Ways to Brighten up your Home this Winter

Feeling a touch of the winter blues? As the nights get darker, the temperature gets (shockingly) colder and the days get cloudier, it’s only natural to feel a little under the weather (quite literally). However, with Christmas around the corner, there’s every reason to be cheery.

Here are our top tips for brightening up your home this season – regardless of the temperature outside!

Light during the Winter Months

SAD Light

Feeling a little glum at the perpetual darkness colder months bring and finding it harder to wake up when the light outside tells you it’s still 11pm at 7am? You’re not alone. It’s estimated around 4% of us get clinical depression during the winter months, with an additional 10-20% of us suffering from a condition known as SAD. Seasonal Affective Disorder (to give it its full name) is a condition that appears as the seasons change (usually during the autumn and winter months) and our bodies’ internal clocks are disrupted. It’s especially prominent during the colder months of the year as we produce less natural melatonin and less serotonin- essential hormones for our body to keep happy and healthy.

One recommended way to treat the condition is what’s known as a SAD lamp (or lightbox) to help your body adjust to the changing light. There’s a huge variation on offer – from ‘official’ SAD lamps which are medically proven and designed to help your body adjust to what’s lacking, to what’s known as a Dawn Simulator to help you wake up and go to sleep more naturally.

Light Colour Covers and Curtains

It might sound stupidly simple, but the furnishings and fabrics you use in a room can make a huge difference to how depressing it feels during winter months. Blackout blinds, for example, are unnecessary light blocks when it’s a subtle shade of ebony outside, while a stylish black leather couch can eat up any natural rays from outside.

If you’ve already got light-coloured curtains or furnishings, a good clean could make all the difference and, if you don’t, an abundance of covers are available from most linen or homeware stores. Try and mix complimentary shades to make the throws and curtains a feature rather than just a necessity – you may even find a result you’ll stick with them the whole year through!

Additional Light Sources?

Sure the sun may not be shining, but it’s not the only place you can get a little bit of illumination from. While you don’t want to have every light in the house on (for energy and money saving purposes), opting for a few strategic LED sources around your humble abode could make all the difference. Consider false candles on mantelpieces or shelves, for example, or replace existing bulbs with much brighter, energy-efficient LED alternatives.

If you’re feeling really chilly, there’s even a satellite channel to turn your TV into a log fireplace (we kid you not ). 20% of the Norwegian population tuned into the programme when it was shown on the state broadcaster NRK – who needs a real log fire, eh?! Our favourite tip (naturally) will always be in using clever positioning of lights and mirrors to maximise existing light sources – and, if you want to combine, the two –  don’t forget we’re the UK’s largest LED mirror and cabinet supplier.

Now if that doesn’t brighten up your winter, we don’t know what will!

Got any additional tips on adding light to your home during winter months? Drop us a message on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook

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Jamie Bell is the managing director of Illuminated Mirrors. You can find Jamie on Google+; he also occasionally updates the Illuminated Mirrors Facebook page.

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