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This Lightbulb Doesn't Need A Dimmer To Set The Mood

Does it really work? We tested it out.

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Nanoleaf Bloom is a futuristic-looking light bulb that promises to save you energy.

Colin West McDonald / CNET / Via

Touted as a "dimmable light bulb that doesn't need a dimmer" on their Kickstarter, the LED doesn't need any additional hardware or fixtures and can work with any on/off switch — and it's nabbed some high-end investors.

Does it work? We asked for a sample to see for ourselves.

Colin West McDonald / CNET / Via

The bulb arrived, and to our excitement, looked like a carnival light sent from the future to bathe us in its space glow.

It was surprisingly gorgeous — fragile-looking, but sturdy, like a mad circus scientist figured out how to harness sunlight.

It even fit in our tiny reading lamp.

Kasia Galazka / BuzzFeed

And the adjustable light was perfect for those who can never seem to find the right light to read under.

The way it works: As it turns on, you turn it off and on quickly to lock in your preferred brightness (or the reverse if it's fading).

For those who don't speak lightbulb, here's how three lights you've seen fare.

A lumen (lm) is a unit of measurement for brightness. A watt (W) is a unit of power, or how much energy you need to get that puppy going. Because new energy-saving bulbs use fewer watts to operate, shopping can get a little confusing, so what you want to look for are lumens.

Here's how three other common bulbs break down, per the U.S. Department of Energy:

Regular (incandescent), 60W: 10-18 lm/W

Compact fluorescents (CFLs): 35-60 lm/W

LEDs: 27-92 lm/W

The Nanoleaf Bloom operates using 120 lumens/watt, making it incredibly energy-efficient.


So how does the bulb save energy?

Colin West McDonald / CNET / Via

A standard 60W bulb like you grew up with produces about 800 lumens, and 90% of its energy is given off as heat, according to (Having memories of burning your hand while changing a bulb yet?)

The Bloom reaches 75W with only 10W energy usage, glowing up to 1200 lumens — and it doesn't get hot like standard bulbs.

What about money? Is it worth it?

Colin West McDonald / CNET / Via

If it works as advertised, yes: at 100% brightness (10W), the bulb consumes $1.53 of electricity per year (a standard bulb costs about $8.02 a year). At half that brightness, you can use your couch change to pay the $0.38.

The best part: You don't need any electrical know-how to use it. "Nanoleaf Bloom brings simple dimming to any room without the need for extra installation of hardware or apps, all while significantly cutting down on global energy consumption," says Gimmy Chu, CEO.

The verdict: Pretty damn cool.


Being able to dim your lights is a fun way to feel fancy — especially if you're in a home where you can't install dimmers. Lighting accounts for 14% of the electricity U.S. homes consume, per the U.S. Energy Information Administration's analysis, so consider your factors if you're looking to save.

While the bulbs are still only available through the Kickstarter campaign for a $40 pledge and ship in November, Nanoleaf Bloom told BuzzFeed they'll be available through Amazon and by the end of the year. The price will be similar to what it costs to get one via Kickstarter.

Want to change your incandescents for energy-efficient bulbs?

Here's a handy chart and guide from the Federal Trade Commission about what lumens you need and what to look for the next time you shop. The U.S. Department of Energy also has tips for saving money.