A lot of people prefer warm yellowish light inside their houses, to daylight fluorescents.

But why?  Daylight seems more natural.  It makes the inside of one's house more like the outdoors. 

Maybe we have instincts related to fire, the safety that prehistoric people found around a fire that puts out yellow light. 

Whiter fluorescent lights tend to be used at work, where people are more on guard. 

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I've often thought about this, but have come to no conclusions as yet.  Knowing me, I'm surprised that I've not done an experiment yet.

I'm slowing changing my fluorescent lights to LEDs, so may someday do an experiment with them.

You might be right about the yellow light being associated by us with the additional security our ancestors felt around camp fires. We also find water relaxing which might be associated by us with the additional security our ancestors felt near it because of the plentiful game and drinking provisions it supplied.

This is a big thing for me personally. I can't stand florescent lighting. I will not have it in my house. Even outdoor lighting. It puts my teeth on edge. And just like you say, I'm not bothered by it at all in stores or workplaces. I still use incandescent light bulbs in my home until such lighting can be replicated by the new style fluorescents or LEDs.

 In the 70's and 80's, street lighting in my part of the world was also florescent. This too also bothered me. It came across as ugly and garish, especially in otherwise pretty neighbourhoods. This is when light pollution entered my lexicon.

I was literally thrilled when the yellowish lighting was installed in the city and suburban roads. No longer would my house feel like it was plunked in the middle of a mall parking lot. I am in a mountainous area and the new thing around here is now shaded street lights, which has the effect of lighting up an area without any glare from the bulbs themselves. The effect is stunning. Greenery and landscaping is highlighted, while you can look up and see the stars without them being washed out by the ambient glare given off by standard lighting.

I've heard quite a few people say they can't stand fluorescent lighting.  It doesn't seem to bother me except for a couple of stores years ago that bothered my eyes, and the type of fluorescent lighting was the only thing I could think of that did it.

I know that incandescent light is closer to the spectrum of light from the sun.  Fluorescents and LEDs don't even come close so far.

Consciously, I'm not bothered by the kind or color of light I'm in, except for red.  I have a red light in the hallway and bathroom that goes on at night, because It probably doesn't bother my sleep as much if I have to get up in the night.  When I first put it in, it was very creepy.  A little scary.  After a few months, I got used to it, and it only seems slightly creepy now. 

They make warm CFLs you know, guys.  I have CFLs in my house that you can't tell apart from incandescent bulbs, based upon the light they put out.

They make warm CFLs

I know, but why would people prefer "warmer" ones for their houses?

 In the 70's and 80's, street lighting in my part of the world was also florescent.

There are horrible orange streetlights around here.  It always looks like Halloween. 

Don't know about the street lights.  All I know is that the ones I have are within the same range to the point that it's not perceptible ... I mean even side-by-side, a few inches apart.

I have one ceiling fixture that has one of three sockets that won't accept a CFL bulb.  If I had to guess, I'd say that that socket isn't getting quite the full 120 volts or the full ampage that it's supposed to provide to the bulb.  Standard CFLs (they make ones specifically for dimmer switches) require the full voltage and ampage, within a very tiny margin, to the point that they don't work on dimmer switches.

Looking at those two CFLs and the one incandescent, side by side, I can't see any difference in the color of the light coming from them.

Wait, I just remembered ... aren't street lights halogen bulbs?

Ask a photographer. ;-) Or an artist.

We prefer yellow light (which is actually largely red) because it imparts a warmth. We have evolved to seek out warmer climates, etc. so anything warm in colour is pleasant. Our brains are amazing at detecting the spectrum in any given light - even if we're not fully aware of it.

Older fluorescent tubes were a nasty green but so-called Daylight CFs are actually more blue than anything else; at least that's what the camera sees.

Many people will tell you they prefer incandescent bulbs to any of the more recent innovations, including LEDs for the same reason.

Blue, which is at the high-energy of the visible spectrum, is associated with cold, forbidding climes. Arctic ice (all water in fact) is slightly blue.

Curiously, even a warm handshake (or being asked to hold a warm cup of coffee) can make you more attracted to a stranger than the lack of it!

From a videographer's perspective, which is where I'm sitting now, even "daylight" bulbs - and we have some very expensive ones - are far from full spectrum. Technology will probably get there eventually, but it's a long way off.

This http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_temperature Wikipedia article might help clear it up. It's a wonderful subject. Particularly when you think where the vast majority of our natural light comes from (and energy to power most of the rest can be traced back to that same source eventually). 

Yellow and red aren't actually warmer according to color temperature. It's probably because fires are yellow and red that we think those colors are warm.  Our ancestors were using fire about 800,000 years ago, to cook, protect themselves, light their houses.  Fire is associated with nurturing and safety.

I've actually preferred whiter light like the "daylight" fluorescents in my house.To me yellow light seems dingy, not bright enough.  It makes spaces look smaller.  I love the outdoors and nature so I like the inside of my house to look like it's outdoors. 

I'm not living in my house because severe allergies drove me out.  I'm in a rented place that has incandescent light.  I can see the appeal of yellow light.  The place has light-brown walls and brown carpet.  I can see the appeal of that also, living in a "burrow".

According to wikipedia daylight enhances concentration and yellow light causes relaxation, which would fit with our prehistory.  But I found a study online that found no difference in thinking speed etc. with different kinds of fluorescent light. 


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