the secret key to lighting strategy: light bulbs

Lighting has the power to transform your spaces — maybe even more than paint. You can overhaul your lighting in major ways like replacing light fixtures, adding mood lighting, or installing additional task lighting.

But you might not need a big lighting overhaul to make an impact, a simple light bulb swap can actually make a HUGE difference in your home.

I’m breaking down some of the key strategies for choosing the right light bulbs as well as giving you the easy designer hack with my favorite light bulbs so you can screw them in and go.

finding the right light bulb

bulb style

The first key to finding the right bulb is to pick a style that adds to the space. This is especially important for light fixtures with exposed or glass globes where the light bulbs are fully visible.

designer tipopt for a more Edison-style design (like these EcoSmart Bulbs) with exposed filament (like these G11 bulbs) for an upleveled look

First, figure out the size of the bulb base, then compare different styles of bulbs to see which one works best with your light fixture or lamp as well as which one is the best fit for the space.

I love EcoSmart bulbs — they come in a range of different bulb styles and feature a thin filament for a modern look. They have a variety of bulb sizes and shapes which makes it super easy to find a bulb that perfectly matches the look of your fixture or lamp.

lighting temperature

The temperature of the light bulb you choose is a super important part of picking the right lighting to set a mood for the space.

designer tip — I love using daylight bulbs for overhead lights or light fixtures I like to have on during the day and warmer toned bulbs for evening lighting like lamps. This mimics natural light patterns and allows me to adjust the mood of my lighting throughout the day.

Lighting temperature is on a spectrum and the temperature of light lines up with the natural light patterns created by the sun during the day.

During sunrise and sunset, light has a warmer temperature during “golden hour.” During the midday around noon, the temperature of light is more blue / neutral. Amber or deep golden light occurs when the sun is down and light is being used to illuminate the space without it — think the orangey glow of a candle or the fire.

Knowing all of this can help you strategically use lighting temperature in your space for a natural look — leveraging cooler toned lighting during the day and warmer toned lighting at night.

designer tip — avoid the extremes of the lighting spectrum so you don’t end up with lighting that is too blue or too yellow. Instead, opt for Warm White, Soft White, or Daylight light bulbs for a more natural look

cost + energy savings

Light bulb technology has come a LONG way, even since the rise of the LED light. Now its more than possible to have the look you want at an affordable price — both for the initial cost of the bulb AND for the cost of the energy to power it.

If you’re cost conscious or want to be eco-friendly, be sure to choose bulbs that are energy efficient that will save you money long term.

I love the easy reference box on the EcoSmart bulbs that gives you an estimated energy cost so you can easily compare between bulbs.

shop my favorite light bulbs ▼

These new EcoSmart bulbs are available exclusively at The Home Depot. I’ve linked my favorite ones below so you can shop them for your space.

bulb: A15 Dimmable Fine Bendy Filament LED Vintage Edison Light Bulb Warm White

temp: warm white

used in: my night time reading lamps

bulb: BA11 Dimmable Fine Bendy Filament LED Vintage Edison Light Bulb Soft White 2700K (3-Pack)

temp: soft white

used in: my chandelier light fixtures (dining room + upstairs living room)

bulb: G25 Dimmable Fine Bendy Filament LED Vintage Edison Light Bulb Daylight 5000K (2-Pack)

temp: daylight

used in: my bedroom light fixture to balance out the warm tones in the space

📌 pin for later ▼

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