What are the Different Types of Kitchen Lighting?

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  • Written By: Alex Tree
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 13 May 2019
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The standard kitchen has more different types of lighting than many people realize. Whether natural, halogen, or recessed, a kitchen is a room that often requires light for cooking and eating, reading, and even socializing with family and friends. These lights might be located under a cabinet, above the stove top, or near the sink area. Some are designed to naturally save on energy costs, while others are energy hogs that should not be left on when not needed.

Natural lighting is often regarded as the most attractive kind of light. Not only can natural kitchen lighting help cut energy costs, but it is easier on the eyes and can help improve emotional states. There are various ways to fill a kitchen with natural light, including adding skylights, garden windows, and french doors. If on a budget and the kitchen already has at least one window, the homeowner can simply remove the window blinds or curtains that block sunlight.


One type of kitchen lighting is referred to as under-cabinet lighting. The lights typically placed under cabinets are focused, task-oriented lights. These lights are oriented so that there is improved visibility on the kitchen counters for cooking and other tasks, but they also improve the general lighting of the room. Many different types of lighting fixtures can be used under cabinets, though long-lasting halogen and xenon bulbs are often favored. Small track lighting fixtures as well as singular bulb fixtures are also often affixed to the undersides of cabinets.

In addition to the standard interior microwave light, modern microwaves often have exterior kitchen lighting. These microwaves are typically installed above the stove, and the light can be used to light up the cook-top below it. With a touch of a microwave button, the light can usually be dimmed, brightened, or turned off. Not all microwaves have this feature, especially if they are designed to be used on a counter or in a wall.

Often, kitchen lighting fixtures are oriented to provide light specifically for the sink area. There are quite a few options for sink lighting, but a couple options stand out. Track lightingis often utilized on the ceiling around the sink, and can be particularly viable because it is very focused yet still adjustable. Recessed lighting is also prized, often due to how it can be focused and because it is usually unobtrusive in the decor of the kitchen.



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