a powder room, but look to be more functional in a bath you and your family use each day. The benefit of modern bath lighting is that it bridges form and function, bringing a look and style you love and all the utility you need for this very important space.


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