Everything You Need to Know about Full Spectrum Lighting

Many people are aware that Full Spectrum Lighting (FSL) can positively affect health, but many are not aware of how it works. FSL is designed to mimic natural light from the sun by providing a variety of colors and wavelengths.

Natural sunlight provides an essential balance for your body’s circadian rhythm, and FSL can be used in order to balance this cycle as well!

This article introduces you everything you want to know about full spectrum lighting.

full spectrum lighting and light bulbs

What Is Full-Spectrum Lighting?

Full Spectrum Lighting or “white light” is a type of lighting that includes all the colors in the visible spectrum.

This means it’s not just white but has varying yellow, red, and blue shades to mimic natural sunlight.

Normal light bulbs emit light in a narrow range of wavelengths. FSL produces light across all major wavelengths in broad ranges, just like natural sunlight, and gives a more “sunlit” effect in a room, which can be beneficially calming for some people while also providing the benefits of white balance afforded by using daylight-balanced lighting.

There are three types of Full Spectrum Lighting you should know:

1. Narrow Spectrum Lights

Narrow spectrum lights are light sources that have a narrow band of frequencies, meaning they emit few extended wavelengths outside of the targeted range.

2. Broad Spectrum Lights

Broad-spectrum lights are a type of light bulb designed to emit a wide range of different wavelengths, which means it has a good balance of light waves.

This makes them appear brighter and whiter than their broad-spectrum counterparts.

3. Adjustable Spectrum Lights

Adjustable spectrum lights are special lights that adjust a light spectrum across the visible spectrum.

Adjustable spectrum lights are a new type of light that produces the most natural color and can be changed to accommodate different tasks.

What Are the Benefits of Full Spectrum Light?

Full Spectrum Lights are typically made out of either fluorescent or LED technology.

They can be purchased in different “wattages,” which correlate to how much brightness they produce.

Full-spectrum lights provide a more vibrant, clear-white color than the yellowish hue of standard incandescent bulbs.

The blue wavelength from these lights has been shown to reduce eye strain and increase productivity by stimulating brain activity with its energizing effects on mood.

The human eye requires exposure to sunlight for the eyes to function properly; full-spectrum bulbs emit a light that simulates this natural environment.

Artificial lights are more likely to cause headaches, fatigue, and depression than full spectrum lighting.

There is less chance for these negative side effects with full-spectrum light because you’re getting an even balance of colors from natural sunlight.

The more exposure your eyes have to ambient lighting of this kind, the less strained they will be when it comes down to tasks like reading or paying attention during lectures.

Full-spectrum lights can help you sleep, reduce stress and anxiety.

What Are Full Spectrum Lights Used for?

Full-spectrum lights mimic natural sunlight to maximize benefits for humans, animals, and plants.

Full-spectrum lights are often found in waiting rooms, hallways, and other public spaces.

They emit a natural light to produce healthy growth of plants while also decreasing the strain on your eyes.

You will find that many hospitals use full-spectrum lights to improve patients’ moods while recovering in bed from surgery or injury because they make you feel more alert and less anxious.

Full-spectrum light usage in aquariums includes supplies for plants, animals, and the environment.

The most common light type used for aquatic plant growth is linear fixtures with optics that project a wide spectrum of light onto the plants. The shading can be used to provide uniform illumination.

Regarding animal life, full-spectrum lamps are not required, but they promote health and optimal conditions.

In an aquarium with fish, turtles, or other invertebrates, a full-spectrum light may be necessary as these creatures require bacteria on their surfaces in order to thrive.

What Makes a Light Bulb Full Spectrum?

A full spectrum light bulb is able to replicate the sunlight or other natural light by emitting an array of wavelengths.

It also usually has a warmer color temperature, closer to 3000K than 2700K, and emits an average brightness comparable to a 60-100 watt CFL lamp.

Light bulbs such as fluorescent ones use only certain colors, causing them to be less efficient than other bulbs.

A full spectrum bulb has an even color distribution across the whole range of colors, including those naturally shielded by optical systems in the eye.

This allows it to distribute visible light more uniformly throughout its source emitting.

How to Measure the “Fullness” of Spectrum?

The fullness of the spectrum depends upon many factors, such as color temperature, saturation of the colors, and brightness.

The most commonly accepted measure of “fullness” in the spectrum is color temperature.

As the color temperature increases or becomes warmer (2900-3400K), it’s less likely to detect these differences in saturation and brightness.

For best viewing, choose a bulb with a “daylight white” rating (5000-6500K), as these illustrate brighter whites and reveal subtle colors better.

One of the factors to consider is its color reproduction index or CRI.

The higher the value for CRI – such as above 95 – generally provides better quality illumination since colors are rendered more accurately with fullness and richness where no hue dominates over another.

The color rendering index (CRI) is one method for measuring the quality of a light source.

As its name suggests, CRI measures how well different colors mix when illuminated by light from a given bulb.

A higher CRI means a more accurate mixing of colors that the eye can perceive.

Full Spectrum Lighting vs. Natural Daylight Lighting

Natural sunlight is better, but it’s not always available. Full-spectrum lighting offers some of the benefits of natural light in a more easily controllable package.

There are many benefits to full-spectrum lighting and only some drawbacks. For instance, full-spectrum lights offer a more soothing light that can be less disruptive to one’s circadian rhythm.

Full-spectrum lights also provide illumination in a broader range of colors than natural daylight lighting.

However, the biggest drawback is that it doesn’t emit as much electromagnetic radiation into space as natural sunlight does at midday.

In comparison, full-spectrum lighting helps to improve color accuracy and energy, reduce eye strain and fatigue from glare, and increase ambient illumination levels.

These features make it much easier to focus on tasks at hand during daytime activities; even the most severe cases of ADD/ADHD can be reduced when using full-spectrum lighting.

In contrast, natural daylight is not efficient in creating an adequate level of brightness throughout a space without using electric light sources.


1. Do Full Spectrum Lights Really Work?

Yes, full-spectrum lights really work.

These are often touted as far better than plain white lights for helping with seasonal syndromes or sleep disorders.

They can have a significant impact on our circadian rhythms and the quality of sleep we get overall.

2. Is a Daylight Bulb the Same as Full Spectrum?

Daylight refers to a color temperature. It’s different from Full Spectrum, which is the spectrum of visible light emitted by the sun.

Unlike full-spectrum bulbs, a daylight bulb does not include a variety of different wavelengths.

3. Are LED Lights Full Spectrum?

An LED is not full-spectrum light, but it does emit mostly blue wavelengths in the visible light spectra.

LEDs do not offer the complete range of visibility that a traditional “full-spectrum” lamp provides.

Full-spectrum lamps put together an array of different LEDs with wavelengths in infrared, red, yellow, and green.

“Full-spectrum” is used to refer to artificial light sources that emit a broad range of wavelengths from both ends of the visible spectrum.

These lights provide some sense of natural daylight with color accuracy and contain all three spectral colors.


Full Spectrum Lighting can be a powerful tool for any business to increase productivity and health.

When it comes to health, you want to ensure that your body is getting the right balance of natural light.

For this reason, Full Spectrum Lighting should become a part of your daily routine.