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The Benefits of Bathroom Skylights

by Rachel Lyon, Editorial Director for The House Designers

Most people immediately imagine living spaces when they think about skylights, but the fact is, they make great additions all around the house. Bathrooms may get overlooked for a number of reasons—they’re relatively small and unimpressive, you don’t typically spend a lot of time in them, etc.—but there are even more reasons why you should seriously consider installing skylights in them. Here’s what you could look forward to!

VELUX Sun Tunnel Skylight

Even a single Sun Tunnel Skylight fills this large bathroom with plenty of natural light from above. And it’s perfect for bridging the gap between a pitched roof and a flat ceiling—these are very quick and easy to install!

Natural Lighting

Have you ever gotten dressed and/or done your makeup in front of a mirror and then caught sight of yourself while out and about? It can be shocking how different you look, even just minutes later. Color perception is affected by the light source—not only will you see them differently under different types of light, but in some cases, you might think two distinct colors actually look the same. That makes it pretty difficult to put yourself together! Swapping lightbulbs can help mitigate the effect, but nothing beats true, natural light. And lighting from above is better than the harsh shine that vanity fixtures direct over and around your face horizontally. If you want to cover both fronts, skylights are up to the task.

As with any other building and design decision, you can select the perfect kind of skylight for your bathroom’s needs. Large traditional skylights make a ton of impact, of course, but you can also opt for smaller Sun Tunnel skylights that you might mistake for recessed lighting at first. If you’re concerned about glare, you can select light-diffusing shades that soften sunlight while still allowing it to fill the room. Explore the options and you might be surprised at how flexible skylights really are!

VELUX Solar-Powered Fresh Air Skylight

Installing a Solar-Powered Fresh Air Skylight over the shower brings sunlight down through the lightwell and allows steam to naturally rise out as needed. A built-in solar panel means this operable skylight doesn’t need any wiring to work!

Effective Ventilation

Moisture is one of the biggest problems bathrooms can face, and it’s inescapable. Bathing generates steam, and if that damp air has nowhere to go, moisture will settle into surfaces and create the perfect environment for mold growth. Turning on the bathroom exhaust fan can help to some extent, but many fans don’t vent effectively. Some recirculate through a filter rather than blowing to the exterior, and it can sometimes be difficult to install proper ductwork due to the home’s structure. Hot showers and the airtight walls of modern construction are a recipe for mold, but there is a simple, low-tech solution.

Steam rises, so all you need is to open a pathway through the ceiling! Skylights that open do just that. No matter what type you choose—manual, electric, or solar-powered—hot, damp air will naturally go up and remove itself from the bathroom. Installing the skylight at the highest point of the room or over the shower will give steam the most direct path. Of course, you need to remember to open the skylight to prevent moisture buildup. If you’d like a smart, hands-off option instead, look into an automated system with sensors—it will open the skylights as soon as it detects rising humidity. That’s even less involved than hitting the fan switch!

VELUX Skylight

Even though it has a window, the skylight in this bathroom greatly improves ambiance by brightening from above. Look closely and you’ll see this is actually a pretty small room—the skylight also increases the feel of the space!

Inviting Atmosphere

It's no secret that some bathrooms are just plain dreary. Whether they’re a tight fit, located in a windowless interior room, or have windows that you keep covered for privacy, you don’t need to accept that uncomfortable ambiance. Better lighting will help a lot, and given their position on the ceiling, you don’t have to worry about privacy with skylights. If you’re really concerned, Sun Tunnel skylights don’t provide any view in or out! Stuffiness can also make a bathroom feel uninviting, and that’s an issue that will get worse over time if air isn’t exchanged regularly. Make venting a priority for a healthier home! The layout of your house determines where and what kinds of skylights you can install, so if you’re sold on bathroom skylights, keep that in mind when selecting a house plan and let your builder know your goals early on.

If you’re in the market for skylights for your bathroom(s) or anywhere else, take a look at what VELUX® has to offer! Their catalog includes a full range of products from standard to Sun Tunnel skylights and roof windows, so you won’t have any trouble finding a beautiful and practical solution for your space. Not sure what will give you the best results? Schedule a virtual consultation and discuss the possibilities with the professionals!