Maybe you’ve got everything you want in your man cave — all the latest games, your most prized sports memorabilia, a nice and cozy couch to lounge on, and a fridge full of good booze. So why does it still feel like something’s missing? If, despite everything you’ve done, your man cave still looks like… well… a cave, then you must be lacking proper lighting.

Lighting affects your man cave’s mood and ambiance. Some guys shy away from modifying their man cave lighting because they think it’s too much work or because they think it’s too expensive but that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

There are plenty of ways to modify your man cave lighting, regardless of whether your budget is big or small, or if you’re renting the house or own it. There are man cave lighting projects that you can take on yourself, too, if you’re more of a DIY kind of guy.

Ready to light up your man cave? Here are some ideas for you.

1. TV Back Lighting

Straining your eyes is never a good idea. They say don’t read in the dark, but did you know that watching TV in the dark can cause eye strain, too? Turning the lights off while you watch TV keeps your eyes focused on the screen but it creates a big difference in luminance between the television screen and the room’s dark background.

This can lead to eye strain and eye fatigue later on. Luckily, you can prevent that by adding a TV bias light or illuminating the back of your TV and creating some sort of a “transition” for your eyes between the bright TV screen and the pitch-black room.


  • Affordable – adding lights to the back of your TV is cheaper than you think. All you need to get the job done is an LED strip light kit and you’re good to go. No expensive tools or equipment are needed for installing this lighting option either.
  • It looks cool – sure, we can talk about the health benefits all day long but giving the back of your TV a cinema-like glow looks really just adds that extra level of atmosphere on movie night
  • Easy to install – Most LED strip lights come with an adhesive backing. The one shown below even has support clips to keep them in place so you don’t have to worry about the strips falling off and messing up with the aesthetic.
  • Good for the eyes – as mentioned earlier, having soft lights between the bright TV screen and the pitch-black room can help your eyes transition better and, therefore, reduce eye strain and eye fatigue.
  • Better viewing experience – adding a TV bias light gives you a better viewing experience. It enhances the picture on your screen, making your favorite movies and TV shows more enjoyable.
  • Versatile – TV backlighting is also a great way to set the mood in your man cave. Most LED light strips used as TV backlighting come in a plethora of colors and lighting modes so you can choose which one to use accordingly.


  • If you chose a backlight that isn’t sticky enough, the adhesive will deteriorate over time and your backlight will peel – but I have never had this problem with my recommended.
  • Doesn’t light up the whole room – if you’re looking for something to brighten up your whole man cave, this may not be the option for you. Other than that, though, there’s really not much to dislike about TV backlighting. 


● 13.2ft LED strip light with 16 million color variations, 16 auto-colors 
● Best for illuminating 56-75” TVs
● USB-powered with dual controls (remote and power box)
● Plug-and-play
● Easy installation using pre-placed 3.2ft adhesive backing and support clips

2. Shelf Lighting

Got a sick toy collection that you’d like to put on display? Or maybe you have an amazing array of sports memorabilia from over the years that you’d like to show off. Are you into drinking fancy booze and collecting the bottles?

Whatever your collection may be, having a shelf where you can put it up for display is a sure way to add some personality to your man cave. Make it the focal point of your space by lighting up your shelves to draw attention to your collection.

This man cave lighting idea is a quick and easy way to illuminate a specific part of your man cave, especially if you’d like to keep the lights dim in the general area.


  • Inexpensive – one of the best things about shelf lighting is that it’s cheap. You can get shelf lights for a fairly low price so it’s great if you’re looking for something that won’t break the bank.
  • Functional – adding lights to your shelves not only light up a good portion of your man cave but it lets you showcase your prized possessions as well. You’ll be able to see them easier and you’ll be reminded to clean them more often as well.
  • Adds a personal touch – your collection reflects your style and your personality and adding lights to bring attention to it can really make your personality shine throughout your man cave.


  • Could be damaging – lights that emit UV rays like fluorescent lights can damage your collectibles over time. Thankfully, you can avoid this problem by using LED lights to light up your shelves instead.


● Comes with 6 12” light bars and 5 12” extension cables 
● Safe UL-listed LED lighting kit won’t damage collectibles with UV rays and keeps cool, even when left on for hours. 
● High-output LED at 150 lumens per light bar
● Linkable light bars allow you to light up your growing collection seamlessly
● 3M adhesive backing lets you stick it on multiple types of surfaces 

3. Stylish Pendant Lighting

Man Cave Lighting Ideas - Pendant Lighting

Pendant lights are quickly becoming one of the hottest trends in home decor trends. These lights are stylish and very functional as well. Because they come in a wide variety of styles and designs, pendant lights can be used to achieve a number of looks for your man cave too.

This lighting option is great for those whose man caves have a high ceiling or for those who are looking for lighting options that don’t take up a lot of floor space. Pendant lights are the manly counterpart of fancy chandeliers.


  • Efficient – pendant lights can efficiently brighten up the whole room instead of casting light on a particular area. This is a great option to consider if you’re looking for something that will make your man cave look well-lit. 
  • Stylish – men may not be big on aesthetics but we try to make things look nice whenever we can, especially in our man caves. Adding a pendant light is a great way to jazz up your room and make it look more interesting. 
  • Saves space – a lot of people rely on lamps to add more light to a dark room but if you don’t want to sacrifice floor space or precious real estate on your desk, having a pendant light installed would be a better alternative. 


  • Cleaning – because pendant lights are installed overhead, cleaning can be tricky. Using a vacuum extension or an extended duster can help with this issue.


● Decent-sized piece (25.3 x 6.1 x 4.7 inches) effortlessly lights up a small to mid-sized room
● Uses easy-to-find E27 LED bulbs
● Rustic, vintage style pendant light that fits retro, steampunk, industrial, and even modern themed man caves
● Unique steampipe design with bronzy patina makes for a great statement lighting piece
● Easy to assemble, install, and adjust according to your personal preference


● Each pendant light measures 12.00 x 12.00 x 6.50 inches
● Simple, classic design that’s easy to install and works for most man cave themes
● Works with various bulb types including LED, CFL, and incandescent
● Comes in a budget-friendly pack of three which you can use all together or in separate rooms
● Corded electric power source ensures a safe and stable light source
● Adjustable cord length lets you hang your pendant light as high or as low as you want. 

4. Bar Underside Lighting

Naturally us guys love going to the bar for a few drinks with friends, but anyone who’s married knows that if the clock runs over, there could possibly be a terror waiting for them at home… Bring the bar experience into your man cave by having your own personal bar counter installed and stocked up with your favorite drinks.

Complete the look by adding underside lighting to your bar counter and invite your friends over for drinks! You’ll never be late again and you won’t have to worry about being too wasted to go home ever again.


  • Sets the mood – bar underside lighting helps set the mood for parties and get-togethers in your man cave. 
  • Aesthetically pleasing – looking for a cool way to pimp out your man cave? Adding underside lighting your bar might just be the weekend project you’re looking for. Aside from illuminating a part of your man cave, it also adds a cool look to the room, making it the perfect place to chill. 
  • Makes a bold statement – girls like to show off perfectly organized cupboards and pristine living rooms. For men, it’s the man cave. Anyone who has one can’t help but brag about it to their pals and having bar underside lighting is one great way to make a statement in your space. 
  • Increases your home value – well-lit rooms can help boost your home’s value and additional light fixtures such as bar underside lighting can raise the value even further. Having the right amount of light in a room makes it look and feel more spacious and expensive. 


  • Limited illuminated space – this isn’t the man cave lighting option to go for if you’re looking for something that will illuminate the whole room. 


● Warm white 
● 6.6 ft. 120-LED strip light delivers 1100 lumens with low power consumption illuminates your wall art without breaking the bank
● Peel-and-stick adhesive backing lets you install lights quickly and easily
● High quality, UL listed lights
● Made or copper and plastic materials 

5. Down Light On Art or Poster

Man Cave Lighting Ideas - Poster Downlight

They may not be Picasso, Van Gogh, or Rembrandt, but if you love art and have pieces by your favorite artists to put on display, investing in good down lights is a must. Many think having art pieces of your walls makes you a snob but, in reality, it just means you’re a person of sophistication and good taste. The right down light fixture can turn your man cave into a gallery. It highlights your favorite art pieces and adds a modern touch to your space as well.

This man cave lighting option is great for movie buffs as well. Recreate the classic look of cinema/theater walls by hanging framed posters of your favorite movies and highlighting them with down lights. Now all you need to complete the experience are snacks, drinks, a comfy recliner, good speakers, and a big-ass TV – all of which are man cave must haves anyway.


  • Modern and classy – whether it’s the gallery look or the cinema look that you’re going for, there’s no denying that adding downlights to highlight your wall art is a surefire way to add a classy and modern look to your man cave. 
  • Modern and classy – whether it’s the gallery look or the cinema look that you’re going for, there’s no denying that adding downlights to highlight your wall art is a surefire way to add a classy and modern look to your man cave. 
  • Versatile – who says this lighting option is for art pieces and posters only? Downlights work amazingly well as spotlights for anything you want to showcase in your man cave. 
  • Soft and non-intrusive – don’t you just hate it when lights are too bright and too blinding that, instead of helping you appreciate what’s on the walls, it gives you a headache instead? Downlights emit a downward soft light that’s easy on the eyes so it’s perfect for those who have sensitive eyes. 
  • Ideal for low ceilings – with most man caves being located in garages and basements, having a high ceiling isn’t usually an option. Thankfully, down lights are low ceiling-friendly. 


  • Requires professional installation – downlights need to be installed by a professional if you want a clean look. Unless you know your way around wiring and electrical stuff, this isn’t something you can DIY. 


● L14.2″xH10″
● Lamp shade diameter 10.2”
● Wall mounted metal downlights with a classic vintage design 
● Uses E26 LED, CFL, or incandescent bulbs

6. Dimmer Lighting

Man Cave Lighting Ideas - light Dimmer

Man caves aren’t always loud, bright, and busy. Guys appreciate a bit of down time, too, every now and then. If you appreciate chilling solo as much as you do partying with your pals, getting a dimmer light switch to help you set the mood in your man cave would be a good move.

Turn it up to the brightest setting when you’re working on your hobbies, working out, or playing with friends and turn it down low for a chill Netflix-and-chill kind of night with the wife.


  • Energy-saving lighting option – having bright lights on all the time consumes a lot of energy. Being able to dim your lights so they don’t consume that much energy can result in a significant change in your power bill. 
  • Prolongs bulb life – granted that today’s bulbs already last an incredibly long period of time, using dimmers can extend their life even further as they won’t be burning bright every single time you turn them on and use them. 
  • Easy on the eyes – lights that are too bright can give you a headache but lights that are too dim can strain your eyes and cause eye fatigue. With dimmer lighting, you can achieve the perfect brightness in your man cave to protect your eyes and prevent them from being damaged. 
  • Works with most lighting fixtures – dimmers are switches that allow you to control the brightness of lights used in certain rooms. These work with a wide variety of lighting fixtures so you don’t need to blow money on special lighting fixtures to enjoy the perks. 
  • Great for mood lighting – one of the biggest benefits of using dimmer lighting is that it allows you to set the mood in your man cave appropriately. Mood lighting helps you achieve whatever look, vibe, or theme it is that you want for your man cave. 


  • Pricier than a regular light switch – dimmers are more expensive compared to regular light switches. Aside from buying the dimmer switch, you’ll also be incurring a few other expenses like installation and changing old non-dimmable bulbs into dimmable ones. 


● 6-feet cord lets you control lights, even from a distance. 
● Easy plug-and-play installation doesn’t require fiddling with wires so you can do it yourself. 
● Slide control instead of a dial for better control 
● Also works as a simple on/off switch 
● Ideal for floor lamps and table-top lights as well as other stand-alone corded lighting fixtures. 

7. Smart Lighting

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could control the lights in your man cave without leaving the comfort of your couch? Or if you could turn the lights on in your man cave even before you enter the rooms so that when you get there, everything’s ready for you? More and more homeowners are starting to turn their homes into smart homes so why not turn your smart cave into one as well? A good place to start with would be the lights.

To start automating the lights in your man cave, you can either buy a smart bulb (just replace your regular bulbs with these and you’re good to go) or get a smart switch (requires a bit of fiddling around with wires). Switching from regular lights to smart lighting is quick, easy, and relatively cheap. Once you’ve made the switch, you can say goodbye to all those days you had to get up to turn the lights off.


  • Ideal for man caves in basements – ever had that awkward moment where you invited a few friends over to your man cave in the basement and you had to lead them to a dark room because the light switch is located somewhere inconvenient? With smart lighting, you can turn your man cave lights on before you even enter the room. 
  • Ideal for man caves in basements – ever had that awkward moment where you invited a few friends over to your man cave in the basement and you had to lead them to a dark room because the light switch is located somewhere inconvenient? With smart lighting, you can turn your man cave lights on before you even enter the room. 
  • Saves energy – having smart lights in your man cave can help you save energy and lower your electricity consumption by allowing you to turn the lights off when they’re not in use and you’re nowhere near to flip the switch. Smart lights are often controlled via apps that you can install on your smartphone so it’s easy to monitor and control them even when you’re not home.
  • Customized lights – if you though dimmable lights were the pinnacle of pimping out your man cave, you  should realiy give smart lighting a try. Smart lighting allows you to customize the brightness level, color, power, and even the schedule of lights in your man cave — all with a tap on your phone screen. 
  • Connects to most personal virtual/voice assistants – most smart lighting systems can be connected to and controlled by personal virtual/voice assistants like Amazon’s Alexa, Microsoft’s Cortana, Apple’s Siri, and Google’s very own Google Assistant. You don’t even have to fumble through your phone to control your lights, you just have to blurt out orders to your device! 


  • Pricier than a regular light switch – dimmers are more expensive compared to regular light switches. Aside from buying the dimmer switch, you’ll also be incurring a few other expenses like installation and changing old non-dimmable bulbs into dimmable ones. 


● 7.28 x 7.28 x 3.15 inches
● 36 to 85 watts, 1100 lumens, 110 volts
● Wifi-powered smart light lets you control the lighting from anywhere in the house. 
● Remote and voice controlled, compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant
● Comes with an app to help you control and manage the lights in your man cave. 

8. Track Lighting

Track lighting is another lighting option that you can explore and use in your man cave. This works best as a supplementary light but not so much as the main or only light in the room. It’s pretty much like a spot light that you can use to accent and highlight certain pieces or areas in your man cave.

You can also use it for areas that need to be extra bright like your workstation or your hobby table. Some track lights are adjustable so you can shine the light fixtures in multiple directions, making it an efficient lighting option for man caves that severely lack light.


  • Easy to install – seeing as track lights are often used in galleries and showrooms, it’s understandable that some are overwhelmed and intimidated by it. However, installing track lights in your man cave is just as easy as installing any other light fixture. 
  • Stylish – looking for ways to finesse your garage/basement man cave and make it look posh? Adding track lighting can help with that! Aside from lending your man cave that high-end gallery look and feel, you can also find some track lights with a classy, elegant design. 
  • Adjustable – thinking of moving that wall art to another wall? Or that designer chair into another spot? That’s alright! You can rest assured that your statement pieces in your man cave will remain accented and highlighted because track lighting allows you to control which direction to point the lights towards. 
  • Efficient – track lighting lets you illuminate different areas of your man cave all at one using just one lighting fixture. If that’s not efficient lighting, I don’t know what is. 


  • Big and chunky – track lights are big and chunky which may go against the overall aesthetic of some man caves. It can also make your ceiling look cluttered. 


● 4.5 x 47.38 x 6.25 inches, 120 volts
● Uses GU10/Bi-Pin Base MR16 Shape 50W Bulbs
● Pivoting heads allow you to focus light 6 different ways
● Dimmer-friendly and compatible with smart bulbs so you can set the mood nicely in your man cave
● Sleek, minimalist design with a matte black finish looks great in modern man caves

9. Neon Light Signs

Man Cave Lighting Ideas - Neon Signs

A posh and high-end looking man cave is nice and all, but isn’t the point of having a man cave to have a place where you can relax and have fun? Add a touch of quirkiness to your man cave by having a neon light sign up on one of your walls.

Gamers and streamers can add personalized neon light signs on their walls to use as part of their background aesthetic. If you love going to the bar, you can also get those generic bar neon signs to bring the dive bar look to your man cave.

Also I don’t know about you, but I feel like the glow a neon sign gives off creates a really nice atmosphere in the room.


  • Long-lasting – neon signs can last anywhere from 6 months up to a year, longer if you don’t really use it that often. 
  • Uses very little energy – aside from the fact that they’re not always on, neon lights use very little energy as well which means that you don’t have to worry about too much of a significant raise on your usual power bill. 
  • Affordable – even custom-made neon light signs don’t cost very much. It’s a nice and cheap way to add something unique and interesting to your man cave. 
  • Customizable – whether it’s a small neon sign that you want or something big enough to cover a whole wall, neon light signs can be made to cater to your taste and your style. Have one made with your name or your favorite sports team’s logo (die-hard fans love this), just create a mock-up of your design and forward it to the supplier and wait for it to be delivered to you. 
  • No techy installation required – anyone who knows how to use a drill can put up a neon light sign on the wall. Just make sure there’s a power outlet nearby where you can plug it in. 


  • Provides very little light – neon light signs are more of a novelty item, not really a proper lighting fixture that can light up the room. 


● 16 x 1 x 12 inches
● Customizable (name, logo/image, color)
● No maintenance required 
● For indoor use only 
● Electric corded with an on/off switch

Basement Man Cave Lighting

Basements are one of the most ideal places to turn into man caves. It gives you tons of privacy, and you’re free to do pretty much everything you want without disturbing other people in the house. Love playing the drums? Bring it on! Drink ‘til you’re pissed as a fart and pass out as you please without being a bad example to the kids or an eyesore to the wife. Watch your favorite sport, cheer for your favorite team, or get some alone time to work on your hobbies. Being in the basement may sound lonely but it can be really fun when you turn it into a cool man cave.

There is one major issue, though, about using your basement as your man cave and that is the fact that there’s no natural light coming in which means that it could look and feel sad, cold, drab, and dreary down there. The solution? Get proper and additional lighting fixtures to make the room brighter and more cheery.

Some lighting options work for low ceilings which is almost always the case in basements. Other options require a bit of height for the light to be diffused beautifully. Some are totally DIY-able while others need to be installed by a licensed professional. Depending on the conditions present in your man cave, you’ll want to choose a lighting option that’s easy to install, convenient, and efficient.

Garage Man Cave Lighting

Not everyone wants a techy man cave with the latest gadgets and a big screen. Other guys prefer to convert their garages into man caves that could double as workshops where they could zone out and do their hobbies like woodworking, building miniatures, or even blacksmithing. If you plan on doing this, getting the proper kind of lights is a must, too.

While you don’t need to brighten up the whole garage, you’ll definitely want to have the right amount of light in your work area or your work station. It needs to be bright enough to let you see small details clearly, but not too bright that it starts to hurt the eyes. A downward pointing light fixture like this would be ideal since it minimizes glare and focuses the light on your work desk/work bench plus it has a warm white light setting that’s easier on the eyes compared to the usual daylight white or cool white which emits a lot of blue light.

Man Cave Paint

You’ve already added a few extra light fixtures, you even changed your existing bulbs into new ones with a higher wattage, so why does your man cave still look dark and gloomy? Well, the paint on your man cave walls could be the culprit.

Dark colors can add that cool but mysterious, manly vibe to your space but they don’t do much for your eyes. While having dark paint colors on your walls is ideal if you plan on turning it into a home cinema/theater, it’s important to remember that dark colors tend to absorb light instead of reflecting it so the room ends up looking gloomy and dim. One workaround that you can do is to paint the wall where you have your TV a dark color like black, navy or brown and keep the rest of the walls a light color.
If you don’t intend to turn your man cave into a home theater or if you’re not a movie buff, it would be better to paint the walls a light color instead. It doesn’t have to be a stark white color but you can opt for light neutrals like eggshell, gray, or beige. Bright colors can help uplift the overall mood in your man cave and make it feel more cheery, too.

Can’t decide on what color to paint your man cave? Read our breakdown on the best paints that would suit your Man Cave for ideas on the best colors and the best paints to use for your man cave.