How to Buy a Table Lamp

Table lamps can be as decorative as they are practical. When carefully purchased, the right table lamp can do wonders for your living space.

This table lamp buying guide helps you pick a lamp that’s scaled to your space and has the features you want most.

  1. How high should a table lamp be?
  2. Table Lamps with USB Ports, Night Lights, and More 

How High Should a Table Lamp Be?

Selecting the right size table lamp is an important part of decorating a space.

A table lamp that’s properly scaled in a room looks better and prevents the light from shining into your eyes.

Table Lamp Height at Eye Level

When deciding on a table lamp height, consider the eye level rule.

Table Lamps for Living Rooms

When sitting on a sofa, the bottom of the shade should line up with your eye level so that the light isn’t shining directly into your eyes.

An image of a couch, side table, and table lamp with a line to demonstrate the eye level test.

Table Lamps by Chairs

The same rule of thumb applies while sitting in a chair. The bottom of the shade should line up with your eye level.

An image of a chair, side table, and table lamp.











While sitting in bed, the bottom of the lamp shade should line up around chin level. This will ensure the light isn’t shining directly into your eyes.

Table Lamp Shade Size

Buy a table lamp with a shade that is smaller than the width of the table. This ensures that the shade isn’t sticking out beyond the table.

Table Lamps With USB Ports, Night Lights, and More

Table lamps are decorative elements as well as practical lighting solutions. When shopping for table lamps, look for color and design as well as your must-have features.

Table Lamps with Night Lights

If you want to light your way at night, consider buying a table lamp with a night light.

These table lamps offer ambient, or overall lighting, when all light features are on, and accent lighting when just the nightlight feature is being used.

Double Pull Chains

Table lamps featuring double pull chains provide you with two levels of light.

USB Ports

For a handy way to charge electronic devices, purchase a USB table lamp.

These table lamps come with a built-in USB port located in the base of the lamp, allowing you to charge your electronic devices without using a traditional outlet

Table Lamp Sets

A pair of table lamps offers a unified look for entries, bedrooms and living areas.