What's an Ideal Lighting? Can you "Taobao" Lighting for a Singapore Home?

What's an Ideal Lighting? Can you "Taobao" Lighting for a Singapore Home?

In today’s era of Internet shopping, it is not hard to find information, but it is also easy to end up with the wrong type of lighting solutions. 

Taobao and online shops alike can show you what is the cheapest, but they do not help you tell the difference between a good or a bad LED product, or highlight to you what maintenance cost associated with it in the long run. 

Unlike a handphone accessory, when you receive something unusable, you can simply not use it and sell or give it to someone else. 

When you install a piece of fixed lighting equipment, if it does not fit or fails to perform, you most likely have to engage some qualified person to remove it. 

Some common mistake people usually overlook when considering lightings for their homes. 


  • Insufficient light is bad, everyone knows that
  • Too much light is just as bad, if not worst, it disrupts and affects our mood
  • Its not hard to just light up an empty room, but takes effort to ensure adequate and ideal lighting when you go to the details like considering whether you need them to be task, accent or ambient lighting
  • In today's world of LED, indirect lights with minimal glare is ideal.  Track lights, cove lightings, etc are good to achieve such an effect.
  • Modern BTO and Condo are equipped with multiple switching and points to enable the use of layered lightings, something a single pendant light and ceiling light does not sufficiently provide.
  • Sacrificing Long Term Benefits for Short Term Price Advantage
  • Good lighting complements our lifestyle
  • Bad lighting has excessive strobing and flickering that affected our well being 


D-I-Y (a.k.a Taobao) lighting, what can go wrong?

The era of internet, bargain taobao hunting and to no less owing to "professional" advice and "personal" experienced dished out by bloggers, renovation portals and platforms, has spawned countless self-taught lighting "experts" overnight, whom sometimes go to the extent of determining that they may even go without the need for an interior designer, opting to DIY to save some cost.

These home owners, despite spending hours online scouring product reviews, digesting technical specifications while tracking down extreme bargains, often end up with a home with insufficient or overwhelming lighting.  The result is a home that is less than practical to suit the lifestyle and routine of the occupants.

This is especially true in today's use of LED, which is more powerful than any of its predecessors.  Coupled with the fact that modern LED luminaires do not allow for easy replacement, unlike the lighting fixtures of old, where the problem of too little or too much light can be easily resolved by a simple change of bulbs.

Put it this way, it is not hard to buy a ceiling light online but it requires experience to determine the right type of ambient, task and accent settings.

The diagram below (borrowed and credited to an online post by MARCELO GORI), illustrates the various scenarios of an ideal and less than desirable light setting.

Wrong Lighting For Singapore Homes


1. Depicts the use of downlights to achieve both accent and ambient lighting

2. Shows the use of cove lightings to provide an indirect yet adequate lighting 

3. Just a single source of light that may not be adequate and no longer practical

4. Insufficient use of downlights which are misplaced due to bad planning


One Light One Room No Longer Ideal

Diagram 3 highlights the problem associated with a single source of light that is localised, and leaves far corners that further away from the light source darker and undesirable.

Such a single source lighting used to be adequate in the past when a single room serves a single purpose (Living Room, bedrooms) but as modern interior designs incorporate efficient space planning, and our modern lifestyles require us to perform a variety of tasks in a given space, adequate planning is necessary to ensure the lights achieve both its practical and aesthetic functions.


Right Place, Right Time, Right Light

Besides considering the right lumens and colour temperature, one would also need to ensure the switches are placed right where you need them.  Be it a single or 2 way switch, a little planning will go a long way to achieving the right light settings conveniently.  


So, Tao Bao or not?

Well, that depends on how much you value your lightings and time, if you feel that you can afford extended downtime to have your lights fixed/replaced, especially in these times where we spend more time working/studying at home.  


If you need to speak to someone, do not hesitate to contact us!

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