If you live in an area that gets little to no sunlight, buying solar-powered fairy lights isn’t an ideal situation. Instead, a safer bet is battery-operated Christmas lights. Unlike solar lights, these can be installed anywhere and are often wireless. Many people find that battery-operated choices have a higher power capacity, and are therefore brighter than solar ones.
Try to search for LED lights if you’re going the battery-operated route, since this gives you a whopping 16 times the battery life of a normal bulb and reduces the amount of power used. Many big-box stores sell these in their brick-and-mortar locations, but online shopping allows you to compare and make sure you get the best bang for your buck.
Battery-operated Christmas lights come in bulb sizes, colors, and shapes, as well as varieties that can even change color. To find lights that meet your every need, browse our carefully selected guide below.
1. Koxly 60 LED Battery Operated Fairy Lights
BEST OVERALL PICK
These remote-controlled lights come in warm white, cool white, and multicolored options on a silver wire that’s both flexible and lightweight. Thanks to the tiny waterproof battery box that comes with this light, it can be used both indoors and outdoors, minus the headache of an external power supply or trailing cables. It has various brightness settings with a built-in dimmer and a timing program, so you don’t have to worry about whether you left them on or not.
2. Koopower 100 LED Battery Operated String Lights
BEST RUNNER-UP PICK
Whereas most lights are sold on a copper or silver wire, these ones come on a clear wire, making them even more invisible and providing a floating aesthetic. They can be used inside or outside, and function throughout dusty, rainy, or frosty conditions. LED lights provide a solid amount of brightness without using up too much energy. One buyer hung them above her headboard with ease using miniature Command hooks for an attractive interior design hack.
Related: The Best String Lights
3. BOHON Natural Fluorite String Lights
MOST UNIQUE PICK
If you like to do things a little differently, consider BOHON’s battery-operated Christmas lights which are definitely not limited to holiday usage. They mimic sea glass with stringed-up raw stones, available in fluorite and amethyst. These lights are subtly beach-themed but still completely elegant, offering a touch of luxury and sparkle anywhere they’re strung up. Unlike cheap plastic imitators, these are actually made from natural raw stones. One reviewer says, “My zen has increased 460% since putting these lights up.”
4. Room Essentials Dark Green Christmas String Lights
BEST BUDGET FRIENDLY
For only $5, you can have those classic green Christmas lights that have been used and loved for decades. They’re neither high tech nor especially glamorous, but you can connect up to 5 sets, and they hold up to any weather. If you want to freshen up your outdoor space to have some otherworldly Pinterest vibes for an unbeatably low price, this is a good choice. But beware of hot bulbs, since they don’t have the cooling technology of more expensive models.
Related: The Best Outdoor Christmas Lights
5. Merkury Innovations Smart Neon Flex LED Strip Light
BEST STRIP STYLE PICK
A more modern alternative to battery-operated Christmas lights are LED strip lights, which accomplish the same goal in a clean and streamlined manner. Each strip is 16 feet long, and WiFi is built in directly to work with your existing home network. A unique breaker design allows for re-extending and trimming, so you get the perfect length you desire. For customizable lighting options that you can control from your smartphone, consider this innovative product by Merkury Innovations.
Merkury Innovations Smart Neon Flex LED Strip Light
Merkury Innovations Smart Neon Flex LED Strip Light
6. Ollivage LED Rope Lights
BEST MULTICOLOR PICK
A creative alternative to individual bulbs, these rainbow LED Christmas lights come in a rope style, but still have all the rainbow tones of your classically colorful Christmas lights. Clear tubing protects the fragile copper-wire lights inside, which also makes it easier to put up on doors, windows, and walkways. Each strip measures 40 feet long, so if the length is your priority, you may need to buy a few strips. Still, at $13.99 they’ve very budget-friendly and worth a bulk buy.
7. WERTIOO 100 LED Battery Operated String Lights
BEST GLOBE PICK
For an effortless vintage look with warm light, WERTIOO’s battery-operated string lights get the job done at just over $15. Use them in your outdoor space or any room in your home to add a festive look that’s not too seasonal. Although they’re battery-based, they consumes a low amount of energy and never overheat. One buyer notes that you need to press and hold on-and-off functions for them to properly work.
8. Twinkle Star 50 LED Battery Operated Christmas Lights
BEST OLD-SCHOOL PICK
Nothing conjures up childhood memories like these classic Christmas decor lights. These are upgrades with 8 lighting modes and waterproof features but still feature that nostalgic color scheme. One buyer notes that these still have the yellow lights, which have been phased out by many manufacturers over the year. If you’re trying to recreate that old \-school look but your dusty decades-old holiday decor has stopped functioning (or you need a non-plug-in option), replace them with these without breaking the bank.
9. Segmart LED Battery Operated String Lights
BEST BOUQUET SHAPED PICK
Guests will be bound to compliment these unusual LED lights, which hang in a bouquet shape rather than being strung up. Even though the shape is presented as a fan, each individual strand can be bent in any direction to create a range of looks. Beyond Christmas, these remote-controlled lights are perfect for more formal events as well, and even weddings. They emit a warm white light, and the silhouette stands out just the right amount without being tacky.
10. Koopower Dimmable Outdoor Battery Fairy Lights
BEST DIMMABLE PICK
Most battery-powered Christmas lights only have the ability to switch between different flickering modes, but this one actually has a built-in dimmer, letting you set the mood like never before. The adjustable brightness settings combined with a durable construction (weatherproof and waterproof) make this a popular pick on Amazon with nearly 5,000 glowing reviews. It comes complete with a remote control, so you can dim from your bed or sofa without getting up.