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How To Brighten A Dark Room

Electrical & Lighting
By on Oct 14, 2018
How To Brighten A Dark Room

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A dark room can be seen as a challenge for homeowners. Having natural light invade a space can make the room seem larger, cleaner and more relaxing. It’s no wonder people are turning to innovations and techniques to brighten up their homes.

Even for rooms that have the smallest of windows, there are ways you can boost the sunshine in the space. Here are a few ways to brighten up a dark room.

If you’re able, adding a window to a room is the solution to increase brightness. Contact a window contractor today for quotes from pros in your area.

Benefits Of Natural Light

If there’s a lack of light in a room, many homeowners turn to light fixtures in order to brighten it up. However, there are many benefits of natural lighting that go beyond just design. According to North Carolina State University,  natural light boosts vitamin D storage in the body and can lead to higher productivity. In addition to the health benefits, natural light in the home is a sustainable way to brighten up a space and at the same time, lower your utility bills.

“Adding brightness and allowing natural light in a space instantly helps to make a space feel larger and more expansive,” Elyza Brillantes, design program manager at, said. “With enough natural light, you can reduce your dependence on artificial light sources throughout the day while still keeping a light and airy feel to your space.”

So before you go light fixture shopping, here are a few ways you can add natural light to even the smallest of rooms.

1. Add Windows & Skylights

Of course, the best way to add natural light to any room is with a window installation. Small windows can make a big difference in areas like a bathroom or a basement. However, if privacy concerns is what’s stopping you from a window installation, Brillantes has a few ideas.

“Homeowners may run into challenges with limited natural light depending on the size and placement of their windows, as well as maintaining privacy while still allowing as much natural light in their space,” she said. “Options like window frosting, sheer curtains, and top-down-bottom-up cellular shades are all great privacy solutions for windows that may face a busy street, but still allow a large amount of natural light to come through!”

Additionally, for either space or privacy concerns, you might want to consider adding a skylight to your home. This is a great way to incorporate natural light without sacrificing wall space. The average cost to install a skylight is $1,420, with most homeowners spending between $1,009 to 1,508.

2. Paint With Light Colors

If adding a window is not an option, consider changing the paint color on your walls. Lighter hues help reflect sunshine thought a room, rather than darker colors that absorb it.

“In spaces where natural light is limited, choose a light neutral color palette, lighter colors will always make a space feel brighter, and you can always bring in bolder accents in the décor,” Brillantes said.

3. Hang Curtains

You might be surprised to learn that curtains can actually help you add natural light to the room. By properly hanging them, you can open up your room and even make it seem bigger than it really is.

“Short of some major architectural updates like adding more windows, you want to make sure that you are really optimizing your window treatments to maximize the amount of light coming through,” Brillantes said. “Hang your curtains high and wide, so that when the curtains are fully opened, they aren’t blocking the light coming through the window. This will also help to visually make your windows feel larger!”

4. Utilize Mirrors

Did you know the décor you use can help increase the natural light in your home? Choose accents that reflect, like popular metallic items, that can help to reflect light. Even better, if you have wall space available, add a mirror or two of various sizes that will help to bounce light around the room.

“Hang a mirror to help bounce light around the space, and ensure you have adequate floor or table lamps to aid in brightening up the room,” Brillantes said.

5. Trim Trees

What you do on your home’s exterior matters to the look of your interior. If you have a tree that is overgrown and blocking the light that could be coming through a window, take the time to trim down the branches that are in the way of the window. This is an easy way to better utilize your windows, not to mention also improve the curb appeal of your home. The average cost to trim or remove trees is $638, with most homeowner spending between $422 and $707.

6. Use A Light-Color Rug

Similarly to paint color, you choose on the walls, your floor decor matters. A dark rug will absorb light that’s coming in, while a lighter hue will help to reflect the light better. A natural texture or material might even make your space feel airier, depending on the color scheme you’ve chosen.

Hire An Interior Designer

If you’re looking for more ways to incorporate natural light in your home, it might be best to contact an interior designer who can help. They’ll know exactly how to brighten up a space of any kind. Keep in mind, the average cost to hire an interior designer is $4,735, with most homeowners spending between $2,008 and $4,927.


Adding more natural light to your home isn’t impossible. You can use a few of these tips to brighten up any room in your home and get all the benefits that a little bit of sunshine can bring.

Looking for more ways to add light in to your home? Read The Best Lighting For Your Kitchen.

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