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Amazon’s Alexa has become a huge part of the home and thanks to Alexa skills, you can control almost any smart home device using your voice, including your lights.
There are now a ton of smart bulbs that make great Alexa accessories, including from traditional incandescent bulb manufacturers to cheap imported brands.
We’ve reviewed all of the popular products and found that Philips Hue is still the best Alexa-compatible bulb on the market in the UK. This is thanks to reliability, third party integrations and the option to use it offline when the internet is down.
Keep reading for our buyers guide and full product recommendations.
In a rush? Here are my top three smart bulbs that work with Alexa. Find the full list below.
Best Overall: Philips Hue• Most reliable smart bulb
• Available in every size and fitting with colour and white options
• Sync your lights with Spotify
Best Without a Hub: LIFX• No hub required so set-up fees are lower
• Brighter than Philips Hue at 1100lumens
• Both white and colour bulbs are dimmable
Budget Pick: Lepro• Also work via Wi-Fi so no hub is required
• Most affordable Alexa light bulb
• App can be buggy
Hub vs No Hub Smart Bulbs
If you have an existing smart home hub, you’ll want to ensure the bulbs will integrate with this whereas if you don’t yet have a hub, you’ll need to consider if you want to invest in one.
All of the lightbulbs in this list operate either using WiFi or Zigbee.
- WIFI: The benefit of WiFi connected devices is that you don’t need a hub, they connect directly to the router or a repeater so you’ll need to ensure it’s within range.
- Zigbee: This is an alternative mesh network, meaning that your device only needs to be within range of one other Zigbee device to work. However, you will need a hub of some sort.
Light Fittings Explained
As with buying regular light bulbs, you’ll need to ensure they will fit the intended spot. The main light bulb fittings in the UK are:
- Edison Screw E27: A screw in light bulb that measures 27m in diameter.
- Bayonet Cap B22: This is a simple push and twist bulb with two outward legs that clip into place. It is 22mm in diameter.
- Spotlight GU10: This is a small twist and lock light bulb for spotlights. It has two downward legs that clip in to place and the distance between these is 10mm.
Most Alexa lightbulbs will come with an Edison E27 and Bayonet B22 fitting, fewer are available as Spotlight GU10 fittings as this is a different type of bulb.
Best Alexa Light Bulbs
Here are the 7 best smart light bulbs that work with Alexa:
- Best Overall: Philips Hue
- Best Without a Hub: LIFX Bulb
- Budget Pick: Lepro Smart Bulbs
- Brightest Bulbs: Novostello
- Best for Tracking Energy: Kasa by TP link
- Best for Offline Use: Sengled Bluetooth
- Best Hue Alternative: Innr
Below you’ll find our full reviews of these recommendations, with pros and cons of each.
At the end of the article, I’ve added a side-by-side comparison table for easy comparisons between the products.
Philips Hue – Best Overall
Brightness: 800 lumens (Equivalent to 60W) Fitting: Available as Screw, Bayonet and Spotlight Wireless Protocol: Zigbee
Philips Hue bulbs were one of the original smart lights and still remain one of the best to this day. They are compatible with a huge range of other smart devices, from syncing with your TV for a home cinema experience, to syncing with smart plugs and lamps. For me, the reliability of Hue is what earns them a top spot, you know that your lights will work every time which can’t be said of many other brands.
If you have an Echo Plus or an Echo Show, you can connect your Hue devices directly without the need for a hub. However, if you have another Alexa device, or to access the full range of Hue features, you’ll need a Hue bridge. Some of these other features include syncing with your TV (Hue sync box required) and with your music on Spotify.
You’ll find a huge range of options to choose from, with fittings for screw, bayonet or spotlights and the option to have white only or full colour. The coloured bulbs have 16 million colours to choose from, whilst the white bulbs have 50,000 shades of white, so you’ll always get to play around with scenes to suit you.
The Hue bridge connects directly to your router via a wired connection to your router which reduces any problems that other bulbs can encounter such as being incompatible with 5Ghz Wi-Fi bands.
If you’re new to Hue lights, then we recommend you take a look at the starter kit which gets you best value for money with a Hue bridge included. You can also pick up some Hue smart switches for a unified experience.
LIFX A60 – Best Without a Hub
Fitting: Bayonet or Edison screw fitting Wireless Protocol: WiFi
LIFX have a variety of bulbs on offer including mini sized, plus sized and candle shaped, but we’d recommend starting off with their signature A60 colour changing bulb that can be purchased as Bayonet or Edison fitting.
By the way, the A60 is called the A19 outside of the UK just to confuse you, but these are the same device. One of the benefits of these bulbs is that they are dimmable like the Hue bulbs, even the colour ones.
LIFX bulbs work with WiFi, this means they connect directly to your router and don’t require a hub, once connected to the cloud you’ll be able to add them to your Alexa smart home and install the LIFX Skill for added functionality.
Unfortunately, the fact that they connect directly to your router does prove difficult if you have to change routers as you’ll need to reconnect every device.
The LIFX A60 bulbs are far brighter than many bulbs listed here, at a whopping 1,100 lumens and outshine the Philips Hue. LIFX also has some other features that competitors don’t offer including randomly turning your lights on when you’re away to make it look like you’re home or integrating with smoke detectors.
Lepro – Best On A Budget
Brightness: 800 lumen (60w equivalent) Fitting: Edison Screw and Bayonet Wireless Protocol: WiFi
If you’re on a tighter budget, then the Lepro Alexa compatible light bulbs are a great choice. As far as the basics go, it’s not too dissimilar to the market leading Philips Hue with a similar number of colours to choose from and 60W equivalent lighting.
There is both a white and colour changing bulb available, however at less than £12 per bulb it’s worth going for the colour changing every time to futureproof your purchase.
These bulbs connect over WiFi like the LIFX and Kasa, however they will only work over 2.4Ghz WiFi. Once connected, integrating with Alexa is simple.
Some users have reported trouble setting the bulbs up using the official Lepro app with many suggesting that the Smart Life app is a much better way to set them up.
Kasa by TP link – Track Energy Conumption
Brightness: 800 lumen (60w equivalent) Wireless Protocol: WiFi Fitting: Bayonet or Edison screw
As you’d expect from a brand that made its name selling WiFi routers, the Kasa by TP-link range of smart home devices also runs over WiFi, eliminating the need for a hub.
The light integrates easily with Alexa via the TP-link Kasa Alexa skill which can be used to control them with voice commands.
The app is very easy to use and if anything is a bit basic compared to the rest of the Alexa light bulbs listed here, however a nice feature is the energy consumption meter which helps track your efficiency.
As far as integrations with other devices, the TP-link does fall behind, with no support for Apple HomeKit, Logitech Harmony and a few other key players in the smart home world.
The light isn’t as bright as the LIFX; however, it does have a much wider beam angle at 220 degrees compared to the LIFXs 135 degrees.
Novostello – Brightest Bulbs
So far, most of the bulbs I’ve shared have fallen between 800 and 1,100 lumens. However, Novostello have taken things to the next level with their 1,300 lumen Alexa-compatible bulbs which makes them equivalent to 120 watts. This is great for lighting up larger rooms, studies, or even outdoor areas (with a waterproof casing).
They connect via Wi-Fi so similar constraints apply as the other Wi-Fi bulbs I’ve shared such as the need to be within range of the router and no offline capability.
Whilst both Edison E27 and Bayonet B22 fittings are available, the 1,300 lumen bulbs from Novostello’s range are only available as RGB coloured bulbs. However, this isn’t a huge problem since they are affordable and still include dimming.
Innr – Best Hue Alternatives
If having a bulb that both looks good and works with Alexa, then look no further than Innrs range.
Similar to the Hue bulbs, these work via the Zigbee protocol which means you’ll need a hub. Whilst you can use the Innr hub, one of the biggest selling points is that Innr bulbs are compatible with Philips Hue which means you can add them to the Hue bridge as a cheap alternative. They are also compatible with the smart things hub or the Amazon Echo Plus or Show.
They have Edison, Bayonet, spotlights and many others in the range. One of my favourites is their vintage bulb which has been designed to mirror the retro look of a filament style bulb and has a golden coating to finish off the vintage look. There is also a globe version of the bulb which makes great decorative lighting even without any case or lamp shade.
Their bulbs are fully compatible with Alexa and have the usual smart functions that you’d expect, including routines, dimming, voice control, and more.
Sengled Bluetooth – Best for Offline
Sengled offer a range of smart bulbs including some that connect via Zigbee and others that use Wi-Fi. For the most-part, they have similar features to others on the market. However, one bulb that caught my eye was their Bluetooth Low Energy bulb.
Unlike the other bulbs in this guide which connect to the cloud via the router before speaking to Alexa, these ones can be connected directly to an Echo smart speaker. The advantage of this is that you can control them even when the internet goes down.
Typically, Bluetooth devices only work over a short distance. However, Sengeld have also incorporated mesh technology which means that each bulb only needs to be within range of another bulb and not the Echo device itself so it extends your coverage significantly as you add more bulbs.
Unfortunately, these specific bulbs are only available in white so you won’t have access to the full colour spectrum as with others on this list. However, there’s both an Edison and bayonet fitting.
Here’s a side-by-side comparison that shows the key specs of each smart bulb range shared in this guide:
|Philips Hue||LIFX||Lepro||Kasa||Innr||Sengledd Bluetooth||Novostello|
|Works Without a Hub?||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||Use Echo as Hub||Yes|
|White or Colour||Both||Both||Both||Both||Both||Both||Colour|
|Where to buy||Amazon||Amazon||Amazon||Amazon||Amazon||Amazon||Amazon|
Other Bulbs that Work with Alexa
So those are my top picks, but there’s a huge range of brands to choose from.
Here’s a full list of bulbs that work with Alexa in the UK:
Controlling Lights with Alexa
Once you’ve set up your bulbs or switches in the Alexa app, you’ll be able to execute a range of Alexa commands using your voice. Out of the box, Alexa will be able to turn your lights on and off or dim them if supported. You can also include light bulbs within routines, see my full list of Alexa routine ideas for inspiration.
However, many of the product mentioned here come with their own Alexa skills, once these are enabled, you’ll be able to access a wider array of functions such as:
- Accessing the full spectrum of colours
- Creating scenes
- Custom voice commands
Offline Alexa Controls
When considering using Alexa to control basic home appliances, most consumers are keen to understand what happens when the internet is down.
With Alexa, you can control any smart home device that is connected directly to an Echo, even without internet. To do this, you will need:
- An Amazon Echo Plus or Show (these have a built in Zigbee hub)
- A bulb that runs on the Zigbee wireless protocol
We have outlined which devices run on Zigbee in our reviews to help you choose.