Interior Design Tips

How to choose the best ceiling lights for your home

Collaborative post

When you embark on a room renovation in your home, at what point do you think about lighting?

It’s tempting to leave this aspect of a makeover until the later stages of the project, because it feels like a relatively small element to make decisions on.  But lighting actually plays a critical role in the atmosphere and practicality of a room, so it should be something that’s carefully considered right at the start of a revamp.

Whatever room you’re working on, it’s pretty much guaranteed that you’ll need some form of ceiling lights.  This type of lighting is the main source of artificial light, and as such it forms the base upon which you can build up layers of accent and task lighting with things like floor lamps, wall lights and desk lamps.  Because ceiling lights are so fundamental, it’s really important to get them right.

A guide to the different types of ceiling lights

To help you find the perfect product for your room, take a look at this guide to the different types of ceiling lights, and where they work best in the home.  When you’re ready to start shopping, the John Lewis ceiling lights range has a really comprehensive selection of styles and sizes.


Pendant ceiling lights

This is probably the most well-known and popular type of ceiling lighting.  Pendant lights typically hang down into the room from a central fitting.

At their most basic, pendant lights can be a simple shade attached to a wire flex. This is a low cost lighting option which is easy to fit and update.  There’s also a huge range of more design-led pendant lights on the market, making this style of ceiling light a versatile choice for all interior styles and room sizes.


Flush mounted ceiling lights

As the name suggests, flush mount ceiling lights nestle up against the ceiling, rather than hanging down into the room.  They work really well with small spaces and low ceilings, as they provide good ambient light without being too intrusive.


Semi flush ceiling lights

Semi flush ceiling lights are similar to their flush mounted cousins, but they extend down into the room slightly.  They’re great if you’d like something a little more impactful – in a living room, for example – but still don’t want to take up too much space.



If it’s wow factor you’re going for, you can’t go wrong with a chandelier.  This type of ceiling light is usually bold and impactful, and works well in larger rooms and hallways.  Don’t assume chandeliers are just about crystal and old-fashioned looks; there are some fantastic modern designs out there too.

As well as providing a focal point in a room, a chandelier can really deliver when it comes to light output.


Recessed lighting

Loved by interior designers, recessed lighting has lots of potential as ambient, accent or task lighting.  It’s usually fitted as ceiling spotlights which can be fixed or angle adjustable.  Innovation in LED light bulbs and a range of finishes makes recessed lighting a popular and flexible choice for modern homes.

Recessed ceiling lights are brilliant in kitchens and home offices, where they can provide strong, even light to work in.  There’s also the option to add a dimmable function which can give greater flexibility in open-plan living areas.


Track lighting

Track lighting usually has a number of lights mounted onto a straight track, which is then fitted flush to the ceiling.  It’s available in a range of lengths, and some products allow you to change the angle of each light.

Track lighting fixtures are ideal for positioning over kitchen islands and dining tables.  They also work really well as accent lighting to highlight a particular feature or piece of wall art.


Ceiling fan lights

If you’d like to improve air circulation in your room, consider a ceiling light which incorporates a fan.  You don’t have to go for the traditional blades design; there are some really stylish ceiling fans which don’t look like a fan at all when not in use.

Do bear in mind that a ceiling fan light will need to be installed a minimum of 7 feet above floor level. They’re definitely not a good option for low ceilings.


Choosing the best ceiling lights: features to consider

Making a final choice for your ceiling light fixtures isn’t just about finding the right type of light in a design you love.  It’s also a good idea to think about each of the following features.

  • Size – it sounds obvious, but it’s one of the most important things to get right!  Make sure the size of the ceiling light suits the proportions of your room.
  • Bulb wattage – think about how bright you want the light to be, and check that the recommended bulb wattage or lumens rating can deliver this.
  • Dimmable – would you like to vary the brightness of your ceiling light?  This is a quick and easy way to change the ambience in a room, and using the light on a lower setting can also be more energy efficient.
  • Adjustable drop – if you want some control over the final height of your light fitting, look for styles that allow you to alter the drop.
  • Moisture – if you’re fitting ceiling lights in a bathroom, you need to choose a product that’s designed to cope with damp conditions.
  • Energy efficiency – low energy and LED ceiling lights are the most efficient option here, but they can be initially more expensive to buy and are often more tricky to repair.
  • Easy fit – many types of ceiling lights are best left to the experts to fit.  If you don’t want to call in an electrician, look for products that are simple to fit.

Hopefully this guide to the different types of ceiling lights has helped you work out which is best for your interior space, and makes the process of finding the perfect light fitting quicker and easier.  What type of ceiling lights are going to work beautifully in your home?

Pin for later


Related Articles

Back to top button