The Best Vanity Lighting of 2022

The right vanity lighting for your bathroom can help you prepare yourself for the day and help you wind down during your evening routine.

By Alisa Martin | Updated Dec 28, 2021 6:54 PM

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Best Vanity Lighting Options

Photo: amazon.com

Vanity lighting makes our bathrooms sanctuaries, as the bathroom is where we prepare ourselves for the day and then return to perform evening rituals. The best bathroom vanity lighting can make your bathroom a calm, mindful space to reduce stress and anxiety. After all, the right bathroom lighting is one element to achieving this serene atmosphere.

Shopping for bathroom light fixtures can overwhelm even the most enthusiastic home decorators. Read on to learn about the fixture features to look for as you select the best vanity lighting for your bathroom and the top picks in each category.

  1. BEST OVERALL: PRESDE Modern LED Chrome Bath Mirror Lighting
  2. RUNNER UP: Bennington 3 Bulb Vanity Light Fixture
  3. BEST DIMMABLE: mirrea 48in Modern LED Vanity Light
  4. BEST SCONCE: Effimero Black Wall Sconce Lighting
  5. BEST PENDANT: Linea di Liara Primo Large Glass Globe Pendant Light
  6. BEST FOR MAKEUP: DINGLILIGHTING DLLT Wall Light Fixture
  7. ALSO CONSIDER: SOLFART Dimmable Bathroom Light
Best Vanity Lighting Options

Photo: amazon.com

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Vanity Lighting

The first step in choosing vanity lights for bathrooms is deciding what style of lighting fixture best suits your decor. Once you settle on how you want your bathroom light fixture to look, think about the best lighting temperature—warm or cool, each of which has a specific purpose—to help you achieve your vision of the perfect bathroom. The following are a few things to think about as you shop for the best vanity lighting.

Design 

The number of lighting fixtures you need in your bathroom depends on how big your bathroom is, how big your vanity is, and how bright vanity lighting needs to be for your space. There are four main styles of bathroom vanity lights: single-light fixtures, multi-light strips, bar fixtures, and sconces.

  • Single-light fixtures rarely cast enough light to illuminate a bathroom and should thus be reserved for small spaces if they are the room’s only light source.
  • Multi-light strips hold between two and eight bulbs and are usually installed above the mirror.
  • Bar fixtures, which are multi-light strips encased in a frosted shadow box, are an easy way to update an outdated bathroom.
  • Sconces are usually hung in pairs on either side of a focal point, such as a bathroom mirror, 5 feet to 6 feet from the floor.
  • Pendant lights are trendy globe-shaped fixtures that typically contain a single bulb, so they’re best used in combination when lighting bathroom spaces.

Next, think about what color you want the fixture’s finish to be. Modern vanity light fixtures are often black, white, chrome, polished nickel, brass, and antiqued brass. Many people coordinate their bathroom lighting fixtures’ finish with the finish of their vanity faucet and with the overall style of their space.

One last question to ask as you finalize your bathroom vanity lighting look: Will the bulbs be right-side up or upside down? Most bathroom vanity light fixtures can be installed with their bulbs facing upward or downward. The right orientation for you is a matter of preference.

Color Temperature 

As you shop for the best vanity light for your bathroom, be mindful of the color temperature you want your bathroom lighting to cast. Bathroom vanity lights can cast either warm or cool glows, and some lights have dual temperature options. Warm temperatures cast a cozy, flattering light.

Cool (or white) light is closest to natural light and is ideal for detailed tasks like makeup application. Energy efficient LED bulbs, available in a variety of hues, are another option for bathroom vanity lighting.

Dimmable Features 

With dimmable vanity lights, you can control how bright your lights are and the overall ambiance of the room. Full light is necessary for makeup application or shaving, but an evening bath will be more relaxing with dimmed lighting.

Vanity light dimmers are typically controlled by a wall knob or button. Some lighting manufacturers also have apps that allow users to control dimmers remotely, via smartphones and smart speakers. Note, however, that vanity light fixtures with dimming capabilities may require dimmable light bulbs. Be sure to check the manufacturer’s recommendations for your specific fixture.

Water Resistance

While shopping for the best vanity lights, you’ll notice that products are labeled with Ingress Protection (IP) ratings. These ratings begin with the letters “IP” followed by two numbers ranging from 0 to 8. The first digit indicates how protected a lighting fixture is against solids like dust and large particles.

The second number indicates the fixture’s resistance to moisture and water. Zero indicates no protection, and 8 indicates full protection. An IP rating of IP15, for example, offers minimal protection against solid objects but moderate protection against sprayed jets of water.

If your vanity lights are close to your tub or shower, consider a higher IP water rating. Dry-rated vanity lights are suitable for many bathrooms, as long as these areas don’t come in direct contact with water.

Our Top Picks

Now that you know what kind of vanity lighting you have in mind for your bathroom, begin your search by taking a look at some of the top picks for the best bathroom light fixtures.

Best Overall

Best Vanity Lighting Options: PRESDE Bathroom Vanity Light Fixtures Over Mirror
Photo: amazon.com

This bathroom vanity light from PRESDE has glass lampshades that will add a touch of glamour and sophistication to your bathroom update. You can customize your lighting experience by rotating the lamp heads and pointing them where you want them. Its mirrored chrome stainless steel finish is both waterproof and rustproof.

This fixture requires G9 bulbs, which are sold separately, and is also compatible with dimmable bulbs. It’s available in strips of three, four, or five bulbs, to accommodate vanities of varying sizes, in either a chrome or matte black finish.

Product Specs

  • Type: Multi-light strip
  • Bulb Compatibility: G9 bulbs
  • Water Resistance: Waterproof
  • Finishes: Chrome and matte black

Pros

  • Rotatable lamps
  • Dimmable with compatible bulbs
  • Chrome/stainless steel finish is rustproof
  • Several configurations to fit your vanity

Cons

  • Bulbs sold separately

Runner-Up

Best Vanity Lighting Options: Bennington Lakeland 3-Bulb Bath Vanity Light
Photo: amazon.com

The Bennington Lakeland bath vanity light has painted glass globes and a sleek, transitional design. We like that you can install the fixture with the bulbs facing up or down. This fixture can accommodate LED, CFL, halogen, or incandescent A19 bulbs.

This vanity lighting is available with two to four bulbs in three finishes—bronze, chrome, and nickel. Whatever the size of your vanity, a set or two of these bar lights should complement it nicely.

Product Specs

  • Type: Multi-light strip
  • Bulb Compatibility: LED, CFL, halogen, or incandescent A19 bulbs
  • Water Resistance: Unlisted
  • Finishes: Bronze, chrome, and nickel

Pros

  • Can be installed facing up or down
  • Available in two- and four-bulb configurations
  • Easy to install

Cons

  • Quite bulky

Best Dimmable

Best Vanity Lighting Options: mirrea 48in Modern LED Vanity Light
Photo: amazon.com

If you are ready for your Hollywood close-up, this is the fixture for you. The 48-inch mirrea modern LED vanity produces 3680 lumens, which is equivalent to an eight-light vanity fixture. It easily illuminates a double-sink bathroom and can reasonably be the sole source of light in your bathroom.

This fixture is compatible with TRIAC dimmer switches, so you can moderate the light’s intensity when it suits you. Designed with chrome stainless steel and a frosted acrylic cover, mirrea’s vanity light has a 180-degree rotating hinge that allows you to adjust the light in the direction you choose. It is available in both a warm hue or cold hue.

Product Specs

  • Type: Single-light fixture
  • Bulb Compatibility: ‎LED bulbs
  • Water Resistance: Moisture-resistant
  • Finishes: Chrome stainless steel

Pros

  • Rotates 180 degrees
  • Works with TRIAC dimmer switches
  • Comes in cold white and warm white options

Cons

  • Pricey

Best Sconce

Best Vanity Lighting Options: Effimero Black Wall Sconce Lighting
Photo: amazon.com

If you are ready for your Hollywood close-up, this is the fixture for you. The 48-inch mirrea modern LED vanity produces 3680 lumens, which is equivalent to an eight-light vanity fixture. It easily illuminates a double-sink bathroom and can reasonably be the sole source of light in your bathroom.

This fixture is compatible with TRIAC dimmer switches, so you can moderate the light’s intensity when it suits you. Designed with chromed stainless steel and a frosted acrylic cover, mirrea’s vanity light has a 180-degree rotating hinge that allows you to adjust the light in the direction you choose. It is available in both a warm hue or cold hue.

Product Specs

  • Type: Sconce
  • Bulb Compatibility: LED, CFL, halogen, and smart bulbs
  • Water Resistance: Water-resistant
  • Finishes: Black, brushed nickel, chrome, and satin brass

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Available in multiple finishes
  • Dimmable with the right bulbs

Cons

  • Mounting bracket may need modification to fit

Best Pendant

Best Vanity Lighting Linea Fixture
Photo: amazon.com

Clear, bright light is typically sought after for bathrooms and powder rooms, making this glass globe pendant from Linea Lighting a perfect pick. It comes with either brushed nickel, polished chrome, or antique brass hardware so you can coordinate with your existing bathroom fixtures. The glass shade comes in either a clear translucent finish or a frosted white finish. Depending on the finish chosen, it can suit either a traditional or a more contemporary decor.

It has a minimum height of 14 inches, a maximum hanging height of 100 inches, and a diameter of 8 inches. It’s compatible with most lighting types including LED, CFL, halogen, and smart bulbs. This pendant is also fully dimmable.

Product Specs

  • Type: Pendant light
  • Bulb Compatibility: LED, CFL, halogen, and smart bulbs
  • Water Resistance: Unlisted
  • Finishes: Brushed nickel, polished chrome, and antique brass

Pros

  • Comes with a 400 lumen, 2700K LED bulb
  • Available with a clear or frosted glass globe
  • Dimmable with a compatible EVL dimmer

Cons

  • Requires hardwiring; no switch or plug on the fixture

Best for Makeup

Best Vanity Lighting Options: DLLT Wall Light Fixture, Vintage Bathroom Vanity
Photo: amazon.com

With its rust-resistant matte black finish and clear glass cylinders, we chose the DLLT Wall Light Fixture as the best vanity lighting for makeup. DLLT’s vanity light fixture complements homes with contemporary, industrial decor. Install the fixture with bulbs facing up or down, depending on your style preference.

Though its E26 socket is compatible with a variety of light bulbs, including LED and incandescent, you can raise this fixture’s cool factor even more by pairing it with Edison bulbs. This fixture is available in both two-bulb and three-bulb strips with two globe options and is dimmable if paired with a dimmer switch.

Product Specs

  • Type: Multi-light fixture
  • Bulb Compatibility: Most E26 bulbs
  • Water Resistance: Water-resistant
  • Finishes: Matte black

Pros

  • Provides ample light
  • Available in two-bulb and three-bulb configurations
  • Dimmable with a compatible switch

Cons

  • Glass shades can wobble if not screwed tight

Also Consider

The Best Vanity Lighting: Solfart
Photo: amazon.com

The SOLFART vanity light is a modern take on an above-the-mirror light fixture. Its stainless steel finish is polished to a glossy, mirrored shine, and its shades are made of elegant, bubbled glass crystal.

Resistant to both rust and moisture, the fixture is available in three-, four-, five-, or six-bulb sizes that accommodate energy-efficient 16W LED light bulbs. Complement a single sink with one fixture or a double sink with two.

Product Specs

  • Type: Multi-light fixture
  • Bulb Compatibility: LED bulbs
  • Water Resistance: Water-resistant
  • Finishes: Polished stainless steel

Pros

  • Stylish bubbled glass
  • Moisture- and rust-resistant build
  • Available in multiple sizes to suit different spaces

Cons

  • Dimmer than other options; may not be suitable as the only light source

Our Verdict

If shoppers are looking to add a touch of elegance to their bathroom renovation, the PRESDE multi-light fixture can deliver sophisticated glamour to the vanity without breaking the bank. If a more modern industrial style is what you’re after, consider the Effimero wall sconce and choose the metallic finish and bulb type to perfectly suit your needs.

How We Chose the Best Vanity Lighting

The best vanity lighting must be lit well to fit the mood of the bathroom, while hopefully looking great and adding a touch of style to the bathroom. We researched the top bathroom lighting brands and vanity designs with high customer satisfaction and positive testimonials.

We gathered our top picks in a range of styles to match several popular bathroom looks—from glamorous modern with sleek chrome finishes to antique brass for a vintage aesthetic. Naturally, since we’re talking about bathroom lighting, the recommended products also feature a degree of moisture resistance and should comfortably stand up to the occasional splash.

Shoppers differ in terms of their preferred color temperature and brightness for their bulbs, so we made sure to include options for a wide variety of bulb types, colors, and brightness levels—many of our top picks are also dimmable.

FAQs

Choosing the best vanity lighting for your bathroom might feel overwhelming because there are so many fixture designs and sizes from which to choose. Before you begin shopping for the best vanity lighting, here are answers to a few questions you may have.

Q: What is the right ratio of mirror and vanity light?

It’s recommended that vanity lighting fixtures be three-fourths as wide as the vanity mirror. If you have two sinks, however, two lighting fixtures will offer a more symmetrical look.

Q: What kind of lighting is best for applying makeup?

Cool light, which has a clean glow more similar to natural light, is preferred for applying makeup. Warm light is very flattering but does not accurately represent real color, which could lead to heavier than necessary makeup application.

Q: What kind of lighting is best for a bathroom vanity?

Incandescent, halogen, and LED light sources most accurately render color. And warmer light temperatures tend to be more flattering and inviting than cooler light temperatures.

Q: How many light bulbs should a vanity have?

To ensure proper brightness in your bathroom, a vanity light fixture should have at least 2 60-watt incandescent bulbs.

Q: How bright should bathroom vanity lights be?

To ensure proper visibility during your usual bathroom tasks, a bathroom vanity should be lit with at least 1,600 lumens of light (the equivalent of 2 incandescent or LED bulbs).

Q: Is it better to have vanity lights up or down?

Positioning your vanity lights upwards forces light to stop once it hits your ceiling, providing a more ambient and muted look. If you decide to position your vanity light downwards, it is more likely to provide task lighting as the light is uninterrupted and distributed throughout the room.

Q: How high above your mirror should your vanity lights be?

If you decide to place a vanity light over a mirror, it should be hung or affixed so that the bulbs and bulb coverings are not hanging over the mirror. As a rule of thumb, your multi-light fixture should be placed no closer than 1 inch from the top of the mirror.

The same rule applies with single-light fixtures and sconces, but these can also be affixed 1-inch from either side of the mirror at eye-level. It should also be noted that these fixtures should be placed 35 to 40 inches apart.

Q: How do you know what size vanity light you need?

The right vanity light for your bathroom depends on the size of your space and is proportionate to the size of your mirror or cabinetry. Be sure to measure these items before purchasing a vanity light. For proper light distribution, large bathrooms will require multi-light fixtures with more bulbs, while smaller bathrooms and power rooms could suffice with two single-light fixtures or sconces.

Q: What is the most flattering lighting for a bathroom?

Ideal lighting in your bathroom will match the finish of your current fixtures and aren’t longer than your bathroom’s mirror or cabinet. Many prefer multi-light fixtures for ample light distribution and their stylish bulb coverings.

Q: Is warm white or cool white lighting better for bathrooms?

The ideal color temperature in your bathroom depends on personal preference. Most prefer to have calming, ambient light in these spaces, which comes from warm lighting. But, for those that prefer to have more natural, bright light in their bathroom, cool light may be ideal.