What is the Best Magnification for a Makeup Mirror?

Makeup Mirror Advice

What is the Best Magnification for a Makeup Mirror?
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A makeup mirror with magnification is a great tool to give you a great view when you apply your makeup.


More magnification is not necessarily better.

So how do you select the best magnification for a makeup mirror? 

We will help you find the perfect magnification level so that you can select a mirror that allows you to achieve flawless makeup results.

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Different Magnifications

Makeup mirrors have a wide range of magnifying levels, from as little as 5X to as much as 15X. The more the magnification, the smaller your field of view, or bigger your features will look.

Because the higher magnifying levels have smaller fields of view, they should not be used for makeup application.

Your features will be distorted at these levels and you can’t see your whole face.

Different Magnifications

Single or Dual Sided?

Makeup mirrors can be single or dual sided.

Dual-sided mirrors have either both sides with magnification or one with and one without.

Work out whether you want a single- or dual-sided mirror. Most people choose a dual-sided mirror as they get a 2-in-1 option.

Where Will the Mirror Be Used?

Are you going to hang the mirror on a wall or place it on your table top?

This will change what magnification you need.

If the mirror will be hung on the wall, you need a higher magnification level as you will be standing further away.

A table top mirror needs less magnification.

Consider Your Lighting

If you are purchasing a mounted or table top mirror, consider the lighting in the room. Ideally, get a mirror that has built-in LED lights.

If you have a handheld mirror, you can simply move to where there is natural light.

Select the Type of Mirror that Suits Your Needs

When selecting a magnification mirror, you can choose from a few different types.

The correct one for you depends on how you apply makeup and your needs.

Table top

This is the most common type and they are great for general use. They are easy to transport and are normally dual sided so you can select which side you prefer.

They can be quite fragile if poorly built, so they aren’t great for traveling.


If you want to travel with the mirror, a handheld (compact) mirror is the perfect choice.

Some handheld models can stand up on a table top but can be folded away for safe transport.

They fit well into a purse, allowing you to freshen up your makeup on the go.


These are also table top mirrors, but they do not necessarily offer magnification. They normally have lights built in and offer you views of your face from all angles.

This type of mirror is ideal if you want to see your face from every angle to make adjustments to a flawless look.


If you want a more permanent mirror that you can install in a well-lit room, then a wall-mounted (mirror-mounted) model may be for you. This type of mirror normally has some magnification.

They also typically have arm attachments that allow you to move the mirror closer to or push it further away from you.

These mirrors can be mounted on your wall or may come with strong suction cups that attach to your bathroom mirror.



These mirrors come in any of the above mirror forms: table top, handheld, tri-mount, or wall-mounted.

If you have a poorly lit bedroom or bathroom where you apply your makeup, then a lighted mirror is just what you need.

Go for a model that has warm white LED lights that have a color as close to natural daylight as possible.

Your Eyesight Affects the Level

A makeup mirror is good for getting an up-close view of your face, but magnification is mainly designed for those with vision problems.

If you wear contact lenses or glasses, you must remove them to apply makeup. A magnified makeup mirror acts in place of your glasses so you can see clearly.

If you don’t have vision problems but you want a magnification makeup mirror, a 5X level will work well.

You can see your face more clearly but you won’t distort your features.

Finding the best magnification for a makeup mirror is not easy.

If you don't have vision issues, then you may find that a magnifying mirror distorts your vision to a point where you cannot properly apply your makeup.

If you do choose a magnification mirror, opt for the lowest magnification possible and find a mirror type which fits the way in which you want to use it.