The Best Floor Lamps for Reading

The-Best-Floor-Lamps-for-Reading

If you’ve been searching in vain for the best floor lamps for reading, we’re here to help you today and guide you through finding the most effective lighting for your needs.

Floor lamps are by no means the only solution but they offer incredible flexibility and you can find something in all shapes and sizes to fit just about any décor you have in place.

We’ll look today at a full dozen of the very strongest models on the market so you won’t need to spend days trawling around department stores lost in a seemingly endless maze of lamps that all seem so similar you end up with analysis paralysis and walk away empty-handed.

If you’re particularly impatient we’ll look first at our 2 top picks overall so you can check out if either of those would work well for you. If so, you’ll have saved even more time and you can jump straight in. If not, keep reading for our main reviews where you can explore all 12 lamps in a little more depth.

Before we do that, we’ll give you some handy pointers on buying the best floor lamp for reading the easy way but first, those overall winners:

Our #1 Pick: Brightech Litespan Reading and Craft Floor Lamp

Brightech-Litespan-LED-Bright-Reading

We considered a range of factors from price and overall value through functionality and design. The Litespan won out for the degree of choice you’ll get and the way in which the cool white light works wonderfully for reading. You’ve also got that first-class 3-year guarantee and all the brand heritage you expect from Brightech.


Runner Up: Brightech Jacob LED Reading and Floor Lamp

Brightech-Jacob---LED-Reading-and-Floor-Lamp-for-Living-Rooms-&-Bedrooms

In second place, it’s Brightech again with the Jacob floor lamp coming with much more traditional styling but with the modern and cost-effective touch of LEDs rated for a full 20,000 hours and ensuring you can read your favorite book for hours on end without tiring your eyes.


Comparing Incandescent bulbs vs Fluorescent vs LED

Bulbs make a big difference to the effectiveness of any light so before we get properly started today, we’ll give you a brief breakdown of 3 of the main choices of bulb at your disposal:

  • Incandescent Bulbs
  • Fluorescent Bulbs
  • LED Bulbs

Incandescent Bulbs

Incandescent bulbs come into their own with task lighting.

Since they emit a very soft white light ideal for reading purposes, it’s well worth considering this type of bulb.

With incandescent lights, the tungsten filament inside the bulb is heated and this leads to the emission of light. You’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to sizing, wattage and voltage.

This tried-and-true method has been in action for over a century and shows no signs of disappearing from currency any time soon.

These bulbs are extremely cheap as well as widely available and they won’t stiff you on the performance front either.

For bargain hunters, it’s got to be incandescent.

Fluorescent Bulbs

This type of light bulb uses mercury and an electric current gives off short-wave UV light. When this happens, the inside of the lamp is coated with phosphor and that’s what causes the fluorescent glow.

These bulbs are far more efficient than incandescent bulbs in terms of converting energy. They are also more expensive. In return for the higher sticker price, though, you’ll reap longer-term savings since they will use less electricity.

The serious downside of fluorescent bulbs is the fact they contain mercury. This causes them to be classified as hazardous waste so you’ll need to dispose of them sensitively. The other snag with mercury is whether or not you consider it safe to expose your children to this so if you are planning to create a reading area for your kids, it’s probably wise to sidestep fluorescent lights.

LED Bulbs

The third type of bulb commonly used today comes in the shape of LEDs.

Light-emitting diodes produce the light you’ll read by in this kind of bulb. While fluorescent bulbs are more efficient than incandescent bulb, LEDs sit in a class of their own at the top of the table.

Growth in this segment of the market is staggering and projected to keep on rising.

Unlike fluorescent lights, there’s no warm-up period required and you’ll be straight up to full brightness as soon as you turn the light on.

Generally, LEDs do not emit light in every direction, but this is by no means a deal-breaker for reading purposes.

Book lights make use of tiny LEDs and batteries.

While LEDs are undeniably more expensive upfront, you can reap enormous savings over a lifetime since they’re also ruthlessly energy-efficient.

Other Factors with Bulbs

As with all aspects of your buying decision, there’s no one-size-fit-all solution, so take this information and mold it to your needs so you get the most effective bulb for you.

There are, though, a handful of other elements you should factor into the equation so we’ll touch upon these briefly before we show you how to choose the right floor lamps for reading.

  • Get The Fitting Right: The easiest way to avoid confusion and make absolutely certain you don’t mistake a bayonet for a screw fitting is to take your old bulb with you when you go shopping. If you’re buying online, make sure you determine precisely which type of fitting you’ll need to avoid the frustration of being unable to fit it in your lamp. Screw fittings, bayonet fitting and pronged fitting are the most popular types so get this right before you go any further
  • Think About Color and Brightness: Brightness is expressed in terms of lumen output or watts. When the prevailing bulbs were all incandescent, wattage was the most common form of expression but this actually relates to power. With the advent of energy-efficient bulbs, lumen output came to the fore as a more accurate expression of brightness. If you’re thinking of a bed table lamp for reading, an output of 400 lumens will be more than fit for purpose. A spacious living room, on the other hand, calls for more like 2000-3000 lumens depending on the exact dimensions of the space. Color is measured on the Kelvin scale. This is intended to measure temperature, one reason why lights are often described in terms of warmth. Whether you want stark whites, warm yellows or another color entirely is down to you but you should again focus on this before progressing further. Make it personal and get the best color and brightness for your mood and intended usage
  • Don’t Overlook The Shape: Last but by no means least, bulbs come in a vast array of different shapes from globes and sticks through candles and spirals without, of course, forgetting the uber-traditional bulb shape. The shape of the bulb directly affects the spread of light along with the angle.

With that groundwork laid, it’s time to show you how to choose the right floor lamp for reading.


How To Choose the Right Floor Lamps for Reading

It goes unsaid that when you’re looking for the best floor lamp for reading, you should consider the health of your eyes first and foremost. We’ll kick off with what you need to think about on that front then we’ll walk you through 5 other key factors to help you get the right lamp for reading the easy way whether that’s a floor lamp or another kind of specialized light. You need to be creative and get what works best for any given situation rather than expecting a magic bullet.

The Best Type of Reading Light for Your Eyes

It’s best to read in natural light but this is obviously not always possible. One of your key motivators when selecting a reading lamp should be avoiding as much strain and fatigue on your eyes as you can.

  • Task lights make a great way to get localized lighting so you get just the amount of light you need for the task at hand with a directed beam of lighting. You can use floor lamps, goosenecks and table lamps as fixtures to achieve this. Opt for incandescent bulbs with task lighting
  • Get some mood lighting by popping some lamps onto end tables. Avoid table lamps since they’re not properly adjustable
  • Reading lamps are highly effective and do exactly what their name suggests. Pop it above and behind your head for best results

Reading Light So You Don’t Disturb Your Partner

How about if you like to read in bed but you don’t want to keep your partner awake as you inch toward the end of the page-turner you’re currently engrossed in?

While we’re talking about reading lamps today, there’s one obvious solution that doesn’t involve a lamp at all: invest in a Kindle, iPad Mini or similar electronic reading device so you won’t need any light whatsoever and you won’t need to get out of bed to switch anything off when you’re ready to sleep yourself.

Assuming you’re not a tech-fan and you actually want a physical reading light to match your physical book, you could consider one of those miner-style lights that come on a headband if you don’t find the idea ridiculous and you don’t feel it would be uncomfortable.

LightWedge lights are another option if you want a reading light that won’t disturb your partner. All light shines onto the page with none seeping toward your lover trying to get their beauty sleep.

Task lamps also work particularly well for focusing the light exactly where you want it.

Create a Great Study Environment for Children

The amount of homework our children get these days means they’ll need a graet study environment at home so they can focus on their work without straining their eyes or feeling in any way uncomfortable. So how do you make their lives easier without spending a fortune?

Again, it’s worth stating that the optimum scenario is to harness natural light but this is by no means always practical or possible.

Since reading and studying calls for a greater level of luminance than the average overhead light provides, you should consider some task lamps – many of which we’ll review – so you’ll shed more brightness on the job at hand. Using regular lights and task lights in tandem is an even stronger option giving you the best of both worlds.

Sadly, too much light can result in too much glare – something we’ll examine next – so keep your eyes peeled for lamps with an inbuilt glare-reducing feature.

For a child-friendly and safe solution, you’re better off using LED light bulbs. Unlike traditional fluorescent bulbs and tubes, these contain no mercury making them completely kid-friendly while still performing their intended role perfectly.

Rather than just throwing your kids into a room as is and expecting them to work to the best of their ability, give them a helping hand and create an ideal study environment. When you see their grades, all the extra effort will be worthwhile!

Glare-reducing Features

If lights comes pinging off a reflective surface, reflective light occurs. Not only does this force your eyes to work harder, straining or tiring them, in the longer-term it can actually damage your eyesight so it’s worth taking action before causing irreparable harm.

3M Polarizing Task lights come with a polarizing filter to mitigate this glare and keep your eyes fresh and strong not laboring along. This step alone can slash glare by fully 80%.

If you’re experiencing headaches or red and tired eyes after reading with your current set-up, these are strong indicators that it’s time to think about uprating your lighting to reduce glare and protect your eyes at the same time.

Reading Light for Your Bedroom and Living Room

Where you read makes some difference to the type of lighting you should choose.

In the bedroom, we’ve explored some different options that not only help you to read more easily but also stop your partner being molested by light when they’re trying to fall asleep. If you live alone, you obviously don’t need to factor this into the equation and a simple, standard reading lamp will be perfectly fine.

In the living room, especially during the day, aim for natural light if at all possible. While that might not seem the best advice to give in an article about floor lamps for reading, we’re not here to sell you on anything in particular, simply to guide you toward the best solution for you.

If you can’t get enough light in or the day is drawing to an end and you want some focused light from a lamp, task lighting works wonders. You’ve got a great deal of choice here so think about design and how well the lamp fits with your décor then think about how effective that light will be when it comes to illuminating the book you’re relishing.

Using a Task Lamp and Complementing This With Overhead Lights

To underscore something we already mentioned, one of the hardest-hitting ways to get the most light on the subject when you’re engrossed in your book is to combine task lamps with the lighting you already have in place so you’ll get a great overall environment allowing you to focus on the job at hand and power through your latest blockbuster.

Right, with that background in place, we’ll laser in now on 12 of the best floor lamps for reading with some short, punchy reviews. We’ll draw your attention to where these lamps stand and fall and you’ll have a pre-prepared shortlist to simplify your buying decision, saving you time and money.


12 Best Floor Lamps For Reading Reviews

1) Brightech Litespan Reading and Craft Floor Lamp

Brightech-Litespan-LED-Bright-Reading

First up and our overall winner in these floor lamps for reading reviews is one of many entries from the stellar Brightech.

Available in a range of colors and finishes to mesh with most rooms, the cool white light is ideal for reading and any intricate craft work where you need to focus without straining your eyes.

The design of this lamp would probably work best in a stripped-down minimalist home but it’s not so stark it wouldn’t fit into a more traditional space and you’ve got that choice of colorways to make your decision easier.

Since it’s so rugged yet flexible, you can pop this floor lamp into your kids’ room without worrying about them damaging it. The LEDs are also perfectly safe for children with no mercury anywhere near them.

While you’ll get more than enough brightness to read by, this lamp is also dimmable so it’s eminently multipurpose and you’ll be able to set the mood for a movie or relax into your evening with a less harsh glow.

The inbuilt bonus, as with all LEDs, is that when the power bill hits the mat, you’ll make savings month in and month out with this energy-efficient floor lamp that’s tailor-made for reading and a range of other activities.

Things We Liked

  • Power-saving LEDs
  • Ideal design for children
  • Gooseneck and dimmable for flexibility

Things We Disliked

  • Some complaints about lifespan

2) Brightech Jacob LED Reading and Floor Lamp

Brightech-Jacob---LED-Reading-and-Floor-Lamp-for-Living-Rooms-&-Bedrooms

Next in our lineup, we’ve got another reading and floor lamp from the mighty Brightech, again powered with cost-effective LEDs.

Where the first model we looked at is sleek and modern by design, this elaborate 3-light tree is much more traditional and finished in gold to set off any drawing room or living space.

The trio of bulbs comes together to deliver 2400 lumens of light, more than enough for extended reading sessions without fatiguing your eyes.

With all bulbs blazing, you’ll get enough brightness to illuminate an entire room even without relying on overhead lighting. You can also choose to cut off 1 or 2 of these bulbs for a much more muted ambiance.

With omnidirectional pivoting, you can angle the light exactly where you need it most, excellent news if you’re looking to get in some reading time.

You’ll get the trademark 3-year Brightech warranty giving you complete peace of mind and removing any reason not to give this outstanding floor lamp a try. What are you waiting for?

Things We Liked

  • Luxe, antique style design
  • Lights pivot through a full 360 degrees
  • Energy-efficient LEDs lasting 20,000 hours

Things We Disliked

  • Reasonably costly but still great value

3) TROND Halo LED Gooseneck Floor Lamp

TROND-Halo-11W-F-LED-Gooseneck-Floor-Lamp-for-Reading,-Crafts

This gooseneck floor lamp from TROND is yet another LED lamp designed for many purposes but exceptional if you spend a lot of time reading.

With the dimmer stepping down through 5 levels of brightness, you can tailor this to the job at hand, whether that’s focusing on a book or providing a relaxed and dim glow while you edge toward sleep. You can also vary the warmth of the lighting through 5 different stages making this a remarkably versatile lamp.

Glare is reduced to an absolute minimum with no ghosting or flickering. A few disgruntled users have moaned that this does happen over time but you should make your own mind up on that front.

Thanks to the proprietary diffusion film, the light can be directed just where you want it with incredible precision.

For a retro lighting solution that won’t end up burdening your eyes or hitting you too hard when the utility bill drops, road test this awesome floor lamp and you won’t be disappointed.

Things We Liked

  • Dimmable light with 5 modes
  • Anti-glare and flicker-free
  • Focused lighting with none seeping from intended target area

Things We Disliked

  • Some complaints about flickering developing over time despite lamp being designed to prevent this happening

4) Brightech Sparq Arc LED Floor Lamp

Brightech-Sparq-Arc-LED-Floor-Lamp

Now for something completely different even if the brand remains the same. Yes, it’s another Brightech out to play.

The innovative arched shape renders this lamp a wonderful way to read on the couch with exactly the lighting you need. Although nice and bright, it’s not so searching that it will irritate sensitive eyes either.

Despite the killer looks, assembly couldn’t be much easier and you’ll be up and running – or down and reading! – more or less straight out the box.

As with all LED lamps, you’ll get the twin benefits of highly focused lighting and energy-efficiency making the Sparq Arc an attractive option for a Christmas gift.

One thing to bear in mind is that these lights don’t work so well with smart homes in that you’ll be unable to use the lamp with a timer or a wall switch. In all other respects, you’ll get outstanding value from a brand you can trust with looks to die for and all the light you’ll need for reading. What more could you want from a reading lamp?

Things We Liked

  • Superb, eye-catching design
  • Bright enough for reading but won’t hurt your eyes
  • Built to last 20 years

Things We Disliked

  • Don’t work with timer or wall switches

5) Brightech Madison Modern Nightstand

Brightech-Madison---Mid-Century-Modern-Nightstand,-Shelves

The reason we have yet another Brightech up next is not because we have any particular affinity with this brand but simply because they have such a stranglehold on this space and completely dominate it.

While the set-up is rather less streamlined than some of the more minimalist models we reviewed, you’ll never end up knocking the lamp to the floor when you’re reading in bed since it’s attached to the unit itself. You can double up with a storage area as well.

If you’re a smart home fan, you can use your favorite digital assistant to turn it on and off using voice commands as a lovely extra touch.

As with all LEDs, you’ll get up to 20 years of use, saving money each month at the same time since they are so energy-efficient. And, as with all Brightech products, you’ll get that winning 3-year limited warranty for a completely stress-free purchase.

Things We Liked

  • Impeccable brand heritage at a reasonable price point
  • Side table included with charging function inbuilt

Things We Disliked

  • A relatively cumbersome unit

6) Light Accents Metal Floor Lamp

Light-Accents-150-Watt-Metal-Floor-Lamp-with-Side-Reading-Light

Light Accents offer a wide spread of configurations with this metal floor lamp.

The model we tested has a separate reading lamp on the side with a main lamp up above. This gives you plenty of freedom to tailor your lighting to your requirements without needing separate lamps.

Although it doesn’t come with a dimmer, you can easily add one if you want even more customization.

You might expect from appearances that this lamp would be pretty pricey but it’s almost unbelievable value for money and built to last into the bargain.

You can choose between a number of different bulbs but we would suggest rolling with the manufacturer’s recommendation of LED bulbs up to 150 watts for best results.

If you’re looking for a pocket-friendly reading lamp but you’re not prepared to compromise on build quality or performance, pop this Light Accents on your shortlist as it delivers in fine style.

Things We Liked

  • Great choice of colors and designs
  • Works best with LED bulbs
  • Fits in any room of the house

Things We Disliked

  • 1-year warranty less than generous

7) Brightech Maxwell LED Shelf Floor Lamp

Brightech-Maxwell---LED-Shelf-Floor-Lamp

Guess what’s up next? That’s right, it’s yet another Brightech lamp!

This model is another that comes with onboard storage so if you’re living in a smaller apartment, it might not make best sense. If, on the other hand, you’re lucky enough to have a larger home and you want a real conversation piece for a reading lamp, read on…

If you enjoy smart home devices and controlling your lighting with voice commands, this floor lamp for reading works with all the major virtual butlers assuming you have the requisite enabled device.

Whether you want mood lighting, ambient lighting or sharp focus so you can read page after page of that latest Stephen King, this is a supple and versatile floor lamp that covers all bases.

With that famous Brightech guarantee keeping you safe for a full 3 years, there’s no reason not to pop this lamp on your shortlist and start reading in comfort without straining your eyes throughout the holiday season and for many years to come.

Things We Liked

  • Great brand heritage and performance combined
  • Unit equipped with plenty of storage and display space
  • Compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant

Things We Disliked

  • Not great for confined spaces

8) PHIVE LED Floor Lamp

PHIVE-LED-Floor-Lamp-for-Reading,-Dimmable-Gooseneck-Standing-Lamp

If you want a design-driven classic that’s not a case of form over function and you’re operating on a tighter budget, this PHIVE LED is the obvious solution.

Although you’ll only get a guarantee for the first 18 months, that’s about all we can say against this budget-friendly floor lamp with striking good looks and a very adaptable functionality.

You’ll get 4 modes and a dimmer you can tweak through 5 levels of brightness. This gives you plenty of freedom whether you’re reading, relaxing on the sofa or eating your dinner. The one lamp is good for pretty much everything.

Things We Liked

  • Show-stopping looks at a price you’ll love
  • Multipurpose lamp not limited to reading
  • Straightforward assembly

Things We Disliked

  • 18-month warranty could be longer

9) Aaron 3-Light Floor Lamp

Aaron-Aged-Brass-3-Light-Floor-Lamp

For a 3-light floor lamp taking on board a trio of 40-watt bulbs to illuminate your reading session a treat, check out this Aaron classic.

Weighing 10 pounds, you’ll get a rock-solid and stable floor lamp with 3 separate lights allowing you to fully customize the angles with each head tilting through 180 degrees and swiveling fully 360 degrees.

Although it’s labelled retro and vintage, we don’t think this lamp is quite such a good match with modernist spaces so you should think carefully about whether it will fit well with your design scheme.

If you’re happy with the aesthetic, there’s little else we can say to knock this effective trio of reading lamps and it also comes in at a pretty competitive price point.

Things We Liked

  • Great swiveling heads
  • Antique brass finish for an injection of class
  • Solid and sturdy while still a looker

Things We Disliked

  • Looks better in traditional spaces than modern homes

10) Kenley Floor Lamp

Kenley-Natural-Daylight-Floor-Lamp

This lamp provides the next best thing to natural sunlight which, let’s face it, is absolutely perfect when you’re curled up with a book any time of day or night.

The sturdy base means there’s no danger of your precious lamp toppling over and it would slot in neatly to just about any room in the house.

While the commanding design might polarize opinion, we feel this reading lamp looks sufficiently different that it would make a great gift if you know someone’s tastes well enough to be confident they would appreciate it.

Lightweight and extremely portable, this task light will give you plenty of faithful service without breaking the bank. We really can’t recommend it highly enough.

Things We Liked

  • Replicates the feel of natural sunlight around the clock
  • Helps to keep you alert so ideal for study purposes
  • Fully adjustable

Things We Disliked

  • Design not to all tastes

11) Ikea Floor and Reading Lamp

Ikea-201.109.03-Lersta-Floor

No collection of the best floor lamps for reading would be complete without an entry from the Scandinavian legend Ikea.

You can pick up this lamp with or without a bulb and, like every Ikea product, you’ll get that winning combination of style, performance and price that ensures everything they make sells like hotcakes the world over.

The adjustable nature of the arm mean you can direct a piercing beam of light exactly where you want it, one of the reasons this is a firm favorite with readers.

The slick aluminum is a breeze to clean and looks the part, too. For a dependable and affordable reading lamp from a brand you can trust, look no further.

Things We Liked

  • Fully adjustable arm for directional lighting
  • Stripped-down and minimalist design
  • Easy to wipe down and clean

Things We Disliked

  • As with all Ikea products, assembly can be tedious

12) KEDSUM LED Floor Lamp

KEDSUM-Dimmable-Eye-Care-LED-Floor-Lamp-with-Remote-Control

Last but by no means least in our search for the best floor lamps for reading is this KEDSUM LED.

The 10-watt lamp represents superb value while the 12-watter will run you a little more so is great if you’ve got a more fluid budget.

The sleek monochrome aesthetic would work well in a bachelor pad or a loft conversion while it’s understated enough to serve a turn in a more traditionally-styled house as well.

The reflective LEDs are flicker-free and replicate natural light so it’s a great weapon if you’re looking to fight back against the eye-strain and fatigue you can get from reading with a sub-par lamp.

Things We Liked

  • 5 lighting modes as well as 5 dimmers
  • Get natural feeling light with no flicker
  • Fully adjustable by remote control

Things We Disliked

  • Uprated model is pretty expensive but baseline model great value

Conclusion

We very much hope you’ve enjoyed this bumper guide to the best floor lamps for reading.

You should now be in a very strong position to get the most fitting lamp for your reading requirements without taking too much time laboring over the bewildering number of options in this crowded market.

Any of the 12 floor lamps we reviewed are worthy candidates but you should focus firmly on your needs and the size of the space you need lighting so you can get the best personal solution.

Come back soon for more great ideas, buying guides and first-rate products we test rigorously and stand behind fully.

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Peter - Design Expert
 

I’ve always been fascinated with creating designs on my own or simply looking through home improvement books to get new ideas. My love for the art of design has grown over the years, and it’s all been based around furniture. Whether it's exquisitely made with high-quality features or delicate enough to feel like a feather, I’ve dived deep and immersed myself in it. Piece by piece, I’m familiar with everything from classical designs to more contemporary styles and brands. Enjoy the site and I hope you become a regular visitor for all your furniture needs.

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