Clip-on reading lights aren't just a simple solution for late-night reading that won't disturb the person sitting next to you, they're also a great way to offer illumination in tight spaces that are just too small for table lamps. The best clip-on reading lights typically fall into two categories: lamps and book lights. Both allow you to read and study better in dim light, but they're designed a bit differently. Lamps have larger clamps that attach to headboards, desks, or nightstands, while book lights attach directly to the page or binding. The former offers a bit more illumination, while the latter is especially great if you travel a lot or have a partner who goes to bed early.
When shopping around, there are several factors to consider:
- Quality of light: Although most reading lights are made with LED lights, there's still considerable variation in terms of warmth, intensity, and brightness. Some emit cool white light for clear illumination, while others feature an amber glow. Some have dimmers, while others have fixed settings. Make sure you choose one that matches your preferences.
- Functionality: As I mentioned above, consider what you're using the light for — do you need illumination in small spaces or targeted light to let a partner sleep? And when it comes to a clamp, you want it to be wide enough to fit the surface without it being so big that it gets in the way.
- Battery: Most reading lights are USB-chargeable, but some use tiny coin cell batteries. Whichever you opt for, make sure it can last a decent amount of time before needing to be recharged or the batteries replaced.
With these considerations in mind, take a look at the best clip-on reading lights below.
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