17 Types Of Ceiling Lights [All You Need To Know]

Your home is your safe haven and making it appealing requires some work, but with proper lighting, it’s possible to revamp the place. 

Whether it’s for a housewarming party or to redecorate any room in your home, installing beautiful light fixtures can be an instant crowd-pleaser. However, you need to consider the interior design of the room, the furniture, and the architectural details before choosing the most suitable ceiling lights. 

Depending on your room décor and preferences, you can go for modern yet sophisticated LED ceiling lights or more extravagant and fancy chandeliers. But with so many options, it’s natural to feel confused and get lost in your head. That’s why we’re here to discuss some of the most popular ceiling lights found in homes and other real estate properties to make the decision easier for you. 

Without wasting any more time, let’s look at the best options! 

17 Types Of Ceiling Lights

Types of ceiling lights

A. Mounted Ceiling Lights

Mounted ceiling lights are best for saving space in small rooms with low ceilings because they are mounted close to the ceiling. They are excellent in spreading the light across the room and can be a good choice for ambient lighting. 

1. Flush Lights

Flush lights

Flush lights are flat attachments mounted close to the ceiling and are ideal for medium or large rooms having low ceilings. These lights are quite versatile and come in various designs and styles. You can easily find fixtures ranging from 12 to 24 inches wide in any interior décor store. 

Depending on the size of your room, you can choose the size of the light fixture. For instance, small flush mount fixtures work well in a bathroom, closet, or narrow hallway but larger flush lights are a better option for your bedroom. 

Flush lights usually look perfect in rooms with a ceiling height of fewer than 8 feet. Due to their simple and compact design, you won’t have to use hanging fixtures that use up too much space in a small room. However, installing a flush light can leave empty spaces if you have a higher ceiling. 

If you choose the right light fixture that’s wide enough for the room and install a powerful bulb, flush lights can illuminate every corner of that room. These ceiling lights are also quite popular among homeowners and professional interior designers, thanks to their discreet and minimalistic design. 

2. Semi-Flush Lights

Beautiful luxury electric ceiling light lamp decoration interior of room. Semi-flush lights.

The semi-flush ceiling light is another versatile and popular light fixture that differs from flush lights because of its length. Typically, semi-flush lights hang 4 to 8 inches below the ceiling once they are mounted and work best in rooms with 8 to 10 feet high ceilings. 

An attractive feature of semi-flush lights is they are easy to install, and changing the lightbulbs is pretty straightforward. They are common in small dining rooms and kitchens, but you can make them work in any room with the right décor and architectural design. Semi-flush ceiling lights are available in a wide range of diameters, anywhere between 7 and 23 inches. 

Homeowners often face a dilemma while choosing between flush and semi-flush ceiling lighting fixtures because of their similarities, but they also have certain differences. A flush light helps in downlighting by directing the light downward across the room. 

In contrast, a semi-flush light works well to light up your ceiling while directing the light down to your room. It can make your ceiling look higher, and the room feels larger, so semi-flush lights work as ambient lighting to make the room look more welcoming and appealing. 

3. Recessed Ceiling Lights

Recessed ceiling lights

Recessed lights, also known as pot or can lights, are installed inside the ceiling and can be ideal for rooms with a low ceiling. These light fixtures won’t take up any space inside the room, making it look much bigger. 

You need at least a clearance space of 6 inches above the ceiling if you want to install a recessed light. They sit inside the ceiling, covered by a glass panel that spreads the light across your room. 

The glass panel design is simple and discreet, making these light fixtures excellent for small rooms. And, thanks to their glass trim, they can work quite well for task lighting or ambient lighting. You can direct the light to a particular artwork on the wall or create optimal lighting for your work desk. 

These recessed lights are efficient in creating spaces in rooms with sloped ceilings. But, make sure your ceiling has good insulation to avoid humidity build-up inside these light fixtures. The downside of recessed lighting is that 2 or 3 light fixtures are not enough to light up the room because the light diffusion rate is pretty low. 

You need to install at least 5 to 6 fixtures to light up the room and create a soothing ambiance. Moreover, even though the recessed lights look beautiful, the installation process is complicated and time-consuming. 

4. Utility Lighting

Utility lighting

If you’re looking for non-extravagant and simple light fixtures for your garage, basement, or laundry room, utility lights can be the best option. You have probably seen utility lights around shopping malls and large commercial buildings. Even though they are slowly becoming obsolete, they are pretty efficient in diffusing bright light across large spaces. 

You usually get two types of utility light fixtures – flush mounted to the ceiling and solid metal casings for LED bulbs. The latter can be ideal for your garage or workshop because it’s more energy-efficient and diffuses brighter light. On the other hand, you can install the ceiling mount utility lights in your basement or laundry room, having limited space. 

Utility lighting might not be as fancy or aesthetically appealing as other ceiling lights, but it can transform your workspace and light up the entire area. You can also consider installing some LED bulbs with your utility lights if you frequently work on DIY projects in the garage or basement. 

5. LED Indirect Lighting

Led indirect lighting

LED lights are an interesting way of putting a new spin on your old and traditional ceiling lights. You can install LED light strips around your ceiling instead of light fixtures and they can pair perfectly with flush mount lights or other ceiling lighting fixtures. 

The LED strips will reflect light onto your ceiling, making the room appear much larger to create ambient lighting. You can also install light-changing LEDs so that the light strips can change color when you want. 

This lighting fixture can offer a modern style to your room décor. You need to install crown molding around the ceiling to hide the LED light strips inside the mold. In that way, the light will be directed toward the ceiling, delivering a charming appeal to your room. 

On top of this, installing LED strips can be quite energy-efficient, and you can save a lot of money on your electricity bills. It can be a fun and interesting DIY project, and you can complete it for less than $400 because LED light strips are much more affordable than normal LED bulbs. 

B. Hanging Ceiling Lights

Generally speaking, hanging lights are better suited for ambient and task lighting compared to ceiling mount lights. These light fixtures concentrate light within a small area and instantly become the showstopper in any room. In this section, we’ll highlight some popular hanging ceiling light fixtures that can help you amp up the interior décor of your home. 

1. Pendant Light

Pendant light

Pendant lights hang quite low from the ceiling, so you can easily compare them with chandeliers. However, unlike chandeliers, pendant lights offer a single light source and you can’t install them to light up the entire room. The best design idea is to pair a pendant light with some flush light fixtures for additional lighting in your room. 

Moreover, installing a number of pendant lights can offer better task lighting in your living room or hallway. You can try looking for some interesting and unique mini-pendants to light up the room because they can be extremely appealing visually. These mini-pendant lights can offer an aesthetically pleasing look to your room even if you don’t have many décor items to display. 

Since pendant lights hang low from the ceiling, they can easily become the center of attraction in the room. But you need to be careful while choosing the style and design of this light fixture to pair it perfectly with your existing room décor. 

Pay close attention to the size of the pendant light fixture and how far it will hang from the ceiling. You can also look for themed pendant lights if you want to redecorate the house by adding new decorations. 

2. Inverted Pendant Lights

Inverted pendant lights

Inverted pendant lights are excellent for creating a subdued and soothing atmosphere in any room and can be ideal for ambient lighting. They can instantly reflect light to the ceiling and make a small room look much larger by adding an extra visual dimension. 

Usually, homeowners prefer to install inverted pendant lights over the dining room table or kitchen island to enjoy a fine dining experience. You can also easily install these light fixtures in your bedroom or living room to provide ambient light and create a relaxing environment. 

A bowl pendant is the common inverted pendant light fixture that’s widely popular, but you can look for other shapes to create a more stylish and modern effect. 

Furthermore, since inverted pendant lights will draw attention to the ceiling, you can work on enhancing its architectural design. Add a crown ceiling mold at the center, and the inverted pendant fixture directs light toward the ceiling and creates a beautiful effect, which can be an instant crowd-pleaser. 

3. Chandeliers


If you want to add some glamor and extravaganza to your living room or dining room, a chandelier is arguably the best pick. It’s safe to say that once you install a chandelier, it will grab everyone’s attention and become the prime attraction of the room. 

You need to carefully choose the design of your chandelier because it will have an impact on the rest of the room’s décor. Furthermore, consider the ceiling height before installing a chandelier, and make sure that the lowest part of the chandelier stays 30 inches above your dining table. 

If you place it higher, it might leave too much empty space behind. Similarly, if the chandelier is hanging too low from the ceiling, it can take up excessive space and make the room appear much smaller. 

You can consider certain things to determine the right size for your chandelier. For instance, if you plan to install a chandelier above your dinner table, make sure the chandelier’s diameter is equal to half of the width of the table. 

But when you want to choose a chandelier for the living room, measure the length and breadth of the room before deciding the diameter of your light fixture. You can also look for different styles of chandeliers, such as suspension chandeliers or traditional chain-hung light fixtures. 

Moreover, you can choose uplight or downlight chandelier designs depending on your preferences. The uplight design can make the room look much larger than a downlight design, or to increase the room’s lighting, look for a chandelier with multiple branches. You might need to hire a professional to install a new chandelier and finish all the electrical wiring jobs, which can be a bit expensive. 

4. Track And Rail Lighting

Modern stainless steel track light hanging on white ceiling background.. Track and rail lighting.

As the name suggests, track lighting fixtures come with several lights hanging from a track to create a modern effect and can be ideal for task or accent lighting. Depending on your ceiling height and lighting preferences, you can hang the track or mount it to the ceiling. 

Some track lights also allow you to adjust the direction of individual lights, making these light fixtures perfect for task lighting. You can carry on with food preparations in the kitchen or focus on your work without any difficulty by installing these light fixtures. In fact, track lighting fixtures are quite popular in modern kitchens and bathrooms because they offer excellent accent lighting. 

They can even be a good alternative to semi-flush mounts if you’re looking for a more modern room design and décor. You can easily pair track lights with pendant lights to create an interesting and unique visual effect. 

On top of this, track lighting comes with customizable fixtures that are quite affordable to install. The installation cost usually ranges around $500, so you can hire a professional to do it. 

Rail lighting and track lighting are very similar, but you can adjust the position and shape of the rail in the former. And it becomes easier to use task lighting for illuminating every corner of your room by installing rail lights. 

They help to highlight the curved architectural details of the room much better than trail lights. That said, you can go for both of these lighting fixtures to improve the accent lighting of your room. 

5. Island Lighting

Island lighting

Island lighting is pretty similar to track lighting, but it’s specially designed for kitchen islands. This type of ceiling light hangs lower than track lights and offers task lighting over your entire kitchen island area. 

These lighting fixtures are available in different shapes and designs, including squares and circles. Pendant light fixtures are even a popular island lighting choice among homeowners. 

Since these lights hang quite low from the ceiling, they can influence the entire design of your kitchen and become the focal point. Thus, island lighting is often considered a go-to design in modern kitchens. 

Even though island lighting fixtures are primarily used in kitchens, you can easily install these lights over your desk or in a workshop because they are ideal for task lighting. 

C. Ceiling Light Materials

Apart from different designs and styles of light fixtures, you can also consider different materials while purchasing the best ceiling lights. Here, we’ll discuss some of the most popular ceiling lights based on their materials. 

1. Glass Ceiling Lights

Glass ceiling lights

Remember your high school science lectures where you learned glass is a good conductor of light? That’s why glass is one of the most common materials for ceiling light fixtures because it can easily diffuse light. 

Glass light fixtures are pretty subtle and blend in perfectly with any kind of room décor without drawing too much attention. If you prefer functional lighting over decorative light fixtures, glass can be an excellent material for your ceiling lights. On the other hand, if you like to add a touch of glamor to the room, you can install light fixtures having colored glasses. 

Most flush mount, semi-flush, and recessed lights come in different glass designs and styles. Glass is also a common material for pendant lighting, inverted pendant fixtures, and traditional chandeliers. 

2. Fabric Light Fixtures

Closeup of decorative pendant lamps made of fabric in shape of milk cans hanging in home kitchen interior. Lighting design ideas. Fabric light fixtures.

The fabric creates a warm and homely effect to set a relaxing mood every time you turn on your ceiling lights. Even though fabric shades are preferred for bedrooms, you can use this style of lighting in your dining room or living room. This ceiling light material is excellent in offering soothing and ambient light to your room décor. 

You can find different flush and semi-flush light designs in fabric shades. While choosing the fabric material, carefully consider its color because it will determine whether the fixture is noticeable to help you set the right mood in your room. 

3. Crystal Ceiling Lights

Crystal ceiling lights

Crystal is popular for chandeliers, but the delicate features of this material are used in making pendant lights and semi-flush fixtures. Although crystal is more expensive, it can make a stronger style statement than simple glass lights. 

It offers interesting visual effects because it has a high refractive index, making light effortlessly bounce off its multiple faces. A beautiful crystal light fixture can easily become the central statement piece for a large living room or dining room. But, if you have a small room, crystal ceiling lights can make it look a bit crowded by taking up too much space. 

4. Metal Ceiling Lights

Metal ceiling lights

Metal is not a traditional material for lighting fixtures, but it has become quite popular in recent times, especially for modern and sophisticated home designs. It is mostly used for rail and track lights, and you can find some island and pendant lights made of metal. You can also find several modern metal designs while purchasing contemporary light casings. 

Metal is quite versatile and adaptable like glass and can be used to create both elaborate lighting fixtures and simple trails or rods for attaching ceiling lights. However, a metal light is not as subtle as glass lights and always becomes a statement piece wherever it is installed. 

Metal works well for both sleek and extravagant light designs. You can install a metal island light to make it the central point of attraction in your modern kitchen. On the other hand, if you prefer simple ceiling lighting, you can install a discreet metal track to offer accent lighting in the living room or bathroom. 

D. Other Ceiling Lights

Now that you’ve looked through our lists of various light designs and ceiling light materials, we’ve added some additional lighting options to amp up your room décor. 

1. Ceiling Fans With Lights

Ceiling fans with lights

If you have a small room with a low ceiling and don’t want to install a new light fixture, you can go for ceiling fans with built-in lights. They can save a lot of space while lighting up your entire room. You can also mount a ceiling fan exit on your existing ceiling light to avoid installing new fixtures. 

Installing ceiling fan kits can be a more energy-efficient option, and you can easily install these kits above pendant lights, inverted pendant lighting, and chandeliers. These kits usually come with flush or semi-flush mounts, making them a more practical option for rooms with sloped or low ceilings. 

2. Ceiling Spotlights

Spotlights under the ceiling on the wall. Track led-lighting system. Ceiling spotlights .

Spotlights can alter the entire design and appearance of your room and offer a completely different visual effect compared to other ceiling lights or wall-mounted fixtures. These lights deliver a more concentrated task lighting for illuminating a well-defined area. 

You can mount them on the ceiling or add them to your track and rail fixtures for better accent lighting across the room. They are mostly used in large living rooms, industrial kitchens, and dining rooms. 

Although spotlights are commonly known for their high power and illumination, modern spotlights use energy-efficient LED bulbs. You can choose different LED bulbs based on their intensity and color, making these ceiling spotlights quite versatile in their functions. 

3. Cove Lights

Cove lights

Cove lights are perfect for illuminating a room without becoming the center of attention or a statement piece. They are installed inside the recesses of your ceiling and are usually hidden from view, reflecting light both on the ceiling and the adjacent walls. 

These types of ceiling lights usually offer softer illumination, but you can choose the light intensity and brightness depending on your preferences. Whether you want a gentle glow in the hallway or eye-catching accent lighting in the living room, cove lights can fit seamlessly in every part of your house. 

Soundproofing and Ceiling Lights

The installation and type of ceiling lights can influence a room’s acoustics. Although they are not typically considered in soundproofing endeavors, their role shouldn’t be overlooked.

Ceiling lights, particularly recessed lights, can create acoustic weak points in the ceiling. They require holes and penetrations in the ceiling structure, which can allow sound to leak through. This is particularly problematic in multi-story buildings, where noise can travel from one floor to another.

To mitigate this issue, ceiling soundproofing measures can be implemented. Soundproofing materials such as mass-loaded vinyl (MLV) or soundproof drywall can be used around the light fixture installations. Additionally, installing acoustic sealant or backer rods around the light fixture’s perimeter can help reduce sound leaks.

Moreover, certain types of light fixtures might contribute to a room’s overall acoustics. For example, large, hard-surfaced fixtures might cause unwanted reflections or echoes. In contrast, fabric lampshades might help absorb some sound, improving the room’s acoustics.

How Can Dimmer Switches Help To Offer Ambient Lighting?

When it comes to choosing the right ceiling light for your home, it’s best to consider the factors for ambient lighting to improve the aesthetic appeal of your rooms. Installing a dimmer switch can be ideal for adjusting the brightness of your ceiling lights to set the perfect mood. So, it might be a good idea to add a dimmer switch while installing new lighting fixtures. 

Other than allowing you to adjust the intensity and brightness, dimmer switches help you to save energy by using fewer light bulbs. You can effortlessly control the functions and energy consumption of LED, CFL, and incandescent light bulbs using a newly installed dimmer switch. 

Besides, adding a dimmer switch to your ceiling lights is fairly affordable, and you won’t need to waste hundreds of dollars for getting this simple upgrade. Some dimmer switches even support smart home systems, allowing you to control the lights using your smartphone. 

Best Ceiling Lights For Your Bedroom

Depending on the décor and design of your bedroom, you install different types of ceiling lights that pair well with the bedroom furnishing and décor items. A flush mount is usually the most popular ceiling light option for a bedroom because it works so well with low ceilings. 

Furthermore, you want your bedroom to have a relaxing and soothing environment, and flush-mount ceiling lights are excellent in blocking out harsh glare from direct lights. You can install them above your bed to create a soft and peaceful glow in your bedroom without the light being too bright. 

Semi-flush ceiling mount lights can also be an excellent choice for your bedroom for the same reasons. However, they work better in bedrooms having a higher ceiling, offering enough space for the light to hang from the ceiling. 

If you have a modern and contemporary bedroom design, you can install some pendant lights above the side tables or work desks in your bedroom. They can offer excellent task lighting, making it easier to illuminate well-defined working areas. You can also consider installing some recessed lighting fixtures above the bedroom mirror that can offer sufficient lighting while you’re dressing up for an event. 

In addition to this, if you have a master bedroom with a high ceiling, you can install small chandeliers for a more elaborate and extravagant design. But, if you want a simple and minimalistic bedroom design, choosing recessed lights might be a better option. 

Carefully consider the architectural details and interior design of your bedroom before installing the ceiling lights. 

Best Ceiling Lights For Your Kitchen

Your kitchen needs to be well-lit at all times so that you can smoothly carry out all food preparations and cooking chores without a hitch. That’s why it’s best to install a combination of lighting fixtures in your kitchen. 

You can use flush lights with bright light bulbs to illuminate the entire kitchen. These types of ceiling lights are also extremely low-maintenance, so you don’t need to worry about replacing them frequently. Furthermore, as flush lights are mounted against the ceiling, they won’t come in the way when you move around the kitchen. 

Track and rail lights are also popular for kitchens because they offer excellent task lighting by directing lights to well-defined areas in the room. The rail fixtures come with multiple easily adjustable lights, and you can angle the light in any direction around the kitchen based on your requirements. 

Moreover, if you have a kitchen island, it’s best to install some island lighting fixtures that hang low from the ceiling to focus on your kitchen island structure. You can even enjoy a cozy family dinner sitting on the kitchen island if you have the right island lighting. 

In this context, you can check out the lighting fixtures offered by Kitchen Ceiling Lights for your kitchen. 

Best Ceiling Lights For Your Living Room

Living rooms are usually large open areas that have multiple light sources to offer accent and ambient lighting. Since living rooms offer a large space, you can explore different design ideas and experiment with various combinations of lighting. 

Depending on the interior design and room décor, you can choose simple flush and semi-flush mount lights or the more extravagant chandeliers and pendant lights. You can also pair these lighting fixtures to create a unique and interesting visual effect, amping up the aesthetic appeal of your living room. 

If you want a modern and sophisticated look for the living room, you can pair metal pendant lights with flush or semi-flush lights. On the other hand, if you love a bit of glitz and glamor, installing a chandelier can transform the entire look of the living room. 

But make sure that your fixtures don’t look out of place and perfectly complement the living room décor. 

Best Light Bulbs To Consider

The most important thing about installing a new ceiling light fixture is to choose the right light bulb. If you don’t have a suitable light bulb, your ceiling light cannot function properly to illuminate the rooms. 

Always look for light bulbs that’ll be a perfect fit for your light fixture and offer optimal lighting. CFL is usually the most common light bulb that works well with all types of ceiling lights, offering ambient and task lighting. It is energy-efficient, affordable, and can help you save a lot on your electricity bills. 

When talking about energy efficiency, it’s hard to miss the modern LED bulbs that use 90% less energy than any other light bulb and stay cool for a long time. These are directional lights and work excellently for task lighting but LEDs can be quite expensive and are not compatible with all types of light fixtures. 

Halogen bulbs can also be a good option for your ceiling lights, thanks to their durability, affordability, and energy efficiency. Their light is similar to natural light, creating an interesting ambiance in your home. 

On the other hand, if you have a traditional chandelier, you might need to install some incandescent lights. But, incandescent bulbs are hardly available nowadays due to their low energy efficiency. You can look for compatible LED or CFL bulbs for your chandelier as suitable alternatives. 

And check the wattage and lumens of different bulbs to determine their energy efficiency and light intensity before purchasing them. Try to look for dimmable bulbs if your lighting fixture has a dimmer switch. You also need to consider the size and shape of light bulbs if you plan to use them for track lights or mini-pendant lights. 

Ceiling lights frequently asked questions

Ceiling Lights Frequently Asked Questions?

What are the different parts of a ceiling light?

Even though you can find various styles and designs of ceiling lights, their basic structure is almost similar. A ceiling light typically comes with the following parts: 

  • A light bulb
  • A bulb holder 
  • Reflector 
  • Junction 
  • Electrical wiring 
  • Lens 
  • Trim

If any of these parts stops functioning properly, your ceiling light won’t be able to emit and diffuse light across the room. 

Can you mount ceiling lights on walls?

You can’t mount all types of ceiling lights on the wall because of their design and structure. It might be possible to install some flush mount lights or recessed lights on the wall, but you can’t mount pendant lights or chandeliers because of their design. 

You also need to consider the heat emission rate and weight of the ceiling fixtures before you can wall-mount them. Carefully read the warranty and instructions before installing a ceiling light fixture to avoid violating the product warranty due to incorrect installation. 

Are all ceiling lights dimmable?

Not all ceiling lights come with a dimmable feature; it depends on the light bulbs you choose. Read the product description of the light bulbs carefully to determine whether they are dimmable. Not just that, but check the dimmer switch to know if it can work for modern CFL or LED bulbs. 

Some old households have dimmers that only work for incandescent bulbs and are not compatible with LEDs. Under such circumstances, you may need to upgrade the dimmer switch while installing new LED ceiling lights. 

What to do if the ceiling lights flicker frequently?

If your ceiling lights are flickering quite often, it signifies that the light bulbs are overworked and are sending signals via short currents to reduce the light output. The vibrations usually create a constant humming or buzzing sound. 

The flickering and the buzzing noise won’t stop until you adjust the light output or install a more powerful light bulb. If the problem continues, you might need to hire a professional to check the electrical wiring and power consumption of the ceiling lights. 

Are battery-powered ceiling lights better?

When it comes to portability and energy efficiency, battery-powered ceiling lights are better than traditional ceiling lights. You can easily place them anywhere in the room for additional lighting without the hassle of installation. They also come with easy-to-use buttons to turn them on and off, and dim or brighten them whenever you want. 

Ceiling lights final thoughts

Ceiling Lights Final Thoughts

The most important thing that you need to remember while choosing the best ceiling lights is to look for options that offer optimal lighting. 

We’ve covered several ceiling light options in our list, and you can choose any of them depending on your room décor and requirements. You need to consider whether you’re looking for ambient lighting, task lighting, decorative fixtures, or basic utility fixtures to make the right choice. 

If you want, you can experiment with different combinations of ceiling lights and create a stunning visual effect in different rooms. You can even consult a professional interior designer to choose the most suitable ceiling lights for your home. 

Take care and we’ll see you next time! 

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