This Viral $20 Socket Hack Turns Any Lamp Into a Nostalgic Clap Light Hack — 'It's Just Like the Movies!'

You've seen them in your favorite sitcom: clap on, clap off! Relive the movie magic with this nostalgic lighting device that costs less than you might expect

viral clap light
(Image credit: Amazon)

Clap lights feel so nostalgic. Growing up, I saw them in reruns of '80s sitcoms and later used as a gimmick on channels like Disney. The idea is a little corny, sure, but fun? You bet. The notion of commanding the room with the clap of a hand blew my adolescent mind. Of course, now that we've digitized everything, there are lights that can be controlled from a phone. But what these lights lack is the drama of a clap — you simply can’t beat it!

I had all but forgotten about the bedroom lighting idea until I came across a video by TikTok creator Anna Barger. She’s in the process of decorating her room, having just recently purchased a new bed frame that looks great but, due to its awkward shape, doesn’t bode so well for her shins. Her solution? Don’t get out of bed. But how then will she turn her bedroom lights on and off? And then it hit her.


clap lamp nostalgia level 10000

♬ Can I Call You Tonight? - Dayglow

A clap light! More specifically, The Clapper — a sound-activated light switch that first came onto the market in 1984. It works with not one, but two home devices at once, so it's perfect for Anna’s need of controlling the lights flanking either side of her bed.

But consider the possibilities! Come Christmas, imagine never having to return to that awkward hunched position to turn off your tree lights. Or not having to leave the sofa to switch on a fan during a swelteringly hot day. And laziness aside, The Clapper really is a godsend for anyone with limited mobility.

The Viral Clap Light

The device is remarkably easy to use. Simply set your noise sensitivity level, plug a device (or two) of choice into The Clapper, and then plug The Clapper into a wall outlet. Voila! Lights are controlled like magic.

Free from issues? Well, in the TikTok, Anna did get off to a bit of a rough start, but she got the hang of it after a few tries. Also, be aware that the device doesn't selectively listen to claps — there is always the chance that The Clapper turns on or off in response to loud noises in your environment.

Despite the slightly finicky nature of this very '80s device, all in all, it works quite well (4/5 stars out of 13,722 ratings). Plus, at just $20, it’s well worth it for the sake of entertainment.

More Wireless Lights

If you're as intrigued by unconventional lighting ideas as I am, I've compiled some additional options below.

This viral Nate Berkus-designed kitchen organizer quickly declutters a counter — chicly, I might add. 

Style Editor

Formerly covering fashion at L’Officiel USA, style maven Julia Demer brings her love of design to Livingetc’s world of interiors. As the title’s Style Editor, Julia's work reflects a sharp eye for detail and an innate passion for aesthetics. Her journey began with a strong foundation in design, honing her craft at renowned establishments like The Row and even establishing her own eponymous fashion brand. Julia’s design background is evident in the way she thoughtfully curates shopping edits, always maintaining a focus on emerging trends while preserving timeless sensibilities. For Julia, fashion and interiors go hand in hand, reflecting her lifelong commitment to perfecting the art of style.