If you’re looking for energy efficiency and a longer bulb lifespan, LED lightbulbs are the way to go. However, if you’re sensitive to light color quality, the blue-ish tint of early LEDs may have been enough to turn you off for good. Incandescents weren’t particularly energy efficient, but we all have come to love that soft, warm light that they throw.
It’s exciting, then, that LED lightbulbs have been evolving. And as we learn more about how different colors on the light spectrum affect our mood and behavior. For example, the blue light that your friendly smartphone emits can keep you up at night. LED bulb manufacturers are responding: The latest collection from GE Lighting not only promises different colors for different parts of your life, but high definition as well.
HD LED lightbulbs, how so? These bulbs are optimizing the “CRI,” or color-rendering index, so you can see more contrast and brighter colors. That’s lightbulb jargon for feeling like your home stepped into a Wes Anderson movie: Everything’s brighter, richer and pops of color truly pop. Because why invest in that perfect-shade-of-indigo sofa and vintage throw pillows if your whole room is bathed in a dingy yellow tint?
Another next level move is the ability to choose the right color of light per room. Now we’re talking serious mood-crafting:
Refresh bulbs mimic daylight and keep you awake and on task. Use it where you check things off your to-do list, like the laundry room, home office or garage.
Reveal bulbs cast a bright white that’s great for bathrooms and kitchens, so you can see clearly while you’re chopping onions or applying mascara (I’d do the onions first, or you’ll end up with raccoon eyes).
Relax bulbs have a warmer tone for laid-back spaces like bedrooms and living rooms. This is the closest to the incandescents you may be used to, and the most flattering.
All these lightbulbs have a lifespan of up to around 13 years and are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, wattages so they fit wherever you need them to, and will last way longer than bulbs of old. And they’re not as expensive as they used to be, though they are a bit of an investment: Each of these bulbs is between $5 and $15 (but remember the average incandescent lasts only 1,000 to 2,000 hours, whereas an LED lasts 25,000 to 50,000).
Deep thoughts about LED lightbulbs
The thing I love about smart home innovations is that they give us all an opportunity to reexamine the pedestrian parts of our home, reacquaint ourselves with their importance, and reimagine their potential. You may have not thought much about your lighting choices before, but lighting sets a mood, helps us see, guides the internal rhythms of our sleep-wake cycle. Now, the chance to optimize and improve this pretty-important home design element awaits you, and you don’t even have to do much thinking— just pick a room, and use highly specialized, energy-efficient, new-fangled bulbs to instantly improve it.
Have you been replacing old bulbs with LEDs? Tell me about your experience in the comments below.