Your Guide to Buying Ceiling Lights for Your Living Room

Like if this guide is helpful
Your Guide to Buying Ceiling Lights for Your Living Room

Finding the right lighting for rooms in the home can affect the overall ambience and finished feel, be it for the positive or negative, and one of the most important rooms in which to get this right is the living room. This is the room used most for entertaining friends and family, and where the home occupiers relax and unwind in the evenings. Any interior designer will say it is worth spending some time considering the lighting – the style, the amount, and the type. Pay special attention to the points listed below when thinking about making a purchase on eBay. Ceiling lighting are different to wall mounted lighting or lamps as they provide the central point of light in a room, adding form and function, and the main source of artificial light in a space.

Things to Consider

There are a number of things to consider before purchasing ceiling lights.

How is the space used? And at what times of the day?

Most living rooms are used throughout the day, so different layers of lighting will be appropriate to suit every part of the day. Ceiling light is only one facet of lighting often required in a living room.

How big is the space?

Will a big chandelier fit the room? Or a series of small spotlights? Generally, the larger the room, the larger the ceiling light can be.

How high is the ceiling?

For living rooms with low ceilings, a flush or semi-flush fixture may be best to reduce the intrusion into the space made by the light fixture. For rooms with more height, such as period rooms, a ceiling light that hangs lower will be a focal point without restricting movement. Larger rooms with high ceilings will often require several small lights on the central ceiling fixture, usually five, eight or more bulbs. Smaller rooms should receive sufficient light from a three-arm fixture. Height-adjustable lighting allows for greater flexibility.

Types of Lighting

There are three different types of lighting – task, ambient, and accent lighting. All three types are useful in a living room, particularly the last two. Accent – Gives shape and focus to special features, useful for drawing interest to specific areas of the room Task – Bright light for specific tasks, useful for reading areas Ambient – Replaces daylight, useful general living room lighting Ceiling lights with a dimmer control will allow the occupants to control the brightness of the light and adapt it according to the current use in the room. Lighting in a living room needs to be flexible for the many and varied activities that take place there. Generally, light in the living room should be ambient and/or accent lighting, in order to create atmosphere and mood, with the occasional task activity for something like reading or cleaning.

Accent Lighting

Firstly, consider points of architectural, design, art, or display significance in the room. These elements are usually at the perimeter of the room, or on the wall, so bear in mind that further lighting in the form of task lamps or spotlights may be required if the ceiling light is insufficient. In a modern living room, spotlights on the central ceiling fixture may be an option here.

Task Lighting

Living room spaces can be used for many different things, so firstly consider exactly what task activities will happen in the individual room. The amount of light required will vary since some activities will require a lot of light. Casual reading, for example, does not require as much light as operating a sewing machine. Spotlighting can be useful here by positioning a light track in the ceiling to pinpoint certain spots in the room so that these activities can take place.

Ambient Lighting

In small living rooms with light coloured walls, light surfaces, and plenty of natural light from windows further ambient lighting may not be required. However, in a large room, or one with dark walls, surfaces, and lacking in natural light additional ambient lighting may be required. This can be in the form of indirect fluorescent lighting, which bounces light off various points in the room, including the walls and ceilings. A canny homeowner will be able to use decor in the rest of the room to their advantage in order to add to the overall lighting effect. Create the illusion of greater space by incorporating mirrors around the living room in the right places and at the right angles to reflect the light. The overall effect can be stunning as mirror make small rooms feel bigger. However, always ensure that there is something pleasing that is being reflected.

Types of Ceiling Light

Central ceiling fixtures are designed to give a good level of general ambient light in the room. Always consider how much light is needed in the room, and always make the lighting high enough so it can comfortably be walked under. Central ceiling lights can come in any number of styles, sizes, and colours. There are several different types of ceiling light. These are:

Recessed Fixtures

These are set into the ceiling itself so the light bulb is not seen. Usually this takes the form of a series of spotlights so as to give sufficient light for the whole room. In a space with a modern design, this can be very stylish and sophisticated.

Flush Fixtures

In a small room, this type of lighting can act as the perfect focal point as well as the only lighting needed if it is concentrated enough in the right area of the room.

Pendant Lighting

In the right room, this type of ceiling light can look extremely stunning. Large chandeliers are perfect for a period style living room, an excellent focal point and gives out a great deal of light. A single pendant light can be streamlined and sleek; and fit well with a modern style of living room.

Track Lighting

This is a set of spotlights, usually three or four per track, which have individual movable heads for pinpointing different areas in the room. As a type they are very versatile, particularly ones that can fit both incandescent globe bulbs and halogens.. Track lighting is only usually seen in modern or minimalist living rooms due to the streamlined design.

Choosing the Right Bulbs

Picking the right wattage bulb is almost as important as choosing the light fixture itself, since ultimately the amount of light that comes from the bulb dictates the feel. Experiment with different bulbs to achieve the right brightness, warmth, and strength of light needed for the living room. Warm incandescent light is a traditional type of bulb suitable for living room spaces, whereas compact fluorescent bulbs last longer, use less energy but may not be as bright as ordinary bulbs.


Choosing the right ceiling light for a living room can add a final finishing touch to the decor of a room. The style of the room, the size, the natural light, the feel, and the design will have a great impact on the type of ceiling light that will be best placed in a room. Before making any purchases, always conduct sufficient research into what kind of lighting is required, including suitable bulbs. By making a purchase on eBay, the perfect kind of ceiling light for the living can be found cheaply, easily, and conveniently.

Have something to share, create your own guide... Write a guide
Explore more guides