Ceiling Lights

Ceiling Lights for the Home Buyer's Guide

With such a wide variety of styles to choose from, ceiling lighting can be a challenge. Selecting the right fixture involves considering the effects of layers of light and lighting design elements that can be a little more complicated than simply choosing a favorite look. Narrowing down the differences between ceiling lights ensures you’ll find the right fixture for your space.


How to Choose the Right Ceiling Light

To create a comfortable room, the lighting should spread around the area to reach the corners and most often used places. Because each part of a room will be used differently, there are no one-size-fits-all lighting fixtures. An effective lighting solution for a room may require multiple light sources to fully take advantage of the space. 

One way this is achieved is by creating a lighting plan that relies on different layers of light. 

Each layer provides a specific type of light to minimize or manipulate brightness and shadow, adding easier visibility and depth. 

What Are Ceiling Lights?

There are ceiling-mounted light fixtures of every shape, finish, and size. While installed overhead, recessed lights, pendants, and chandeliers each stand out in style, and their unique heights and characteristic features earn them their own categories. You can read more about pendant lights and chandeliers in our other buying guides.

Ceiling lights specifically refer to flush and semi-flush ceiling fixtures. 

Also called close to ceiling lights or overhead lightsflush and semi-flush fixtures cast an ambient light to illuminate a room or hallway. They are a reliable single-lightsource for a small room, or as a foundation when used as part of a comprehensive lighting solution.

The shades cast light downward to allow a wide spread and cover a larger area. The amount of light and brightness will depend on the type of diffuser shade the fixture uses. Some semi-flush lights also provide a reflective glow of light against the ceiling. The extra space between the shade and the ceiling can produce an attractive accent light to emphasize the design of the light fixture or the room itself.


Styles of Ceiling Lights

Close to ceiling lights are not limited in size or shape because of their specific installation method. They are instantly recognizable in any home, and range from classic and traditional globe styles to more unique lines and materials. The shade helps define the style of the ceiling light and is often made of frosted glass or another heat-resistant light diffuser. There’s a look for every room and design theme. 

Some of the styles to look for with ceiling lights include the familiar bowl shape. These dome-shaped shades rest against the ceiling and can spread light around the room below. They can be found in round or oval dimensions, or even have pointed square corners.

The urn style ceiling light takes the rounded bowl ceiling light and exaggerates the dome to make it deeper at the center point. Bowl and urn ceiling lights are often decorated with transparent etchings or other desig