How to Choose the Right Color Temperature

Color Temperature

If you upgraded your office's ceiling lights, you already know the gains from a well-lit room. Great lighting can benefit not only offices but also homes, industrial buildings, parking lots etc. But you're sitting at your desk and you can't shake off this weird feeling. You can clearly see in your room, but something feels off. So, there you sit in an awkwardly lit room second-guessing your decision.

"Did I make the right purchase, or did I just dump hundreds of dollars?"

Using LED lighting is the best decision you can make for your visibility and cost-effectiveness of your electricity bill. Most people buying LED ceiling lights for their homes or offices though don't pay attention to the color temperature of their output, dealing with more pressing matters in their day. Selecting the right color temperature goes a long way in affecting people’s moods and how their bodies react to your LED lights; it’s not just about the brightness! So which color temperature is right for you?

What is Color Temperature?

Color temperature is represented by a number (the temperature at which the light operates) and a capital letter K for degrees Kelvin. This measure will basically tell you the hue of the white light. The number is assigned using the basis of correlated color temperature (CCT).

The lower the Kelvin rating, the warmer the light and vice versa. “Warm” and “cool” does not describe the temperature at which the light operates, but rather how the light appears to us. A 3000K light will appear more like a standard incandescent light bulb while a 5000K light will a bluish tint to it with a color intensity closer to the sun.

Which White Should I Pick?

The mood you are pursuing will decide what color temperature of LED lighting. This effect is amplified by the amount of white in your room. If your space has white walls and ceilings and you select a warmer hue of white, it will look warmer than if it had a dark color scheme. Conversely, if your room is predominately dark in color, you may want a cooler hue of white, so you can clearly see the room. Choose from three basic tones of white to help you decide what kind of LED lighting is best for your room.

LED Color Lighting

Warm Tones

Warm lights fall under the 3000K-4000K range and have a soft, yellow hue to its white appearance. Lower temperature lighting tends to create an inviting and cozy atmosphere where you can relax and lay back. They are also known to reduce eye strain and fatigue and will least interfere with your body’s ability to create melatonin, the substance that helps you sleep. Typically called “warm white”, this kind of lighting is ideal for intimate spaces like living rooms and strikes a great balance between a relaxing ambiance and a productive feeling.    

Neutral Tones

Neutral lighting is best represented in a 4000K-5000K range and is very popular for commercial and retail lighting purposes. Solutions like high bay LED lights shine in clear and pure white, and are best used to display warehouses and supermarkets where there isn’t a lot of white toning. Like warmer color temperatures, neutral lights do not cause eye strain or other irritations like headaches. Use neutral white LED lighting if you want to create an adequate workspace that makes for a productive classroom or office.

Cool Tones

5700K-6000K LED lights offer the most clarity and a crisp, invigorating ambiance. They give off an extremely white output with a bluish tint that mimics daylight, so they typically aren’t used for residential purposes. The harshness of cooler lighting causes eye irritation and gets in the way of melatonin production and sleep cycles, but this is conducive to alertness and productivity which is why it’s often used in factories and offices. Like 5000K, cooler white light can be used to create a vibrant display area that will attract customers. You’d also find 5700K-6000K lighting in workplace parking lots and stadiums where visibility and activity are important.

Choosing the right color temperature for your space can help you maximize the mood or aura you are trying to achieve. Hykolity offers an essential 4000K-6000K color temperature range in a wide spectrum of LED lights for your purpose. So whether you need soft or vibrant lighting, we guarantee to light up your space with the right LED fixtures! Explore our inventory in the LED dropdown boxes above.