How to Navigate LED Lighting + A Giveaway from GE

Replacing Lights to LEDThese days the lighting aisle is increasingly difficult to navigate. I’ve had numerous requests from readers asking if I could share how I choose LED, efficient lighting, that is warm and bright- yet inviting. That’s easier said than done! Efficiency is a big issue for Emmett, myself, and our home, especially since moving to Salt Lake City where air quality is a huge issue. We experienced inversion (air pollution in the valley) for the first time this winter and it really opened our eyes. Our main goal when renovating is to make our house the best it can be… that includes power, electric, water, and gas- right down to the insulation and lightbulbs. I’m thrilled to announce I’m partnering with GE Lighting in honor of Earth Day (which I LOVE celebrating) to update the lighting in one lucky reader’s entire home. That’s right- a complete house will be updated with LED lighting for the best and most efficient outcome possible! Click through to get my lighting tips and enter the giveaway.

Best Light Bulbs for Ceiling FansDid you know that lighting eats up 10% of the average household energy bill? That’s quite a bit! LED bulbs use up to 90%(!) less energy than traditional lighting. I’m happy to report that our entire home is LED and we didn’t have to compromise design for efficiency at all. If you’re interested in making the transition or would just like to learn how to be a better bulb shopper, here’s what you need to know.

LED-Lighting-GuideThe lighting aisle doesn’t have to be daunting. Prior to shopping for lightbulbs… ask yourself these questions:

  • Can it dim? If your fixture has a dimmer, then you have to buy bulbs that are compatible. The packaging will state whether the bulb is capable of dimming.
  • What brightness are you looking for? Have you heard of the term lumens? Lumens measures the amount of light a bulb emits… the higher the lumens, the brighter the light.
  • Do you like a warm light or cool light? I prefer a warm or neutral toned light. They’re inviting, cozy, and give a softer, bright glow. They’re perfect in residential settings. Whereas cool light (blue hued), has a harsh, clinical brightness to it. You often see cooler lights in commercial settings or ultra modern spaces. The color is totally your personal preference! Lighting comes in a variety of shades and each has a temperature rating, measured in degrees Kelvin. The lower the Kelvin number the more yellow the light, and the higher the Kelvin the bluer the light. Most big box stores have a display that shows the color spectrum, making it easier to shop.
  • Where will the bulb be installed? This might be the most important question. Depending if it’s being installed indoors, outdoors, in a small laundry room, or a large great room, the location will certainly influence all of your answers to the above questions.
  • What type of fixture are you using? There are so many beautiful light fixtures on the market, once you finally choose one, make sure to read the specifications and select a lightbulb accordingly. This is also where bulb shapes comes into play! Here’s the misconception… many people assume that LED bulbs only come in the ugly (in my opinion) spiral shaped bulb. Today, there are lots of shapes on the market that look just like a traditional, old school lightbulb. That’s a big thing for me when considering the overall aesthetic. Bulbs play a big role in the look of a fixture, sometimes I prefer the traditional shape, while other times I opt for a round bulb. If the bulb is exposed, I typically prefer a plain white, round or oval bulb. If the bulb is totally enclosed, it really doesn’t matter. Emmett likes the spiral shaped ones and will sneak them into the enclosed fixtures. I never notice and that’s the point! It’s also important to source fixtures that are compatible with new technology. These days, the majority of new fixtures will work with LED bulbs.

Energy Saving Light FixutresCheck out some of my favorite LED products… they’re not too cool, not too warm, and work perfectly with the fixtures in our house. Remember the sconces in our recently finished guest room? They’re dimmable and I installed the relax bulbs below. They’re a warm, soft white light perfect for cozy vignettes and inviting rooms. These bulbs would be great in intimate spaces like the bedroom, family room, and dining room.

GE Relax LEDAnother soft option is this standard, dimmable bulb below. We’re currently using this one in our living room. We have so much natural light during the day, we never turn it on until the evening. It’s not too harsh, but bright enough to watch TV and socialize in the space.

Soft White LED

How to Choose Lightbulbs for Your HomeThe refresh bulbs below are a great extra bright option. They’re also dimmable. We’re experimenting with these in our master bedroom sconces (look for that reveal soon)! Because of the location, the space is not as bright as the guest room, so we needed something with a little more energy. So far, we’re loving them. I would describe them as a cooler light… they’d be great for active spaces like a workout room, office, laundry room, or even outdoor living areas.

GE Refresh LEDLast but not least, I think this is the best neutral bulb on the market. These reveal bulbs aren’t too cool or warm. The bulbs are designed to filter out dulling yellow light to give you bright color contrast and whiter whites for better clarity. I’d recommend this bulb for kitchens, bathrooms as well as studios or office spaces where clarity matters most. If you’re curious as to which bulb belongs in which room, GE also has a special guide for their HD collection that tells you which light should go where. Super handy if you don’t have the time to research!

GE Reveal LEDIn honor of Earth Day (that’s tomorrow, guys!) I have to share some facts and benefits that sort of blew my mind… energy saving LED bulbs:

  • last 25 times longer than traditional lighting (less bulb changing… that’s something we all can get on board with)!
  • use 70% – 90% LESS energy.

With the energy saved from switching a 60-watt bulb to an LED one, you could…

  • watch ~200 episodes of your favorite hour-long TV show.
  • power an oscillating fan throughout an entire workweek for 7 weeks.
  • microwave breakfast, lunch, AND dinner for an entire year.
  • save $6,000 over the lifetime of the bulbs (hello vacay)!

Best Light Bulbs for LampsIf every American replaced ONE traditional bulb with an LED bulb, we would…

  • prevent 7 billion lbs. of greenhouse gas emissions (equivalent to eliminating 648,000 cars).
  • save $566 million in annual energy costs (enough to light 2.6 million homes for an entire year).

By 2020, 50% of all residential lighting sockets in the United States will be LED. That’s only 3 years away… so you might as well start the transition. Congratulations to the top 10 cities that are already exceeding at LED technology:

  1. Seattle
  2. Minneapolis
  3. Oklahoma City / Tulsa
  4. St. Louis
  5. Richmond
  6. Orlando
  7. Hardford / New Haven
  8. Milwaukee
  9. Nashville
  10. Phoenix

To many of my international readers- great job! I’m sure your country is ahead of the curve.

How to Navigate LED LightingI love what GE stands for when it comes to their commitment to LED and efficient lighting… and I wanted to offer one of you the opportunity to update your ENTIRE HOME! If you want to do something this Earth Day, enter the giveaway below and make your home and lifestyle more efficient.

Enter to Win (open to US residents only):
1. Take the GE pLEDge – it takes 10 seconds, is free, and there are coupons waiting for you!
2. Comment below… tell us about your favorite light fixture in your home.

The winner will be selected at random in one week. Good luck!

As a blogger, nature lover, and adventure seeker, I’m excited to do my part and reach as many people as I can, sharing facts and knowledge to make our planet a better place. Happy Earth Day, you guys!! Let’s do something positive together.

*This Earth Day post is brought to you in collaboration with GE Lighting. I truly love what they stand for, and I actually use their products in my own home. All content, ideas, and words are my own. Thank you for supporting the sponsors that allow us to create unique content while featuring products we actually use and enjoy! 

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  1. Katie Richards says:

    My favorite light fixture in my house is a large off-white drum semi-flush fixture in our dining room that I loved so much that we moved it from our old house to the new.

  2. My favorite is in my kitchen. I have a small kitchen and the light future is small and modern.

    1. Sometimes a little unexpected modern piece steals the show! I have a feeling your light fixture is fantastic in your tiny kitchen, Risa. xo

  3. Stevie Storck says:

    This post was super timely for me (aside from Earth Day!) in that I recently attended an ASID event on The Science of Color and Light. I was already convinced I need to up my light bulb game and your was super helpful! My favorite light fixture in our house is the vintage-inspired crystal chandelier hanging in our master bedroom. We’re still renovating the room, but having that fixture up makes me so excited for when we can finally move our stuff back in!

    1. First of all, the ASID event sounds amazing! Secondly, your vintage chandelier sounds equally as dreamy. I can totally relate to renovating pains… it will happen and it will be worth it, Stevie! Trust me. xo

  4. We are moving to our first house in 6 weeks, and I’m already excited about the light fixture we are putting in the kitchen!

    1. Ahh!! So exciting. I bet it’s amazing, Fran! xo

  5. Our favorite fixtures are the Austin wall sconces from Barn Light Electric in all our bathrooms.

  6. B. Williams says:

    I can’t pick a favorite! I’m mid – kitchen remodel and my two new favorites are a gorgeous glass, pendant light with a wood accent and a black iron/ white linen chandelier. Dreamy!

  7. We are very fortunate to live in the house my mister’s grandparents built in the 1940s. It is a lovely little cottage with several of the original light fixtures. My personal favorite is the pink pressed glass fixture in the hallway.

  8. Nikki Dziedzic says:

    I have an ikea chandelier that I love!!! My husband of course, hates it. 😂

  9. I love our round globe entryway light fixture! It is so simple and beautiful.

  10. My favorite lighting fixture in my house is the simple light in our nursery. It’s so warm and inviting and my son stares at it constantly!

  11. Dana Moss says:

    We have slowly been replacing the “boob” lights in our house. Out of the 3 we’ve updated, my favorite is my craigslist score — a West Elm globe pendant light that hangs in our dining room. It’s amazing what a new light fixture can do to change a room. Thanks for the giveaway!

  12. Mitchell Moss says:

    In my home, my favorite is probably a modern-style desk lamp from Target. It’s a globe of half glass, half bronze, suspended from a thin bronze right angle pipe with a white “marble” base. It sits on the bar cart next to the couch and is the perfect amount of light early in the morning before anybody has any business being up.

  13. My fave is the first table lamp that we bought for our new house , it’s super oversized and yet neutral and just perfect for our living room ; lightbulbs are another story 😜 I’m always looking for something soft yet efficient .

  14. Love my entry chandelier

  15. I love my lamp that looks like real wood :)

  16. Christian Marie says:

    My favorite light fixture in my house is my 1930s hanging light. It’s purple and white glass and it’s just gorgeous. It’s one of just many original light fixtures in our house but it’s my favorite.

  17. Melanie Huttner says:

    My favorite are my mother of pearl light fixtures in my master bath :)

  18. My fav right now is a wood bead chandelier that I made, that hangs in our kitchen. It’s not perfect at all but stands out from the rest of our outdated lights. We just bought our house after living in our camper for 1 and 1/2 years, while we worked off paying our debt. And that was with one toddler and through one pregnancy!!! But now we are fixing and upping our new home! We will definitely use this great post on lighting and oh man I am crossing my fingers to win the drawing!! Thank you so much!!!

  19. Kendra Dinh says:

    My favorite fixture is my arc light in our living room. It give a classic mid century modern feel to our home and yet still comfortable. I’m starting to change all our light bulbs into LEDs to reduce cost and save energy. We all need some more energy. :)

  20. Sky Duarte says:

    Lamp shades in living room

  21. I took the pledge. My favorite light fixture is the pendant light in our dining room.

  22. I love my DIY version of the Lindsey Adelman brass chandelier. Partly because it’s really great looking in my dining room, but mostly because my dad figured it out by trial and error and made it for me (it’s so great that Lindsey provides the instructions for free online…but, yeah…the wire that is spec’d did NOT fit!! :) ) Thanks for hosting this giveaway!

  23. Elizabeth says:

    My favorite fixture is the 3 globe flushmount we’re about to put in our laundry room that’s originally from the 70’s!!

  24. Well done on the article, very informative and I hope it causes people to make changes! Thank you for highlighting this issue!! My fave fixture in my house is my living room light that came with our house!

  25. Eek! I hope I’m not too late! We are moving into our first home this summer and this would be SO amazing to win. I went and took the pledge. Thank you!!! Crossing my fingers!

    1. It says I commented April 28th at 12:02 am…. but it is actually April 27th at 8:06 pm (eastern time zone). So weird? I hope I’m still eligible! xoxo!