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How to Choose the Right Color Temperature of LED Lightbulb

Buying LED lightbulbs can seem like a daunting task when you are confronted with so many options. Whether you need cool, warm or neutral temperature LEDs depends on how and when you use your home, as well as your home’s interior style and materials.

Answering the five questions below will make choosing your next LED bulbs easier. But first, you’ll want to know the answer to this one: What is color temperature? We’ll explain.

What Is Color Temperature?

Color temperature, a fancy term for how warm (amber) or cool (blue) a light is, is easiest to explain in terms of how sunlight works.

The sun changes color, measured in degrees Kelvin, over the course of the day. Midday readings might be 6000K, or very blue-ish white, while temperatures dip below 3000K near sunset with a very “warm” amber light.

Generally, warm light is anything 3000K or lower, while cool light is 4000K or above. 3500K, a middle ground often called neutral, can look either cool or warm depending on furnishings and other nearby lights.

1. When are you at home the most? If you are at home mostly in the evenings, then warmer color temperatures, such as 2700K LED bulbs, are likely the best option. They are more relaxing, less likely to disrupt your sleep patterns and will provide a similar glow to traditional 60 watt incandescent bulbs.

2. When do you use your lighting the most? 5000K LED daylight bulbs might be a good idea in an office that you use primarily during the daytime, but if you have enough daylight coming in from your windows, consider warmer-temperature bulbs instead that will be more comfortable at night.

3. What are the colors of your walls, floor, ceiling and furnishings? If your home is full of cool colors like black, blue, green or crisp whites, a cool color temperature such as 3000K or even 3500K LED bulbs might be the best bet to complement your decor.

But if you have a lot of natural materials like hardwood floors or cabinets, woven rugs and upholstery in browns, tans, reds or oranges, warmer whites like 2700K LED bulbs will likely enhance your home.

4. What is the style of your home? Traditional and transitional homes typically look best under 2700K LED warm white, because they produce a glow that is closer to candlelight, firelight and gas light once used in classic houses.

Some modern homes, especially those with crisp white finishes, might look better with bulbs closer to the cooler side of the temperature scale. But keep in mind that, even in modern homes, you’ll need light that helps you relax at night, so warmer temperature bulbs might still be the best choice for the bedroom.

5. Do you dim? The classic incandescent bulb was easy to dim and create a warmer amber hue when you did. The first LEDs to hit the market did not dim, which was one reason some people didn’t like them. Manufacturers now make “warm dim” LEDs that go as low as 1600K when dimmed, giving off a more traditional incandescent glow.

The Best of Both Worlds

Ideally, our light would change over the course of the day, just like the sun does. We can re-create that pattern with some new LED light fixtures called “tunable white.” These new products allow us to have daylight-cool white in the middle of the day that matches natural light, giving us the most energetic and active atmosphere when we need it. As the sun sets, tunable white bulbs shift warmer toward traditional incandescent, making it easier for us to relax and sleep.

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Travel Blog Recommendations

Check out this fun article from AmericaNoize

If you like to travel but aren’t sure where to begin your research, travel blogs allow you to be a voyeur and tag along as writers review destinations and amenities on their bucket list. You can learn to cook gourmet food over an open flame or view spectacular photography taken by regular travelers.

1. Carnets de Traverse

Follow the English version on Instagram to gain access to secret places off the beaten path of tourist destinations. The photography is evocative and creates a longing to follow in the bloggers footsteps. After reading their content, unknown places come to life, and you find yourself checking out flight and accommodation expenses.

2. Fresh Off the Grid

Learn how to make mulled wine and beef jerky while you’re camping out and seeing the country. Megan McDuffie and Michael Van Vliet travel across the country in a beat-up Ford Focus. Yet, they produce inspired recipes for campers and backpackers that make cook out food seem gourmet. This site can save you a lot of money without going hungry on the road.


3. Meraviglia Paper

These bloggers live in Northern Italy, and right away you can see that the site is unique. Written in newsletter type and presented in a three-column layout, the Meraviglia Paper reads like a tri-fold brochure. Refreshing photography includes local bakers holding baguettes and chickens digging up breakfast in a museum district. The tasteful writing and low-key vibe recommend the authors as people to ask for advice on where to go and what to eat there.

4. This Is the Place I Was Telling You About

If website names could win awards, this one would get a nod for originality and effectiveness. You want to read it. The bloggers whisper in your ear regarding travel tips for international destinations. Find the best restaurants and boutiques in remote cities and admire self-portraits against tropical sunsets, as the Texan couple who writes the blog regale you with their hypnotic storytelling. They shoot their pics with film and laser in on fun details, like where to get great coffee or find camera film abroad.

5. The Blond Abroad

While this site is a bit commercial, the writer is a California native living the dream. She quit a corporate job to travel the world on a budget, often alone. This is one of many blogs that show solo travelers how to have the time of their lives in exotic locales. The photography is realistic, and the page presents like an open diary of places Kiersten and guest bloggers have visited.

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