Should You Buy a Ring Light?

If you're taking any sort of photos or videos at home, a ring light might be a worthwhile investment.

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If you’ve ever tried to set up lighting to take photos or videos, you know how tricky it can be. Ring lights gained popularity from the photography community, but they’ve quickly become a must-have for all types of content creators thanks to their versatility. Here’s everything you need to know about ring lights.

What Is a Ring Light?

Ring lights are circular electric lights with a hole in the middle — hence the “ring” — that usually measure between 10 and 20 inches in diameter. These lights typically give off clear, white light, and come with a mount in the center where you can place a camera or smartphone.

The main advantage? Ring lights cast a uniform glow from all directions on the object in front of them, helping to minimize awkward shadows without the need for a full lighting set-up.

What Can I Use a Ring Light For?

The most popular uses for ring lights include portrait photography and videography; many people illuminate their faces with these lights while taking Instagram pictures or filming YouTube videos. The even lighting is especially helpful for documenting detail-oriented tasks like makeup application.

But that’s not all. Some use the 360-degree light for product photography, and others for hobbies, like painting model cars. Some dentists even use ring lights to better illuminate patient’s mouths!

What Should I Look for When Buying a Ring Light?

If you decide to purchase a ring light, remember a few key factors. Make sure the light can hold your camera or phone if you’re planning to use it for photography or videos. Consider whether the light comes with accessories such as a stand, filters that change the light color, or a remote control for adjustments.

On a more technical note, consider the wattage of the light and whether it will be bright enough for your needs. More advanced ring lights may even offer different light intensities or colors.

Which Ring Light Should I Buy?

There are lots of ring lights to choose from, but these three are among the best you can buy.

  • Ubeesize Selfie Ring Light: This small, eight-inch ring light is ideal for anyone looking to test out the technology without making a large commitment. It has three lighting modes, each with 11 brightness levels, and its small tripod features a built-in mount for your smartphone.
  • GVM Bi-Color LED Ring Light: This 18-inch ring light best suits larger applications, and you can adjust the lighting temperature from cool to warm. It comes with a stand, smartphone holder, camera mount, light diffuser and Bluetooth remote control, increasing its versatility.
  • Westcott Bi-Color LED Ring Light Kit: If you want the best of the best, this 18-inch ring light is suitable for professional applications. It can be powered by battery or AC adapter, and its LED lights are dimmable with adjustable temperature.

Camryn Rabideau
Camryn Rabideau is freelance writer specializing in fashion, beauty, home, smart technology and general lifestyle content. She holds a degree in fashion merchandising from the University of Rhode Island and jumps at any opportunity to combine her love for fashion and writing.

Camryn is a regular contributor to popular media sites such as Martha Stewart, Food52, InStyle, Taste of Home, USA Today, Reviewed.com, The Spruce, Elite Daily and The Everygirl. She has also worked with several Fortune 500 companies to create engaging articles for their content marketing initiatives. Despite pressure from her peers, she remains on team #NoOxfordComma.