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Whether you are designing a bathroom from scratch, or refurbishing an existing one, the best and cheapest way to give it charm is to ensure its lighting is exceptional.
How do you do that? Here are our ten top tips and tricks.
1 Layer the lights
The trick to creating elegance is through subtle use of shadows and pools of light. The only way that can be done is through layering the lights. For example, have wall lights as well as ceiling lights, with different directions and intensity.
2 Think outside the box
There is no rule that says bathrooms must have boring old downlights or oyster lights. You should be thinking: How can I make my bathroom interesting? Consider pendant lights or even small chandeliers.
3 Mirror, mirror on the wall
The mirror is critical, so for optimal flattery make sure it receives good bright lighting. To avoid distorting shadows there should be, at the very least, lights at the top and both sides of the mirror. Ideally, the mirror will be surrounded by a ring of light.
4 Safety first
The laws around bathroom lights are complex and you must understand and follow them to avoid electrocution. Lights within a bath or shower must be 12V and completely waterproof; lights above or within 60cm of a basin, bath or shower must be water-resistant.
5 Use dimmers
Like any other room in the house, bathrooms require optimal illumination - but this may be different for every person. This is where dimmers are handy, allowing you to adjust the lighting to suit individual preferences. Nothing beats making your shower or bath a magical experience by dimming the lights right down and relaxing.
6 Consider LED strip lights
LED strip lights are long, very thin lights that are fixed directly flush to the wall. They are extremely well suited to bathrooms because they do not use any space, can be installed at any height, and provide light along a length rather than from a point.
7 Too little Is better than too much
Most people, and this includes many electricians, tend to overdo all lighting - bathrooms included. If you are not sure, be conservative and reduce the illumination. Subtle is better!
8 Don't forget the shower
Because lights in showers need to be specialised, many showers are completely neglected and as a result the experience is dark and depressing. This is a common mistake which should be avoided. Either install lights inside the shower ceiling or have spotlights just outside it.
9 Use warm white
White light comes in three temperatures: warm, cool and daylight. For a cosy feeling we strongly recommend using warm white lights and globes.
10 Wall lights look great
Wall lights - called sconces - look great in bathrooms but don't overdo them. They should be hung at head height, but at positions where they will not shine directly into your eyes.
For the largest range of bathroom lights in Australia, with thousands of products, see Lighting Style.