The advent of inexpensive LED components has led to an explosion of unique lighting solutions that you can use around the house, and these are some of our readers’ favorites.
A lot of different manufacturers make these, but they all work basically the same way: A solar panel charges the battery during the day, and the light turns on at night whenever it detects movement. They aren’t exactly pretty, but you can frequently find them for under $10, and they install in minutes, no wiring required.
Closet and Cabinet Lights
These come in seemingly endless shapes and sizes (the most popular ones are from a brand called OxyLED), but basically all of them can attach to any surface, allowing you to install them in dark cabinets, closets, or hallways that don’t have any built-in light fixtures.
When choosing your lights, be sure to note whether they’re motion-sensing or require you to manually turn them on. And while most require replaceable batteries (usually AAA), some have USB-rechargeable Li-ion batteries that will save you money over time.
A relatively new trend in the space, these are basically adhesive string lights attached to a motion sensor. Just stick them to the bottom of your bed frame, and they’ll automatically light up the floor if you need to get up in the middle of the night. They also ward off monsters.
They might seem silly, but motion-sensing toilet lights are seriously useful, and our readers have bought thousands. Personally, I find that flicking on the overhead lights if I wake up to use the bathroom at night wrecks my circadian rhythms and makes it hard to get back to sleep, so softly illuminating the toilet bowl instead is a real luxury.
Bias lights project light onto the wall behind your TV, which reduces eyestrain, and improve’s your TV’s perceived black levels. Typically, these are LED light strips that attach to the back of your TV via built-in adhesive, and plug into the set’s USB port for power. The only choice you really have to make is whether you want a white or RGB colored model.
String lights in all their forms are the most popular novelty lighting product among our readers by far. Obviously, they come in handy as holiday decorations, but plenty of people keep these hung up around their homes or on their patios all year ‘round.
You can find battery, solar, and AC-powered varieties in a ton of different lengths, so be sure to give some thought to how you want to set them up before you buy.