The fluorescent lighting that shines in our faces at the supermarket and the doctors’ office is exactly what illuminates our own personal hell. (We’re seeing stars in our peripheral vision and getting eye strain just thinking about it.) When we come home to the ol’ crib, we want nothing but good vibes, and nothing kills the energy of a space more than nasty, overhead lighting. It makes us moody—and not the ~cool~ kind of moody, like our Vans Warped Tour era.
What are we to do? Well, deck the place out with the best mood lighting, of course, for the good kind of vibes we love. Select colors can really make all the difference with how you feel. Want to feel calm? Blue is your sanctuary. Energized? Red will get the job done. Lights are a great way to give you a boost of euphoria, too. There’s evidence that chromotherapy, otherwise known as light therapy, seriously affects mood and might even cure certain diseases. We’re sold, and it makes sense, especially when thinking about ailments such as seasonal affective disorder.
Whether you want to set the scene for sexy times, house parties, or winding down with a sack of Japanese potato chips (no judgment), we want you to curate your lighting, which is why we put together this short list of the best mood lighting in the game. Bring on the vibes.
Philips Hue LED Light Bulbs
Although on the pricier side, Philips Hue is a popular pick known for its high-quality design and durability. (It even has a two-year warranty.) Set the mood through a Bluetooth-powered app on your phone which lets you customize your own shades of colored light. You get a pack of two for lighting in separate rooms, and both can be activated via voice control through Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.
If you’re seeking out a centerpiece that will give you a splash of color when you’re not at home, the Hue Go portable ambiance light is also a top-tier option.
If you’re just seeking out your favorite color to fill your room, these are definitely the GOAT. Speaking from experience, these cast a single color throughout the whole room at a bargain price—and last a long time. Others agree, with its 4.6-star average rating from over 11,900 reviews. (Just make sure you’re ready to commit to whichever color you choose!)
Blisslights Sky Lite
We want to escape from reality and feel like we’re in outer space, both mentally and physically, and this projector is the perfect way to do it. Launch yourself into a new galaxy with lights that mimic green stars and blue nebula clouds. Your guests can either dance themselves straight into a galactic black hole, or the soothing aurora effects can also create a tranquil space if you just want to chill.
Govee Smart Corner Floor Lamp
Add a touch of minimalism to your home with this sleek and slim floor lamp that creates a collage of colors. Plus, once the party arrives, make your lights dance with music mode, which syncs your lights with your favorite jams. With 14 segmented color controls and 28 preset scene modes to choose from, you should have no problem getting your guests to drop their donks to the floor for some dancing—or to the couch for some relaxin’.
USB TV Backlight Kit
Whether you’re having a Borat movie night or streaming nostalgic episodes of Full House, setting the scene is crucial for a hangout. Pop a few adhesive LED strips to your TV for some mood lighting—with 17 different colors to choose from, you can also adjust the brightness 16 different ways to suit whatever you’re watching.
Sunset Projection Lamp
We love jetting off into the sunset, but sometimes we need to bring the sunset to us. Enter: the Sunset Projection Lamp. With 180-degree rotation, the lamp can produce different lights from various angles so you can sit back and enjoy the atmosphere. The lighting is in the shape of a halo, which, hallelujah—our angels are definitely singing. VICE’s own Mary Frances Knapp loves it, too, describing it as “high-drama in effect.”
Globe String Lights
Ah, the OG classic. These may remind you of the basic girls who lived in sorority houses, but these Globe String lights do, in fact, slap. Stretching to 32 feet, there are 10 brightness adjustments and eight lighting modes. They’re also waterproof for when you want to spruce up your patio, but can easily be transported to your living room for your next cocktail party.
LED Cube Light
We are lovers of shapes, and even more so of shapes that light up. Scatter these lit cubes all over your place and make each one a different color with 16 options and four light modes. They operate through rechargeable batteries and last up to 12 hours on a single charge. At-home raves, here we come.
Create your own lighting variation with these geometric LED wall lights. They are touch-sensitive and turn on and off with a simple tap. With colorful slow-change mode, fast-change mode, and flash mode, these have all the vibes for different occasions. Its power supply is also very unique since it doesn’t require an outlet. if an outlet is unavailable, just simply plug into your laptop.
Pop a squat on these LED chairs
Mood lighting isn’t just for viewing, it’s for sitting. This LED chair at Wayfair is weather-resistant, remote operated, and alternates between all the colors of the rainbow for tranquil ambience. We also give you permission to use it as sex furniture, especially this curvy Patio Dining Side Chair with 16 color changes, five brightness levels, and four lighting effects including flash, strobe, fade, and smooth. Both are cordless and run a charge.
Or make your crispy boi glow
Highlight your food and bevy bois with this LED pedestal coffee table that radiates white light. It runs by charging it up, and thank god, because buying batteries is a moolah drainer.
A lava lamp to *feel something*
A lava lamp probably embodies what our soul looks like: fluctuating, colorful goop. Not only do they resemble us, but looking at one automatically transports us into an alternate dimension without…help. Hypnotize yourself with the ~flow~.
We don’t care how old we are, we will always appreciate a star projector that turns our space into a galactic abode. This one has four light speeds, 12 levels of brightness, 16 light effects, a light cycle mode, and a musical flashing mode to simulate the Arctic sky.
No go set the mood, dude.
The Rec Room staff independently selected all of the stuff featured in this story. Want more reviews, recommendations, and red-hot deals? Sign up for our newsletter.