|Country of Manufacture||China|
Mirror Buyer's Guide
Magnification: Don't make the mistake of automatically opting for the greatest magnification offered. Most people are surprised to find how strong that might be. Most cosmetic-counter mirrors have 3x or 5x magnification power, but our most popular magnification power is 5x. Indeed if you have vision problems or you have particularly critical tasks to accomplish, then go for the higher magnification mirrors - we have some up to 15x magnification. (To give you a basis of comparison, a jeweler's loop is 10x power.)
Factors other than the magnification itself affect the quality of the image you see. The size of the mirror is an important factor. When two mirrors with the same magnification are compared, the larger size mirror always wins - both for image clarity and freedom from distortion.
Tilt and Swivel: Every wall mounted mirror we carry both tilts and swivels. Swivel is usually 360° or close to it. Tilt is usually 15° up or down - sometimes more. A double-arm wall-mounted mirror has more capability than a single-arm mirror because in addition to rotating at the mirror pivot, you can also rotate through 360° or almost, at the elbow.
Distortion: All magnification-mirrors distort the image. If they didn't, they wouldn't magnify anything. The reason for this is that the mirrors magnify by using bent glass to form a sort of lens which does the magnification. The larger the magnification, the greater the bend in the glass and the greater the distortion. The center portion of the mirror, at any magnification level, always has the least distortion. In a larger mirror, the absolute size of the center section is relatively larger, and therefore the area of least distortion is larger. This is the main reason a larger mirror is preferable.
Expensive Mirrors: All of our mirrors are high quality mirrors, usually better quality than those found in big-box stores; both for image and finish. But some of our mirrors are dramatically more expensive than others. The reasons are manifold. The "expensive" mirrors have silver-backed glass forming the image, rather than aluminum-backed glass. The larger mirror sizes of the more expensive mirrors are much more difficult to produce correctly but once you've seen the difference in the larger image it's hard to go back. The plating on our Miroir Brot mirrors is thick and perfect, as is the finish itself - tiny imperfections are simply not present. Lastly, the expensive-mirror frames themselves are solid brass or triple-plated steel and heavily built - as these mirrors are often used in hotels and need to be able to take abuse.
Fluorescent, Incandescent, or LED: The long and the short of this is that it's what you prefer that counts. All of our fluorescent-lighted or LED mirrors are so noted.
Our mirrors use only color-corrected fluorescent lamps and LED lamps, which approximate daylight or indoor lighting - your choice in most cases. They do not have the green tinge of commercial indoor fluorescent lighting - which people find objectionable. (See full explanation below.) Even so, daylight is not always preferable. Light from incandescent lighting or "regular" light bulbs usually used indoors, is often preferred by many.
A feature of modern fluorescent lamps is that greatly reduced wattage produces light output perhaps four times the wattage consumed - and the lamps stay cool. LED lamps consume even less electricity, stay cooler and last 50,000 hours on average. That's 6 years of continuous usage 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Lighting color is measured in degrees Kelvin. Running through the spectrum, the higher the Kelvin temperature, the closer to pure white light. The light on bright sunny day with blue sky measures 5,600° Kelvin. A very bright day with a cloud-covered sky weighs in at 6,000° Kelvin. An incandescent (regular) bulb gives off light at approximately 3,200° Kelvin. This is quite yellow, as evidenced by photographs taken by lamp-light. But our eyes are used to the color and in most circumstances it looks normal if not pleasing. By contrast, most fluorescent lighting is a color called "cool white" used because it is the cheapest color to produce. Cool-white is 4,600° Kelvin and definitely green. Any photo taken under cool-whites looks green to the viewer. A color-corrected fluorescent used in our mirrors usually run between 5,000° and 5,400° Kelvin, and approximates blue-sky daylight. The closer to daylight color the more expensive the bulb.
So where does this leave us? With the exception of cool-white fluorescent, most people find color-corrected fluorescent lamps and most LEDs agreeable, as they do regular incandescent lamps - it's purely a matter of preference.
Switch on Base: Putting a switch on the electrical cord is the cheapest way to include a switch. 99% of our makeup mirrors do not have a switch on the cord - but have a switch on the base or mounting plate of the mirror.
Hardwired Mirrors: Hardwired mirrors are intended to be installed by a licensed electrician and connected to the house wiring. All of our hardwired mirrors are marked "HARDWIRED" on the website. Also, all of our hardwired mirrors have a switch on the mirror itself, so your electrician need not install a separate switch.
- All of our hardwired mirrors have the switch on the base or on the mounting plate. No other switch is required. Also note that each of our hardwired mirrors tilts vertically and swings horizontally.
- Install a 4" octagon box on a CGFI line, flush with the mounting surface at a height determined by the user. Remember, the center of the mirror is usually higher than the mounting plate center by somewhat more than half the diameter of the mirror frame. The box should be capable of supporting 10 lbs. (The mirror doesn't weigh 10 lbs., but remember it may be on an arm as long as 20".)
- NOTE: Hardwired mirrors, once connected electrically, are non-refundable.
Gifts: Makeup mirrors make excellent gifts. 18k Gold or Brass are the best finishes for use in rooms other than bathrooms, while most bathrooms have chrome fixtures, and chrome-framed mirrors should be at the top of the list. Consider the situation at your recipient's home... their style and preferences, and whether or not they'd want a lighted or unlighted mirror; and if lighted and wall-mounted, whether it should be hard-wired or plug-in.
Bulk Commercial Orders, and Hotels: Let us know what you need, by contacting customer service.
Returns: In accordance with our Refund Policy most mirrors can be returned for a full merchandise refund provided they are returned according to our regular refund procedures. Custom-made mirrors are non-refundable except for manufacturing defects - extremely rare. Also non-refundable are hardwired mirrors that have been electrically connected. A restocking fee of $10 is required for all mirrors with greater than 7x magnification.
Major Brands Only
At PMM we carry only better to best mirror brands. These even the least expensive of our mirrors will exceed in quality, most of those found at "big-box stores."
99% of our makeup-mirrors are glass (i.e., not plastic) and those that are not are clearly specified. Similarly 99% of our lighted mirrors have switches on the base or mounting plate - not on the cord. Vanity-table mirrors all have padded, weighted bases.
- Aptations makeup mirrors including Kimball & Young, First Impressions, Clear Mirror, and Mirror Image makeup mirrors are an upper mid-priced line of high-quality Makeup Mirrors and come with a 3-year Manufacturer's Warranty. Finishes include Chrome, Gold, Brushed Nickel, Polished Nickel, and Italian Bronze. Magnifications run from 3x to 10x with many lighted, reversible, and hardwired mirrors as well as a many cool-running LED-lighted mirrors.
- Jerdon Style makeup mirrors are a mid-priced line that compares favorably with most in this price range. Exceptional values may be found in their quality mirrors.
- Miroir Brot mirrors are made in Paris France and hold the world standard for supreme quality. A Miroir Brot mirror is truly a luxury for those able to afford one. Each Miroir Brot makeup mirror is shipped directly to your door from Paris.
- Sharper Image mirrors have numerous clever and useful innovations in their line of high-tech makeup mirrors.
Makeup Mirror Magnification Comparison
These images are an approximation and may not be 100% accurate but they are useful as a basis for comparison.  The image you will actually see in the mirror is dependent upon several factors in addition to magnification power; including the size of the mirror, the viewing distance from mirror, and the quality of the lens.
|3x||Face, Hair, and Neck||10" - 13"||16"|
|5x||Face and Some Hair or Some Neck||8" - 9"||11"-12"|
|7x||Part of Face||5" - 6"||6" - 7"|
|10x||Eyes and Nose||3" - 4"||3.5"|
There is no industry standard for specifying magnification power for makeup mirrors. This opens the door to a high degree of subjectivity on the part of manufacturers when they describe the magnification power of their mirrors. To ensure you're getting what you expect it is best to rely to the integrity of high quality makeup mirror manufacturers.
Don't make the mistake of opting for the highest magnification offered. Most people are surprised to find how strong that might be. Many find the 15x and greater mirrors much too strong and the viewing distance of approximately 2 inches, much too close for comfortable viewing.
For comparison purposes, most cosmetic-counter makeup mirrors have magnification powers between 3x and 7x. Our most popular magnification power is 5x. Indeed if you have vision problems or you have particularly critical tasks to accomplish, then you may want to opt for an extreme magnification makeup mirror. As an additional reference point: A jeweler's loop, used to inspect diamonds, is 10x power.
Factors other than the magnification affect the quality of the image you see. The size of the makeup mirror is an important factor. When two makeup mirrors are compared that both have the same magnification, glass quality, and silver-back quality, the larger size makeup mirror always wins - both for image clarity and freedom from distortion. There is a simple reason for this. Magnification is achieved by shaping the glass to a convex lens. It is impossible to have zero distortion, but the center of the glass/mirror/lens is the point of least distortion. The larger the mirror, the larger the center, and the less apparent distortion.
The quality of the glass and whether or not it's backed with pure silver or aluminum are two other important factors to consider. And finally the quality of the material used for the frame and other metal parts is important if the mirror is to be used in a humid location such near a shower or bath.
Color Temperature Comparison
The color temperature of any light bulb, including LEDs is measured in degrees Kelvin ("K"). The higher the color temperature, the closer the light is to pure white light at 10,000° K. A blue sky sunny day at noon has a color temperature of about 5,500° K. A very bright cloud-covered day, where the sky registers a color temperature of about 6,500° K., while a "regular" incandescent light bulb has a color temperature of about 2,700° K.
The color temperature of the lighting in your mirror may affect the way people see you in different situations. It's best, therefore, to choose a lighted makeup mirror with a color temperature to approximate your most frequent environment.
Many of our LED mirrors have their color temperature specified. And some makeup mirrors have adjustable or switchable color temperatures. For those where color temperature is not specified a reasonable guide is this: For incandescent bulbs, a color temperature of around 3,000° K. is normal. Fluorescents and LEDs with no color temperature specification have color temperatures around 4,600° K. The chart below can serve as a guide.
If you're planning for an outdoor day, the higher the color temperature the better. For evenings on the town, 2,700&deb; K. to 3,500° K. is best. For office environment lighting conditions, color temperatures around 4,500° K. provide the closest match.
LED Quick Facts
LED stands for Light Emitting Diode
• LED Lighted Mirrors Use Tiny Amounts of Electricity
• Emitting the equivalent amount of light, LEDs typically use 50% of the electricity
consumed by a fluorescent bulb and about 17% of the electricity
consumed by an incandescent (regular) bulb.
• Standard incandescent bulbs operate an average of 1,500 hours
• Standard fluorescent bulbs operate an average of 8,000 hours
• LEDs operate an average of 50,000 hours.
• 33 times as long as a standard incandescent bulb.
• 6.25 times as long as a standard fluorescent bulb.
• More than 40 years of 2-1/2 hours of use, every single day.
•Incandescent bulbs get hot quickly and generate lots of heat
•Fluorescent bulbs are much cooler than incandescents, but still warm.
•LEDs generate very little heat.
Electrician's Hardwired Makeup Mirror Mounting Instructions
• We strongly recommended that installation only be done when the mirror itself is present, and the actual user is available, in order to set the most convenient mounting height.
• Install a 4" octagon box on a GFCI line or on a line where a GFCI outlet is installed, or both. The box should be flush with the mounting surface at a height determined by the user. The box should be capable of supporting 15 lbs. The mirror doesn't weigh 15 lbs., but remember it may be on an arm as long as 20". Note that the center of the mirror is usually 1/2" to 6" higher than the mounting-plate center. All of our hardwired makeup mirrors have the switch contained within the mirror mounting plate, mirror base, or mirror housing. No other switch is required. Also note that each of our single and double arm wall mirrors tilt vertically and swing horizontally.
• Hardwired mirrors, once wired, are no longer eligible for refund.
Partial List of Hotels with Aptations Brands Makeup Mirrors
- Holland America Cruise Lines
- Omni Hotels
- Trump International Hotels
- Fountainbleau Resort
- The Wynn Hotel
- Hotel Oceana
- Marriott Hotels
- W Hotels
- Hyatt Regency
- The Fairmount Hotels
- Hard Rock Hotel - Las Vegas
- Crown Plaza Hotel
- Hilton Palmer House
- Disney's Grand Floridian Resort
- Terranea Resort
- LaCosta Resort
- The London Hotels
- Kapalua Bay Ritz Carlton
- Hotel del Coronado
- Marriott's Grand Chateau
Product lead time is subject to item availability. With 99% certainty, if an item is back-ordered, the item will be greyed-out on the selection list. If an and item "sneaks through" and allows an order, even though the idem is on back-order, we sincerely apologize, and we will do our best to notify you promptly.
To request tracking information for an order already placed, please contact customer service.
All mirrors in the Aptations collections mirrors go through a 4-step process to prevent pitting and tarnishing. - Step 1. The metal frame is cleaned in a neutralizing water bath. - Step 2. The metal is treated to a brass plating, then a pre-plating nickel bath. - Step 3. An acid-bath plating method is used to apply the chrome, gold, nickel, or other finish plating. - Step 4. Completion occurs with an application of an anti-tarnishing lacquer coating. All joints are either welded or reinforced and carefully machined to give you a mirror that won't turn into a "spinner" after a few months or even years of use. All glass lenses.
Bulbs are replaceable in incandescent and fluorescent models. Most lighted models, however, use LEDs that need no replacement. 3-Year Manufacturer's Warranty - best in the industry. Magnifications of 1x, 3x, 4x, 5x, 7x, and 10x. Please bear in mind that most mirrors are 3x or 5x magnification. 7x is larger than most people are accustomed to and more than adequate for most purposes. The 7x and 10x magnification mirrors produce dramatically large magnifications. Many models reverse to regular view. Non-reversible mirrors have plated metal backs, not cheap plastic. Table-top and Vanity Stand Mirrors have weighted and padded bases. Wall Mirrors have concealed mounting hardware. Most wall makeup mirrors are available in hardwired models. Lighted Mirrors are all UL listed. Incandescent illumination models use 25-Watt bulbs. Fluorescent models use low-heat 20 and 22 Watt bulb for the equivalent of 75 to 90 watt illumination. LED illuminated mirrors usually come in two color temperatures - 3,500° K. for indoor lighting and 5,500° K. that closely approximates daylight. They are very bright, and consume tiny amounts of electricity. Shipping usually within 48 hours.
Aptations Mirrors in all collections are warranted to be free from defects in material and workmanship. All metal finishes and reflective materials are fully warranted for three years.
The life of the finish will be best cared for, especially in areas of high heat and moisture, by keeping all surfaces clean and dry. Cleaning should be done with a non-abrasive cleaner and soft polishing cloth.
The warranty does not cover damages resulting from an accident after purchase, misuse, abuse, lack of reasonable care, or loss of parts. For lighted mirrors, this warranty does not cover the original light bulb beyond the normal lifetime of the bulb, or replacement bulbs. Replaceable bulbs (not LEDs) are easily replaceable and may be purchased at most local hardware stores or through Aptations directly.
Should your experience a product defect covered under the expressed warranty period, please contact our customer service department for prompt replacement of the defective item.
Returns & Exchanges
We understand that ordering online is different than purchasing a product in a store. Online, you are unable to touch, feel, and see the item "live and in person." Should you wish to return or exchange an item, simply contact us within 30 days of receipt. We will provide return instructions to ensure a prompt and accurate refund is issued.
Items must be returned in new, unused, and resalable condition with all original packaging intact. All returned items will be inspected prior to issuing credit. Original shipping costs will be deducted from refund for returns unless the mirror was received defective or damaged. Original shipping costs may be waived if exchanging for another item of same or greater value. Custom made products cannot be returned due to their uniqueness.
Items offered with free shipping have the cost of shipping built into the price you pay. In the event of a return, we reserve the right to deduct the actual original shipping cost from the amount refunded to you. Free shipping applies only to merchandise shipped within the 48 contiguous United States.
If your item arrives damaged, please contact us within 5 business days of receipt of your order to ensure refund or exchange. We do not guarantee refund or exchange after 5 business days for items that may have been damaged in shipping due to requirements set forth by our shipping carriers.Restocking fees apply only to mirrors with 7x or greater magnification. A restocking fee of $10 will be applied to returns for these items.