How to Change the Mood of Your Home With Lighting

How different lighting can affect your mood

You may not realize it, but when you enter a room the lighting that is in place can impact your mood.

For example, the energy you get from walking into a brightly lit office, with sunlight streaming through the windows can make you feel wide awake and alert.

Alternatively, walk into a family room, with a warm fire blazing in the fireplace and a simple tableside lamp and you’re ready for rest and relaxation.

Measuring light

Artificial lighting is measured in terms of Kelvin(K). This measurement refers to the hue of a particular source of light. The number is not connected to the heat that a source of light puts out, but to the color of that light.

Note that the higher the Kelvin number, the closer that light source is to that of the sun.

Warm light2700K to 3000K Amber
Cool white3000K to 5000KAmber – up to 3500KWhite hue – 3500K to 4100KBlue hue – 4200K
Daylight5000K to 6000KBlue hue

Warm light

Warm light is similar to the incandescent bulb. If you’re familiar with the soft yellow/orange glow of these bulbs you’ll easily recognize the mood they can create.

As you might imagine, warm light is perfect for relaxing, dining and creating a pleasant, intimate atmosphere.

Fortunately, it’s possible to find energy-efficient CFL bulbs that provide warm light so you don’t have to opt for incandescent bulbs to enjoy a warm, cozy home.


Temperatures for this range can fall anywhere between cool white, neutral white and bright white. This type of lighting is perfect for task areas such as in the kitchen or in a home office as it can help you stay alert and attentive.


Think about how natural sunlight streaming in through the windows can instantly liven up a room.

Bulbs that are 5000K and up can create a vibrant and energetic mood in your home.

Put this type of light in areas such as the utility room, under kitchen cabinets or in a reading lamp to help with focus and mental energy.

Easy ways to change up the mood

Install a dimmer switch

Add a dimmer switch to help change the mood in your home. Simply turn it down when you want to create a calm, relaxing atmosphere and turn it up to the maximum if you want to stir things up.

Think about the last time you were at a bar or a restaurant at closing time. What did management do when they wanted to encourage everyone to get up and leave?

Adjust the lighting of course!

Layer the lighting

Add floor lamps, table lamps or even spotlights in dark corners and spaces to add layers to the existing light sources.

For example, spotlights on a chimney or in an alcove can add a dramatic flair. Or create the perfect reading space with a warm, low kelvin light in a floor lamp behind your favorite stuffed chair.

And of course, don’t forget candles…they bring peace and relaxation…or a sense of romance…to any space quite easily.

Mood and light

Simply put, white lighting gives off energy, making you want to move. Warm, yellow light, however, slows you down and relaxes you. It even encourages you to eat more!

Use this to your advantage by using the color lighting that will encourage the mental responses you want to invoke.

Turn on the bright overhead lights to get you up and moving in the morning. At night, turn on the amber lights to help you relax and wind down before bed.