Best way to light a small bathroom

Finding the right lighting for a small bathroom often feels tricky. Many believe bigger fixtures bring better light, but that’s not always true in tight spaces. Our article shines a beam on clever solutions that maximise brightness and style without overwhelming your petite powder room.

Dive into dazzling ideas ahead!

7 Small Bathroom Lighting Ideas

Illuminate your small bathroom with these innovative ideas, such as multitasking with an illuminated mirror and fitting spots into tight spaces. Go for an industrial look or highlight shelves with spotlights for a modern touch.

Reflect a white ceiling

To further enhance the lighting in your small bathroom, consider the simple yet effective strategy of reflecting light off a white ceiling. This technique can help distribute light evenly throughout the space and create a brighter, more open feel.

By using ceiling lights along with the reflective properties of a white ceiling, you can effectively illuminate every corner, making the small bathroom appear larger and more welcoming.

Incorporating this approach aligns with the need for effective lighting to open up and brighten a small bathroom. Adding depth and warmth to the overall ambiance is crucial when working with limited space.

Fit spots into a tight space

Install recessed lighting to save space and provide ample illumination in your small bathroom. LED spotlights are perfect for tight areas, creating a spacious feel without taking up much room.

Use strip lighting under cabinets or around wall niches to maximise the available space while adding brightness. These options ensure effective lighting without compromising on space, making your small bathroom look and feel more open.

Consider recessed lighting to brighten your small bathroom effectively. Incorporate LED spotlights and strip lighting in narrow spaces, ensuring optimal illumination without overcrowding the area.

Go for an industrial look

If you want to give your small bathroom a stylish and modern feel, consider going for an industrial look. Industrial lighting fixtures such as exposed bulbs, metal sconces, and wire cage pendants can add character and uniqueness to the space.

Look for fixtures with matte black or metal finishes to achieve an edgy and contemporary aesthetic. By incorporating industrial-style lighting into your small bathroom, you can create a trendy atmosphere while ensuring effective illumination.

Industrial lighting can also provide functional task lighting in addition to its visual appeal. Utilise wall-mounted industrial light fixtures above the vanity or mirror to ensure adequate brightness for grooming tasks.

Use spots in a recess

Recessed lighting, also known as spotlights or downlights, can be a great space-saving option for small bathrooms. Placing these lights into recessed areas in the ceiling or walls not only provides effective illumination but also helps to create a clean and uncluttered look.

With their ability to distribute light evenly across the room, recessed spots can brighten up the entire bathroom while minimising visual obstructions. By incorporating these small but powerful fixtures, homeowners can achieve an open and well-lit ambience without sacrificing valuable space.

Incorporating spots in a recess allows for targeted illumination in specific areas of the bathroom, such as above the vanity or near shower niches. These versatile lights provide flexibility in directing light precisely where it’s needed most, enhancing functionality and aesthetics simultaneously.

Highlight shelves with spots

Illuminate your bathroom shelves with spots to showcase your decorative items and create a warm ambiance. By installing spotlights above or below the shelves, you can draw attention to your favourite pieces without overwhelming the space.

LED spotlights are an energy-efficient option that provides focused illumination, ensuring that your shelved items stand out while adding a touch of style to your small bathroom.

Consider using narrow vertical lighting or LED strips under the shelves for subtle yet effective highlighting. This technique not only enhances the visual appeal of your bathroom but also contributes to creating a bright and inviting atmosphere, making the most of every corner in your compact space.

Keep it simple with spotlights

When looking for a straightforward and effective lighting solution for your small bathroom, consider the versatility of spotlights. One key advantage of spotlights is their ability to be directed precisely where light is needed the most, allowing you to highlight specific areas such as the vanity, shower area, or other focal points in your bathroom.

With the option of adjustable heads, spotlights can provide targeted illumination while also offering flexibility in directing light to different corners of your bathroom.

In addition to providing focused lighting, spotlights are an energy-efficient option that can help brighten up your space without consuming excessive power. By strategically placing these fixtures in areas where additional brightness is desired, you can create a well-lit and inviting ambiance without overwhelming the small space with too many lights.

How to Light a Small Bathroom

Layer the lighting, reflect light off of wall treatments, add personality with small bathroom lighting, and consider energy-efficient options to brighten up your small bathroom. Read on for more tips on how to effectively illuminate a tight space.

Layer the lighting

To effectively light a small bathroom, consider layering the lighting to create depth and functionality. Utilise a mix of ceiling downlights, wall sconces, and LED strips to provide ambient, task, and accent lighting.

This combination helps to illuminate the entire space while also highlighting specific areas such as vanities or mirror reflections. By layering the lighting in this way, you can achieve a well-lit and visually appealing small bathroom that meets both practical and aesthetic needs.

As you explore different options for layering your bathroom lighting, it’s important to consider how each type of light will contribute to the overall atmosphere of the space. Whether brightening up tight corners with recessed lights or adding warmth with soft strip lighting under cabinets, thoughtful layering can transform your small bathroom into an inviting oasis.

Reflect light off of wall treatments

To enhance the brightness of a small bathroom, consider using wall treatments to reflect light. Neutral or light-colored walls can bounce natural and artificial light around the space, brightening it up instantly.

Strategically placed mirrors on the walls can also help in reflecting light, creating an illusion of a larger and brighter bathroom. Incorporating vertical wall sconces will not only add character but also direct light upwards and downwards for a balanced and well-lit ambiance.

Using LED lights behind translucent materials like glass tiles or frosted windows can further contribute to bouncing and diffusing light throughout the room. This technique adds depth and dimension while maintaining functionality in illuminating key areas such as sink vanities or bathtub surrounds without being too harsh on the eyes.

Add personality with small bathroom lighting

Illuminate your small bathroom with lighting fixtures that add personality and style. LED mirrors or lighted mirror medicine cabinets not only provide excellent task lighting but also create a modern and sophisticated atmosphere.

Consider incorporating under-cabinet or strip lighting to enhance the ambience while brightening up the space. Wall sconces can add a touch of elegance, along with vertical wall lights for a stylish and functional choice in compact bathrooms.

To infuse character into your small bathroom, play with different types of fixtures such as flush or semi-flush mounts, which can offer both practical illumination and aesthetic appeal.

Use LED mirrors or lighted mirror medicine cabinets

Illuminate your small bathroom with LED mirrors or lighted mirror medicine cabinets for efficient and stylish lighting. These fixtures provide even illumination, making them perfect for grooming tasks and creating a brighter, more open space.

By incorporating these energy-efficient options, you can effectively enhance the lighting in your bathroom while saving on energy costs. Additionally, LED mirrors and lighted mirror medicine cabinets are ideal for adding a touch of modern elegance to your bathroom decor.

Maximise the functionality of your small bathroom by opting for LED mirrors or lighted mirror medicine cabinets, which offer both practicality and aesthetic appeal. With these fixtures, you can create an inviting atmosphere that maximises brightness without compromising on style.

Incorporate under-cabinet or strip lighting

Utilise under-cabinet or strip lighting to brighten up your small bathroom. These types of fixtures can be installed beneath cabinets, shelves, or mirrors to provide additional illumination and create a visually appealing ambiance in the space.

By incorporating these lighting options, you can effectively enhance the overall brightness and functionality of your bathroom while adding a stylish touch.

Consider LED strip lights for energy-efficient and customisable options that can be tailored to fit any space. Whether used under cabinets to illuminate countertops or beneath vanities for added visibility, strip lighting is a versatile solution for enhancing the aesthetics and functionality of your small bathroom.

Consider vertical wall sconces

Install vertical wall sconces to add a touch of elegance and functionality to your small bathroom. These fixtures are perfect for providing soft, ambient lighting while saving space.

Vertical wall sconces can be strategically placed on either side of the vanity mirror or near the bathtub area to complement the overall lighting scheme in your bathroom. With their sleek design and upward or downward illumination, they can enhance the visual appeal of your bathroom while ensuring ample brightness for daily grooming tasks.

Vertical wall sconces also offer flexibility in terms of light direction and intensity, allowing you to create a warm and inviting atmosphere without overwhelming the space. Additionally, these fixtures can be paired with dimmer switches to adjust the light levels according to different needs throughout the day.

Utilise flush or semi-flush mount options

Consider installing flush or semi-flush mount lighting options in your small bathroom to create a sleek and modern look. These fixtures are ideal for low ceilings, as they provide ample light without taking up too much space.

By choosing energy-efficient flush or semi-flush mount options, you can brighten up your bathroom while saving on electricity bills. Additionally, these fixtures are versatile and come in various styles and finishes to complement your bathroom decor.

With the right flush or semi-flush mount lighting, you can effectively illuminate your small bathroom without sacrificing style.

Pairing LED strip lighting with flush or semi-flush mounts is an excellent way to maximise the brightness of your small bathroom while maintaining a clean, uncluttered aesthetic. When strategically placed around the room, these fixtures can ensure consistent and evenly distributed illumination throughout the space.

Make use of natural light

To brighten a small bathroom, make the most of natural light by keeping windows unobstructed and opting for sheer or translucent window treatments. This will allow maximum sunlight to enter and illuminate the space, creating a welcoming and airy atmosphere.

Additionally, strategically placing mirrors opposite windows can help reflect and amplify natural light throughout the room.

By focusing on maximising incoming daylight, homeowners can reduce their reliance on artificial lighting during the day while still achieving a well-lit small bathroom perfect for all grooming needs.

Hire a licensed electrical contractor

To ensure the proper installation and safety of your small bathroom lighting fixtures, it is essential to hire a licensed electrical contractor. They have the expertise to handle wiring, placement of switches, and adherence to building codes.

With their professional knowledge, they can determine the optimal number of lights needed for your small bathroom layout and provide energy-efficient options that are suitable for your space.

Additionally, a licensed electrician can help control multiple lights with one switch and properly space downlights so that you achieve even illumination without any dark spots in your bathroom.

Properly space downlights

Before considering properly spaced downlights, it’s essential to ensure that a licensed electrical contractor handles the installation. Downlights should be evenly distributed throughout the small bathroom to create balanced lighting and prevent any dark spots.

Determine the optimal number of lights based on the size and layout of your bathroom, ensuring that each area receives adequate illumination. By spacing downlights effectively, you can eliminate harsh shadows and enhance visibility in every corner.

Choose energy-efficient options for downlights to minimise electricity consumption while providing ample brightness in your small bathroom. Properly positioned downlights can complement other lighting fixtures such as LED mirrors or illuminated medicine cabinets, adding depth and dimension to the space.

Determine the optimal number of lights

Determine the ideal number of lights based on the size and layout of your bathroom. Consider using multiple light sources to eliminate shadows and evenly illuminate the space. LED mirrors or lighted mirror medicine cabinets can serve as additional lighting options, enhancing overall brightness while adding a touch of style and functionality.

Properly spaced downlights can help ensure even distribution of light without overwhelming the small space. Additionally, incorporating vertical wall sconces or under-cabinet lighting can provide focused illumination where needed, contributing to an inviting and well-lit bathroom environment.

Control multiple lights with one switch

Once you’ve determined the optimal number of lights for your small bathroom, consider controlling multiple lights with one switch. This is particularly useful in ensuring that all the lights in your bathroom can be easily turned on and off simultaneously, providing convenience and efficiency.

By doing so, you’ll save time and energy when using the bathroom lighting as you won’t need to individually operate each light fixture.

To achieve this, seek out a licensed electrical contractor who can install a multi-gang dimmer switch or smart lighting system to control several lights at once. With the right setup, your small bathroom will benefit from a seamless and integrated lighting solution that meets both aesthetic and practical needs.

Choose energy-efficient options

Consider choosing energy-efficient lighting options for your small bathroom, such as LED fixtures and bulbs. LED lights use significantly less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs, which can help you save on your electricity bill while reducing your environmental impact.

Additionally, consider installing dimmer switches to adjust the brightness of your lights according to your needs, further conserving energy. By opting for energy-efficient lighting solutions, you can create a well-lit and inviting space in your small bathroom while being mindful of both cost-effectiveness and sustainability.

When selecting lighting options for your small bathroom, look for fixtures with an Energy Star rating. These products meet strict efficiency guidelines set by the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy, ensuring that they consume less power without sacrificing performance.


To adequately light a small bathroom, it is essential to incorporate a mix of lighting options such as spots, pendants, wall lights, and low-level lights. LED mirrors and illuminated mirror medicine cabinets can provide effective lighting solutions in a compact space.

Adding strip lighting under the vanity or mirror, as well as in wall niches, can help brighten up the area. Additionally, ceiling lights and recessed lighting are perfect for evenly illuminating the entire bathroom.

Hiring a licensed electrical contractor can help ensure that all fixtures are properly installed for optimal functionality.


1. What’s the best way to light a small bathroom?

Using LED strips, illuminated mirrors, and sconce lighting helps brighten up a small bathroom effectively.

2. Can I use vanity lighting in a compact bathroom space?

Absolutely! Vanity lighting, when positioned well, can make your small bathroom look bigger and more inviting.

3. Are LED lights a good choice for my small bathroom fixtures?

Yes, LED lights are perfect as they provide bright illumination without taking up too much space or adding heat.

4. How should I lay out the lighting in my tiny bathroom?

A well-planned layout typically involves placing mirror lighting at eye level and including overhead ambient light for an evenly lit room.

5. Any tips for using illuminated mirrors in limited bathroom spaces?

Illuminated mirrors work wonders in small bathrooms by combining functionality with soft light to create the illusion of extra space.

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