Best fairy lights

Lighting

If your pet is partial to chewing on electrical cords, install fairy lights out of their reach and camouflage any remaining cord with tape or tubing.

BestReviews is reader-supported and may earn an affiliate commission. Details.

Which fairy lights are best?

Fairy lights add a touch of charming ambiance wherever they hang. When decorating holiday parties or even dorm rooms, fairy lights offer an understated glow at an affordable price. Most fairy lights are easy to set up, making a big impact with minimal effort.

Though the Minetom Fairy String Lights with Remote are a great choice for any space, you’ll want to consider what bulb size, string length, power and color(s) you want to set a cozy mood.

What to know before you buy fairy lights

Number of bulbs

This will generally vary greatly, depending on how long the string of fairy lights is. The more bulbs on each string, the brighter the fairy lights will shine. A string can include anywhere from 20 bulbs to 240 bulbs or more.

String length

The length of the string is related to the number of bulbs, but it also depends on how far apart the bulbs are. An average string of fairy lights measures around 10 feet long, while some longer strings can stretch 100 feet or more. Different lengths of string are useful for different purposes. Consider whether you’re planning to install lights around a railing, window frame, across a yard or above a bed. Then, measure the length of space you plan to cover to know how long of a string you’ll need.

Number of strings

Most fairy lights come as a single strand of lights. But if you’re looking for a variety of design options, know that some fairy lights may have multiple strings in one product. Consider if it would be feasible to string together short strands or if you would need one long strand of lights. Multiple strands of fairy lights make sense only in specific scenarios.

Bulb power

When it comes to powering your fairy lights, there are four main options: a wall outlet, USB connection, batteries or solar power.

Fairy lights that plug into a traditional outlet are straightforward but may be more challenging to install outdoors with limited access to outlets. If you’re decorating near a gaming console or computer, using a USB port may be the most convenient option. Fairy lights that use battery power can hang anywhere you like, but an occasional change of batteries is needed. Solar-powered fairy lights are valuable for outdoor lighting and save money on electricity, but users must be sure to place the solar panel in a place that receives direct sunlight.

Indoor vs. outdoor

Some fairy lights are manufactured for safe outdoor use, while others are made specifically for indoor use. Never use indoor lights outdoors. Instead, find a set of outdoor fairy lights that are waterproof and can withstand the elements. Most sets of solar-powered fairy lights are viable for outdoor use.

What to look for in quality fairy lights

Bulb type

Previously, fairy lights used incandescent bulbs, but LEDs are more popular today. Incandescent bulbs burn out faster, but are more affordable and offer a nostalgic look. LED bulbs are more energy-efficient, emit less heat and last longer.

Bulb size and shape

Fairy lights are iconic for their tiny lights that give off a glow similar to fireflies on a warm summer evening. When compared with regular string lights, fairy lights are much smaller, sometimes measuring only a few millimeters across.

Form

You can find fairy lights on individual strings, attached in a net or as part of a decor piece like a tree, moon, flower or another creative shape. Most fairy lights come in individual strands to hang up and customize.

Color

Just like other types of string lights, fairy lights come in a variety of colors. You can find strands of specific colors or multicolored packs. Some LED fairy lights can even change colors while lit.

Light settings

All fairy lights turn on when you plug them in. However, some models offer extra features like changing colors, different light patterns, flashing speeds and varying brightness. Those looking to coordinate their light show to music can find fairy lights that can flash to the beat.

Remote control

Some fairy lights come with remote control, which is an easy way to power them on and off. If your fairy lights have other light features, the remote may also let you change light settings, patterns or colors.

How much you can expect to spend on fairy lights

The average cost of fairy lights is between $10-$15. Prices will vary based on the length of string, the number of bulbs, the power source and extra features like customizable light settings.

Fairy light FAQ

How safe are fairy lights?

A. Though fairy lights are tiny, they still use electricity, and users should take the same precautions they would with any other electrical cord. Always unplug the cable before changing a bulb. Avoid a fire hazard by only using indoor lights indoors, so you don’t cause an electrical short. Be aware of how many strings of lights you connect, as the manufacturer may limit how many connections are safe.

How can I prevent my cat or dog from chewing on my fairy lights?

A. If your pet is partial to chewing on electrical cords, install your fairy lights out of reach of your pet and camouflage any remaining cord with tape or tubing. Making sure your pets can’t reach the cords is the best solution.

What’s the best fairy light to buy?

Best of the best fairy light

Minetom Fairy String Lights with Remote

Minetom Fairy String Lights with Remote

What you need to know: These long-string fairy lights come with a remote and are ideal for adding mood lighting to bedrooms.

What you’ll love: The lightweight cord holds 200 miniature bulbs along 66 feet, so it’s a great option for stringing across large spaces, ceilings or walls. The USB power source offers portable power and a quick installation for people with laptops, computers or gaming consoles. The string is waterproof, and the included remote offers added convenience.

What you should consider: Some customers say the lights can tangle easily.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Best bang for your buck fairy light

Brightown String Fairy Lights

Brightown String Fairy Lights

What you need to know: A quality set of 12 strands of fairy lights is a steal.

What you’ll love: Each strand of lights is 7 feet long and has 20 LEDs. Battery power makes these lights portable and easy to install. The string is waterproof and lightweight.

What you should consider: Buying multiple individual short strings of lights might not work for everyone.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Best design fairy light

NOAHFUN Fairy Light Spirit Tree Lamp

NOAHFUN Fairy Light Spirit Tree Lamp

What you need to know: The unique bonsai-inspired design of this fairy light tree makes it a cozy addition to any room.

What you’ll love: It is battery-powered and includes a USB port. The base of the lamp is touch-sensitive for turning it on and off. It has a total of 108 LED lights at the ends of flexible branches. Choose from over 10 different designs.

What you should consider: Batteries are not included.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Best durable fairy light

Slyuexu Solar Fairy Lights

Slyuexu Solar Fairy Lights

What you need to know: These solar lights with adjustable solar panels are ideal for outdoor use.

What you’ll love: The 78-foot-long cord has 240 LED lights attached. Solar panels power the lights, and adjustable stakes are easy to install into the ground. The lights turn on automatically at sundown, last for up to 10 hours and have eight settings. The cord is waterproof and heat-resistant.

What you should consider: Some customers expected the lights to be brighter. Keep in mind, these lights only work if they charge in bright sunlight during the day.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Best colorful fairy light

YULETIME Fairy String Lights

YULETIME Fairy String Lights

What you need to know: Multicolored lights feature many different LED lights on a single strand, perfect for festivals and celebrations.

What you’ll love: The 50-foot strand has 150 different bulbs and an AC power adapter. The string is waterproof, lightweight and easy to bend.

What you should consider: Some customers expected larger bulbs.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Katy Palmer writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.