Shopping for light bulbs is a pretty simple task, right? And yet it can quickly become overwhelming when you realize how many different options you have to choose from. Color temperature is one of the most important factors to consider. If you’ve been browsing the light bulb aisle recently, you may be wondering, “What is color temperature? And why does it matter when selecting light bulbs?”

What Is Color Temperature?

Color temperature is the warmth or coolness of a light source, measured in Kelvins. Lower temperature bulbs (2700–3000K) produce warm, soft whites—similar to firelight or standard incandescent bulbs. Medium temperature bulbs (3500–4100K) produce neutral whites. And higher temperature bulbs (5000–6500K) produce cool whites—similar to natural daylight. Yes, you read that right; lower temperatures give off “warm” (red-yellow) light, while warmer temperatures give off “cool” (green-blue) light.

Why Does It Matter When Selecting Bulbs for Your Home or Business?

Color temperature is important because it actually affects the mood of a room. Warm light (which has a lower color temperature) creates a calm, relaxed atmosphere and is more flattering to skin tones. Cool light (which has a higher color temperature) is brighter and more energizing. Medium light is more neutral and is often preferred for office and work spaces.

LED vs Incandescent Bulbs

People often delay switching to LED because they have concerns about the difference in color temperature between LED bulbs and traditional incandescents. The good news is that LED light bulbs have come a long way in recent years. LED technology has advanced to the point where they are now available in a broad range of color temperatures and brightness levels. Today’s high-quality LEDs can indeed give you that “warm glow” you’re after. If you really love that warm, vintage look, LED bulbs are available in color temperatures as low as 1900K.

For more info on the advantages of LED lighting, check out our previous posts: Switching Your Home to LED and Switching Your Business to LED.

If you have more questions related to home electronics—like “What is color temperature?,” “Why install a home backup generator?,” or “How can I lower my electric bill?”—browse our blog. Ready to switch your home to LED? Contact us! Call our office at 314-266-6551 or email