Verilux HappyLite Mini Ultra

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Light therapy devices seem to be gaining in popularity these days. Having just reviewed the Litebook Elite, I was happy to take a look at the Verilux HappyLite Ultra Mini – a similar product. Unlike the Litebook, the HappyLite is not really a travel device as it does not have a rechargeable battery. It is better suited to remaining plugged in and on your desk.

Package Contents

Verilux HappyLite Mini Ultra lamp
Instruction booklet

verilux happylite 1

This light therapy device stands 12 inches high x 5 inches wide and 3.5 inches deep and is designed to provide light that has the same wave length has natural sunlight, but minus harmful UV rays. Exposure to the HappyLite for 15-60 minutes a day can help
alleviate symptoms of S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder) that effect as many as 14 million people in the US.
If you are not familiar with S.A.D., here is some info from

"Seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, also known as winter depression is
an affective, or mood, disorder. Most SAD sufferers experience normal mental
health throughout most of the year, but experience depressive symptoms in the
winter or summer. SAD is rare, if existent at all, in the tropics, but is
measurably present at latitudes north of 30°N, or south of 30°S.

Seasonal mood variations are believed to be related mostly to light, not
temperature. For this reason, SAD is prevalent even in mid-latitude places with
mild winters, such as Seattle and Vancouver. People who live in the Arctic
region are especially susceptible due to the effects of polar nights. Prolonged
periods of overcast weather can also exacerbate SAD."

verilux happylite 2

The included 10,000 hour 36W bulb has Trucolite Phosphor Technology and delivers 5000 LUX
of light. What does that mean? It means the bulb is bright and should last for
approximately 54 years if you use the HappyLite for 30 minutes a day every day.
Replacement bulbs will set you back $24.95.

verilux happylite 3

Installing the bulb is a snap… literally. Just orient it correctly and snap it
in place. Simple.

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Install the plastic diffuser, and plug the cord into a free outlet and you’re
all set to enjoy your HappyLite Ultra Mini.

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The only switch on this lamp is located near the base. The switch has 3
settings. Off, full bright and half bright.

I was a little worried that the bulbs in this lamp might flicker or buzz since
they are not LEDs like the Litebook uses. I’m happy to report that the HappyLite
has none of these problems. Also, when you turn it on, it lights up instantly,
unlike the fluorescent bulbs I’m used to.

verilux happylite 7

It’s best to place the lamp at least 12-20 inches or so from your face. You also
want to place it at an angle so that you’re not looking directly into the lamp.
You can see how I have it set it up in the picture above.

If I compare the light output from the HappyLite with that of the Litebook, I
find that I prefer the HappyLite. This is mainly because the light isn’t as
sharp as the Litebook. It feels more even and soft. The Litebook has the
advantage though because it is more portable, has a rechargeable battery and
most importantly, it has a built in timer. But then the HappyLite is less
expensive. You can actually buy 2 HappyLites (one for each side of your face…)
for less than the price of one Litebook.

Some people might not believe that light therapy is really all that helpful, but so far during my review of the HappyLite and the Litebook, I have found that using these devices gives me a little more energy and focus in the morning. And who couldn’t use a little more of that?

3 year warranty, 30 day money back guarantee. $139.90 for a set of 2.


Product Information

  • Soft even light
  • No flicker
  • Easy to use
  • Lacks a built in timer
  • Lacks a rechargeable battery for portability

7 thoughts on “Verilux HappyLite Mini Ultra”

  1. Gadgeteer Comment Policy - Please read before commenting
  2. I saw this lamp in the Sharper Image store, but I was skeptical. Since then, I have searched high and low and could not be able to find any review or user’s comment until now. Personally, I think the price is a bit steep. Furthermore, I do not like the style; I prefer and older look instead of the modern decor. Having said that, I am going to give it a try since I have been looking for a desk lamp for quite some time.

  3. Julie,
    It will be more than a couple of weeks since I am waiting for my $50 gift certificate, which takes about 2-3 weeks to arrive. Then, I still need a couple of days to try it out. Once done, I will post my findings. Again, thank you for doing your review on this lamp.

  4. Julie,
    After using the lamp for a week, I have written my impression in my blog. The bottom line? It might be a good therapy light, but I have no objective way to measure it. It does help me with my reading by going against the manufacturer’s recommendation and place the lamp slightly behind me. The lamp so help brighten my den, which makes it less gloomy.

  5. haivu:

    Thank you for letting us know. I guess it’s all subjective. I can now say that these lights really do help me feel more awake in the mornings when I use them. I took the lights home from work (where I was testing them) and since discontinuing their use, I’m groggy again till around 9am most week day mornings. I think I’m going to bring one of them back up here 🙂

  6. I’m a 2 year,2 winter user of this exact lamp and I can say, first hand, that this light therapy works! And this lamp works Great.If you don’t believe me,well I’m sorry.It works great!

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