What is a Backlit Mirror?

There’s quite a lot of buzz around backlit mirrors, so in this post, we’ll talk about what exactly a backlit mirror is. Is there any significant difference between it and our good old bathroom mirror? We took a deep dive into the wonderful world of mirrors to know the answer.

What is a backlit mirror? A backlit mirror is a type of illuminated mirror or a mirror that is equipped with a lighting system. A backlit mirror has its lighting system placed behind it, which means the lights are between the mirror and the wall it is mounted on. When the backlit mirror is switched on, the space behind the mirror gets lit up, framing the mirror and casting a glow all around it.

But there’s more to a backlit mirror than simply a reflective surface with a light coming from behind it. In this article, we’ll dig a little deeper into what backlit mirrors are and take a look at some of their key functions. We’ll also discuss the advantages of having backlit mirrors at home. Here we go!

What Is a Backlit Mirror
Photo by Vecislavas Popa from Pexels

What are the Major Parts of a Backlit Mirror?

Backlit mirrors are made up of four major components, namely the mirror glass, the LED bulbs, the circuitry, and power supply, and the wall-mounted frame. Knowing how these parts work together can help us gain a better understanding of what backlit mirrors are and how they work.

Mirror Glass

The glass is where you see your reflection. Mirrors are made up of three layers: clear glass, an ultra-thin layer of metal, and a coating of paint to seal the metal in. It’s not the glass that has reflective properties but the metal layer. The glass, like the coat of paint at the back of the mirror, serves as protection for the metal layer.

LED Bulb Lighting System

A backlit mirror would not be illuminated without its LEDs or light-emitting diodes. These small bulbs, arranged into a strip and mounted behind the mirror, are the reason behind a backlit mirror’s glow.

The LED light strip runs around a base that is attached to the back of the mirror. The base follows the shape of the mirror but does not reach the edges. The base also has brackets for mounting onto the wall frame.

Power Supply

Because a backlit mirror uses LED bulbs, it also uses electricity. Without power, the LEDs wouldn’t light up, but you can still use the mirror-like a regular looking-glass. The LED circuitry of the mirror is connected to the electrical grid through a system of converters and power supply units.

Frame/Wall Mount

The frame is the component of the mirror that is attached to the wall where the mirror is hung. Within the frame, it’s ideal to have a power outlet into which the mirror’s power supply unit will be plugged. The frame has mounting brackets onto which the mirror base is placed. It’s important to have a sturdy frame and securely installed brackets so that the mirror doesn’t slip or get detached from the wall.

When the mirror is hung, the base containing the LEDs and the frame creates a space between the mirror glass and the wall. When the power switch is turned on, the LEDs are activated and project light from this space. The light also reflects against the bathroom wall.

This creates the backlighting effect and makes it appear as if the mirror is floating off the wall. The light glowing from the edges also frames the mirror and illuminates the surrounding area.

The other components of backlit mirrors, such as switches and dimmers, may vary depending on their design and added features.

What are Backlit Mirrors Used For?

Backlit mirrors are primarily used for personal grooming. The light from the mirror falls on the face evenly and allows you to see yourself. Aside from this, backlit mirrors are also used to beautify a space, make a small space look bigger, and add brightness to a room. Let’s go into these uses in detail.

Grooming Routine

Backlit mirrors are ideal for personal grooming tasks such as washing your face, fixing your hair, brushing and flossing your teeth, shaving or waxing unwanted facial hair, and applying makeup. For these tasks to be done well and without mishaps, you need your reflection in the mirror to be well-lighted from all angles and as evenly as possible.

The glow that backlit mirrors give off has these special qualities that make it great for personal grooming.

It falls evenly on the face

Because the LEDs in a backlit mirror are placed all around a backlit mirror, when you stand in front of the mirror, your face will be lighted evenly from the top, bottom, and sides.

It doesn’t create harsh shadows

The light from a backlit mirror is of just the right brightness to allow you to do your grooming tasks easily. The lighting is not too harsh that it creates shadows on your face.

It’s safe for the eyes

Because the soft lighting is just right, facing a backlit mirror is safe for the eyes, even when you have to get as close to the mirror surface as possible. No squinting necessary!

Interior Design

Backlit mirrors are also used to add pizzazz to a room that needs more personality. A backlit mirror can instantly improve the ambiance in a room and give it a sleek, contemporary look. You can also read this article that discusses if backlit mirrors are worth it. We have shared helpful information that you can refer to.

The illusion of Bigger Space

Mirrors are often used by interior designers to create the illusion that a small area is roomier than it is. Backlit mirrors can do this too, plus the illumination also brightens and opens up cramped spaces.

Additional Lighting

A backlit mirror is not only eye-catching; it’s also a good source of extra lighting. The added brightness also helps make small rooms feel more spacious.

What are the Advantages of Having a Backlit Mirror?

Some of the best advantages of having a backlit mirror include having a more satisfying personal grooming routine, having a lighted mirror that lasts for years, and having the ability to upgrade the look of a space with just one object.

A Satisfying Personal Grooming Experience

Knowing your face is reflected clearly and even allows you to do your grooming tasks confidently and with ease. The light that comes from backlit mirrors is also similar to natural light, so you can also be confident about choosing the right colors and being able to blend your makeup properly.

A Lighted Mirror that Lasts

LEDs are highly durable and have a longer service life than other types of light bulbs–up to 50,000 hours. This means that a backlit mirror can be turned on for 2,000 days straight without the bulbs having to be replaced. If the lights are turned on for a maximum of 8 hours a day, you’ll only need replacement LEDs after 17 years.

Instant room makeover

If you want to do some room upgrades without really having to do much, installing a backlit mirror would do just the trick. A backlit mirror is one of the best wall accents you can have that also serves multiple functions.

✅ Video – 30+ Backlit Bathroom Mirror Design Ideas

This video shows a variety of backlit mirrors. You can see for yourself the different sizes and shapes of these lighted mirrors and how they work to light up and add character to space. While the mirrors in the video are placed in bathrooms, the images can give you a good idea of the effect of backlit mirrors and how they would look in other rooms in a house.

Related Questions

What’s the Difference between Lighted and Backlit Mirrors?

The difference between lighted and backlit mirrors is that lighted mirrors are lit up from the front or within the mirror itself. In contrast, backlit mirrors are lit up from behind the mirror panel, as we’ve discussed above. Both types of mirrors are technically “lighted;” the use of the term “backlit” is just to specify a particular type of lighted mirror. Check out this article for more information about the difference between backlit and lighted mirrors.

Are Lighted Bathroom Mirrors Worth It?

Yes, lighted bathroom mirrors like backlit mirrors are worth purchasing. Not only because they’re useful for your grooming routine, but also they can instantly improve the appearance and atmosphere of the bathroom. We have also written this article that discusses if LED mirrors are worth it. You can check it out for an in-depth discussion.

How Long do LED Mirrors Last?

High-quality LED lights have a usage time of up to 50,000 hours before needing to be replaced. If you use your LED mirror for two hours a day at most, the LED mirror can last up to 68 years. That’s a long time! Check out this article about how long LED mirrors last for more information


In this article, we described what a backlit mirror is and took a look at its major components to explain how it works. Simply put, a backlit mirror is a kind of mirror with a system of LED lights behind it. These LEDs light up the mirror from behind and provide an eye-catching glow that also serves to illuminate objects around it.

We also gave a list of the most common functions of backlit mirrors and the benefits of using backlit mirrors. If you are looking for a mirror that does more than reflecting objects, a backlit mirror would be a wise choice.

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