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The Best Table Lamp

Last updated on August 18, 2023
Best Table Lamp

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Those of us who spend a lot of time at home barely even notice our table lamps, and that’s a good thing. The last thing we want is a lamp that surprises us with a burned-out bulb, an easily toppled lamp structure or a light switch that sticks. Generally, we want a light that works and stays out of the way.

That’s not to say that it has to be invisible or ugly. A table lamp that fits in with the decor can brighten up a workspace or room in more ways than one. Finding one that’s right for your situation can be fun, but it’ll save you headaches to look at the boring specs first.

Foremost among these is the size of your lamp. Do you have a small table? You’ll probably want a compact lamp, as well. (Although if it’s so small that every bit of surface area counts, you may want to consider a standing floor lamp instead.)

Bigger tables, of course, give you a little more leeway. But it’s also important to consider the size of your actual space. In the home office, for example, if most of your work is confined to a laptop screen, you really just need illumination in that small area. But if you’re using a larger area, make sure your lamp stands a little taller so that it can throw light in a wide arc. Of course, many modern table lamps have a swivel head or points of articulation in the neck that let you adjust the height and location of the light. This can be a big help if you’re switching areas often.

Many table lamps might advertise their high-powered bulbs, throwing around lumen numbers into the thousands. Just remember that we’re talking about a table lamp, not a ceiling light. Not many tables are large enough to need a high-wattage light, and 10W or so should be more than sufficient in most places. A rustic retro lamp or stylish industrial model can add a great visual touch to any room, and the added functionality as an accent light can give it lots of versatility as an interior design element.

Finally, there’s the matter of the lamp itself. What sort of bulb should you have in it? Most table lamps these days go with an LED bulb. For the most part, you should, too: They last about 50 times longer than a typical incandescent bulb, which is not only great for the environment but key for your work routine.

Our Picks For The Top Table Lamps

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Product Overview
Our Take
 USB Capabilities

Briever USB Black & Cream Table Lamp

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval


USB Black & Cream Table Lamp

In addition to illuminating your work space, this table lamp also charges your electronic devices. It comes with three USB charging parts and three slots for holding your phones and tablets. There are also two built-in AC outlets for laptops and other large devices.

Overall Take

Multi-Functional UnitThe solid wood base on this table lamp makes it both attractive and durable.

 Choose Your Colors

Limelights LT2024-GRY Grey Table Lamp


LT2024-GRY Grey Table Lamp

Elegant is the best word to describe this table lamp. It has a sleek design with a contemporary fabric shade. At the base of the light, you'll find a power outlet for charging any two-prong device.

Overall Take

Slim DesignYou'll find this table lamp is available in 30 different colors and finishes.

 Stylish Pick

SOTTAE White Geometric Table Lamp


White Geometric Table Lamp

Add a decorative touch to your living space with this table lamp. It has a ceramic body that features an artistic geometric pattern. The lamp's high-quality TC fabric shade is made with built-in insulation, which works to protect your eyes from light damage.

Overall Take

Creates a Romantic AtmosphereThis table lamp accepts LED medium base bulbs to save on your energy bills.

 Three Light Settings

Dicoool Grey Touch Table Lamp


Grey Touch Table Lamp

Three light settings make this table lamp ideal for everything from reading a book to creating a romantic atmosphere. The light settings are easily adjustable, as the metal base is programmed to respond to touch. You can set the lamp on a nightstand in any bedroom, as well as on a side table in a living room or patio.

Overall Take

LED Bulb IncludedThere are two USB ports built-in to the side of this table lamp, so you can charge your devices while lighting up your living space.

What to Look For

  • Modern lamps want to do a lot more than just light up your table. There’s an increasing number of lamps on the marketplace that serve as miniature technology hubs. There are desk lamps that incorporate charging stations for your cell phone or smartwatch, some with wireless charging capability. There are even lamps that double as a Bluetooth speaker. This can be a great asset if you’re on a small desk where space is at a premium.
  • Older eyes need a little more care, and that’s especially important when you’re working close to a light source for extended periods of time. If your eyes are sensitive to glare, get a lamp with a high CRI (Color Rendering Index) or adjustable brightness that you can tweak at different times of the day.

More to Explore

Estate sales and flea markets can turn up some great retro desk lamps, but they don’t come much more exotic than the one a North Wales couple found in 1953. It was an ornate ceramic globe that the pair had attached a lampshade to and were using as a desk lamp for decades. It was only in 2016 that a vendor realized the lamp was actually a hat stand made for Chinese Emperor Dauguang of the Qing dynasty over 200 years prior. It was subsequently sold at auction for a staggering £581,000 (over $750,000).