Generally, whenever one talks about lighting a bathroom, a wall mounted fixture above the mirror props up immediately in one's mind. Even though, this is the most common type of lighting fixture known to people since last century, there are wide varieties and styles of lighting fixtures that are now available in the markets all over the world.
Task lighting: Task lighting should allow you to groom yourself efficiently, not create shadows and special effects, although no doubt it's fine if you can easlily incorporate those suitably in your lights arrangements. For task lighting around the mirror, place the light fittings on each side of it. The lighting should illuminate the person before the mirror rather than focus on the mirror. Generally speaking, the lights should illuminate your face fully and minimize shadows under your eyes and chin. It's also possible to wish to install lighting inside the bathroom cabinets so it is easier to consider things placed inside. Also install lighting fixtures over the bath area and toilet.
Ambient lighting is another part of light layering. These are usually your typical uplights. They direct light upwards to allow the light to bounce off the ceiling and into the rest of the room. It softens the light and creates a good glow. Next is accent lighting. This is the kind of lighting that will give an additional spark to the lighting of the room. You can choose to dim it or increase the glare depending on your needs.
There is no rule such that the bathroom lighting should be provided only in the ceiling or is better if it is provided at the sides or on top of the mirror. One has to fix the bathroom lightings according to one's taste and the mood that he or she wants to bring into the room. Even for a small bathroom, people, these days, go for two or more lighting fixtures. Thus, lighting is the most important factor to be considered in any modern bathrooms.
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