What you need to know before buying a table lamp

Do you ever sit at your desk for hours with just an overhead fluorescent light guiding your way? Or natural light from the window showering across your desk? Only to discover that your eyes get irritated and itchy and your head starts to ache? It’s a common reaction to this situation. Well, in this article, we’re looking for a solution to this irritating fact. We discovered that you can fix this problem with one simple solution: add a quality desk lamp to your work or study area.


A desk lamp has the purpose of illuminating your work area to help reduce eye strain and other annoying symptoms. But finding the perfect desk lamp for your office, library or study can be a difficult task, because there are many factors to consider.

Not one of us is like the other and we all have different needs when choosing the right desk lamp. So here are some questions you should consider helping you find your next desk lamp.

What’s the purpose of your desk lamp?

Obviously, the most basic purpose of a lamp is to provide light. But a desk lamp holds a much more practical purpose. You will be increasing your productivity because the right kind of lighting can affect your mood in a positive way and reduce eye strain.

How much light do you really need?

Even if there’s no evidence that bad lighting will affect your long term vision for long term, there is a lot of evidence that poor lighting will have short term effects, like headaches and eye strain. This can be avoided by having the right amount of illumination evenly spread across your work area.

The measurement of illumination is the light distribution on a flat work area called foot-candles. The most acceptable range for most home and work office desk lamp lighting is somewhere between 30 and 50 foot-candles.


A more common measurement for light output is the Lumen. A common range for task lighting is 1000-1400 lumens. Quite a few desk lamps come with dimmer switches and a high/low switch to help you find the right fit for your desk top.

Where will you put the desk lamp?

A desk lamp’s primary job is to provide a light that reduces eye strain. The position of your lamp is a crucial element that makes sure you’re getting the best output from your desk lamp. A good rule of thumb is to place your light about 40 cm to 90 cm away from your work area, depending on your needs. Fortunately, many desk lamps today come with adjustable arms that allow you to find your desired height.

If you are right-handed, place the desk lamp on your left side and vice versa. This will tremendously reduce the amount of shadows cast across your workspace.

Power and electricity

Do you want a desk lamp with a cord or not? You have many choices from lamps with cords that plug straight into a regular wall jack. Or maybe you want a cordless desk lamp? In today’s market, there are many new LED desk lamps that come with rechargeable USB ports or battery operated desk lamps. Choosing what type of power you want to run your desk lamp with is definitely a personal and practical decision you should consider.


Talking about power, not every desk lamp is as energy efficient as the next one. The least efficient is the incandescent desk lamp with the most efficient being the LED desk lamp. You should also consider how much of the light will end up on your energy bill, if that’s a concern for you.

What other features to look for in a desk lamp?

Decor is another feature that you might want to consider. Most times, desk lamps are chosen for their practical uses. If you can find one that is practical and also goes with the ambiance of your work space, then it’s just perfect. Take height into consideration, as many desk lamps today are adjustable to meet any one individual’s needs. Brightness levels are also an important feature. The amount of brightness often has to do with the type of bulb being used. But there are many lamps today that have brightness control switches.

The material

Desk lamps are made from a few different kinds of materials. The most common being plastic mold, a flexible metal neck that is covered in plastic, ceramic, wood etc. The choice of what material you would like your desk lamp to be solely depends on if it is a practical fit to your already existing office.


Consider price and warranty

Budget is usually a big factor to consider. Some lamps are very cheap, but they may lack many vital functions, like light adjustment. While others can have a higher price tag, they generally give you full control over your desk top lighting needs. We suggest you always consider what type of warranty comes with the desk lamp you are interested in buying.

Consider the desk lamp types

Based on the bulb types, there are 5 types of desk lamps.

Halogen Desk Lamp. These are great for reading at your desk, because they offer a bright natural light that helps you focus on the text. The bright white light of a halogen lamp decreases eye strain, while the halogen light bulb will last about 2 to 3 times longer than a regular bulb. Also, they use 10% to 20% less energy than a standard light bulb.

Incandescent Desk Lamp. These use a typical light bulb that produces light from the heat of the filament burning inside the bulb. This type of lamp gives off a warm slightly yellowish glow, which makes it an excellent light source for the evening time. These desk lamps run a little cheaper than the others, but the bulb does not last as long.

Full-Spectrum Desk Lamp. This is a great choice for graphic designers, interior designers or jobs where seeing color in detail is essential. These lamps make color look amazing, because the light covers the electromagnetic spectrum from infrared to ultraviolet.That’s what the sun does when it covers the Earth in light. The full spectrum has been found to increase workplace productivity.

Fluorescent Desk Lamp. This type of desk lamp comes in several shapes and styles, which makes it easier to find one that goes with your decor.A fluorescent desk lamp gives out a nice, even coverage across your workspace, with very natural looking light.They are also very efficient, lasting almost 10 times longer than traditional bulbs, while only giving about 30% of its heat.

LED Desk Lamp. LED lights produce a lot less heat than all the other lamps mentioned above. They come in many unique designs to make for a sleeker looking desktop lamp.An LED is a directional light, which means it creates a concentrated beam of light, rather than sending light out in all directions.It will produce light with zero glare and no stray light shining back into your eyes. Also, they can last up to 50,000 hours, even though they are pricier.


As you can see, buying a desk lamp is not as easy as walking into the lamp store and choosing whatever catches your eye. It’s a whole process, but one that will bring a lot of light into your life

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