Lighting is one of the many tools we have at our disposal when designing the interiors of our homes. Interior designers are well aware of the impact that lighting, both natural and artificial, can have on the visual impact of a space, and the mood it sets. The use of lighting patterns, different colours, and varying levels of illumination can evoke feelings of happiness, just like when the sun is shining bright. It can make us productive when bright light is shining down from directly above, it can relax us when the light is soft, and it can even stimulate or suppress our appetite! With daylight decreasing, and the need to retreat inside becoming more prevalent, it is essential to surround ourselves in positive light, as demonstrated from these UK experts who know a thing or two about the effects of lighting on our moods.
Lighting can certainly set the mood when it comes to spending time with your partner. Here, the London Swimming Pool Company have effectively set the scene for a relaxing time in the spa with the use of indirect lighting, hidden in the cornices of the roof and the pool.
Waking up with the sun is the way nature intended us to rise in the morning. Our ancestors rose with the sun, hunting and gathering, returning at dusk to eat and sleep, only to do it all again the next day. As hard as it might seem to get up early, you will feel much better for it. As we often migrate to the bathroom first thing, to prepare for the new day, allowing in as much natural light as possible will help you slowly wake in the way nature intended, helping your body clock reset.
Natural light also fights depression. Something as simple as the sun can have such an effect on our mental health and happiness. Notice how everybody is so much happier in summer? Next opportunity you get to take a walk in nature when the sun is out, jump at it. Your body will thank you, and you will feel all the better for it.
Lighting is a key aspect to our moods at work, just as much as it is in the home. A bright (but not too harsh) working environment is said to increase our alertness and productivity. The use of bright lights in a boardroom for example, will help brain activity and keep employees energetic.
A recent study from a university in New York found that soft lighting, in a relaxed atmosphere, helped people to eat less and be more satisfied with their meals. Combined with darker colours, the appetite can be suppressed. This is why fast food restaurants are bright and loud, enticing us to eat more. So, this winter, if you are looking to slim the waistline, soften the lights, put on some relaxing music, to hopefully become a little healthier, and a little happier while you're at it.
The bedroom is the ideal place for soft, subtle lighting, as it can slowly induce peaceful sleep. Melatonin is a hormone that controls the night-day cycle in humans, animals, and even plants. Melatonin is naturally produced in the body at night, to help us feel tired in order to go to bed. It can be controlled with mood lighting to induce deep sleep, and it can be reduced in the morning with the aid of the sun and the natural light it produces, keeping our body clocks in check, aiding happiness and productivity.