Start your day on the right foot with a beautiful light above your bathroom vanity. These hardworking fixtures cast the right light on your face and provide a pretty decorative element to a room filled with hard surfaces.
Whether you're building a new home, gutting an existing bathroom, or just looking for an inexpensive way to update your space, you can find a vanity light fixture that's perfectly suited to your needs. They are available in a nearly endless variety of styles, sizes, and price points.
When choosing vanity fixtures, first assess how much light you need. Bathrooms without natural light from a window are likely to need more or brighter vanity lights. In most cases, a vanity fixture alone can't provide enough overall light for an entire bathroom. They are best used in conjunction with recessed or other overhead lighting.
Next, consider what size of fixture will look best in your space. When buying a bar-style or multiple-light fixture, a good rule of thumb is to pick one that's no wider than the vanity cabinet (it is OK, however, if the fixture is wider than the mirror). Long vanities might require multiple fixtures, and double sinks look best with a separate fixture over each. Sconces can be hung on both sides of a mirror if there isn't room above for a light. Or, they can be paired with bar fixtures to provide more light and prevent shadows on the sides of your face.
The vanity fixture you purchase should also coordinate with the decorating style of the bathroom or adjoining rooms. Select a finish that coordinates with other fixtures in the home. Popular choices include chrome, brushed nickel, antique brass, and oil-rubbed bronze.
When it comes to providing proper lighting, a fixture is only as good as the bulbs you use. A very bright light first thing in the morning can shock the system. Choose lower-wattage bulbs to prevent the glare of harsh light; dimmer switches can also be used to help control brightness. For the most flattering light, choose coated or frosted bulbs and select fixtures with frosted-glass covers rather than bare bulbs.
Whatever vanity fixture you choose, be sure it is designed for use in the bathroom. This will ensure it is waterproof and safe for the space.