Let’s talk about bathrooms. Whereas once they were utilitarian rooms of the house (or sometimes the whole street) we now see bathrooms in a very different light. They need to be beautiful spaces to look at, practical, and maybe even a little glamorous. Rather than places we rush in and out of, we now like to linger there; we enjoy being there, and we want their aesthetic to reflect this.
Lighting is an important aspect of any room where we are trying to strike the balance between practical and beautiful. Of course, once you add water to the equation, like a bathroom or kitchen, this equation becomes a little more complicated.
You will often hear the term IP rating when discussing bathroom lighting. Simply, an IP (or Ingress Protection) rating gives you a guide on how dust proof or water proof your light is. The higher the numbers, the more protection provided. The first number relates to solids (or dust) and goes to a maximum rating of 6. The second figure relates to water and moisture and goes as high as 8, meaning the fitting can be immersed in water.
In Australia and New Zealand, there are strict regulations as to where you can install lights in bathrooms and kitchens, and what voltage and IP ratings you must use. Pinterest might have you pining for a fabulous pendant light over the bath and although a 240V pendant light without an IP rating cannot be hung over a bath, many lights can be converted to meet the Australian Standards for this application.
Lighting around the mirror is practical and also looks great. The wrong type of light or awkward positioning can leave your face in shadow (and an ensuing awkward makeup or shaving result). An easy rule of thumb is to position wall lights about 90cm from each other and a little above eye level, and avoid spotlights as these create glare on the mirror. Concealing LED strip around the mirror is another great option as it provides indirect lighting onto faces, and also creates a relaxing mood for those long, lovely baths in winter.
Putting your bathroom lighting on a dimmer is also becoming more popular as our desire to make the bathroom a place to luxuriate is considered essential.
This is of course is only a general guide to lighting your bathroom. Chat to the Urban staff for more tailored solutions for your particular design.