We tried the vertical Christmas tree light hack and it's so much easier

We compared the traditional technique with the TikTok famous 'up and down' method

mauve living room with christmas tree and fireplace
(Image credit: Future PLC)

Decorating the Christmas tree is one of the best things about the festive season. A mulled wine, some Mariah and an argument about the Christmas lights and you know the Big Day is on its way.

There are two lighting options when it comes to how to decorate a Christmas tree. So which is better, the traditional 'wrap around' method we all know and love or the vertical zigzag? 

We tried both and found that the vertical Christmas tree light hack all overTiktok actually worked better.


♬ O, Christmas Tree - Christmas

'Something really cool that I learned on TikTok is that when you're putting your Christmas lights on your Christmas tree, instead of wrapping around the tree, you actually go up and down,' says @lizlovery. 'This way you use fewer lights, if a string goes out you can easily change them and it's just a whole lot easier.'

Wrapped around

christmas tree decorated with lights using the horizontal lighting method

(Image credit: Future)

Here's my best artificial Christmas tree from Hayes Garden World, with the lights wrapped around it in the normal way. To be honest, I was a little disappointed with the finished look and found the lights looked quite sparse, despite using a lot of lights.

It was also quite a long process and I found myself flinging the lights over the top impatiently just to get it done. It looks okay, but ideally, I'd want at least double the number of lights you can see here. 'Tis the season to go overboard!

Vertical method

christmas tree decorated with lights using the vertical TikTok method

(Image credit: Future)

Now, the vertical method, which you can see above, was ten times quicker and easier, and ultimately, more effective. To cut corners, I only covered the visible areas of the tree, and this made the tree look extra luminous.

The vertical lines of the lights also divide up your tree to help you spread Christmas decorations out evenly. The only drawback is that the wires are much more visible, although once you've covered the tree in decorations it won't be so noticeable.

Life can be complicated, but putting the lights on the tree shouldn't be, so I'll be using this method from now on. Will you be trying this vertical Christmas tree light hack?

Millie Hurst
Senior Content Editor

Millie Hurst was Senior Content Editor at Ideal Home from 2020-2022, and is now Section Editor at Homes & Gardens. Before stepping into the world of interiors, she worked as a Senior SEO Editor for News UK in both London and New York. You can usually find her looking up trending terms and finding real-life budget makeovers our readers love. Millie came up with the website's daily dupes article which gives readers ways to curate a stylish home for less.