10 Unique Applications for Strip Lights at Home

These one-of-a-kind LED strip light uses are simple, visually appealing ways to look at your rooms in an all-new light.
Nexillumi RGB 50-Foot LED Strip Lights

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Convenient, versatile LED strip lights have a handful of well-known uses that make everyday life a bit easier, but their full potential goes untapped in most homes. Whether you need some carefully hidden night lights or a way to emphasize your prized possessions, strip lights are an affordable and user-friendly way to light up the home.

RELATED: The Best LED Light Strips for DIY Illumination

1. Cabinet Lighting


Installing strip lights under kitchen cabinets can introduce affordable and practical luxury into your cooking space. The most common strip light use in the kitchen is to illuminate the countertops underneath, but these LED lights can even line the interior of kitchen cabinets. This alternative use looks especially stunning when used to highlight your best dishware in cabinetry with glass windows.

2. Vanity Mirror Glow-Up

Strip lights on vanity mirror

You can add some glamor to your morning routine with this simple hack. Frame your bathroom mirror with strip lights, or apply them to the back of an existing vanity, for more even bathroom lighting. This use of LED light strips is popular for the halo of light it produces, helping with precise makeup application, new hairstyle experimentation, and everything in between. This upgrade doesn’t only visual appeal to a bathroom mirror; it’s also a great way to start the day with a fresh-from-the-salon feel without buying an expensive new backlit vanity mirror.

3. Outdoor Step Spotlight

Under step strip lights

When you let out the dog at night or start your commute before dawn, navigating your property in the dark is a clumsy, risky affair—especially if you have to go up or down any steps along the way. However, you can line your porch, patio, or deck steps with strip lights on a timer to significantly reduce your chances of taking a fall in the dark. Just apply the strip lights to the overhang of stair treads or risers for a reliable light source on even the darkest of nights.

4. Dresser Drawer Dazzle


For another touch of luxe practicality in your morning ritual, you can line the interior of your dresser drawers or closet pull-out shelves with subtle strip lights. This will make finding those elusive mismatched socks or your favorite T-shirt easier than ever. For added convenience, consider using light- or motion-activated strip lights that automatically switch on each time you open a drawer and switch back off when not in use.

RELATED: How to Install LED Light Strips

5. Bookshelf, Enlightened


For avid readers, their bookshelves are the heart and soul of their homes. A novel way to decorate your shelves—while also making finding the right book simpler—can be achieved by applying a few LED strip lights to your bookcase. The lights work their magic best when applied along the bottom of shelves to illuminate the books underneath, turning your book nook into a sophisticated personal library.

6. Well-Lit Wall Art


Many homeowners proudly display their collections of artwork, photographs, and portraits, but not everyone knows how to creatively light and draw focus to their favorite wall art. Illuminate your prized pieces by concealing strip lights discreetly behind the frame or canvas. You can easily turn these dull accents into natural points of interest by adding strip lights behind picture frames and canvases, which will make them appear to glow in cozy low lighting. To make wall art pop even more, experiment with the individual light strips’ color and brightness settings to better blend with and emphasize each piece.

7. Headboard Reading Light 

Bedroom with illuminated headboard

Curling up in bed with a good book is one of life’s luxuries. Getting up or reaching over to turn the lights on or off, though? Not so much. Make bedtime reading more comfortable by applying discreet LED strip lights, which will pull double duty as accent lighting and a convenient reading light, behind your headboard or nightstand(s). This way, when it’s time for lights out, you can effortlessly turn off the strip lights with a click of the accompanying remote from the comfort of your bed.

8. Brightened Truck Bed 

LED LIghts on Truck Bed

Strip lights have countless applications in the home, but they come in handy outside of it too. Pickup truck owners know how important truck bed storage is, and making out what’s what in a covered truck bed can be a challenge in low light. Whether you’re packing up for a late flight or searching the truck-bed toolbox for an early-morning job, finding what you need can be a challenge when the cover is on. Battery-powered strip lights offer an ideal solution, casting a gentle glow into the darkest corners of the interior. Just keep the battery pack dry, don’t apply them to the tailgate (It moves!), and remember to turn them off before driving to avoid distracting other motorists.

RELATED: The Best Garage Lighting for Your Home

9. Bathroom Safety Strip

Side view of luxury shower room interior of dark iron and concrete, shower tab, warm light, candlelight, bath tube and monstera leafs. Luxury interiors. Design and interior decoration. 3d render

Navigating to the restroom in the wee hours is a familiar challenge we all face, but traditional (often too-bright) night lights aren’t the only solution. An attractive alternative is adding a reel of LED strip lights along the bottom of your bathroom counter’s edge, along the top of baseboards, or even around the interior bathroom door frame. On the lowest brightness setting, this should gently bathe your bathroom in a dim glow.

10. Coffee Station Glow

Young woman making coffee on coffee machine at home

Spare your yet-uncaffeinated eyes from harsh kitchen lighting in the morning by lighting your coffee station with strip lights. These can either be applied to the bottom of the closest cabinetry, behind or underneath organizers, or directly on the counter surface behind a trusty coffee maker. You can even sync the light’s timing to turn on when your automatic brewer does, too.