Lighting Direct

Are You Doing It In The Dark?

Doing it in the dark: three quarters of women say they apply makeup in poor lighting

Are you one of the many women doing your makeup in the dark? On the rare occasion I get the time to wear makeup I’m definitely guilty of this, up earlier than the rest of the house and struggling to make myself look presentable in the dark. Even when it’s daylight I don’t have anywhere that bright to do my makeup properly.

Despite women spending an average of £22k over their lifetime on makeup products and two years of their lives applying them, three quarters (75%) say that they do not have the ideal lighting set-up, according to new research from online lighting retailer, Lighting Direct.

And this is despite 86% of the people surveyed saying that getting their makeup right is important to them and over three quarters (77%) saying that they would like a better lighting solution.

Lighting Direct
Where do you do your makeup?

Does my makeup look good in this?

With so many people concerned about the lack of appropriate lighting when doing their makeup, it probably won’t come as a surprise that seven in ten (71%) check their makeup in another room or mirror to ensure that they’ve achieved a perfect result, and one in ten (12%) get someone else to check it for them – be that a partner, offspring or colleague. I have certainly asked my son on more than one occasion!


An interesting revelation amongst younger makeup wearers was the tendency to take a selfie to ensure that their makeup was as they intended; however, this trend was not evident in makeup wearers over the age of 45. I haven’t actually tried this, though it’s actually a valid idea. Can’t help but think me just getting a decent light would be easier though.

Lighting Direct
Bedroom or bathroom?

Bedroom and bathroom most popular rooms for makeup application

The bedroom is the most popular room in the home in which to apply makeup (45%), closely followed by the bathroom at 42%. Two per cent of people admit to regularly trying to apply makeup on the move – either in the car or on a train.

Kathryn Middleton from Lighting Direct said: “We were surprised to find that so many people do their makeup in the bathroom: aside from the obvious steamy mirror issue, most bathrooms have extremely harsh lighting that can drain colour from the face. It’s much better to try and replicate natural daylight wherever you apply your makeup as then you’ll see your finished ‘result’ in the type light that other people will see you in too.”

Lighting Direct
You don’t want harsh light

Foundation fiascos!

Foundation fails were the most common of all beauty disasters – either being too orange, applying too much or not blending the product sufficiently – and all due to being applied in rooms with poor lighting.

Kathryn continued: “Whilst not all will admit it, many beauty vloggers have a huge array of near professional lighting systems in the room in which they film in order to demonstrate perfect makeup application. Whilst that level of professional lighting is not necessary for the majority of us, getting the right lighting can save us all both time and money by not wasting products and not spending quite so much time applying them.

“We all know that getting our makeup right gives us an extra confidence boost or spring in our step, so investing a little bit of our budget in the right lighting just makes common sense.”

Lighting Direct’s tips for getting the perfect makeup lighting:

  1. Lumens, lumens, lumens – you need bright lighting to see the detail when applying makeup. Choose a lightbulb with around 1350lm (lumens) to provide enough brightness.
  2. Step into the daylight – natural light is the best light for applying makeup, so choose bulbs that closely mimic daylight.
  3. Use dimmers – if you’re applying makeup for a night out, then using a dimmer helps to ensure that your makeup will look great in a range of different lights.
  4. Avoid downlights – downwards directional lights highlight wrinkles, bags, and skin issues making you look – and feel – instantly older, leading to inevitable makeup overcompensation.
  5. Side to side – installing lights either side of where you apply your makeup, 90-100cm away from each other, with the radiance focused at eye level, will maximise the absence of shadows.

Kathryn concluded: “If budget is an issue, then you may not necessarily need to change your lighting fixtures as selecting the right lightbulb could make a huge difference.”

For a selection of makeup friendly lighting and bulbs, visit

Disclosure – this is a sponsored post

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