Mirrors are a classic feng shui recommendation…for so many reasons! Let’s reflect on the dos and don’ts of mirrors.
Feng shui and mirrors go together like landscaping and trees. After all, feng shui is about how energy flows through your home – and nothing helps direct and shift energy flow quite like mirrors. Chances are a solid 100% that if you’re going to decorate using feng shui principles, you’re going to want some mirrors.
But it’s not as simple as you might expect. Mirrors are not a one-size-fits-all or more-is-better sort of feng shui cure. There are actually many reasons you might want to bring in a mirror, and there are also several important considerations to keep in mind when you do.
The good news is, it won’t take you long to learn the basic dos and don’ts of mirrors and feng shui. Read on to discover everything you need to know.
If your space feels cramped or narrow in any area, mirrors are your friend. A large or medium-sized mirror can add space to a narrow hallway, a small foyer, or any other space you’d like to “expand.”
Don’t: Create Space in the Wrong Place
If a room or hallway is long, don’t hang a mirror at the narrow end. Instead, hang one on the side of the hallway or along the longer wall in the room to balance out the extreme or awkward shape.
It’s a wonderful idea to hang a mirror across from or perpendicular to a window in a way that doubles the window’s light-boosting effect.
…But don’t get carried away! When mirrors reflect each other, they create a frenetic energy. You can sense it as an endless bouncing back and forth, which can foster a sense of anxiety and unease.
One of the goals of feng shui is to establish a leisurely and buoyant energy flow: not stagnant, but not too fast either. While mirrors can activate energy in a stagnant area (such as a cramped or windowless room), they can also help slow overly rapid energy. For example, a strategically placed mirror at the bottom of a staircase or on a landing (as pictured above) can promote a more balanced flow of energy by counteracting a staircase’s downward pull.
In some cases, a mirror that’s visible immediately upon entering a home can help draw energy in. But if it’s too close to the front door – say 4 to 5 feet or fewer – and directly across from the front door (so you see yourself in it immediately upon entering), it might have the opposite effect.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the most obvious reason we have mirrors in our homes: seeing ourselves. So we can, you know, put on makeup, shave, and get dressed.
Don’t: See Yourself in a Negative or Distorted Light
…But don’t set yourself up for low self-esteem! Whether a mirror is more for functional or decorative purposes, chances are good you’re going to glance at yourself in it, at least occasionally. That’s why it’s important that all your mirrors reflect you in a way that support your most positive self-image. This means making sure that no one in the house has to crouch in order to see the top of their head. Mirrors that distort your image or that break your image apart because of seams or tiles can also subtly undermine how you perceive yourself as well as how you believe that others perceive you.
According to feng shui, it’s ideal to regularly sit in places where you can see most of the room as well as the main entrance(s) to the room. This way, you feel significantly safer and more empowered in the moment, and this carries over into other areas of life. But this is not always practical: for example, sometimes the only place a desk can go is up against a wall. Mirrors can help with this. If you can’t see the room or the doors to the room from where you’re sitting, the next best thing is to be able to see the area behind you in a mirror. (I like how the mirror in the picture also brings in light from outside: bonus!)
As wonderful and useful as mirrors can be, when there’s a mirror in your bedroom, it can potentially keep you up at night or otherwise interfere with your sleep. This isn’t true for everyone, but it is for some. The best way to know for sure is to cover any mirrors you currently have in your bedroom before you go to bed, perhaps with a tapestry or sheet. Do this for a week or two and see if you notice a positive difference in your sleep quality or quantity.
Do: Use Mirrors to Energetically Protect Your Home
In addition to helping make our homes brighter, happier, and more joyful spaces, mirrors can also serve as protective charms. For example, a common feng shui cure for challenging neighbors is to hang a mirror outside your home so that it’s directly facing the home of the neighbors who are causing you grief. Or, if you feel unsafe in your home, you can hang mirrors on the outdoor side of all doors that open to the outside. If you choose to do this, simply hang the mirror with the neutral intention to redirect all negativity back to its source.
On the other hand, it’s important not to be too obvious about using mirrors for an energetic cure. If, for example, you hang a recognizable feng shui mirror outside your home, and it’s visible to your neighbors, they may have an inkling of your intentions, and they not take kindly them. Instead, you can either use a mirror that appears to be purely decorative, or you can hang a mirror on the inside of your house, but facing outward. Even though in this case, the reflective side will be facing the wall, it will still work. I have even used small mirrored craft tiles for this purpose, and simply taped them to the back of framed pictures. (Just to be clear, be sure to do this in such a way that the reflective side of the mirror is facing the wall and the neighbors. And remember to set the intention to send all negativity back to its source.)
Hanging a mirror over a fireplace is not only an attractive design choice, it also has a number of feng shui benefits. First, it balances out the fire element with the water element, as mirrors are aligned with the element of water. (You may not understand what this means, but you will feel the pleasing sense of balance nonetheless.) Second, it helps redirect and regenerate any energy that may exit the room through the fireplace. (When the fireplace is not in use, it can slightly suck energy out of a room.) And finally, because the fireplace is often the focal point of the room from a design standpoint, it can create a greater sense of comfort and safety by allowing a more comprehensive view of the room, no matter where you’re sitting.
P.S. If for any reason hanging a mirror over your fireplace is not practical, don’t worry about it! No one can incorporate every feng shui cure.
Did this post answer your question about feng shui and mirrors? Did it help you feel more confident about decorating with mirrors? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.