Humans have always been fascinated with their own reflection, thus, a major role mirrors play in our daily lives. Not only does it boost confidence in a person, as a decorative piece, it also adds sophistication in a place especially if it is well placed. Like all else, mirrors come in different types, functioning differently.
In this post, we shall look at the different types of mirrors. If you are looking for the perfect type of mirror in your extra space, here are the different types of mirrors.
In this article:
- Types of Mirrors
- 1. Plane mirror
- 2. Spherical mirrors
- 3. Concave mirror
- 4. Convex mirror
- 5. Non-reversing mirror
- 6. Two-way mirror
- 7. Freestanding full-length mirror
- 8. Traditional full-length mirror
- 9. Cheval full-length mirror
- 10. Leaning full-length mirror
- 11. Mounted mirror
- 12. Over-the-door mirror
- 13. Vanity mirror
- 14. Bespoke mirror
- 15. Antique and vintage mirror
- 16. Wall mirror
- 17. Custom-designed mirror
- 18. Silvered mirror
- 19. Acoustic mirror
- Factors to consider when buying a mirror
- How do I clean my mirror?
- Can mirrors be recycled?
- Where is the best place to put your mirror?
- How much does a mirror cost?
- What if my mirror does not look right in my home?
- Is it safe to buy mirrors online?
- Can a mirror be painted?
- How many types of mirrors are there?
- Who invented the mirror?
- What type of mirror is used in a satellite dish?
Types of Mirrors
1. Plane mirror
It is the most common type of mirror you can see in your homes, office, bathrooms, and other more. It is usually flat in appearance and is coated using metal alloy.
Since it produces images that are nearly identical, a plane mirror is the best mirror for you if you want to see yourself as it reflects real proportions.
2. Spherical mirrors
This type of mirror which comes, well, in spherical shape. It has two main types, the concave mirror and the convex mirror. Spherical mirrors are usually found in modern and contemporary homes, giving angles that match the neat lines of such interior.
3. Concave mirror
The main identifier of this one is that it bulges outward so the image produced is quite distorted or looks larger than normal. Concave mirrors are those used in magnifying glasses, security cameras and among vehicles.
The good thing about this type of mirror is that it could make you see even the most minute detail making it good for make-up application and security.
4. Convex mirror
This one is also called the converging mirror. Unlike concave mirrors, convex mirrors tend to curve outward, resulting in images that look smaller than usual. Although the image produced is considered distorted, it still gives greater coverage when it comes to view.
Hence, it is understandable as to why it is used mainly for rear-view mirrors in vehicles or in what they call as vigilance mirrors. They are also used as reflectors in street lamps.
5. Non-reversing mirror
This one is also called the flip mirror or the true mirror because it offers the most accurate reflection of a person or object.
This type of mirror shows exactly how another person sees you. As is the case, this one is best used for changing rooms in malls and boutiques as well as in dancing studios.
6. Two-way mirror
Essentially, two-way mirrors are composed of reflective portions on one side and clear on the other. Being a fan of crime films, you might already know that this type of mirror is used in interrogation rooms. You can literally see the clear side while you are on the dark side and that is kind of cool.
7. Freestanding full-length mirror
As the name implies, this type of mirror allows you to see yourself from head-to-toe. Best used in a store changing cabin and best for mirror kind selfie shots which is very likeable for Gen Zs and millennials as the image it reflects are social media friendly.
8. Traditional full-length mirror
This type of mirror usually is mounted horizontally and can be seen in a room to make the room appear larger. If you have a compact room and would want to give it the illusion of space, this one is a good choice.
9. Cheval full-length mirror
This type of mirror has feet that makes it able to stand freely on the floor. It is typically seen on walk in closets and dressing rooms as it is best for fitting because you can tilt the mirror based on your fitting preference.
Cheval full-length mirror gives your room a vintage feel and is perfect for retro and chic interiors.
10. Leaning full-length mirror
Unlike the cheval full-length mirror, this type has no support or base making it freestanding. Due to its large size and bulky look, they are literally placed on the floor to lean against the wall.
11. Mounted mirror
This type of mirror ranges from small-medium size. In photography you can call this type a medium shot as it only shows from your head down to your shoulders.
They are made in various shapes and sizes (rectangular, round, oval, and other traditional shapes) and are almost in every home, especially in the bathroom.
Related: 21+ Simple DIY Mirror Frame Ideas
12. Over-the-door mirror
This type of mirror is best for small spaces as it can be mounted in the back of your doors, in your cabinet sets or any other space available in the room.
This is the ultimate space saving option type of mirror. So, if you have a small space and you are thinking of buying a mirror, this one is probably the best.
13. Vanity mirror
As the term suggests, this one is made for grooming. They can be oblong, circle or square. And if you have a larger room, you can have a vanity dresser and install with it a vanity mirror to make you feel as if you are a celebrity.
14. Bespoke mirror
This mirror type is made for customization. You tailor every element from the size to the cut of the glass, frame, size, and mirror mounting. This type is best for people who have sophisticated taste in designs and want the home to be cohesive or uniform looking.
15. Antique and vintage mirror
Well, this one is the mirror of the yesteryears, as the term implies. Because of their age, they can be profitable. But design-wise, you can create a sophisticated look with this one.
Many people are also into antique mirrors because it does not only add so much beauty in a home but a very wise investment because its value weighs the years it has been made.
16. Wall mirror
It mirrors or reflects objects or a scene back. It simply throws up a reflection of whatever happens to be situated just in front of it.
17. Custom-designed mirror
With the name itself, this type of mirror is custom made according to your preference. Custom-made mirrors can come in a wide range of designs, including:
- Backsplashes made of mirrors to add a special touch to your kitchen
- Full-length mirrors to help you dress up
- Mirror table tops that look great and serve a unique purpose
- Mirrored walls to give your bedroom a special look
- Mirrors with specialized frames to accent certain aspects of the room they are in.
18. Silvered mirror
This type of mirror is coated with a reflective material, which comes from several different materials including silver, which is the most common.
This type having silver as its material makes the mirror last a bit longer and very lightweight compared to other types. It is often used in bathroom or furniture mirrors that are decorative in nature.
19. Acoustic mirror
This type of mirror is unique in a way that it does not reflect visual reflections. Rather, it reflects sound waves. Used by the military and best for sports events, picking up distant sounds.
Factors to consider when buying a mirror
Beyond the types, materials, and styles of mirrors, there are other important factors to consider before buying one. Here are some pointers to be aware of before shopping for a mirror.
1. Type of room
Not all mirrors are made for all rooms. There are still some that are more functional than others given your needs and preferences. For instance, bathrooms can benefit a lot from wall mounted mirrors while hallways could
2. The shape of the mirror
The shape of the room must be considered based on the space design as mirrors are known for the beauty they add in a home or space.
3. Size of the mirror
The size of the mirror must be considered and not space per se is important as mirrors can give in or give out space in your home or wherever you are placing it.
4. Mirror frame
Design wise, mirror frames are considered because frames add a little something to a mirror. Unique mirror frames are best seen in vintage houses, hotels, restaurants, and other public places best for picture taking and the like.
5. The mirror surface
Considered for its quality in the like. The surface (i.e coating, materials), must be considered when buying mirrors as it can make or break you speaking of the amount and effort you give in having your space designed.
If you are low in budget, we suggest that you look for mirrors with a lower price but good in quality. But if you have enough budget, we suggest that you look for the ones that are good in price with good quality. But always remember that if there is still no need to buy, there is no need to buy. Spend your money wisely for more stylish mirrors in the future.
This is best for your chosen designs. You may look for grey, bronze, pink, violet, red, clear or other more colors. The color you choose reflects the design or the mood in the space you wish to add the mirror as part of your space design.
As for the style, from the size or shape of the mirror to the frame design, choose where you feel beautiful at. Beauty is subjective, that is why people’s choice of design varies because we see beauty differently.
How do I clean my mirror?
A dirty mirror can ruin the beauty of the image it reflects so always make it a point to clean your mirrors if there’s a need to. Here are some pointers on how to clean your mirrors.
- Make your unused clothes usable. Put some glass cleaner in your clean unused clothes and wipe all the dust, scratches or anything that makes your mirrors look dirty, though it doesn’t apply to all kinds of mirror.
- Make it a habit to clean your mirrors in one direction, from to bottom until you have covered every inch.
- Stand back, at a 45-degree angle to the mirror, to check more dirty spots – go over them with a dry cloth and make sure to clean them all over again.
A friendly tip to every mirror owner is that when cleaning mirrors with water, it may or may not damage your mirrors. Some mirrors are not water friendly. So always check if you’re the materials used in a mirror or you can ask the seller if it can be used for water, glass cleaners and the like.
Can mirrors be recycled?
People love to recycle as it can help the environment but we have to disagree with this one. Mirrors cannot be recycled. Nonetheless, here are some tips on the proper dumping of mirrors since we cannot recycle them.
- Dump in the trash bin. Make sure to dispose of it properly according to the garbage type. For mirrors, it is classified under special waste so make it a habit to put some trash bins and mark it as ‘special waste’ for sanitation purposes.
- If broken, wrap. When getting rid of the broken mirrors, get the old newspapers or scratch papers or any kind of paper, wrap and label it as ‘this contains sharp objects.’
- Take it to the landfill. If you are near the landfill, you can immediately drop it off so that no person will be harmed by the broken glass.
- Sell your mirrors. It has been said that buying mirrors does not only add aesthetic to a place but is a profitable one. So, if you plan to buy a new one and you are thinking on how to dispose of it, selling it is the best option. You can put it on sale and post it online as it is the most powerful platform in selling nowadays.
- Gift your mirrors. If you outgrow your mirror, other than selling, you can gift your old mirrors to a friend or to anyone you like to give them. Giving is better than throwing them especially if it Is still usable.
Where is the best place to put your mirror?
The right place is always the best place. Wherever you think it may look beautiful is the best place. But when choosing the best place to put your mirrors, here are some guides according to Feng Sui and other beliefs.
- Place mirrors perpendicular to the front door: It is believed that when you put mirrors perpendicular to your front door, opportunities will keep entering your homes.
- Use mirrors on any dining room walls: It is believed that the best place to put your mirrors to is the dining area. It says that it measures your capacity to hold wealth—a thing we would all want to reflect in our lives.
- Avoid mirrors in the kitchen. It is believed that when hanging mirrors, always remember to never place it perpendicular to a stove as it gives negative energy into a home. So, if you have one, you may think of putting your mirror in other parts of your home.
- Place mirrors opposite beautiful views: When placing a mirror, always make it a point that it reflects beautiful views because it is believed that beautiful things will keep coming if you put your mirror in front of a beautiful view.
- Pick a square or rectangular mirror in which you can see yourself from head to toe. Keep your mirrors in full view instead of the short-sized mirror. It is believed that keeping mirrors that break reflection (not in full view) will keep negative energy in a home or a place where it is placed.
How much does a mirror cost?
The cost of a mirror always depends on the size, style and material used in the object. When buying a mirror, keep in mind the budget you have as it can affect the quality of your chosen mirror type. ‘The higher the price, the higher the quality,’ does not always apply. It still depends on how the owner takes care of the object and where it has been placed.
What if my mirror does not look right in my home?
Before buying a new one, keep in mind the space you are putting it into, may it be in your room, dining area, hotel or a restaurant. Always visualize or imagine the style or design or better if you ask experts to suggest the kind of design to make it look perfect in the space provided.
Is it safe to buy mirrors online?
Shopping online is very evident nowadays because of the convenience it provides but there are still a lot of complications talking about purchasing online. While it is best to buy in an actual shop, many are still into online shopping. But the question is, is it safe to buy mirrors online?
The answer depends on the person. Many believe that it may be broken during delivery but many still order online. But if you have time to visit the physical stores, we recommend that you visit one so you can compare the price and the designs provided.
You may look for the designs online so you can have an idea of the possible designs and styles of the mirror you wish to purchase and still buy it in a physical store.
Can a mirror be painted?
Mirror frames can be painted, not the mirror. While paints can add extra color into an object (especially for designs), painting mirrors are not advisable. You can look for different colors of a mirror, paint the mirror frames or even the sides of the mirror but you can never change the color of the mirror as if you do it, you may not reflect any image anymore.
How many types of mirrors are there?
There are nineteen (19) types of mirrors listed here. Any of these types can be suited according to the need of the space or according to the owners’ preference.
When choosing the best type of mirror, always remember that your choice can add or lessen the beauty you put into the space provided to put in the mirror so always choose the mirror that reflects you as a person and is the perfect type for your space design.
Who invented the mirror?
Justus von Liebig, a German chemist, invented the modern glass mirrors that are used today. Though, other examples of mirrors have been around for thousands of years.
Justus von Liebig’s mirror was invented in 1835, but the earliest archetypes of mirrors date back more than 6000 years. It is believed that people in Anatolia made the first mirrors. They were made from crushed and polished volcanic glass called obsidian.
Mirrors were later made from polished copper by Ancient Egyptians. Mesopotamians made mirrors from burnished metal. Polished stone mirrors were produced by Central America and South America.
In China, mirrors were made from polished bronze and metal alloys. Mirrors that were made from these precious metals were considered very valuable during the ancient times. Only the wealthiest could afford to have such mirrors.
What type of mirror is used in a satellite dish?
The type of mirror that is used in a satellite dish is the concave mirror. It is known that concave mirrors reflect images larger than and since satellite dishes are far in distance, the waves that reach the earth from them are practically parallel.
When these waves strike a properly aimed concave mirror, they are all reflected through the focus of the mirror. The purpose of the mirror is to gather the weak signals over a large area and concentrate them in one spot.
Mirrors have a lot of benefits from seeing oneself to giving a space beauty. The main buying guide here is to always give it a time to think about what you want for a mirror design before you buy because if you know what you want, you will know exactly what you need to buy. Lesser effort, lesser time, best mirror of your choice.
With all that we have covered here, choosing mirrors for the home for whatever reason should be a concerted choice. But with this list, we know that you will make the perfect choice.