What to Look For in a LED Strip Light in 2022
LED strip lights are available in a wide variety of options geared to suit nearly any lighting application. So, with that many choices, how do you know what to look for? You’ll want to decide a color type, how bright you need your strips to be, and any additional features you might need.
When determining a color type, know there are generally three main options for smart LED strips: daylight white, warm white, and RGB. In working spaces or other areas requiring focus or attention, daylight white is the best choice. Warm white is the way to go in rooms geared more toward relaxation. For any scenario that could use some mood lighting—say, behind a bar, computer monitor, or sound system—RGB would be the best choice.
After making that decision, you’ll want to determine your brightness requirements. If you need high brightness for your home, make sure that you choose 5050 LED lights. Other lumen options, including 3528 or 2835 LED, are generally used to accent or create the desired ambiance and are generally not as bright.
Finally, it’s important to consider any other special features your lighting project might require. For example, if your application is outdoors or might encounter any moisture, a waterproof light strip is the safest bet. If you want your strip lights and smart bulbs to sync up, it’s usually best to grab items from the same company. It’s also important to ensure any smart features work with your smart home ecosystem, whether it’s Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, or Apple HomeKit.
With that in mind, here are our picks for the best LED strip lights.
Best LED Strip Light Overall: Govee 65.6ft Strip Lights
- ✓ Vivid, bright lights and stunning segmented colors
- ✓ Compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant
- ✓ Syncs with your favorite music
- ✗ Expensive
Govee has consistently produced lighting technology that’s as innovative as it is durable as one of the frontrunners in the strip light industry. With its 65.6 ft RGB LED Strip Lights never has there been a more stunning blend of durability and innovation.
With only two rolls, these strip lights provide bright, vivid light. Furthermore, Govee’s professional-grade lamp bead technology offers incredible colors and customization features.
In addition to the light that’s both bright and soft, Govee’s strip lights are fully smart-tech-enabled and compatible with both Alexa and Google Assistant, giving you the ability to power on and off and adjust brightness and color by simple voice commands. They also come with a built-in, high-sensitivity mic that will sync your lights with your music.
Plus, the company’s app for Android, iPhone, and iPad allows you to create your own lighting effects with 16 million colors and a wide variety of themes in the Govee Light Studio. You can even sync up with other Govee products, such as smart bulbs and light bars, to make a fully immersive light profile.
Govee’s newest strip model, the RGBIC Pro, allows for multiple colors to be displayed on the same line at one time, which isn’t common for smart LED strips. However, unlike the traditional RGB strips, RGBIC Pro strips cannot be trimmed. We recommend the older model because they can be cut to the perfect size, and the jump in price isn’t quite worth one new feature.
Best Smart Strip Lights Overall
Govee 65.6ft LED Strip Lights
Govee’s strip lights, while more expensive than the competition, offers bright, beautiful colors, a friendly app, and is compatible with Google Assistant and Alexa.
Best Budget LED Strip Light: TJoy 50ft Smart LED Strip Lights
- ✓ Affordable
- ✓ Compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant
- ✗ Slow color transitions
- ✗ App isn’t as user friendly as competition
Want to harness the full potential of Govee’s strip lights but for a fraction of the cost? Enter TJoy’s Smart LED Light Strip. TJoy’s strip lights offer many of the same features that Govee does, such as voice and smartphone control (including Google Assistant and Alexa) and light syncing to your favorite music.
You’ll also get 16 million color combinations with brightness control through TJoy’s Tuya app (available on Android and iPhone), which is the same number of colors as Govee’s app offers. If you don’t want to deal with the app, though, you can also use a remote control to adjust the lights as needed.
The LEDs on TJoy’s smart LED strip are bright and vivid, though you only get 50ft of LED lights as opposed to Govee’s 65.6ft. This doesn’t matter much if you’re setting up for a smaller space and needed to cut the strip anyway, but might be a dealbreaker if you’re looking to deck out bigger rooms.
That being said, some users report issues with setting the TJoy strip up by using the app, but it seems like persistence and patience usually get the job done. If you’re not particularly tech-savvy, though, you may want to investigate other options. Govee’s app is more user-friendly and our favorite strip light overall, and other LED strips are optimized for voice controls with Alexa and Google Assistant.
TJoy 50ft Smart LED Strip Lights
If you want to try out some smart strip lights but don’t want to pay Govee prices, TJoy has a strip set that will cost much less. It’s slightly less user-friendly, but they’re still great, especially at this price.
Best Waterproof LED Strip Light: Hitlights Waterproof Warm White Light Strip
- ✓ Smooth, bright 3528 LED lights
- ✓ IP-67 waterproof rating
- ✓ Can be cut to size
- ✗ No colored light option
- ✗ Not smart enabled
- ✗ If cut, waterproofing needs to be resealed before use
If your lighting project runs the risk of being near water or moisture, you can’t do any better than Hitlights’ Waterproof Warm White LED Light Strips. Besides housing superior quality 3528 LEDs that provide smooth and even light output, these strips boast an impressive IP-67 waterproof rating.
The IP rating means these Hitlights strips have been tested to work for at least 30 minutes while under to 3ft of water. This LED strip can withstand a whole lot when it comes to typical water exposure. Most other “waterproof” strip lights don’t even come close to this kind of rating. So, put them anywhere and relax—these lights can handle it.
Granted, these strips do not have any smart functions, nor any RGB colors. This is just a single-color strip. In addition, if you need to cut the strip, the area needs to be resealed to keep the waterproofing intact. But if a waterproof LED strip is your main priority, you cannot beat these warm white light strips.
Best Waterproof LED Strip
Hitlights Waterproof White LED Light Strip
While this Hitlights strip model doesn’t offer color or smart options, it’s one of the few available with an IP-67 waterproof rating.
Best LED Strip Light for Alexa: Cozylady Alexa 50ft LED Strip Lights
- ✓ Works best with Alexa voice control
- ✓ Great for kids’ bedrooms
- ✓ Excellent value
- ✗ Cut points are widely spaced
- ✗ Remote requires line-of-site
For all those Amazon Alexa users out there, the Cozylady Alexa might be your new favorite component to your smart home. You can control everything with Alexa voice commands, such as turning the lights on and off, adjusting brightness, and moving between various light modes. You can also do all this within the Happy Lighting app, available on iPhone, iPad, and Android.
In older reviews, some users complained that the adhesive that holds the Cozylady strips up has been insufficient, but the company claims it has replaced the adhesive with one that gets thicker and stronger over time. Cozylady also says that it’s happy to send out additional adhesive tape if needed, so if you happen to get a defective adhesive unit, you can get a replacement with minimal fuss.
One disadvantage of the Cozylady strips, however, is that they can only be cut at widely spaced intervals so precise placement can get a little tricky. Also, users report that in order to control the lights with the included remote, a direct line-of-sight with the receiver on the light strip must be maintained. This isn’t uncommon with budget strip lights, but frustrating if you want to keep the receiver hidden.
Still, Alexa integration is highly praised, so if you want to control your lights with an Amazon device, Cozylady’s LED strip lights make a solid choice.
Best for Alexa
Cozylady 50ft Alexa LED Strip Lights
Cozylady’s smart LED strips are built to work with Amazon Alexa, allowing you to use voice commands to change colors, adjust the brightness, and more.
Best LED Strip Light for Google Assistant: Philips Hue Lightstrip
- ✓ Simple pairing via Bluetooth
- ✓ Intuitive and powerful smartphone app
- ✓ Ties into a Hue Hub for added functionality
- ✗ Expensive
If you can look past its price tag, the Philips Hue Lightstrip has a lot to offer. If you’re looking for a great product that will integrate natively with Google Assistant, you can’t do much better than this. The light strip can be easily connected to your smart home using Bluetooth and can be synced with gaming, music, and movies using the intuitive Hue Sync app.
Aside from easy Google Home integration, Philips Hue Lightstrips are surprisingly easy to install. Each pack comes with six feet of lights and more can be connected if needed, with up to 32 feet per base kit. They also come with cutmark indicators that make it easy to trim off the excess for smaller applications.
Best of all, Philips has incorporated a unique coating around the entire light strip that offers uniform illumination, meaning you shouldn’t get any “dark spots” in between lights.
While you can enjoy Philips Hue Lightstrips with a simple Bluetooth connection, you’ll need to add a Hue Hub to experience everything they have to offer. This includes automated schedules, the ability to sync with movies, and the option to toggle lights on or off when entering and leaving your home.
The only real drawback to the Hue Lightstrip is its price, which is considerably more expensive than the competition. It’s not a dealbreaker, but the addition of a Hue Hub–which typically costs more than $50—could end up putting you over budget if you need that additional functionality.
Best LED Strip Light for Google Assistant
Philips Hue Lightstrip
The Philips Hue Lightstrip offers a premium lighting experience with plenty of functionality, although it comes with a hefty price tag.
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