How To Use Smart Lights To Personalize Your Home

Looking to improve the functionality of your home? The simple setup process and relative affordability of smart lights make them a great place to start, according to Wired. There are many practical applications for these lights that can make life easier, as well as stylistic enhancements that can create the perfect ambiance or enhance a media experience. It has never been easier to feel like you're living in the future.

The market for smart lights is a bit crowded and it's easy to get overwhelmed by the options. There is a wide price range across products and brands, so your budget and the product features you're looking for can help narrow your options. Gearbrain recommends choosing products from the same brand for the most seamless experience, however, some lights will work in conjunction with other brands. Once you've embraced the smart light lifestyle, you'll likely wonder how you ever managed without them.

Set your lights to a schedule

One of the most straightforward applications for smart lights is the ability to set them to turn on automatically. Time them so that they turn off when you leave for work and turn on just before you arrive, or stay in tune with the sun by setting your lights to gradually brighten in the morning or get dimmer at night. You can even set your lights to make it look like you are home and reduce the risk of break-ins using the vacation mode offered by some products, like Wiz Smart Bulbs (via Gearbrain).

Create the perfect mood lighting

If you opt for a color-changing smart bulb, the possibilities for customizing your lighting are almost endless. Some products, such as the Philips Hue, allow you to select scenes to light the room and fit a certain vibe at the touch of a button (per Wired).

Smart light strips can also be used to create ambient effects. Install lighting under your kitchen cabinets or create a bias light behind your TV, which can also be set to change color to the beat of music or audio, explains the New York Times.

Embrace vintage style with modern enhancements

Considering the number of smart light products on the market, there's no need to sacrifice your aesthetic preferences. If you love the look of Edison bulbs, consider choosing smart filament lights for your exposed-bulb fixtures. According to the New York Times, these lights tend to be dimmer than most bulbs, so skip them in places where you need bright task lighting. If you have other smart lights in your home, opt for the filament bulb offerings from the same brand for the most seamless lighting control, as suggested by the New York Times.

Add smart lighting to outdoor spaces

Smart lighting can enhance the exterior of your home as well. Depending on your needs, you can create an illuminating pathway that welcomes you home or added security that alerts you when someone is outside. CNET recommends the Ring Solar Pathlight, which is sun-powered and can be activated by motion sensor or by voice with a connection to Amazon's Alexa. If you have a Ring camera, these lights can be set to activate when a visitor arrives so you can see who is outside before opening the door.

Install lights that turn on when you enter

Motion-sensing lights aren't only useful outdoors. Many brands offer sensors that pair with smart lights so that they can be set to turn on when motion is detected, which is both convenient and energy-efficient. Some sensors also have temperature-sensing capabilities. Used in conjunction with other devices around your home, smart sensors can be customized to trigger a number of actions when they detect motion, such as turning lights on or off, adjusting the thermostat, or locking the front door (via New York Times).

Enlist a smart bulb to help clean your house

According to Gearbrain, the most recent offering from smart bulb brand Lifx is called the Clean. In addition to being used as a normal smart bulb with color customization, the Clean can be set to produce High Energy Visible light, which is safe for people and pets but kills bacteria on contact. According to Lifx, the Clean can disinfect high-touch items like phones at close range or be used to reduce bacteria in rooms where it can run rampant, such as bathrooms.

Enhance media experiences

Some smart bulbs have the ability to change colors in sync with music, creating an instant party in your living room. Wired recommends the Govee Lyra Floor Lamp, a sleek floor lamp with adjustable sensitivity, so in addition to syncing with music, it can even change colors in rhythm to the audio from your television. For the ultimate effect, however, you may want to invest in the Dreamview LED TV backlights from Govee, specifically designed to enhance your movie or gaming experience by syncing with specific colors as they appear on your screen.