Last updated: August 5, 2021

Welcome to our large daylight lamp test 2021. Here we present all the daylight lamps we have tested in detail. We have compiled detailed background information and added a summary of customer reviews on the web. We would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you find the best daylight lamp for you.

You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should definitely pay attention to if you want to buy a daylight lamp.




Summary

  • Daylight lamps imitate natural daylight in terms of brightness and colour temperature. These can be roughly divided into three categories: Daylight floor lamps or daylight ceiling lamps, daylight lamps for light therapy and full-spectrum daylight lamps.
  • Daylight lamps are used in many areas. They can be used for lighting, for light therapy, for plants and in photography.
  • When used regularly and correctly, daylight lamps for light therapy are excellent for stimulating the production of serotonin and thus for preventing or counteracting seasonal winter depression (SAD).

The Best Daylight Lamp: Our Picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a daylight lamp

What is a daylight lamp?

A daylight lamp is an artificial light that simulates daylight. It resembles both the brightness and the colour temperature of a sunny day.

Daylight lamps are often used for light therapy for seasonal winter depression (SAD). (Image source: pixabay.com / MichaelGaida)

These daylight lamps are used in many different areas. Daylight lamps for light therapy are a common variant. These are mainly used in autumn and winter months to counteract fatigue and seasonal winter depression (SAD).

How does a daylight lamp work in light therapy?

The artificial light of the daylight lamp should hit the retina of the eyes. With sufficient irradiation, the melatonin level is lowered and more serotonin is produced. Melatonin is often referred to as the sleep hormone. Reduced production therefore leads to less tiredness and fatigue. Serotonin is called the happiness hormone and is produced in the pituitary gland, a hormone gland in the diencephalon.

In general, daylight lamps in light therapy are attributed with an increased sense of well-being, better mood and improved performance.

In plants, the use of daylight lamps leads to improved growth and photosynthesis. It is important to note, however, that daylight lamps cannot replenish the vitamin D household. Unlike the sun, daylight lamps do not have UVB rays, which is why the effect of daylight lamps is too small to have any influence on the vitamin D household.

The following video is an NDR production on the subject of "Light therapy against winter depression" and illustrates once again the importance and effect of light for people.

For whom is a daylight lamp useful?

Daylight lamps that are suitable for light therapy are especially suitable in the cold and dark autumn and winter months for people who want to improve their mood.

They are used especially for a lack of light and seasonal winter depression (SAD) to produce more serotonin. However, daylight lamps are also excellent for the desk, office, living room, kitchen or as make-up light in the bathroom.

Daylight lamps or full-spectrum daylight lamps are often used in photography to imitate natural daylight as closely as possible. (Image source: pixabay.com / Pexels)

But daylight lamps can also be very useful for plants. The daylight lamp provides a lot of light and makes overwintering easier for some plants. In addition, the artificial light promotes the growth of the plant and stimulates photosynthesis.

Daylight lamps are also used in the field of photography. In this context, the main focus is on daylight-like lighting conditions and the colour temperature for photos. In this way, pictures should look natural and reflect a normal visual impression under a clear, sunny sky.

What does a daylight lamp cost?

Daylight lamps in general are available in a wide, price range. Price differences in daylight lamps for light therapy can usually only be determined by quality differences in materials, construction and design.

However, you should pay some attention to the tube or bulb of the lamp, as this can have an influence on possible flickering. In the effect of daylight lamps for light therapy, practically no differences can be determined from 10,000 lux, since in this range it is only a matter of correct application.

Daylight lamp type price
Daylight floor lamps/daylight ceiling lamps 30-200€
Daylight lamp light therapy with basic function (on/off) and 10,000 lux 40-70€
Daylight lamp light therapy with more functions (dimming function, timer, smartphone connection) 70-300€
Full-spectrum daylight lamps 10- 40€

What are the alternatives to daylight lamps?

No real alternatives to daylight lamps can be named here. On the one hand, daylight lamps themselves are an alternative to natural daylight. Of course, the lamps do not completely replace natural daylight, but they can have positive effects in many different areas.

Daylight alarm clocks are a similar variant. However, they are not really an alternative to daylight lamps, as they are only meant to imitate the sunrise in a dark room. This is more about gentle awakening than actual positive effects on the mind or full illumination of a room.

Decision: What types of daylight lamps are there and which is the right one for you?

Daylight lamps can be roughly divided into three categories, which differ in certain characteristics. Accordingly, there are:

  • Daylight lamps or daylight ceiling lamps
  • Daylight lamps for light therapy
  • Full-spectrum daylight lamps

The decision for a type of these daylamps depends on the desired application. The category of light therapy day lamps is probably the most frequently sought-after variant. In the following, we will describe the three categories in more detail. We will explain the advantages and disadvantages, which may help you to make your decision.

What are the characteristics of daylight floor lamps/daylight ceiling lamps and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

Daylight floor lamps and daylight ceiling lamps are lamps with brightness and colour temperature similar to daylight.

Advantages
  • Already available at relatively low cost
  • Optimal for make-up
  • Ideal light for working
Disadvantages
  • Usually not suitable for light therapy
  • Colour temperature can be perceived as cold

These are used in many areas, such as offices, to create a pleasant working environment. But they are also ideal for waking up in the living room or kitchen. In addition, these daylight lamps are often used in the bathroom to provide optimal lighting for make-up application.

What distinguishes daylight lamps in light therapy and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

Daylight lamps for light therapy are probably the most common variant when looking for daylight lamps. The term "light shower" is also often used here.

Advantages
  • Many positive effects
  • Easy to use
Disadvantages
  • Regular use necessary
  • light is usually perceived as cold

When used regularly and correctly, these lamps are used to prevent or treat tiredness, fatigue and seasonal winter depression (SAD). They usually have 10,000 lux, which corresponds to an application of 30 minutes per day. The light of these daylight lamps is white and often has a blue tinge, which is why it is usually perceived as cold. It makes colours more intense and contrasty.

What are the characteristics of full-spectrum daylight lamps and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

Full-spectrum daylight lamps not only imitate natural daylight, but do so in the full colour spectrum of natural light (7 rainbow colours). Thus, full-spectrum daylight lamps also contain short-wave ultraviolet radiation (UV-A and B 290 to 380 nanometres(nm)) and infrared radiation.

Advantages
  • Full colour spectrum of natural daylight
  • Most closely resembles actual daylight
Disadvantages
  • Usually somewhat more expensive
  • Mostly only needed in photography and lighting technology

This light is often referred to as healthy light or natural light. The human eye does not recognise any difference from actual daylight. These lamps come closest to natural daylight and are therefore usually somewhat more expensive. These types of daylight lamps are mainly used in photography and lighting technology.

Buying criteria: Use these factors to compare and evaluate daylight lamps

In the following, we would like to show you which criteria you can use to compare and evaluate daylight lamps. This will give you a good overview and help you decide on a suitable product. In summary, the important buying criteria are as follows:

  • Illuminance/size
  • Dimmability
  • Variable inclination
  • Colour temperature
  • Light source

In the following, you can read exactly what is hidden behind these criteria and what role they should play in the decision.

Illuminance/size

The criterion of illuminance or size of the lamp is probably the most important purchase criterion. The former is usually specified in lux.

Full-spectrum daylight lamps cover the entire colour spectrum of natural light and are thus most similar to it. (Image source: pixaby.com / torsmedberg)

Lux is the unit of how much light from a light source reaches a certain surface (corresponds to lumens per square metre). That is why products usually also indicate the illuminated area. Light therapy devices in particular should have 10,000 lux. The following table provides a brief comparison of different lux ranges.

Example Lux
Well-lit office 500 Lux
Real daylight on a sunny day in summer Up to 100,000 Lux
Daylight on an overcast day approx. 20,000 Lux

So you can remember a rough rule of thumb: The less lux, the longer you have to sit in front of a daylight lamp to achieve the same effect.

Dimmability

The dimmability of daylight lamps is usually a matter of taste. However, this feature can be very useful as it helps your eyes to get used to using a daylight lamp. Few people complain of headaches or burning eyes when using daylight lamps for light therapy. In this case, getting used to a dimmer is a sensible option.

But a dimmer function, which allows the brightness to be adjusted as required, can also be very practical when using daylight lamps in offices, bedrooms, kitchens or bathrooms.

Variable inclination

The criterion of variable inclination of a daylight lamp depends on the intended application. An adjustable tilt angle of the entire daylight lamp or of the stand can be very practical to adapt the lamp to individual needs.

Colour temperature

Daylight lamps often have a white light, whereas incandescent lamps tend to give a warm light. The colour temperature (light colour of a lamp) is given in the unit Kelvin. The following table gives you a brief overview of the most important Kelvin differences:

example Kelvin
light of a warm-white lamp less than 3300 Kelvin
lamps in schools and offices mostly 3300-5300 Kelvin
daylight lamp 5300-6500 Kelvin
lamps in schools and offices mostly 3300-5300 Kelvin
full-spectrum lamps 5500 Kelvin (white point)

Illuminants

The light sources in daylight lamps can be LED lamps or halogen and incandescent lamps. It is important to pay attention to the quality of the light source. They should not flicker. Flickering light causes headaches for some people or is unpleasant for the eyes.

You should also find out whether the bulb is generally replaceable, at what price replacements can be purchased and how easy it is to remove the bulb. However, with many daylight lamps for light therapy, it is common that a simple replacement of the bulb is not possible and that a new daylight lamp is necessary accordingly.

Facts worth knowing about daylight lamps

How and for how long should daylight lamps be used properly?

Many manufacturers recommend using the lamp directly after getting up in order to wake up more quickly and recharge your batteries. The light of the light therapy lamp should fall on the retina of the eye. However, lateral irradiation is also sufficient, as you should not stare into the lamp.

With a daylight lamp with 10,000 lux, you should regularly sit in front of the lamp for about 30 minutes. The eyes should be open and a correct distance is essential (it is advisable to check the manufacturer's information). Generally speaking, the further away you are from the lamp, the longer you should use it.

What should be considered when using a daylight lamp?

It is very important to mention that you should never look directly into the light of the daylight lamp and not for too long in order to avoid damage to the retina. In addition, a correct distance to the lamp is very important.

It is also important to note that daylight lamps can compensate for a lack of sunlight to a certain extent, but they have no effect on a person's vitamin D level.

With all this information, you should always pay attention to the manufacturer's instructions and directions. In case of depression, it is essential to consult a doctor, as daylight lamps are only suitable for seasonal winter depression.

Do daylight lamps cause skin ageing and sunburn?

No. Since they do not have UV-B rays, they do not lead to skin ageing or sunburn. However, this is also the reason why daylight lamps cannot stimulate vitamin D production.

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