10 Best Staircase Lighting Ideas For Your Home

Home is where the heart is, and lighting is a fundamental aspect that gives you that cozy feeling. Your staircase needs good lighting so there are no unwanted accidents due to poor visibility. The great news is that you can make the lighting a delightful feature beyond the functionality and set the staircase’s ambiance.

1. LED Lights

LED lights allow much room for creativity in lighting your staircase and provide a unique ambiance. You can buy LED lights in strips that you can place just about anywhere on your stairwell, and they come in various colors that allow for some design flair. Some LEDs are even remote-controlled!

LED lights are more cost-effective and easier to install and remove if you want to change things up after a while. You can buy LED strips in a specific color or ones that can change color to spice up your lighting to change the mood of your staircase.

LED Lights Under The Tread

Illuminating each step by placing LED strips under each tread will provide ample lighting while creating a wow factor. Tread lighting works excellently with floating stairs. Still, it can also accentuate any other staircase style.

LED strips below stair steps

By placing the lights underneath the tread of each stair, the lighting source will appear phantom and look stylish. LED lights are the easiest option, but there are other types of lighting available to highlight the tread.

LED Lights On The Stair Side Borders

An endless strip lighting transition along the stairs’ sides feels continuous and free and looks magnificent with colored LEDs. If you don’t like the constant look, you can use separate LED strips and highlight the riser or structural cut for a more staccato ambiance.

LED Lights On The Staircase Walls

You can use the staircase walls to your advantage by placing LED light strips on the borders. If your wall has texture or divine wallpaper, this lighting will make the wall features pop while providing the needed staircase illumination.

Why Are LED Lights A Great Option?

Besides looking beautiful, LED lighting is energy-efficient and uses 75% less energy consumption than incandescent lighting. LED lights are more durable and offer better quality lighting than other types of lighting, and you can play around with many LED colors.

2. Recessed Stair Lights

Have you ever been to the movies and noticed the lights next to the stairs? Those are recessed stair lights; you can also bring this cinematic feel to your staircase. You can use wash lights installed on the wall next to each step. Another gimmick you can add to recessed lighting is a light dimmer to change the mood and adjust to the amount of light you need.

Recessed lighting illuminates the stairwell without being too bright. If you have the staircase between two walls, you can place the recessed lights on both sides, but this type of lighting still looks stunning on one side of the wall. You can also opt to illuminate every second or third step if every step is too exaggerated or costly for you.

stair lights recessed in wall

Why Are Recessed Lights A Great Option?

Recessed lighting is an excellent option if you’re looking to escape the harshness of wall lights and create a softer ambiance. These staircase lights also complement elemental stairs’ natural beauty, but they are versatile and can match any material.

3. Pendant Lighting

Pendant lights are ceiling-suspended with a single bulb, creating elegant and simple lighting. The hanging effect allows you to play around with design aspects, and the single bulb gives soft, energy-conserving lighting.

Glass pendant lights are a go-to option to develop a sense of sophistication and provide ample light. If you don’t want glass, other go-to pendant light options allow light through, like basket-type lights, which are better than solid pendants as they allow enough light to illuminate the staircase.

You can opt for multiple pendant lights at alternating suspension lengths depending on your roofing space at your stairwell. Be careful not to hang the lights too low, so no one bumps their head on them.

pendant lighting in hall with staircase

Why Are Pendant Lights A Great Option?

Endless pendant light designs can match any house’s interior, from industrial to bohemian themes. The spectrum of options allows you to find pendant lights in your price range. You can also get creative with which type of bulb you use to add an extra design element.

4. Wall Lighting

Wall lighting is your easiest option when choosing a light source for your staircase. Wall lighting is consistent and even, so it works best for dark stairwells that need extra illumination. You can get fancy and find artistic wall lights that match the design theme of your home, as there are countless options available.

If you have a short staircase, one wall light could work, but your best bet is a minimum of two. Place multiple wall lights strategically so that it progresses parallel to the stairs. Some walls have indents you can highlight or paneling that you’ll need to work around.

Uplights are bright and illuminate the wall to accent its details, and downlights do the same but focus on the ground, which works amazingly for stairs. For a sophisticated look, you can use candelabra-type lights, and if you have an artwork by your staircase, you can use picture lighting to accentuate them.

staircase with wall lighting

Why Are Wall Lights A Great Option?

Wall lighting is easier to install than other types, and you can choose any style. The various types of wall lights provide a range of lighting intensities. You can also play around with warm and cool lighting by changing the bulbs to fit your lighting needs.

5. A Chandelier

Nothing screams class like a chandelier. If you want to make a statement that pleases the eye, a chandelier by your staircase is the way to go. The roofing by your stairwell will determine if chandelier lighting suits it.

Chandelier lighting might be a pricy option, but they are worth it from an interior design perspective. Every time you use your stairs, you’ll have something beautiful to look at. Chandeliers have a long history and have been around since the Medieval period. In today’s times, they are readily available to bring royalty into your home.

You can buy a more petite or wall chandelier if you have a smaller space. Your chandelier lighting can be simple, as minimalistic contemporary chandeliers are also available. There are many chandelier styles, from crystal to wrought iron.

classic minimalistic chandelier

Why Are Chandeliers A Great Option?

If you have ample space or a high ceiling, chandeliers bring a romantic compliment to the interior and take lighting to the next level. Chandeliers illuminate an area efficiently but are a statement piece beyond function.

6. Ceiling To Floor Lighting

To create a dreamy staircase with enchanting lighting, you can find lighting that drapes from the ceiling to the ground. These skyscraping light fixtures are their artworks that will illuminate the entire staircase from each floor.

This draped lighting style is reminiscent of a waterfall and should suspend from the center of the stairwell. Finding a singular draped light fixture that can reach multiple stories might be challenging, so you can find numerous pendant lights and suspend them at different lengths. Glass pendants are your best design option to get the most out of the lighting.

Ceiling-to-floor lighting fits bohemian, modern, and classical-themed homes and spiral staircases suit this lighting style like a glove. To get creative, you can find different light styles to drape from the ceiling to the floor to make up contrast and texture.

large chandelier hanging from ceiling to floor

Why Are Ceiling To Floor Lights A Great Option?

Lights that drape from the ceiling to the floor allow for a sense of movement and calculated drama, all while illuminating each floor magnificently. Since you might need to buy multiple lights to make up this lighting style, it allows room for imagination.

7. Stair Rail Lighting

Need a simple way to bring lighting to your staircase? Your stair railing is an easy, sleek, and modern go-to option. If you have a straight staircase, put a strip of lighting along the handrailing for clean stair illumination.

Stair rail lights illuminate the entire staircase, so you won’t miss a single step! LED lights are the most efficient option when lighting the rail. You can include strips of light on the balusters too! Lighting on the handrail and balusters could be too bright, so can opt for one or the other.

staircase with illuminated rails

Why Are Stair Rail Lights A Great Option?

Rail lights are an easy installation option to bring ample light to the stairway. It looks neat and modern and can suit any home’s design. Using LED lights for rail lighting is energy efficient, and you can change the colors to serve you.

8. Layered Lighting

Layered lighting means installing lighting at different sources like the roof, walls, stairs, and rails. This type of lighting allows for a diversified range that you can wire to turn the other sources on and off separately to change how much light you need at any time.

Layered lighting will provide illumination at every angle; some lights can be functional, while others are decorative. To create layered lighting, combine two to three sources, such as the roof, walls, and under the tread. You can combine the light sources mentioned in this article, such as the wall, LED tread, and fairy lights.

Don’t place two light sources too close to one another, as that will make the lighting too bright and waste efficiency. Layered lighting tackles the challenges of sloped roofs and complicated architecture.

staircase with floor lamp on platform and string lights

Why Are Layered Lights A Great Option?

Layered lighting allows you to make use of pre-existing lights and add extras. The even lighting of this method will ensure that all parts of your stairwell get adequately lit and turning off certain lights while others are on can change the ambiance.

9. Fairy Lights

Fairy lights are an affordable way to light up any staircase. These lights aren’t just for Christmas, as they can bring cheer to your staircase all year. You can find battery-powered fairy lights for cheap in either a warm or cool color to wrap around the railing or balusters.

You get variations of fairy lights; some come in a curtain and others in a single strip. Railings and balusters are the most accessible place to put up fairy lights. Using the railings may not suit you as it can seem inconvenient when using the railings for support. Instead, you can drape some from the roof, especially if you have a spiral or alternating-direction staircase with space to fill between the stairwells.

fairy lights placed on the railing

Why Are Fairy Lights A Great Option?

Fairy lights are charming and extremely affordable. You can change how you display your fairy lights as often as you’d like and remove them easily if you get bored with the look. Fairy lights work great in contemporary and bohemian settings.

10. Staircase Window

Natural light is golden to any home and gives the illusion of more space. Windows also show you pretty views of the outside, so if you can add window or two to your staircase walls, taking that opportunity is worthwhile.

Windows come in all shapes and sizes. You can use multiple windows to complement the interior design if you want smaller windows. Big windows will bring in the most light and open the sense of space, allowing your stairs to relish the sunlight’s beauty.

Windows only allow for daytime lighting so you can add candelabra wall lights next to them or downlights above for a design complement and nighttime illumination. You can also use layered lighting to illuminate the windowed staircase evenly at night.

natural sunlight shines on staircase through the window

Why Staircase Windows A Great Option?

The natural light seeping through the windows boosts a person’s mood and allows them to feel warm and welcome in their home. Lighting is just as important in the day as at night, and a window will save you some electricity while boosting an airy feel into your home.