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Nobody wants to click on a bedside reading lamp that shoots white, bright WAKE-UP-NOW light in your eyes. Mornings are already hard enough! So, what are the best reading lights?
Ideally, you will need a gentle, soothing light that’s still bright enough that you can easily read without straining your eyes, yet buttery and warm enough to let you relax.
Maybe you are not a reader of books, even still, the best reading lights are for more than book readers! They are the perfect amount of glow for crafty crochet projects, journaling, practicing music, or even diving into crossword puzzles.
There are lots of options to consider for reading lights and our criteria for the best ones includes:
- Gentle Lighting
- Ease of Use
We’ve compiled a selection of the 11 best lights and lamps to minimize eye strain so you can focus on reading (or crafting!) Some of these are portable while others can be placed on a flat surface without taking up too much space. A few offer dimmable or adjustable light temperature and one even comes with a timer so it cuts off automatically after 60 minutes. (Perfect for those who sometimes forget to cut off lights or fall asleep reading.)
Whether you need a reading light for when you are on the go or a reading lamp in your favorite reading nook, one of these lights will shine the way for you!
- 💡Gentle, amber hue light that is 99.94% free of blue spectrum light to encourage the production of melatonin in the...
- 💡The Hoogalite is not only sleep friendly, but also lightweight, portable and travel friendly. Our clip-on reading light...
- 💡Flexible, 7-inch gooseneck allows for a customized lighting experience. This is especially useful when reading in bed...
- 💡The Hoogalite features a high capacity, rechargeable 1200mAh lithium ion battery that powers 4 bright LED amber lights...
- 💡Use this clip light as an alternative to wearing blue blocker glasses while reading in bed at night. Hoogalite can also...
The Hooga Clip-on Reading Light is a lightweight, portable, and travel friendly reading light. It produces a gentle, amber hue light that is perfect for reading.
A lot of reviewers love the amber light. It helps them read better in the dark and they found the amber light to be better for reading compared to white light.
A few people mentioned that the battery life is pretty bad. There are also a few who commented that the button on the device is too loud when pressed.
The light’s material is plastic. It is battery operated and it utilizes LED as a primary light source.
If you’re looking for a simple reading light that is good for traveling, then this is the one for you!
View Hooga Clip-on Reading Light on Amazon
- [3 Color & 6 Brightness Adjustable] 3 useful color temperature modes: yellow(3000K), warm white(4000K) and cool white(6000K)....
- [Rechargeable & Long-Lasting] USB Type-C rechargeable which is reversible and thus easier to plug in compared with other...
- [Eye Caring & Ergonomic Design] No flickering and blue light filter design with advanced LED beads. No eye strain any more...
- [Partner Friendly] Special narrow beam angel(90°) design. It is bright enough to the area you positioned and at the same...
- [Product Guarantee] Original patent applied. FCC, CE, RoHS, PSE approved. Worry-free 18-month warranty and friendly customer...
The Glocusent LED Neck Reading Light is a reading light that you fix to your neck. It has three light settings, yellow, warm white, and cool white.
A lot of reviewers love the neck light. It’s easy to use and it doesn’t strain your eyes.
A few reviewers mentioned that the reading light is a bit difficult to charge. A lot of them complained that the neck light isn’t compatible with USB-C type chargers.
The light’s dimensions are 10 x 7.4 x 1.1 inches. It weighs 4.6 ounces. The materials used is Abs and rubber.
If you’re looking for a neck light used for reading, then this neck light is the best for you!
View Glocusent LED Neck Reading Light on Amazon
- Better light quality - The Tenergy 7W Dimmable eye-care LED reading lamp offers a soothing non-flickering light that sets a...
- Powerfully bright - At 530 lumens, you can have a brightly lit workspace or office. With 5 dimming levels to choose from, you...
- Touch control and auto shut off - The touch control panel features a 60 minute timer button that automatically shuts off the...
- Sleek design - A sleek black finish with a polished gloss, this modern desk lamp features a foldable arm and swivel base to...
- Long lasting energy efficiency - These power saving LEDs consume 85% less energy and last 20 times longer than standard...
The Tenergy Desk Lamp is a high quality desk lamp that is perfect for reading. It utilizes a touch control and shut off button that automatically shuts off the desk lamp so that you can conserve energy.
Many reviewers really love the lamp. It’s versatile, sleek, and it provides a satisfying light for reading.
Some reviewers mentioned that the lamp’s life didn’t last very long. From an hour to a year, they complained that the lamp broke easily.
The lamp’s dimensions are 17.48 x 7.17 x 2.99 inches. It weighs 3.04 pounds. The material used is plastic with a glossy finish.
If you’re looking for an affordable desk lamp, then this lamp is the best option for you!
View Tenergy Desk Lamp on Amazon
- 💡LATEST SMD LED TECHNOLOGY - Most suitable LED for eyes reading lights. Light up 3X Broader area evenly than normal LEDs....
- 💡MOST COMFORTABLE EYE-CARE READING EXPERIENCE - 2 Brightness Settings. 3000K WARM LIGHT COLOR - Most perfect color...
- 💡LOVE TO READ IN BED WITHOUT DISTURBING OTHERS? Our book light use DIFFUSOR OPTICAL LENS TO GIVE SOFT LIGHT. No direct...
- 💡BUILT-IN RECHARGEABLE 1000MAH LI-ION BATTERY, NO MORE WASTING MONEY ON BATTERIES - 1000 cycles life, equal to 3000 AAA...
- 💡MULTIPURPOSE & WARRANTY - This Rechargeable Book Light can be used for more than just reading. It can be used as a...
The Vekkia Rechargeable Clip-On Book Light provides a comfortable reading experience that isn’t heavy on the eyes. It is easy to use and it doesn’t require any batteries.
A lot of reviewers absolutely adore the light. It provides a bright light that is perfect for reading, some reviewers even used it as a bedside lamp.
A few reviewers complained that the battery life is too short. Readers who binge for hours mentioned that the battery life is pretty inadequate.
The light’s dimensions are 5.5 x 1.8 x 4.7 inches. It weighs 3 ounces. The material used is plastic with a painted finish.
If you’re looking for a rechargeable book light, then this is the best product for you!
View Vekkia Rechargeable Clip-On Book Light on Amazon
- 📖【Amber Light & Eye Protect Function】:Amber Book Light that is free of blue light to reduce eye strain. The round head...
- 📖【Memory Function & 5 Brightness Modes】Memory Function: Always remember the brightness last used,when turned on again,...
- 📖【360° Flexible Gooseneck】:Reading Light with 360° flexible neck allows you to bends and twists to the exact...
- 📖【USB Rechargeable】:The book light built in 1800mAh battery,that powers depending on the brightness level 1-5, it can...
- 📖【100% Satisfaction Guarantee】flowlamp LED Reading light comes with 60 days money back guarantee, 2 years warranty. If...
The Flowlamp Clip-On Reading Light is a rechargeable reading light with a 360 flexible neck that allows you to bend and twist to your desired position. It has five brightness modes to suit your different usage.
A lot of reviewers commend the brightness of the lamp. The different settings make it possible to use the lamp in different kinds of ways, not just for reading.
A few reviewers complained that the lamp didn’t last very long. Some reviewers manage to use the lamp for a couple of weeks and some of them used the lamp for a couple of months.
The lamps dimensions are 6.02 x 3.9 x 2.05 inches. The weight is 9.1 ounces. The materials are plastic and metal.
If you’re looking for a multi-purpose clip-on light, then this is the best choice for you!
View Flowlamp Clip-On Reading Light on Amazon
- Wonderfully Gentle on the Eyes: Shines a flicker-free light that brightens your space without harming your eyes; ideal for...
- Endless Lighting Possibilities: Create the perfect ambience with our LED desk lamp’s unique combination of 5 color modes &...
- Functional USB charging port: Don’t sacrifice charging for lighting - built-in USB port keeps your phone at a full charge &...
- Adjustable Design: Freedom to cast the perfect spotlight, tilt the head up 135 degrees & swivel 90 degrees; the base tilts...
- Energy Efficient LED: Featuring outstanding environmental performance, switch your traditional desk lamp to ours to help...
The TaoTronics LED Desk Lamp is a wonderful desk lamp that is gentle on the eyes. You can choose from five different color modes and seven different brightness settings.
Many reviewers really love the desk lamp. It’s affordable, easy to use, and is unique, because of the different types of settings.
A few reviewers complained that the LED bulb in the lamp is irreplaceable. They complained that if the bulb burns out you’ll have to replace the entire lamp and not just the bulb.
The lamp’s dimensions are 12.99 x 7.09 x 15.75 inches. It weighs 0.32 ounces. The material used is metal with a painted finish.
If you’re looking for a desk lamp that has different types of settings to fit your mood, then this lamp is just perfect for you!
View TaoTronics LED Desk Lamp on Amazon
- ☀Led lamp with 5 Lighting Modes & 10 Brightness Levels : Led lamp/Task Lamp with 50 brightness choices to meet the needs...
- ☀ Desk Light with Eye-caring & Eye-friendly: Our LED light are composed of 64 high-quality lamp beads, shines a...
- ☀Home Office Lamp with Sensitive Touch Control & Memory Function: Touch sensitive panel allow you to control over power,...
- ☀ Table Lamp with Multi-angle Adjustment: Freedom to adjusted to your preferred angle. The base of this adjustable table...
- ☀ Reading lamp with Higher Color Rendering Index: More than 85 color rendering index, to provide you with the true colors...
The JUKSTG Desk Lamp is an eye-friendly desk lamp with a sensitive touch control and memory function, perfect for reading. You can choose from five lighting modes and ten brightness settings.
A lot of reviewers said that this lamp is the best lamp they bought! The different types of settings makes it unique it perfect for home or work.
There are a few reviewers who complained about the life of the desk lamp. It didn’t last very long for some of them and there are others who didn’t manage to use the lamp at all.
The lamp’s dimensions are 5.9 x 5.9 x 16.92 inches. It weighs 1.14 pounds. The materials used are ABS + PC+ Aluminium alloy metal with a painted finish.
If you’re looking for a multi-purpose desk lamp for your home, then this lamp is the best option for you!
View JUKSTG Desk Lamp on Amazon
- ❤️4 LEDs Total & 3 Level Brightness. 2 Leds Each Arm, 1 Spotlight and 1 Wide Angle LED each side. 1st Click is Wide angle...
- ❤️Rechargeable Design- With inbuilt lithium battery, The battery takes only 2.5 hours to get fully charged and can last...
- ❤️Flexible Arms- Bendable and strong, allow you to choose the best lighting angle in different environment, simple and...
- ❤️Portable Lightweight- Wear it around your neck to free your hands, extremely convenient and practical.The LED Book...
- ❤️Wide Application- Perfectly suitable for indoor or outdoor, such as reading, night jogging and mending, writing, work,...
The LEDGLE Rechargeable Neck Book Light is an adjustable book light with flexible joints so you can adjust the light to your liking. The neck book light has three different brightness settings.
Many reviewers love the quality and the battery life of the lamp. Whether you’re reading or doing some crafts such as knitting, this lamp will provide the light that you need.
A few reviewers complained that the lamp wouldn’t work unless plugged in. For the majority of the reviewers the lamp works perfectly fine, but for these folks, the lamp doesn’t work without being plugged in.
The light’s dimensions are 10.24 x 5.5 x 1.38 inches. The weight is 4.7 ounces. The material used is plastic with a painted finish.
If you’re looking for a practical neck light, then this neck light is the best option for you!
View LEDGLE Rechargeable Neck Book Light on Amazon
Bookmark Reading Lamp
French designer Léonard Kadid designed this reading lamp which uses another book as a base. The table lamp named Bookmark lamp, is made of single piece of plywood bent in two places. The lamp has no base, means material and space saving. Check out the pictures.
Minimalist Reading Lamp
Lady LED is a minimalist reading/table lamp designed by Israeli designer Omri Barzeev. This lamp uses three small but strong LED lights. Here is some information by the designer, “Combining materials in a new way, lead me to create Lady LED desk lamp. The low temperature of the LED enables to contact the three LED lights with a heat shrinking tube (the shrinking tube shrinks in diameter when heated) that functions both as a constructive and as a design feature holding the LED lights without any screws. The tube shrinks on the LED lights following the LED lights lines, in a natural soft way creating an elegant clean look. The legs of the lamp have two functions: holding the lamp, and as the movement mechanism to enable the lamp to move up and down and turn around, lighting in a wide range of angels.” Check out the pictures.
Lumio lamp by architect and designer Max Gunawan is designed like a beautiful hardcover book. To turn it on, open it up and to turn it off, simply close it. The lamp has built-in magnets which allow you to mount Lumio on metal surfaces in many different configurations. The LED lights draws their energy from built-in lithium-ion battery which lasts for up to 8 hours. You can charge the battery via micro USB from your PC/Laptop or compatible USB charger.
Top Features of the Best Reading Lights
Buying a reading light or lamp is not a huge investment, but you want to make sure you get the most bang for your buck! Here’s a short guide covering important features to keep in mind as you choose your source of reading illumination.
Plug-In Reading Lamp or Portable Reading Light?
There are many different reading lamps and lights to consider. The first thing to know is whether or not you want a portable light (like a clip-on reading lamp) or a standing bedside reading lamp.
Portable Book Lights: Often battery operated, small, lightweight, and portable. These are perfect for travel or even nighttime reading, especially if you have a partner who goes to bed earlier than you! Booklights often clip onto your book or a nearby surface. Some modern designs loop around the neck.
Stand Alone Reading Lamp: There are a wide variety of reading lamps that may be fitting for your bedside, reading nook, or desk (for more unique desk lamps, check out our post here). Often these can be plugged into a wall outlet and feature adjustable necks with a stable base. Since these have a consistent power source, they may also have other features like a USB port or charging base.
If you prefer a floor lamp, check this list of creative floor lamp ideas!
Reading Light – Color & Brightness
First of all, natural light is the best. However, in the evening or when you need light to shine on a specific task to help you get it done, having the correct lighting can make all the difference.
- Yellow Light: Warm, friendly, and a great solution for reading or relaxing. It is the best solution for when you are reading before bed. (2700 – 3000 K)
- White Light: Generally bright, intense, and helps you focus. Many times this type of lighting is installed in the kitchen and office to keep you alert. (3000 – 5000)
- Blue Light: Cold and potentially harmful blue light often comes from screens. Exposure to blue light decreases melatonin and may delay sleep for up to 3 hours. It is crucial to avoid or limit blue light before bed. (5000+)
Dimmable, Smart, or Adjustable Lighting
Having the ability to adjust the brightness of your light means you can use your lamp at different times of the day. This is especially important if you don’t have a lot of natural sunlight.
Positioning (Focused Lighting)
Reading lights and lamps are designed to shine light where you are directing your attention. This is one of the most important factors when selecting a reading light because it is one of the best ways to minimize eye strain.
Power Source for Reading Lights
Often portable lamps are battery-powered or rechargeable. Make sure to get information about how long the battery life is or if the lamp is easily and quickly rechargeable. That may mean you have a USB cable for charging or a rechargeable battery.
Corded reading lamps are perfect for setting up in your home. They often have a low profile and can fit into small spaces or be set up inconspicuously. Just make sure you have a plug nearby!
- Incandescent: Classic household bulbs. Affordable, energy INefficient, but super affordable.
- Halogen: Long life, very bright yet warm lighting.
- CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lighting): Produces a cold white light.
- LED: Many reading lamps now use LED lighting because it is affordable and energy-efficient. LED bulbs are long-lasting and often feature dimmable options at very little added cost.
This will depend entirely on your personal preferences. Perhaps you want something that you can plugin and leave on your bedside table. Alternatively, you might want a clip-on book lamp that moves with you when you turn over on your side OR when you are traveling!
Whichever you choose, the best reading light needs a light bulb or lamp that emits (or can be adjusted to emit) a soft yellow, warm light.
The optimal color temperature range is between 2700 and 3000 Kelvin.
You should only need 450 Lumens for your reading light or reading lamp to minimize eye strain. Lumens measure the total output or brightness of your bulb. Fewer lumens will provide a dimmer light.
When you use a reading light, the light is directed exactly where you will be concentrating. So, you do not need overly intense light, in fact, a light too strong may cause discomfort or problems while you are reading.
Warmer light is better before bed or at nighttime as it won’t disrupt your melatonin production. Whiter light is fine during the daytime or for tasks in which you need to stay focused and alert.
Reading nooks are typically cozy and calm spaces. Using an amber or warm light or lamp helps support relaxation and comfort.
Dimmable lights are a great option, especially if you aren’t sure what time of the day you may be reading.
Otherwise, LED is becoming the standard lighting solution and is a great option for warm light, energy efficiency, and durability.