This light fixture is stopping you from getting a good night's sleep, according to a designer

A bedroom should be two things: stylish and functional. This is how to combine them both

Painted bedroom with large lighting fixture
(Image credit: Annie Sloan)

The art of combining style and practicality is important in every room of the home, but none more so than the bedroom. This space is often subject to fashionable color schemes and interior design trends – but as designer Martin Waller reveals – your bedroom lighting ideas may be impacting your sleep. 

According to the Andrew Martin founder, your ceiling light (or, more specifically, how you use your ceiling light) may be preventing you from having a good night's sleep – and science agrees.

'Turning off ceiling lights in the evenings in favor of floor and table lamps will help to create a soft and relaxing space for you to unwind in,' Martin explains. 

White bedroom with large lighting fixture

(Image credit: Future)

Instead, he suggests using 'clever combinations of lamps to mimic patterns of daylight throughout your home,' as this will reinforce our circadian rhythms (the sleep-wake cycle). 

The designer also suggests emphasizing any natural light to 'improve our productivity and overall mood.' His favorite light-accentuating tricks involve using 'plenty of mirrors and glass or polished surfaces to bounce light around the room.'

However, Martin's argument is not exclusive to the interior design world. Dr. Lindsay Browning, psychologist, neuroscientist, and sleep expert for And So To Bed, also reinforces the designer's suggestion to dim your ceiling lamp – and opt for a bedside lamp that will promote a better night's sleep. 

Painted bedroom with large lighting fixture

(Image credit: Annie Sloan)

'Bright light suppresses the production of melatonin which is our sleep hormone. The ceiling light is usually the brightest form of lighting in a room, hence often being referred to as the 'big light,' and with the job of lighting the whole room, people often opt for a brighter bulb too, causing a less effective environment for sleep,' Dr. Lindsay explains.

'Lamps, however, generally emit less light and are able to offer a dimmer light source, helping your body know it is time for bed- avoiding bright light in the evening is key,' she adds in the discussion of her modern bedroom ideas

Painted bedroom with large lighting fixture

(Image credit: Annie Sloan)

Dr. Lindsay also suggests choosing a warmer light instead of cooler shades that contain a blue-light spectrum of light – as these convince our body it is daytime – even when night falls. 'This is also the reason why using phones before bed is detrimental to our sleep as they also emit blue light,' she adds.

And, light fixtures aside, it is important to find the best mattress for you – whether you are looking to prioritize temperature control or the right zoned support. It's the tip that might just transform your sleeping pattern for good. 

Megan Slack

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team.

Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US whilst studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site.

Megan currently lives in London, where she relocated from her hometown in Yorkshire. In her home, she experiments with interior design trends and draws inspiration from the home decor ideas she observes in her everyday work life. Her favorite pieces include her antique typewriter and her expansive collection of houseplants. When she isn’t writing, she is browsing London’s coffee shops and bookstores to add to her ever-growing library, taking over the open shelving in her apartment.