Although you may initially recoil in horror at the thoughts of seeing your face up close and personal, a magnifying mirror is a vital object that no home should be without.
An illuminated magnifying mirror is no longer the sole vestige of aging Hollywood starlets; everyone can have a magnifying makeup mirror and feel like a star. Given today’s overwhelming array of choice, how on earth do you decide which is the best magnifying mirror for you?
Read on for our top 10 best magnifying mirrors, followed by a summary of all the factors you might want to take into consideration before making a purchase
Our 10 Best Magnifying Mirrors Reviewed
10. Ikea FRACK
This stainless steel, one sided, wall-mounted round magnifying mirror is compact, cheap and cheerful. The cheapest item on this list, its extendable arm, swivel mirror, 17cm diameter and water resistant surface make it the ideal mirror for in the bathroom. This lightweight mirror is particularly suitable if the wall it will be fitted to isn’t particularly sturdy! Perfect for student residences or a first home.
9. Danielle Twisted Stem Pedestal Mirror
This stylish free-standing, stainless steel round mirror has a non-magnifying mirror on the reverse. Its high magnification (10x) makes it ideal for seeing every detail. With a weighted base for balance and twisted stem design, this mirror will make an elegant addition to your dressing table.
Despite being on the lower end of the budget scale, this mirror looks expensive and classy and would go down a treat with those who want a more ornamental mirror.
8. HoMedics Illuminated Mirror
This illuminated magnifying double-sided (1x and 7x) swivel round mirror has a dimmer witch, allowing you to adjust the light intensity to your preferred level. Although edging towards the pricey side, it is a worthy and ethical investment with its eco-friendly low energy LED light.
It also boasts a no-glare distortion-free surface and the rushed silver effect finish, hidden switch and weighted base combines visual appeal with practicality. As a battery-operated freestanding magnifying mirror, it can easily be moved from room to room.
7. John Lewis Chrome Extending Magnifying Mirror
This mid-budget wall-mounted round mirror has a gorgeous shiny sleek appeal with its clean design and chrome finish. The 20.5 cm diameter gives you ample room to see and it is reversible (1x and 3x magnification).
As well as full swivel, it also has an extendable hinged arm (24-46 cm), making it perfect for facial grooming in the bathroom for all members of the family. It should be noted that this mirror is rather heavy so would need to be attached to a sturdy wall!
6. Simplehuman Mini Sensor Travel Mirror | ST3004
Now we’re talking. This exquisite cordless free-standing magnifying illuminating mirror automatically lights up when sensing movement, and automatically switches off after you’ve finished. The 12cm diameter fully swivelling mirror, adjustable height and high magnification (10x) makes it perfect for close-up work (such as perfecting your eyeliner flick).
Its tru-lux light system uses long-lasting surgical-grade LED bulbs to simulate natural sunlight, which helps achieve a flawless makeup finish.
Aesthetically pleasing, it has a simple clean design and no cord. This travel mirror can be charged every 5 weeks via a USB cable and comes with a padded travel case. Expensive, but worth every penny.
5. Robert Welch Burford Extendable Mirror
This particular magnifying mirror (3x) has a more masculine feel to it with its strong square mirror shape and artfully concealed screws. It is perfect for the bathroom being wall-mounted and with an extendable arm. Constructed from high quality stainless steel that will not corrode, this mirror combines timeless design with durability. A nice gift for a bachelor pad!
4. Simplehuman Wall Mount Sensor Mirror | ST3002
With 5x magnification, this 20 cm wall-mounted round magnifying sensor mirror with light is very easy to install. Utilising the aforementioned tru lux LED light system, this mirror provides optimal facial lighting and colour perception. The robust stainless steel swing arm also maximises adjustability. Upon charging (via a USB cable), the mirror should last a solid five weeks before needing another charging session.
3. Simplehuman Sensor Mirror Pro 20cm | ST3007
This sleek high-end piece of kit nabs the top spot with its futuristic design inspired by old-school tri-fold dressing table mirrors. This illuminated magnifying mirror automatically lights up (and automatically switches off) due to its carefully designed motion sensors.
The 20 cm diameter round sensor mirror has 5x magnification, and 10x detail is provided by a separate detachable mini mirror. This magnifying makeup mirror can be charged (2-3 hours); charge lasts for up to four weeks. This mirror is also Wi-Fi enabled; a corresponding app is available on Android or ios, providing smart features. The brushed stainless steel design provides a modern finish.
2. Simplehuman 20cm Sensor Mirror | BT1080
Despite this free-standing illuminated magnifying sensor mirror with light being pipped to the post for the number one spot, it is an excellent high-end option. As with the other Simplehuman mirrors listed here, it utilises the tru lux light system with long-lasting LEDs and is cordless and chargeable.
This mirror is distortion-free, has a large 20 cm diameter mirror and 5x magnification. With its conical base tapering into a sleek simple stand, this round mirror is one of the most simple stylish options available.
1. Simplehuman Pro Wide View Sensor Mirror | ST3014
So what made the number one spot? This futuristic take on the old free-standing three-panel dressing table mirror is carefully crafted from aluminium and stainless steel, with dual 1x and 10x magnification. As the name suggests, it is designed to allow a ‘wide view’; its folding panels allow you to see your face and hair from any angle.
Illumination is automatic and the dynamic motion sensor is carefully designed to become more sensitive with use so it doesn’t suddenly switch off unexpectedly.
Using the tru lux light system, this incredible mirror is capable of over 50,000 colour variations. Furthermore, it is also app-enabled (using Wi-Fi or Bluetooth) which allows accurate reflection of numerous real-world light conditions (low lit restuarants, clubs, the gym, outdoors etc).
This spectrum of light availability makes it even easier to perfectly blend makeup for a flawless finish. Cord-free and chargeable (every 3 weeks), this mirror can also be programmed as an alarm, notifying you with a soft flashing light. Yes, this is the most expensive option on the list but this award-winning multi-faceted mirror is most definitely the cream of the crop.
Top Features | Best Magnifying Mirrors
Mirrors are available in a wide range of magnifications, suitable for different uses, for example: medium magnification (3-10x) for shaving or makeup application; high magnification (15-20x) for plucking eyebrows and examining pores; or low magnification (2x) for a small handheld handbag mirror for quick makeup touch ups on the go.
Illumination or Light
Mirrors with inbuilt illumination will help you see more clearly, for example ensuring you don’t miss a patch of hair while shaving. Some mirrors have multiple options to replicate different light conditions, such as natural sunlight, or electric fluorescent light, and some have a dimmer switch for optimal adjustment. Magnifying mirrors with light can also prevent eye strain, particularly if you have poor vision.
For more advanced magnifying mirrors, there are integrated sensor that automatically illuminates once your face is within a certain proximity. Once in use, the sensors would usually increase so that the light won’t automatically switch off.
Acrylic is lightweight and strong, and is less likely to show fingerprint marks, so may be better suited to handheld mirrors. Stainless steel mirrors are heavier and usually more expensive, however, they are also more durable and tend to look better.
Free-standing and wall-mounted mirrors tend to be made from stainless steel, whereas smaller compact mirrors may be acrylic.
- Free Standing – Magnifying mirrors can be free-standing which is ideal for doing your make-up in the bedroom. Free-standing mirrors have a much wider range of different designs which may be cordless or wired with a mains plug.
- Wall Mountable – Bathroom magnifying mirrors tend to be wall-mounted, extendable and water-resistant which is more suited for bathroom use – shaving or putting in contact lenses.
- Swivel – Most of the larger magnifying mirrors have a swivel feature, horizontally and vertically, to ensure that you can be seen from every angle. Some swivel mirrors will often have a non-magnifying standard 1x mirror on the reverse, so you can quickly flip it over and see your whole face and hair for a final check.
- Extendable Arm – Wall mounted magnifying mirrors often come with an extendable arm for maximum manoeuvrability and versatile positioning.
An essential feature for bathroom use, a fog resistant mirror can withstand hot, wet and high humidity environments. It will certainly be helpful when using the mirror during or after a bath or shower.