How to make your home more colorful with smart lighting

If there was one smart home trend I imagined as flatlining after the first novelty wore off, it would be colored light. When I was a kid, I was obsessed with anything that could change color, but as an adult, when I installed smart bulbs in my house, I played with the color-changing elements for about 10 minutes, before never using them again.

While colorful automated lighting isn’t for everyone, not only does it still have a place at the table, but new innovations throughout the home are embracing it in new and exciting designs, meaning there are more ways than ever to make this undoubtedly cheerful. idea to bring into your home.

Some of these new products bring such a sense of fun and whimsy to areas of the home that can otherwise feel quite pedestrian, that we almost converted to colorful smart lighting. Check out some of the new and exciting innovations we’ve spotted for every room in the house.

Hugh Metcalf

Hugh is an experienced home and real estate journalist, with a passion for cutting-edge homes and the latest design innovations. Inspired by some of the latest smart home releases from IFA 2022, he’s found some of the best ways to use color lighting in smart technology for modern homes.

1. Daily schedules

smart lighting in a living room

Credit: Philips Hue

In addition to something fun to play with, colored light can be used to change your mood. Smart color lighting like Philips Hue (opens in new tab) has an ever-growing number of features that make them practical, as well as just a clever design detail. For example, you can set schedules so that your light follows your activities throughout the day. A warm amber is perfect for winding down at the end of the day, while something fresher and more uplifting is perfect for your daily yoga session. It’s part of the idea of ​​human-centric lighting, and while these systems are often much more complex, there’s certainly an element of wellness to explore through color-changing lights.

2. The color-changing fridge

LG MoodUP refrigerator

(Image credit: LG)

Color isn’t limited to just smart lighting, of course. LG’s MoodUP refrigerator, unveiled this year, is one of the most impressive kitchen appliances we’ve ever seen. While it can sometimes be hard to get too excited about modern refrigerators, the MoodUP has illuminated doors that can be color-customized using the LG ThinQ app — 22 colors for the top doors and 19 for the bottom. You can also apply pre-selected themes if you’re trying to create a certain mood with your kitchen lighting ideas – for example, for an open kitchen dinner.

Like many color-enhanced smart lighting systems, the MoodUP fridge can be synced to music to change the color in rhythm to whatever you’re listening to, making for the ultimate kitchen disco appliance. Lighting setups can also do this, such as the Philips Hue.

3. Customizable Neon Signs

a bedroom with LED lighting

(Image credit: Twinkly)

It is also good for creating a party atmosphere. If you like more maximalist interiors, a neon lamp can set the mood for a fun space, and now there are smart light versions, like Twinkly, that can be adjusted with the app to create a custom light color combination.

The Twinkly Flex, available from Amazon (opens in new tab), can be sculpted into any shape, whether you want to design a heart, a Picasso-esque line drawing, as depicted in this bedroom lighting idea, or just an abstract squiggle is more your vibe. The Flex can be controlled with an app, introducing a custom color layout, from creating a color block contrast to a subtle gradient.

4. Chromotherapy Shower Heads

a chromotherapy shower head

Credit: Dornbracht

One of the most interesting uses of smart color lighting actually takes place in the bathroom. Brands such as Dornbracht and Graff offer ‘chromotherapy’ shower heads designed with color-changing lights to make the shower experience more therapeutic.

Controllable via compatible apps, with voice commands, or with your Alexa skills, it’s a way to use color psychology to bring an extra level of calm while showering.

5. Expand your screen

smart lighting around a TV

Credit: Philips Hue

Another inventive application of colorful smart lighting is to backlight your TV or PC, for example, to expand the images by mimicking the colors on the screen. This type of smart technology is not exactly new, but used to be built into a TV only.

New products like Philips Hue Play Gradient light strip (opens in new tab) or Philips Hue Play Gradient (opens in new tab) Light Tube, both available from Amazon, can be retrofitted to existing TVs and synced to reflect the colors of whatever you’re watching. The difference is that the Light Strip mounts to the edge of your screen, while the Light Tube sits below or on top of your screen, casting a colored light onto the wall for a fun TV idea in the living room.

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