How To Choose The Best Living Room Lighting For Low Ceilings

Have you ever wished to have a living room so nice that you could brag about it to your neighbors, friends, and family?

Many people have had this dream. The dream to create a space that is not only functional but also breath-taking.

If you have tried your hand at interior design and decoration, you may probably understand how difficult it is to achieve that chic, timeless Pinterest look that we all yearn for. 

This task is much harder in houses where rooms have low ceilings.

This article focuses on interior décor and in particular, the lighting options available for living rooms with low ceilings.

The living room is the most important in any household. It is the happening spot for all family and household activities.

It doubles up as the family room, home theatre, TV room, and guest entertainment area. Getting the living room décor right is not an easy job.

One must balance comfort, thrill, and practicality. Choosing the most appropriate living room lighting fixture is a subtle but powerful means of achieving this feat.

Playing around with different lights of various shapes and luminescence, can aid in making a living room look all the more interesting to behold.

For instance, installing a bright chandelier can add an elegant feel to the room, giving it a transcendent appearance.

If the living room has a low ceiling, choosing the best lighting option and design may prove to be a herculean task.

A low ceiling, which is anything under 8 feet, allows for very little wiggle room when it comes to choosing lighting fixtures.

This however does not mean that there no options to choose from. Far from it.

With the right information, tips, and a little imagination, a low ceiling living room can be transformed from a boring space to a captivating location that gives its occupiers an out-of-the-world experience.


Types of lighting to choose from


There are various types of lighting fixtures that serve different purposes.

Each type of fixture gives the living room a different feel. In most houses, a living room is a multipurpose space.

It serves different functions and different people.

Hence it is best to choose a lighting fixture that harmonizes all the uses of this space and still gives it a chic look.

To do this one must know what form of lighting to choose from.

There are three types of lighting; ambient, task, and accent lighting.


Task lighting

As suggested by the name, this is a lighting fixture designed to be used by a person when performing a specific function or task.

This would include lighting fixtures such as study lamps.

These fixtures are placed on desks and are used by people, primarily for reading.


Ambient lighting

Also known as overhead lighting, it consists of fixtures that are used for illumination.

They are installed in central areas of a room and are meant to flood the entire place with light.

To boost their effectiveness, such fixtures would be installed on ceilings to maximize their lighting capabilities.


Accent lighting

This form of lighting is designed to draw focus to a particular item.

Some are designed to draw focus onto themselves.

They are primarily installed on walls to attract attention to paintings or other wall hangings.

These types of fixtures have the effect of creating a warm and vibrant feel in a room.


Choosing the right bulb


When buying a light fixture, people will, many at times, overlook the bulb.

The bulb is the most important part of a lighting fixture. Without it, there is no light.

A dim bulb will make a low ceiling living room appear much smaller.

Too bright a light will accentuate how low the ceiling is.

It is therefore prudent to choose a bulb with the right wattage to avoid these problems.

LED bulbs are the best choice for a low ceiling living room.

Compared to their fluorescent tube counterpart, LED bulbs give off a much softer white light.

They save more energy and are dimmable.

This means that any homeowner can easily alter the amount of light in a room to the desired brightness.


Low profile fixtures

Low ceiling living room area is a tough space to decorate and as such when decorating them, a few compromises have to be made.

One of the compromises to make is to steer clear of large, low-hanging lighting fixtures.

In a room with a low ceiling, such types of fixtures are simply impractical.

They not only take up space but will always make the room look much smaller than it is.

This added to the fact that your taller guests and roommates will find themselves bumping into them ever so often.

Making this decision is crucial.

The result is that most chandeliers and pendant lamps will be struck out of your list.

Even though these two are out of the picture, it is still possible to find the best lighting fixture for your living space.

There are still many options available in the market.

Some of these would include recessed lights, flush mounts, and floor lamps.

Recessed light is impeccable for low ceiling living rooms.

They are mounted within the ceiling and as such do not project outwards.

They, therefore, do not take up any vertical space.

Flush mounts are ideal fixtures for low ceilings.

Recently, however, they have fallen out of favor.

This is because, for the very longest time flush mount fixtures have come in very drab, unappealing, and limited designs.

This should however not lead you to rule them out altogether.

New and modern designs have emerged and it is now possible to choose a flush mount that is appealing to you.

Wall lamps are another great option.

Also known as scones, they are a good lighting option for small rooms and rooms with low ceilings.

Instead of being mounted on the ceiling, they are drilled into the walls and then pointed upward to the ceiling.

Their light is directed upwards to give the room a warm and cozy feel.

Also, these fixtures create the illusion that the room is bigger and that the walls are higher, when in truth they are not.


Consider Layered Lighting

Layered lighting involves mounting several lighting fixtures in a room to give the illusion that the room is much larger than it is.

The trick is to ensure that the lights are mounted at different heights and different places in the room.

The result is that every corner of a room is illuminated and at different levels.

Thanks to such a creative trick, the walls of a room get to look much higher than they are.

To achieve this effect, such light fixtures are normally suspended from the ceiling.

To prevent wasting vertical space, you need to ensure that the cords used in hanging the fixtures are not too long.

In addition to this, it is best to also have them placed strategically in the room to prevent taller people from walking into them.


Keep it minimalist

A living room designed with a low ceiling room is exactly that.

This is a very important point to keep in mind when installing lighting fixtures.

Though it is possible to create an illusion that a room has higher ceilings than it does, by installing the right lighting fixtures, it does not change the fact that the room has low ceilings.

It is therefore prudent to keep room décor as minimalist as possible.

An over-dramatic and exaggerated lighting fixture will work to oppose the mirage of height being sought after. Pick out simple, elegant looking light fixtures.

The simpler they look, the easier it is to create your illusion of height and match them with other pieces of furniture.


Incorporate multi-functional lighting

Another way to save floor space, create illusions of height, and give an elegant finish to your low ceiling apartment all in one go, is to invest in multi-functional lighting fixtures.

A living room is used for different purposes, with each requiring different intensity of light.

Picking a light that serves all purposes is a big win.

For example, if you use the living room area as a study space, you can invest in a large study lamp that can double up as a stand-alone floor lamp and study lamp.

Accent lamps mounted on a wall can be installed in such a way as to be ambient lights as well.



Contemporary methods of interior design publicized in magazines and social media sites spell doom for low ceiling rooms.

Most of them showcase interior decor ideas designed for rooms with high walls, high ceilings, and large windows.

People living in houses without low ceiling rooms need not fret.

It is possible to decorate your low ceiling living room and create a space that is worthy of praise.

It only needs you to think and see differently.


Fittings like over-sized chandeliers will not work.

You need to think simple and minimalist.

Invest in multi-functional lights.

Have receding lights fitted into your ceiling.

Above all, creativity is key in illuminating your low ceiling living room.


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