TL;DR: The Lumie Task should be your go-to SAD lamp if you suffer from winter blues and also want to up your energy, alertness and productivity levels
There’s less than a fortnight to go until the clocks turn back at the end of October, and that means it’s time to transition into Winter survival mode.
If you want to stay warm and cosy at home when the mercury drops, then you’ll need one of the best duvets or electric blankets to snuggle up with. And if you yearn to remain protected from the elements every time you venture outside, you could do worse than wear one of the best winter coats or waterproof jackets to keep out the wind and rain.
But if you’re desperate to maintain a more positive outlook this season and keep the winter blues at bay as the days get darker, you should also consider investing in one of the best SAD lamps on the market.
Many of us experience a dip in mood and motivation during the Autumn/Winter months due to the lack of natural sunlight. And for those suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), completing even the most basics of tasks can become extremely challenging.
That’s where SAD lamps, including the Lumie Task I'm reviewing here, can help. Medically recommended as a treatment for SAD, SAD lamps are light therapy devices that simulate sunlight to effectively combat the signs of SAD and help you feel more energetic, alert, and happier.
While I have never been diagnosed with SAD by a medical professional, I have always experienced low mood and energy levels as well as a general lack of focus during the winter months. However, after using the Lumie Task every day for a month, I can confidently say I’m feeling lighter and brighter about the prospect of darker months ahead. Read on to find out why.
LUMIE TASK REVIEW: PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
If you have been diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder and you're buying the Lumie Task for domestic and personal use, buying it directly from Lumie will allow you to claim VAT relief, so it will cost you £207.50 instead.
LUMIE TASK REVIEW: DESIGN AND FEATURES
Light therapy specialists Lumie offer a wide range of SAD lamps to suit different environments, including the Lumie Desk Lamp for the home and office. However, this cheaper, chunkier, and deeply unattractive model pales in comparison next to the oh-so-stylish and highly practical Lumie Task.
Launched in August 2023, the Lumie Task has been specially designed to transform any desk space into a place of enhanced clarity while bringing the benefits of natural daylight indoors.
It boasts a slim and sleek design that is surprisingly sturdy (you’d struggle to knock this lamp over by accident), with a wide base measuring 17.5cm across. This solid base is then mirrored in size, shape, and style up top at the lamp head for a balanced, aesthetically pleasing appearance.
While the slim, inflexible stem is fixed in height, it can be rotated to spin in any direction. But it’s at the neck where you’ll find the real adjustability. Simply rotate the head in either direction to direct the light out to the sides by 180°, then angle it up to make the lamp head stand vertically when you want to use it as a SAD lamp (taking the lamp to a height of 55cm) or point it downwards when you need to shine a light on your desk (reducing the height to around 43cm).
Aside from the high level of adjustability, the Lumie Task is dimmable, which is a feature often lacking on standard SAD lamps or light therapy boxes. To adjust the light to a suitable level of brightness, you only need to gently swipe your finger to the right to turn it up, or swipe it left to turn it down. A tap to the side of the logo also turns the lamp off and on.
Built with style in mind, the Lumie Task is available in five colours, so you’re sure to find one that works with your décor. I reviewed the Charcoal Blue model, which is neutral enough to work with any colour scheme, but there’s also White Mist, Steel Blue, and Sage Green, along with Golden Yellow for a cheerful pop of colour.
Packaged in 100% recyclable packaging, the Lumie Task weighs a surprisingly lightweight 1.69 kg – handy if you work from home like me and want to move the lamp effortlessly to a different room when a change of scenery is in order.
LUMIE TASK REVIEW: LIGHT AND PERFORMANCE
The Lumie Task utilises high-end broad-spectrum LEDs to deliver a cool, white light that closely mimics natural sunlight at an intensity of 10,000 lux at 15cm.
For anyone new to SAD lamp tech, 10,000 lux is typically the recommended brightness for a SAD lamp, while the distance – which can range from 10 to 20cm – lets you know how far your face should be from the lamp to receive the full health-boosting benefits when the lamp is at full power (read these tips on how to use a SAD lamp and get the most out of light therapy).
So far, so standard. But the real bonus can be found in the Lumie Task’s high-contrast lighting, which has a colour rendering index (CRI) of 95+ to ensure crystal-clear illumination while you’re completing tasks (the clue is in the name). This allows you to see objects, text, textures, and colours with incredibly accuracy, while minimising eye strain.
In short, this makes the Lumie Task ideal for fine-detail work like arts and crafts, reading, editing, designing, jewellery making, and sewing, and is especially useful when you are painting or drawing, because the CRI of 95+ allows for accurate colour matching and shading (CRI accurately measures how colours appear under electric light, and a CRI of 90 or over is considered excellent).
As someone who experiences low mood in the winter; is permanently glued to a computer screen for approximately nine to eleven hours a day while working from home; and likes to engage in many creative activities in the evening to wind down before a bit of bedtime reading, I can’t tell you how much I loved the Lumie Task’s versatility. Needless to say, I soon developed a daily routine to maximise its uses and benefits.
First thing in the morning, I tilt the lamp upwards and position my face around 15cm away from the light source before whacking the lamp on full power and basking in the light for around 20 minutes while enjoying my morning cuppa (Lumie doesn’t say how long you should use the light for at full power, but it’s generally thought that 20-30 minutes is optimum with any SAD lamp).
SAD therapy session over - and feeling physically and mentally raring to go (it honestly makes that much of a difference to how I’m feeling when the sun isn’t shining) - I then tilt the lamp head downwards and dim the light to about two thirds of its capacity to perfectly illuminate my workspace, before gradually dimming the light as the day progresses to avoid feeling awake in the evening.
Of course, when I’m doing a bit of journaling, or drawing, or colouring in to relax in the evening, I might increase the intensity of the light a little. But by bedtime, I’ll have it down to the absolute minimum for some bedtime reading.
After using the Lumie Task every day for a month across September and October, I can honestly say it’s been a total game changer for my wellbeing. I’ve observed the window of daylight gradually reduce over that period – where the darkness once set in at 8.30pm and now arrives at 6pm - but for the first time in my life, this isn’t making me feel physically lacklustre or mentally miserable.
Naturally, I’m sure this feeling is consistent with any continued use of a SAD lamp, but where the Lumie Task really stands head and shoulders above other SAD lamps is that is has dramatically improved my working environment.
I wear bifocal lens glasses and stare at screens all day, so I often struggle with vision discomfort and sore, tired eyes, to the point where I have to take hours-long screen breaks to rest my peepers. But since using the Lumie Task, I haven’t had one headache, let alone a migraine. Heck, I haven’t even had to use my trusty eye drops, which has been a several-times-a-day-necessity for years.
And if that wasn’t enough, the Lumie Task even doubles as a ring light to perfectly illuminate my appearance during Zoom calls whenever I’m recording an interview for socials.
LUMIE TASK REVIEW: VERDICT
The Lumie Task is an essential buy if you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder or low mood during the winter months. There’s no doubt that it’s pricey, but if you work from home, or regularly partake in arts, crafts, reading, or any other kind of fine-detail work, it will pay for itself ten times over in terms of your visual comfort, productivity, and alertness.
Sleek, slim, and stylish, it’s the kind of lamp that looks good on any desk, or any space in the home for that matter. But it’s also practical and highly versatile, thanks to its adjustable, dimmable design that works for all occasions, whether you’re working or chilling. If you make one purchase this winter, make it this. You won’t regret it.
LUMIE TASK REVIEW: Alternatives to consider
If you like the Lumie brand, a great alternative to the Lumie Task is the Lumie Halo SAD Lamp. This premium SAD light has a similar price tag to the Lumie Task but has a more compact size. It has adjustable colours and lights, and T3's reviewer felt significantly better after using it.
For a different brand, the Beurer TL50 SAD Lamp is a more affordable model to choose. It's simple, bright and effective, and it won't break the bank!