Lights - The ambience and psychology influencer

How many times have you walked into a retail shop or restaurant and you’d want to get your purchase or meal out in no time? How many times have you seen a shop but it does not interest you to even step into the shop?

Many a times, when it comes to office or retail renovation, lighting is often selected based on cost and practicality but do you know incorrect lighting could actually turn your customers away or even reduce the productivity of your staff? The following article will give you an insight on the science behind lights and how you can leverage on them to encourage the behaviour in your staff or customers. 

We need to first understand that lights are made up of 7 colours. There are no prize for guessing them as they are taken from the rainbow family. These 7 colours form the colour temperature in the lights we see in commercial lights and even in photography. The colour temperature influences the behaviour of individuals.

For example, why are classrooms and office brightly illuminated? Other than preventing myopic conditions, the brightness serves as a stimulant for the staff and students. However, did you know that lights used in offices and classrooms typically contain higher concentration of blue? Blue in the world of colour temperature of commercial lights, is known to be a stimulant. To help you choose the right type of light for your space, you may wish to refer to the chart below:


Correlated Colour Temperature (CCT)

(Measures shade of whiteness of a light source to a black body)

Suitable For

Warm White Fluorescent

2700 CCT


Neutral/cool white Fluorescent

3000-3500 CCT

Office lighting/Classrooms

Daylight Fluorescent

5000 – 6500 CCT




On the other hand, if you would like to wind down for the evening, you should introduce lighting with more pink and red concentration. These lights help induce sleep and prevent insomnia from overstimulation.  Lights containing more pink and red hues will also relax an individual, which is why you see many luxury retail boutiques or hotel lounges use these lights to create the ambience of relaxing and welcoming atmosphere for their customers.

Typically, if the retailers are in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) business, they would be using bright lighting and upbeat music to stimulate the customers to make their purchase fast and exit the shop. Some examples include supermarkets and fast food restaurants. If you compare it with that of spas, you will see that the lighting choice are more soothing. This creates the appropriate ambience and encourage the customers to stay longer in their establishment.

In our opinion, we also see that lights have not been used in appropriately to bring out the best customer experience. For example, if you step into a Best Denki store, the use of fluorescent tubes give the retail shops a sleepy and old school feel and does not draw customers to their store. This is an issue of underlighting. Comparing that with Harvey Norman’s flagship store in Millenia Walk, you will see that lighting is appropriately used to highlight products and the storefront is bright and inviting to draw customers and lighting is cleverly used to highlight products on display.

Now that you learn more about the importance of lights, do pay more attention to it when you next renovate or refresh the look of your office or retail store. If you need consultation on lighting solutions Lighting Solutions is your right partner. If you need a consultation session on interior architecture and handyman services, please contact Mr Wright for a non- obligatory consultation session. Let us know what you think! Like us on Facebook @mrwright2018. Sign up for your free handyman account and stand a chance to win $100 worth of Mr Wright’s service vouchers. Offer ends 30 Sep 2018.

Stay tuned for our next write up on Trends in lighting technology where Andy will be sharing more about what are the gamechangers and what can consumers expect!


About Our Author

Andy founded Lighting Solutions in 1992 and the company has grown strength to strength. He started as an apprentice in a humble electrical lighting shop an was inspired to grow his lighting busness.

As a self starter, Andy has  made breakthroughs in the lighting industry by sourcing for new prducts and work closely with partners such as architects and interior designers to create the desired lok and feel by curating suitale lights to jazz up the space.

In the next two series, readers will be able to learn more about how lighting can affect one's mood and innovations that will enhance your well being and at the same time save cost.